The Caribbean yachting season is swaggering â€¦ no, let me rephrase that – is roaring, with exuberance as we head into March. In St. Maarten, I don't remember ever having seen the marinas as full of big yachts as they are now. And what I find amazing is the size of these vessels. I read that the average length of mega yachts in build is going up. I think it's already happened and I didn't really notice. One thing's for sure, a trip around the marinas by dinghy, with the early morning sun reflecting off the gleaming topsides of mega yachts lined up like soldiers on parade, is one of the seasons pleasures. I also enjoy watching the skill with which the captains and crews drive these behemoths, especially when entering a marina berth. When I think of the times I have shouted at my wife, "Quick, fend off!" usually much too late, the mega yacht drivers put me to shame. Mind you, when they do screw up, there's more to redoing a ding in the paint than just slapping on a brush full of enamel from the nearest and cheapest hardware store.
Puerto Rico's abuzz with news that the International Sailing Federation (ISAF), the governing body for the sport of sailing, are to hold their 2011 annual conference in San Juan. Competition to host the conference is fierce and that it is coming to the Caribbean is excellent news. Although I tend to shy away from those who like to organize, preferring instead a bit of anarchy with my sailing, I am agog at just what ISAF does for the sport. If you are in any doubt then take a look at their website: sailing.org
As you go through this month's edition of All At Sea, you will notice several articles and news items about youngsters. Kids from the Caribbean are really starting to make their mark on the international sailing scene. This is good news. That small island states have the initiative and drive to help kids, through various youth training programs, to enjoy being on the water and even excel on the race course is something we should be proud of.
I just know that you are going to enjoy this edition of All At Sea. I had a lot of fun putting it together. Perhaps you have a story to tell, a tip to share, a voyage to talk about. Don't be shy, get in touch. It's simple, just email [email protected] and leave the rest to me.