Daybreak at the Sugar Loaves finds Cutter Loose surrounded by flat calm emerald water for as far as the eye can see. This attractive setting invites exploration by dinghy, including a circumnavigation of Sugar Loaf Cay with side trips to nearby Matt Lowe Cay beach and Sugarloaf Creek. This sure beats the morning commute to work in rush hour traffic.
There comes a time in every voyage when the “outward bound exploration” mode gives way to a “return to home base” mode. We are now at that juncture, revisiting harbors that we have already explored and making plans to visit a few new destinations before leaving the Sea of Abaco. As recently as a few days ago, we were content to relax and enjoy the moment, checking the weather forecast for today and tomorrow. Now, we have begun to focus equally on the long-range forecast, identifying trends and developing tentative schedules for the critical passages through Whale Cay and across the Gulf Stream to Florida. The goal is to return Cutter Loose to the relative safety of the Chesapeake Bay before the onset of hurricane season on June 1st.
The anchor is up in the Sugar Loaves at 11:30 AM. Cutter Loose is bound for Marsh Harbor for one final provisioning visit to Maxwell’s Grocery Store and Da Bes Yet Bakery. Maxwell’s restocks its shelves on Tuesday and Friday afternoons. Today, the selection of fresh fruits and vegetables at Maxwell’s is at its peak. Almost any product can be purchased at Maxwell’s, albeit at prices 30% higher than in the U.S. This pricing is understandable since all of the products sold here arrive by freighter.
We spend our final night in Marsh Harbour at the Jib Room barbeque. This is a Wednesday night tradition in Marsh Harbour. We are joined by five Island Packet owners whose boats are anchored in the harbor. Live entertainment tonight is provided by Desmond, a limbo dancer whose signature act involves squatting under a flaming limbo stick resting a mere 12 inches above the ground.