Saturday, April 30, 2016

The Little Boat and Freedom

Can you see their fort on the back and their two little heads just below the flag?
While anchored in Pirates Bay -Charlotteville Tobago, a  German cruising catamaran with two kids arrived.  These boys looked to be about 5 and 6 or 6 and 7.....I don't have kids so I am terrible at guessing kids ages.  Plus cruising kids are a totally different breed of kido from land kids so guessing their ages is even harder.  Anyway, they played around the deck of the boat and in the kewl fort they built on the back of this cruising cat.  After a day, their dad rowed over to our boat to see if we had a paintbrush he could buy/have.  It seems they had found a old, damaged, hard dinghy abandoned in some mangroves on Martinique.  They decided it was worth rescue and were attempting to bring it back to life as a dinghy for the boys to use.

We immediately thought this was way kewl.  When he mentioned it was a sailing dinghy, Tom became green with envy......he totally digs sailing dinghies of all shapes and sizes.  We happily gave him a new paintbrush with the condition that we be allowed to come ashore and inspect the rebuild progress.  "Of course, of course, of course.  Come and see."   

I watched the parents and kids ashore working on it.  Oddly, the kids just didn't seem all that interested.  I told Tom "I don't think the boys are grasping the fact that this boat.....their boat means freedom for them.  Big time freedom."  The parents on the other hand, completely understood that this boat means freedom for their boys and thus, freedom for them.  Tom agreed.

They completed the repairs late afternoon the next day and the maiden voyage took place.  Life jackets on, the two little boys piled in to their dinghy with oldest at the helm and took off.  Mom and dad gave chase in their motorized dinghy snapping pics and video and giving little bits of advice....although not much.  Come on, these are cruising kids.  They can sail circles around most of us.  We watched with big smiles on our faces.  It clicked.  The boys finally understood that this little boat means HUGE freedom for them.  You could almost feel the freedom in the air.

The next morning, bright and early I climbed up into the cockpit to see the oldest boy already sitting in the dinghy - just hanging out as it floated tied up behind their catamaran.  Freedom indeed!  Later that morning we were ashore and spotted the sailing dinghy tied up at the dock.  A short time later, dad and the oldest boy came along and stopped to say hello and chat.  We congratulated them on the new dinghy.  Both just grinned.  Then they departed.  The boy hopped into his sailing dinghy alone and took off for the mother ship.  Dad took his time and eventually followed along in the motorized dinghy.  After lunch the boys took off again by themselves in their dinghy.  This time dad followed along for a bit and then returned to the catamaran, leaving the boys free to explore the huge Man of War Bay.  Of course I could see him keeping a watchful eye from their cockpit but the freedom was flowing as sure as the tide.

*I didn't take any pics of the boys sailing their dinghy.  It was too kewl to witness to ruin with pics. Plus I didn't want to be the creepy lady in the anchorage snapping pics of little boys.                

Friday, April 29, 2016

The Art Of Doing Nothing

"What do you do all day?"  This is a common question cruisers get asked by non-cruisers.  The answer varies.  As I have mentioned before, in this life, each day is a surprising adventure waiting to unfold whether it's hiking to a waterfall or spending the day fixing a suddenly failed bilge pump, battery charger, rebuilding the the head, etc.  I have also told you before that one thing takes all day;  provisioning, getting cash, finding working and strong internet - all day.  The smartass answer is "whatever we want."

However there is another answer.  Nothing.  "What do you do all day?"  Sometimes nothing.  At least nothing by most societal standards.  Yes we get up, move around, feed ourselves, check on the boat's overall status, and talk to one and other but sometimes not much else.  Some days we don't even leave the boat.  Some days we read all day.  By normal, land people standards, those days we don't do much.  

The Art of Doing Nothing may sound easy but it's not.  Most of us are conditioned to do something.  In today's fast paced world, we are actually trained and expected to do MANY somethings.  Multi tasking is a given and a must whether it's in our personal life or on the job.  For most of us, this has been the way we are since we can remember.  Society expects it.  Each new generation takes multi tasking to a new, higher level.

But occasionally there are spurts of push back.  Articles and studies pop up now and then suggesting too much multi tasking is bad.  Divided focus is less focus on each item.  ADHD, ADH, Ridilin, etc were not common terms when I was growing up.  However the focus on these has died back down in recent years. 

