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21 August 2017

Dumpster Diving In George Town, Bahamas | Is This Really The Cruiser's Mecca?

Note: Our blog lags reality by many, many weeks. So while you're reading about our cruising adventures in the Bahamas, in reality we're actually back at Indiantown Marina working on boat projects. Cruising in the Bahamas was much more fun. {Sigh}

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So we finally made it to George Town. No, not the one in Washington D.C., the one in the Bahamas. People describe it as Mecca for cruisers. It's the hot spot. The place to be seen and to anchor your boat. People make their way there for the season and never leave, it's supposed to be that much fun.

During peak season you can find around 500 boats anchored in the harbor. When we were there, I think there were probably less than 20.

During peak season there are tons of activities going on - volleyball matches, yoga classes, dog costume competitions, craft lessons and the like. When we were there (and we were there way too long waiting on weather), we only heard of one gathering - a solstice beach party.

Other than the beach party, probably the most interesting time we had in George Town was dumpster diving for something to use to bail water out of our dinghy. I guess that's the downside of cruising during the off-season - less social activity. Although, for a couple of introverts like us, that can also be an upside as well.

Don't get me wrong - George Town is a nice enough town, it has lots of amenities, its a great place to resupply and the people are super friendly, but my overall impression was meh...nothing to write home about.

Even if there's nothing to write home about, there's always something to blog about. So come have a little wander around George Town with us.

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Have you ever ridden that Splash Mountain ride at Disneyland or Disney World? Taking your dinghy into George Town kind of reminded me of it. You make your way through choppy water across the anchorage, go through this tiny tunnel with the current pushing you along at rather a jaunty clip and pop out the other end at the dinghy dock.



All of the bright colors help you forget what a dreary and overcast day it is.



I thought this was an interesting building. Those placards have verses from Exodus and Psalms written on them.


I love the shutters on this church.


One of the liquor stores in town. We were in search of reasonably priced rum. We didn't find it here. We did find it at the other liquor store where we waited out a heavy squall. A squall that swamped our dinghy. A squall that made us remember, Oops guess we forgot to get a new bailer for our dinghy. Guess it's time to do some dumpster diving and find a cup or something. It was gross, but sometimes you have to do what you have to do.



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Cruising Log | Thursday, 15 June 2017 - Tuesday, 20 June 2017

15 June
Early start means using the generator. Took four tries to start the engine with the generator running out of gas between attempts #3 and #4. Anchor up 6:45 AM. Anchor down at 5:30 PM at Hamburger Beach, Stocking Island. Had to motor the entire way. Lumpy at beginning, then settled down. Not much traffic. Nautical Miles = 43. Engine = 10 hours 45 mins. Spending = Nil

16 June
Took the dinghy over to George Town. Very lumpy ride. Had to wait out a squall in the liquor store. The dinghy was swamped when we got back. Didn't have a bailer, had to dig a cup out of the trash. People in Georgetown super friendly, but the place is kind of meh. Nautical Miles = Nil. Engine = Nil. Spending = Whatever a reasonably priced bottle of rum costs.

17 June
Learned our lesson and moved Tickety Boo over to George Town, rather than take the dinghy to get supplies. Got 20 gallons of free RO water at the Exuma Markets. Easy-peasy, just fill up your jerry cans at the dinghy dock. Got diesel and gas at the Shell station. Dumped some trash. Headed back over to Stocking Island and dropped the hook at Monument Beach. Nautical Miles = 3. Engine = 1 hour. Spending = $73.62 ($55.62 - 10 gallons diesel and 2.5 gallons gas; $15 -eggs, 6-pack of coke, crackers, eggs and cumin & $3 -trash).

18-20 June
Lazed about. Many naps interspersed with reading, writing, cooking and watching TV. Complete and utter slugs. Nautical Miles = Nil. Engine Hours = Nil. Spending = Nil.

Have you ever been to Georgetown? What was your experience like? Ever done any dumpster diving? What would it take for you to stick your hand in a pile of trash?

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26 comments:

  1. Lovely pictures Ellen. I think the bright colors make a difference too. Thank you for sharing these. I have never been to Georgetown though I have been to the bahamas. I used to pick up trash when I worked in a zoo and I don't think I would stick my hands in anyone elses' trash without gloves. Now my own ... hm... I am known to have a fast toss and go reflex and I have had to sift through it on rare occasions. LOL

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    1. The bright colors that they paint building in the Bahamas are so cheerful. Picking thru the trash was pretty gross, I have to admit :-(

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  2. I love the bright colors.

