“Cruisers' plans are written in the sand at low tide” - Unknown
Antigua’s first inhabitants, the Amerindians date back to 2900 BC. As of 1200 AD, the agricultural Arawaks lived on the island and were displaced around 1500 by the Caribs--an aggressive people who ranged all over the Caribbean. Their ‘claim to fame’ in modern day history is a local beer which is named after them. Christopher Columbus named the island in 1493 after Santa Maria la Antigua, the miracle-working saint of Seville, but Europeans didn’t settle there for another century due to resistance from the Caribs and a lack of fresh water.
We disagree. We found the island to be a lovely place with many beautiful natural beaches and coves, charming local houses gaily painted with gingerbread trim and a fine selection of cafes and eating establishments many of which are right on the beach. The island is expensive and there are a few too many all-inclusive resorts for our taste, but I guess both are necessary for the island’s economy which relies mainly on tourism.
Although the harbor floor was indeed soft mud with some gravel, as Patrice saw when he dove down to check, the keel got somehow completely wedged into that mud and would not budge! The harbor officials offered little assistance, but thankfully our pontoon neighbors all came out to us on their dinghies to lend a hand and their advice. This ready willingness to help it is one of the things I love about this lifestyle. After two hours (!) of trying various ideas and combinations of pushing and pulling, while trying not to panic a local fishing boat came to the rescue and pulled us out. Whew!