The cruising life affords us the luxury of "Doing Nothing". But it's not that easy.  How does one alter a way of life (fast paced, multi tasking, go-go-go) that is ingrained in us from an early age?  It takes practice.  No, really.  One challenge is the guilt.  Have you ever spent a complete Saturday or Sunday doing "nothing". Okay, you probably sat on the couch watching tv the whole day but when it was over, you would report that you "did nothing all day."  How did you feel?  Guilty for " doing nothing?"  Have you ever done that on a week day (gasps)?  Have you taking a day off and done nothing?  Of course not!  If you take a day off, you have a purpose, a goal, a list.  No, doing nothing is rare and usually involves a little bit of a guilty feeling afterward.  

There are a few disciplines/religions that train followers to "do nothing" to speak (day long prayer, meditation, chanting, yoga)  But these take training.  A couple of my friends meditate or have in the past.  Apparently it isn't easy.  It takes lot of practice to learn to clear your mind.  I have on occasion attended a yoga class or two.  At some point during the class we are suppose to clear our mind.  I think this is done in every yoga class.  I can never do it.  I always fight it from the moment it's mentioned "Now clear your mind.  Let go of all the thoughts in your head."  This immediately gets my mind racing on things I need to do and then things I want to do, then funny things, then weird things.  It's hopeless and it always made me feel like a failure at yoga.  Not only am I not flexible enough for most of the downward- tree- plank- rock the baby poses... but I can't even clear my mind.  Sheesh.  However, since cruising and learning to "do nothing", I can now do yoga and just enjoy it.  There are thoughts rattling around in my head but I am relaxed and enjoying the breathing, stretching, strengthening as best I can, to my level.  When the tape says "clear your head" and mine is instead stuffed full of thoughts, who cares.  It usually makes me smile a bit.  Beside I have always been a bit of a rule breaker, why would yoga be different.  Ha!

My point is "Doing Nothing" takes training too.  I would say that freeing yourself from the guilt is step one.  This is a big one.  Next is just being in the moment/day of doing nothing.  Fighting the urge to jump up and do something.  Allowing it, accepting it.  Part of this is learning to sit quietly with yourself.  In the last few seasons of HBO's Boardwalk Empire  Nucky Thompson said several times that he thought the true judgment of a man is how well he can just sit quietly in a room by himself.  I know this is a tv character quote but think about it.  Can YOU sit quietly in a room by yourself?  And not for a few mins but for an extended period of time?  Say 15 mins.  Can you?  I am sorry but I think most of you would fail.  Some of you my dear friends would fail on an epic level, lasting only a few mins.  You know who you are!

Actually last summer while listening to NPR, I heard about an interesting study out of University of Virginia along these lines.  As I recall, volunteers were put in an empty room by themselves.  They were wired up to a device that would give a small but painful electric shock when pushed.  The volunteers were shown this button, how it works and even tested it to get a feel for the shock/pain  Then they were asked to just sit quietly in the room by themselves for 15 mins.  No cell phone, no texting, no games, no writing, no sleeping.  Just sit.  There were no instructions on the shock button.  It was just there.  They should just sit alone by themselves with only their thoughts.  The researchers wanted to see if people could do that.  It turns out a huge number couldn't.  In fact most couldn't.  The bulk of the people started pushing the shock button just to do something even though they knew it would give them a shock.  The urge to do something vs not be alone with themselves was stronger than their urge to prevent pain!  Think about that.  Sit quietly or give yourself pain and most pick the pain.  Wow!  Many pushed it multiple times.  Even after a painful shock, some still couldn't finish out the session by just sitting with themselves.  They had to do something.  They had to shock themselves again.  Double wow!  The study found that men overwhelming pushed the button more than women.  One guy pushed it 190 times in a 15 min time frame!  Many subjects also admitted to sneaking a look at their cell phones or cheating another way vs sitting quietly.  

One of the benefits (for us) of this cruising life is that we have learned the Art of Doing Nothing.  We can sit in the cockpit for several hours just watching the anchorage and or sea, allowing ourselves the opportunity to just be, to think, to see what happens next.  And maybe it's more nothing and that is ok.  We can spend an entire day reading and napping and be ok with that too.  However it is still such a new sensation after years of multi tasking -go hard, that it feels like a luxury but that is ok as well.

