On Monday we spent the afternoon and early evening on the sailing ship Antares.
The Antares is an 80 foot schooner built in 1947 that in its heyday won races around the world.We have to take a smaller boat out to the Antares so we head down to the shore and wade through the water.We climb aboard the motor boat that will ferry us to the AntaresIt’s a windy day. Should be great for sailing. By the time we climb up the ship’s rope ladder the only seats left are at the back of the boat in the shade. That’s perfect for us! We have nice bean bag pillows and cushions to lounge on and we aren’t seated five minutes before the Antares staff has rum punches and Mojitos in our hands. There’s a dog on board and he comes to meet us all. We are sharing our space at the back of the boat with a couple from New Hampshire, a recently retired teacher and engineer who are only to happy to talk politics with us in light of the New Hampshire primary happening the next day.There’s also a younger couple from Tennessee sharing our corner of the boat. He’s a forester and professional musician and she’s an esthetician. They are having a little holiday before they adopt the two pre-school brothers they have been foster parenting. We’ve been told the food on this cruise is exceptional and sure enough our first course arrives. It’s a tofu salad that is fantastic. Second course served by the friendly staff is a salmon bruschetta that melts in your mouth. In between each course our smiling drink server comes around to offer us lemonade, beer, wine and any kind of cocktail we want. The young woman has amazing balance. She can navigate the rocking boat with a tray full of drinks and never spill a drop. Soon the sails are up and we are out at sea. Our captain points out Nicaragua in the distance. The Antares is a family operation. The father is the captain. Candy his wife is the amazing cook who made the wonderful food we ate and a couple of their children work on the Antares too. There was even a guitarist on board to entertain us. Third course is corn chips with guacamole and a delightful homemade pineapple salsa. In a nice secluded bay the boat weighs anchor and we all jump into the water to float in the salty coolness of the ocean. That’s me waving from the waves. Unfortunately it’s too choppy to snorkel because the snorkeling area is near rocks and the waves keep pushing the snorklers dangerously close to them, so the few who try come back quickly, but its lovely just to float in the sunshine and look at the beauty of the bay. Back on board I try out the captain’s chair just to see how it might feel to steer the boat. As we start the sail home our fourth course arrives, my favourite, a Thai curry shrimp soup. Shirley likes it so much she asks Candy for the recipe.Dave finds a fellow passenger who played semi-professional baseball in his younger days and the two compare notes about their baseball and fast ball careers. As the sun sets and bathes the ocean and our boat in orange light……..out comes our dessert a chocolate raspberry cake beautifully presented. I have mine with a glass of white wine. We are full and feeling fine after a wonderful day out on the Pacific ocean. As our motor boat takes us back to the shore we take one last look at the Antares. What a great day!