Galley Wench Tales

Exploring the world through the people we meet
and the food they eat.

Michael and Colleen of Goldilocks in Charlotte Amalie,
St. Thomas.  Check out their blog —

We’re sailing for the long haul, so we’re more likely to befriend cruisers like ourselves than charter boat renters.  With clear waters, warm weather, easy sailing and lots of anchorages, the Virgin Islands are one of the most popular charter bases in the world.  Amidst the crowds, we felt lonesome for our own kind.
Despite keeping in touch over email, I missed Lili and Tomas of Heron (click here and here to learn more about our time with them and click here for their blog) and Kim and Scott of Bella Blue.  We we spent several happy weeks socializing with, as our paths crossed, off and on.  Ultimately, we sailed off in opposite directions, wishing each other a fond farewell and hoping to someday meet again.
Enter Colleen and Michael, hiking along the ridge trail above The Bight on Norman Island, BVI (click here for some great Norman Island images).  With Goldilocks, their Shannon 38’ sailboat, they too sail an older “boaty boat” like ours, smaller than the usual sleek 40+ foot cruising boat far more prevalent in the Caribbean. These are boats whose forte is not speed, but sturdiness; they’re built to withstand rough storms in the open ocean.  They are more like homes, not hotels, with lots of storage. 
Colleen plays Vanna White with her
favorite Rigid tool (for sanding). 
Blissfully, Colleen and Michael are also as frugal as we are, more likely to point out free WiFi hotspots and awesome happy hour drink deals, as opposed to their favorite $50/plate retaurant.  We enjoyed compartive rum tastings (yummy – tried their Cruzan, Pussers and Kracken), glugged Michael’s grog, loved Colleen’s Bushwackers and tried Trellis Bay’s No See Ums on their recommendation (click here to learn about No See Ums).  We shared breakfast and several dinners.
Together watched the flames lick the fire sculptures at Trellis Bay’s Full Moon party (click here and herefor more about the Full Moon Party), and Colleen and I lusted after some of the same fabulous pottery pieces at Aragorn’s Studio (click here for the Aragon Studio website).   We’ve already dipped into the 100 or so movies we downloaded from Michaels 3 terabyte cache.
Like Luke Skywalker seeking Obiwan’s wisdom on the wonders and ways of Cetol and varnish, we worshipped Colleen’s refinishing prowess… we were If do do half as well as Colleen on our refinishing, we’ll be thrilled.   Colleen admitted she spied on us with her binocs… to see if we started our Cetoling….
Michael helped us with quite a few repairs – look for a future blog on that. 
Someday, Colleen’s iMovie turoring will result in some video posts; hers on their Goldilocks blog are an inspiration (click here to see them on her blog)
One of Michael’s many how-to sailing resources.
Watch for a future blog on how he put this book
to work for us on Journey. 
Best of all, Michael & Colleen are wickedly funny.  Who else would introduce us to Flight of the Concorde’s “Businesstime”?  Richard Cheese’s snicker-worthy song spoofs?  Or Hunger Games on  Stuff so good that what we sent their way is too irreverent to mention, but we know they’ll love it. I nearly wet my pants laughing when Michael described how he was taught to extract a conch, sucking it from its shell (Lambi fellatio?” Colleen asked).  We decided the lambi would die, but die very, very happy.  Poor Michael; he wasn’t trying to be funny!
I asked Colleen about their boat’s name.  “We looked at a lot of boats.  When we found her, she was ‘just right,’ just like Golidlocks.”  Great name.  It fits the boat, and Michael and Colleen.
We’ve set sail opposite directions, but on similar paths.  Fair winds and good times to our “just right” friends from The Virgins.