The Accident

Maxi - taxi
In the three years we have been here in the eastern Caribbean, we have traveled on land in nearly ALL manner of transport:  bus, mini-van, car, rental car, maxi-taxi, private car, taxi, pickup truck.  Sometimes just the two of us, sometimes with 17 others in a mini van meant for 12. 

Early on, we made the mental decision to just "go with it" when it came to ground transport.  Accepting the type and conditions of transport seemed like the best way to experience the "adventure" that ground travel often is for cruisers.  There are many times we simply MUST get somewhere on land via transport.  We can't be choosy about the method.  On some islands, the afternoon buses (mini vans) are also transport for the school kids so from 13:00 - 15:00 each afternoon each bus (mini van) will be overcrowded with school kids.  It's a given.  We can try to travel at a different time but sometimes we cannot.  Waiting for a less empty bus (mini van) may not be an option.  Other times, we can get into a maxi taxi that looks perfectly good only to find....or more like hear -once we start climbing some steep hills with curves.... that the tires are rubbing on the frame of the van.  Or riding in a similar perfectly looking van to near the end of your journey as you descend down very steep hills- that the brakes are literally smoking hot!!  D-oh!  Not much you can do about any of these things at the time. I said we chose early on to ignore the odd sounds, smells and overall conditions and pretend these are the norm.  Everyone else aka the locals seem to accept these as normal, why shouldn't we.

Surprisingly we have seen no actual accidents.  We've seen proof of them.  A newspaper article with pictures.  Close calls inching by other cars on narrow streets or tight curves.  And nearly all vehicles have dings and dents but up until now, we have not witnessed any accidents.  Until now.....
Yesterday we were coming back to Charlotteville from Scarborough on a maxi-taxi when we came upon an accident on one of the many curves in the narrow windward road where the hills meet the sea.  The police and *Community Comfort Patrol were already on the scene.  It looked bad.  However, there were no people left in the cars and no ambulance...yet so I think some of the people standing around were the drivers and passengers of the two cars.  Our maxi was stopped close to the accident.  Our maxi driver chatted a bit with someone standing near the accident.  I think it was one of the drivers or passengers of one of the accident cars.  In the mean time, the maxi taxi stereo continued playing 70's and 80's music at a healthy volume.  It was a tad weird watching this accident scene while Marvin Gaye sang "Let's Get It On" to us followed by Darrel Hall and John Oats "Private Eyes."   It felt wrong to be tapping our toes to the soundtrack of our youth while looking over an accident scene but we couldn't help it.  Normally we only hear Soca, calypso, and reggae.  After 10 mins or so we were able to inch through and continue on as directed by the police.  However, a big bus in the other side tried and failed to complete an Austin Powers style turnaround on that side of this narrow curve thus stopping traffic on that side and messing up an already loosey-goosey bus schedule.

After seeing this, our "just go with it" attitude was shaken a tad.  It occurred to me that if we got into a really bad transportation accident on one of these islands and ended up in the hospital that no one would know and poor sv Honey Ryder would sit all alone at anchor wondering where we were.  I started thinking that perhaps we need to be filing "transportation plans" much like we file float plans for longer passages.  Of course just as quickly as I thought of it, I realized how ridiculous that idea was.  Besides my ESS (Evil Sailing Sista) aka holder of our float plan would KILL me if I did that for every ground transport.  Nope, our "go with it" mode was working fine before.  We would just need to continue with that and the occasional stiff drink of rum after "especially adventuresome" land transport.       

*Community Comfort Patrol - we have NO idea what this is.  We have seen many official vehicles cruising around Tobago that say "Comfort Patrol."   Easter weekend one local DJ that may or may not have had a bit of rum commented (via microphone) on the Comfort Patrol as they rolled by the fete....."Hello Comfort Patrol.  You look very comfortable today."  That got a big laugh from the local crowd.  Sorry I didn't take a pic of one of the CCP trucks.

