Dry Cleaning, Cruiser Style

We have left the Exumas and headed east into the Atlantic to some of the islands we visited last year.  We are currently on Long Island, a far cry from the island of the same name we are so familiar with!

Ocean Breeze resort is one of the places where cruisers flock to do their laundry.  It’s a pristine little resort, and the laundry room is spotless. You can sit on a deck overlooking Thompson Bay drinking a cold beverage or even having lunch as you do laundry.

Bahamas Ocean Breeze Long Island

Last year, while I waited for my wash, I met Nancy from Trumpeter who took an hour or so to teach me how to make the local basket which is a tightly coiled technique using Silver Queen palm fronds.  We have bumped into them again this year! Here! How serendipitous!  Nancy makes about 100 baskets each season and delivers them to school children back in the US, when she and her husband George do a program on cultural differences.  This year she has made a wedding present basket that is truly amazing.  I hope to get a photo, but for now here is a photo from last year when Nancy was patiently instructing me.


So….back to laundry.  This is one of those places I count on.  Yesterday morning Bob had already taken the sheets off the bed when a little voice told me I should call Ocean Breeze on VHF radio, and when I did I learned that their water maker is not functioning so there is no laundry available!  Oh no!  That made me realize a few things:  first, I have thought that water makers have made life on these islands so much easier.  While people still do collect water in cisterns, mostly during the hurricane season, and ration water at all times whether from the water maker or from the cistern, I never thought how fragile it is to rely on these modern conveniences.  When mechanical things break down out here it is not so simple to make repairs.  So, Ocean Breeze is carefully rationing their water now.

So that brings me to dry cleaning.  We have heard of this and have now we’ve experienced it!  When cruisers cannot do real laundry they take their sheets and towels and hang them out in the breeze and the sunlight.  I imagine that there is some benefit to this…. clean air and bright sunlight must have some cleaning properties.  Anyway….this was our only option.  Next hope of laundry is either Black Point in the Exumas or Rock Sound on Eluthera.  Must get it done before next guests arrive!

When you visits places like this, you have to expect some inconveniences….like resorting to cruiser style dry cleaning.


We have had a little tragedy onboard Pandora.  My wonderful little window box, full of very happy plants, fell overboard!  You cannot imagine how sad I am about this.  Whenever we move location we put the window box in a safe place, usually in the dinghy that is up in its davits.   One day, last week we just moved from one side of Elizabeth harbor to the other and we didn’t even give my precious little gems a thought.  I was at the wheel, and I didn’t even see them go over.  My chives had somehow figured out it was spring and were bursting into bloom.  I was looking forward to having the flowers on salads.  The geranium was full of happy red flower heads, and the parsley had gotten quite full and delicious.  We didn’t realize it had all gone overboard until about an hour after anchoring.  Bob took off in the dinghy to see if by chance it was floating in the current.  There was a pretty strong current taking it out to sea, and he only found the empty window box.  The plants had fallen out and probably sank.  I feel just miserable about this.   All the islands and cays down here have such a desert climate that my little window box was quite a bright spot in my days.  I am so sorry about its salty demise. I don’t even have a recent photo of it, but this is from a month ago or so…


Lastly, I dug out an old sock project that I brought on board.  It is the “skew socks” from Knitty Winter 2009 by Lana Holden.  I am having a great time finishing up this crazily fun design!  The straight sections are basically diagonal knitting , and the shaping of the toe and heel is quite creative!  I don’t even know how I would begin to envision this on my own, but I am certainly having a great time following the directions.  The heel ended up being a flap that jutted out on only one side of the circular row.  After knitting the entire heel flap (which looked nothing like any heel flap I’ve done before!) you put half of the flap on each of two dps and graft them together with a bit of spare yarn.  The working yarn ends up just where you need it to be to continue knitting around minus the heel flap that just got grafted together.  The graft ends up being a vertical line rather than the typical horizontal, and that is part of skewed-ness of the design.


Five years ago, I posted this photo from the instructions on knitty, and now I am even more smitten by the cute photo and the designer’s sense of humor and love of math!

Knitty skew socks

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