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Bella Donna (1) - April 12, 2007

Updated: Jan 15, 2023

Arrived last night about 9 PM at Village Cay marina in Road Town, Tortola, The British Virgin Islands (18 25.483 N 64 37.082W) We met many people on their way to bareboat in the BVI. I had a chance to show off my new folder of pictures of Bella Donna; this was a really good idea as people just can not picture how beautiful she is. People were returning for their yearly get together with friends in the BVI and all were dreaming of what we are about to do. Today is our last day on dock and we have appointments all day to ready Bella Donna for the passage across the Gulf of Mexico to Panama. We heard of a couple that sailed here from South Africa and chartered for a while before returning to their goal to circumnavigate the world. They left for Panama too early and were badly beat up by storms. Upon reaching Panama they sold everything and returned to a land existence. May God bless Bella Donna's passage to Panama.

We spent all morning with Peter from Cay Electronics. We now understand our primary, secondary and … means of communications. We filed our first Yotreps report today using short wave radio, totally cool, giving today's position. Deborah and I just returned from the local grocery store where we did our last minute shopping. We had the groceries delivered to the Bella Donna; they should be here soon. We are taking Captain John out for a birthday meal tonight. Look for us to start moving tomorrow.


In my following posts I will republish posts I made to family and friends as we passaged from the British Virgin Islands to New Zealand across the South Pacific in 2007. I dreamed of this trip as a child sitting in my backyard Chinese Tallow Tree, in West University Place near Rice University in Houston, Texas, in early 1950s. Most of a lifetime latter I was successful enough to hire a professional crew, John and Deborah Smit, to design and supervise the building a 72 foot catamaran at Yacht Industries in Caen, France. One of only a few incredibly strong ocean going yachts built known as a Yapluka. It all started in 2004 when we chartered a Moorings Yacht named Big Dog in the BVI where John and Deborah were the crew. Since that time they have been loved members of our extended family.

If you are interested in following the voyage there is more to come. I do post other things so the voyage titles will always start with Bella Donna followed by the story's date.

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