    I once dropped my keys in a trash can at a gas station. That was a load of fun fishing them out again.

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    1. Oh no! I guess when it comes to keys, you don't have a choice but to dig thru the trash.

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  3. Once when we were there I came out the Lake Victoria chute when the tide was against the wind. Swamped our inflatable and killed the outboard. Lost my bailing bucket. I made it to shore, found an empty flower pot to bail, dumped out the drinking water Gerry cans and rowed back. Great fun!

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    1. That inlet to Lake Victoria is insane in certain conditions. Love the idea of using a flower pot as a bailer.

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  4. I know you had a great time, well except for the swamping of the dinghy. That wasn't fun.

    I've search dumpsters before. It's a long story. When you work in law enforcement you're going to search a dumpster at some point. I'm so glad I'm retired.

    Have a fabulous day and week. ☺

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    1. Well, at least you got paid for digging through dumpsters :-)

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  5. I would have to be incredibly desperate to go through trash. If I needed something to bail I'd probably buy a big soft drink somewhere. ~grin~ Hope you are well!

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    1. We were really desperate. Unfortunately, there wasn't any place nearby to buy a soft drink from, otherwise that would have been a much better idea.

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  6. My favorite photo is the one of the church - love those blue shutters!

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  7. I like the pink police station. I'm sure that would make all the criminals feel so happy they wouldn't commit any crimes!

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    1. Ah, that makes sense now why it's painted pink :-)

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  8. 500 anchored boats. I can't even imagine that. If you ever are at a dock with that many anchored boats, try to take as picture for us. :)

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    1. It sounds insane to me. I've seen other people's pictures of when its that crowded and I have to say I'm glad I wasn't there at that time.

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  9. Why do those colors always look fantastic in the tropics and hideous in the north? What amazing beauty. I loved that boat entrance to George Town!

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    1. That's so true - those colors would look garish in other places, but in the Bahamas they're perfect.

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  10. Hi Ellen,

    Our first impression of George Town was the same as yours. The grocery store there is so filthy. It doesn't look like like they have mopped the floors in years. Yuk. I posted a picture of rotting food under the store self on our blog. Dumpster diving is probably healthier than shopping at this market.

    The Chat and Chill was nasty and the food was horrid. We found most of the other cruisers to be cliquish and standoffish. People would put a jacket on a shaded table at the C&C and then not sit there for hours. This is unlike most of the other places we have visited where cruisers seek to meet others.

    Boats anchor on top of each other at the popular spots and then wonder why they come loose when the wind picks up. No one leaves to pump out holding tanks. There are no pump out facilities anymore so these boats flush raw sewage into the harbor. We anchored in the middle of Elizabeth Harbour to avoid the masses. The holding was much better and we could run our water-maker if needed. We tried not to run the water maker there.

    The first time there we were very disappointed. We had read great things about GT. The second time there we use GT strictly as a provision stop and spent less than a week there. We loved the Exuma Islands and think this is one of the best places we have cruised so far. But as for GT, meh!

    Mark and Cindy
    sv Cream Puff

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    1. That's so interesting to read that other people weren't impressed with George Town. I'm kind of glad we didn't go to the Chat and Chill while we were there after reading about your experience.

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  11. Nope, I've never been to Georgetown, (except for the one near D.C.)and it isn't likely that I ever will be there, so I'm enjoying your travels vicariously. It's surprising that neither you nor the previous commenter were impressed with the area. I'd only heard good things about it in the past. I reckon it's another case of hype not living up to reality.

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    1. Same with me - I'd only heard good things about it too and was surprised to find that I thought it was just okay. Although, it could be due to the time of year we visited. Or it's just that it's some people's cup of tea and not others

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  12. What did end up using for a bailer? inquiring minds, and mine, want to know...

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    1. A plastic cup. The first one we used broke so I had to go digging for another one.

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  13. My dumpster diving career began at the tender and impressionable age of 5 years, when I dragged home a bicycle that only needed (as my dad said) everything to make it go. Tires, handlebars, all that. But dad thought I was so resourceful that he fixed up the bike, which I promptly crashed into a tree. I guess mom and dad were right when they said I had to wait until age 7 for a 2 wheeler.

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    1. Your dumpster diving experience sounds a lot more fun and educational than mine was :-)

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