The journey all began at UWI one day while the men were idling away our lives in the canteen having some lunch,
by chance a member of a whatsapp group chat dropped a comment asking if anyone was interested in sailing to St. Vincent with a friend of theirs and without a moment of thought, I saw a chance to land Vincy and pree sweet tings so I jumped in the chat like
Luckily my family had no problem with me leaving the country in a 25ft boat to travel to a foreign country (over 111 miles away by sea) with a stranger from the UK, furthermore, my merka Kiel was about that life too so before you knew it we were down at the harbor working on our magnificent vessel, “Sweetie Pie” along side our fearless captain, Richard.
A few days later we were ready to sail, GPS was charged, satellite phone prepped, one backpack of luggage containing the merka essentials around our backs and we set out for St. Vincent aboard Sweetie Pie with our four man crew comprising of Kiel & I, the captain and his relative, it took about 24 hours to reach St. Vincent due to the shy tea winds but time went by quickly as we took shifts driving and maintaining the course, I was impressed by Kiels bubbling energy and constant surveillance of the coastline, what character and dedication:
N.B – No land in site at this point thought the men were drifting to Trinidad
Anyway, we could soon see St. Vincent on the horizon, which was all the motivation I needed at this point because Land = Food ya toweeellllll & the way this EC$ to Bajan Dollar exchange rate setup the feast was about to be real, the men landed Blue Lagoon in the afternoon after navigating around the rocky coast line and took a moment to freshen up before we hit the local food spots to exploit our new found wealth
As if that wasn’t enough, there was a bar right there, and being the adventurous, god fearing men that we are, we took this opportunity to try out a local delicacy, sunset rum >:)
One or two shots of that was enough to numb the effects of whatever we drank after, to this day i’m pretty sure this photo summarizes how salty we felt when we heard you couldn’t bring it into Barbados ya rass.
Anyway, so the men landed Bequia, at this point I’m already content with life from St. Vincents food and general irieness, little did I know that Bequia was 10x harder. The moment we landed an old lady pulled a fish out the water and dropped it into her bucket, which got me hype cause I love a little fishin’ 😉 but forgot all my things. So my first mission was finding some fishing line…
(Sailing to Bequia)
Walking along the coastline now looking for a fishing store locals all greeted us kindly offering us drinks, asking about or trip, tryna sell us herb (Cawlen everyone has herb in SVG yc.) and of course the fishing store was closed so it was drinks!
Unfortunately two days later it was time to leave to head back to Barbados, unlike our journey there the wind was facing us on the trip back and as a result we were forced to motor back, which meant a shorter time but MUCH harder conditions as we faced waves head on…
Luckily being the Badmen that our fathers raised us to be, the merkas set out at sunrise to head back, 5 minutes into the journey as we rounded the cliff side of bequia, the first snap was heard, we lost steering as the engine broke from one of its hinges… as a result the fuel line popped out… men start drifting towards this cliff calm calm calm, I messaged my boy Jesus for help real quick and he hit me back with this:
So the men decided to take matters into our own hands, someone found the fuel hose, I realigned the engine manually, and we squeezed our way back into bequia to do some repairs.
At this point you’re probably thinking, so the men breezed and took a plane home? Well you’ve mistaken badmen for cornbeef families, we got a new fuel line, did some chubble with the engine and set back out, everything was going sweet, for the first few hours atleast before our giant gas barrel (Which took up 80% of the space and covered me in gasoline while refilling it) decided it was done with pumping gave out.. in the middle of the ocean… so you know at this point there was only one logical measure to be taken.
After the standard disaster management protocol was complete it was time to sort out our situation, which took the form of one person being assigned to manually pumping the gasoline into the engine for the remainder of the trip, so basically our setup was one man hold a flashlight on the compass and pumping this little black oval of death, while another fought through the waves into the night, In a desparate attempt to sleep I tied myself to multiple poles below deck and stuffed life jackets under me to cushion the impact from the fall after EVERY SINGLE WAVE YA RSHL. And just as I’d achieved what I’d considered to be sleep a friendly voice saying “Philip refill the gas tank” would bring some joy into my day 🙂
14 hours later we arrived back on the coast of Barbados, 3/4am in the morning, not a coast guard in site, not a customs officer to welcome us, I seriously reconsidered smuggling back that Sunset with me but alas it was too late families. Just when we thought we were good in the hood, Richard yells “The reverse gear isn’t working” which at the point I didn’t really consider significant, until i looked up and recognized we were heading into the shallow draft wall, Richard vise something like “Hold on men we gunna hit”, but badmen weren’t going down so, Kiel and I jumped over board onto the rocks ahead and pushed the boat back out into the water, jumped back on, ran to the back and pushed us off of the boat we were now on a collision course, then we slowly, manually parked this boat in its respective spot by dragging it around the moored boats which crowded the area. (After having to parkour from boat to boat to get it there).
And just like that we’d done it, the men sailed to St. Vincent and back, would I do it again?
For these views fo shizzle.