We spent almost a week and a half in Rock Sound before moving on to the Exumas. We like Rock Sound quite a bit. There are some things to see, it’s a very good place to stock up on groceries and supplies, and the anchorage is great – excellent holding, plenty of room regardless of the number of boats, and good all-around protection as long as you’re willing to move your boat depending on the wind direction.
It has been truly amazing at how few cruisers we’ve seen. When we were in Rock Sound our first year there were probably 30 other boats. This time we shared the anchorage with two others until a blow came in which raised the number of boats to a whopping six.
So far on this winter’s trip we’ve been enjoying revisiting favorite spots and finding new things to see, even in places we’ve already been. A good example of this in Rock Sound was the grocery store. There’s an excellent, well-stocked market – Market Place – less than 1/2 mile from the dinghy dock where we usually go. But I had read on Facebook about Hall’s grocery which we had never visited. Although the walk was a bit longer and it wasn’t as shiny bright as Market Place, it was very good – in some ways we liked it better than Market Place.
Before we went to Hall’s I spent some time studying the various Bahamian coins so I wouldn’t have to inspect each one before I paid. Guess I needed to study some more because that didn’t work out so well. The cashier and I had a good laugh as I explained that I had it down on the boat but the pressure of doing it in real life! Gah! The Bahamians are so friendly – there wasn’t really any pressure. She was encouraging, saying I’d figure it out eventually. I don’t share her confidence, but hope springs eternal.
Eleuthera has been taking Covid precautions very seriously, perhaps because the main island had a lock down the month before we arrived as cases had risen into the low teens for a bit. No, that isn’t a typo. Cases in the teens will trigger tighter restrictions for awhile. By the time we arrived daily cases were almost always zero, but mask compliance was just shy of universal – there’s always someone who believes the rules don’t apply to them. Before entering the grocery stores we had our temperatures taken and were pleasantly asked to use hand sanitizer. No problem for us – the last thing we want is to get Covid while we are here.
In addition to grocery shopping, we made a point of stopping at the local laundromat. Showboat owns and runs the facility, and two loads of washing and one load of drying is only $9.00. An excellent price for the Bahamas.
We had a great time talking baseball with Showboat while we waited. He used to be on the Bahamian National Baseball Team and had some good stories. We reminisced about the Dodgers in the 1980’s, and I told him about how I was at the World Series game where Kirk Gibson hit a home run to win game one (thanks for the tickets, Dan and Gina!). Turns out he had been re-watching the highlights on You Tube just a few days ago, and we laughed about how Tommy Lasorda went running out on to the field, arms waving. Less than a week later Tommy Lasorda died, and I couldn’t help but wonder if Showboat remembered our conversation – I sure did.
Besides grocery stores and a laundromat, Rock Sound has a well-stocked hardware store and some great restaurants – including Sammy’s, which has solid food for a fantastic price. We made a point of getting some takeaway Bahamian macaroni and cheese from Sammy’s while we were waiting for our laundry to dry. You can also renew your cruising permit there by taking the dinghy over to the airport, which we may very well do depending on where we are once February wraps up. Finally, Maker’s Air flies to the Rock Sound airport so if you need parts shipped it’s a good stop. Our parts were taking so long to arrive that we decided to have them sent to Staniel Cay instead.
As much as we enjoy Rock Sound, we were itching to get to the crystal clear Exumas. The water was still a bit nippy in Eleuthera as Jeff discovered when he jumped in, and jumped out almost as quickly! So we were psyched when the wind and weather finally cooperated to head on over. It was going to be a motor sail, but we’d take it. It was time to head off to warmer water – off to the Exumas!