Sunday, April 26, 2009

Evolution in hard times...

As the recession/depression deepens elsewhere and politicians reward those who got us into the mess while offering "tough love" advice to people who actually work for a living, the cruising fleet seems to be adapting and evolving in the Caribbean... It used to be that the standard outboard engine on cruising boats was the 15HP and while I have been noticing a trend towards smaller it was underlined yesterday while on a visit to the local marine store as every dinghy on the dock was 5HP or less... The new cruising standard?

Sadly as various islands keep raising rates and adopting more and more less-friendly to boat fees and red tape I am hearing more people talking about heading out to more friendly destinations. Just about every time I find myself in conversation I hear yet more plans of going back to the Med, heading towards the Pacific, or other out of the way places. You hear the word "Thailand" mentioned a lot. This is one of the advantages of living on a cruising boat and the nomadic existence... You can always move on to greener pastures, evolve and adapt.

Throw in the imminent opening of Cuba to US flagged cruising and charter boats and the only thing that comes to mind for some Caribbean locations is... Big storm coming!