Fish House Politics

New fish house in Charlotteville
I have mentioned before the various fish houses we see on the islands here in the eastern Caribbean, some of them very nice.  Most of these have been built by other governments as a kind gesture.  Yeah right!  Cough, cough..... Japan, China and Venezuela are building these out of the kindness of their government hearts - HA!  Some fish houses built by local governments sit empty.  Fisher men refuse to pay whatever fee to use the new fish house.  The FREE local fish market usually located a few feet from the water on the beach works just fine with it's makeshift shade of tarps and crude fish cutting tables make from scraps wood.  And it's FREE.
Current fish market that seems to be working just fine
Anyway, here in Charlotteville there is a very nice fish house across the street from the current fish market.  This one was built by the THA (Tobago House Assembly).  It's nearly done but there are NO plans to move in as of yet.  Why you ask?  Inquiring minds want to did we.  According to a few local fishermen - politics.  Ugh!  One of the political parties is holding the fish house hostage (so to speak) until after the election in January or February 2017.  They hope to get votes in exchange for a promise to open it.  Weird I know but then again aren't all politics weird no matter what country?   

Tobago - Do You Have

Dash showing off the kingfish he caught

As I mentioned before, we quickly got to know some of the locals in Charlotteville.  It's a small fishing village that is somewhat isolated where everyone knows everyone.  Because of this everyone helps everyone else out.  They soon included us in this.  They were not shy to ask us for things or a ride whether stopping by our boat at anchor or chatting with us ashore.  Sometimes we could and did assist, other times we declined.  We've had this a bit in other places but it was full on here.  Not aggressively, just honest asking.  And that was ok.  It fit with the feel of this tight little village.  No different than you would find in any small town USA.     

A few of the things we were asked-
"Do you have any WD40?"

"Do you have a light?"

"Do you have anything to drink?  Coke?  Beer?  Something stronger?" Or "What do you have to drink?  I am very thirsty."

One local charter boat captain asked if we had any fishing line and a lure.

"We going to da beach.  Can you take us?" 

"I need a ride out to my fishing boat.  Can you take me out and back?" 
"I see you lock your dinghy or I already borrow it to go out and back."  

"Do you have US dollars?  I have a friend who would like to exchange some."

"I have am able to exchange money for you so you can change your US dollars into TT if you need."

"Do you have a cell phone?  I need to call my brother to come and get some fish." 

"You live on a boat.  I never been on a sailboat.  Maybe I can come out to your boat tomorrow and take some pictures aboard to send to my girlfriend in Trinidad."

Fishing With A Local

Dave in his fishing pirogue Neva 2 Late

"Good day.  How are you?  Is everything good for you?  Would you like to buy a tuna I just caught?  And do you have any interest in going fishing tomorrow morning?  I am going out fishing and I wanted to see if you wanted to go and learn how we fish."  
Birds fishing is a good sign of fish for the rest of us

That is what local fisherman Dave said when he stopped by our boat in Pirates Bay.  "Sure" said Tom.  FYI - The invite was for Tom alone.  We have seen NO women fishing.  NONE!  But that is ok.  It would give me chance to chill on the boat by myself.  Dave said he would pick Tom up the next morning at our boat at 6:30AM.  He asked only that Tom pay for the gas.  Ok.  Oh yeah....he needed the money now.  Hum?  Tom said "Half now, the other half tomorrow."   "No, that won't work. De gas station only open today so I must have all the money today to get the gas."  Hum?  "Don't worry.  I won't cheat you.  I will pick you up tomorrow as I say."  Okay.  "As you can see my boat is called Neva 2 Late - big letters.  Everybody know me.  I won't cheat you.  I will show up."     

The poles make it look like the boats have whiskers
There was a jazz show that evening over on the windward side of the island.  Dave mentioned that he would be going.  I told Tom  "You better be ready at 6:30AM but with typical island time AND the jazz show, it will be interesting to see what time he really shows up."  Later I whipped up a batch of brownies for them to take fishing.  Good luck brownies.
Dave always has a big smile.  The Sisters in the distance on the right

6:20 AM "Hello?  Good morning.  I here to take you fishing" Dave called out.  Sure enough, there he was bright and early.  Tom grabbed sunscreen, a hat, water and the brownies and headed off in Neva 2 Late with Dave.

Success - YES!
The fishing pirogues of Charlotteville are similar to other island pirogues -approx 18 ft long with deep V bows that help them maneuver the open waters.  However the Charlotteville pirogues are fitted with long bamboo poles out to each side that look like catfish whiskers.  The fishermen run a fishing line off each of these and two out the back.

Perfect for two people.  In fact we got 2 meals out of this one
Dave immediately started rigging up right there in Man of War Bay and then they headed southwest off shore towards a group of rocks called The Sisters.  They fished from there north all the way up to another group of off shore rocks called London Bridge.  
Cleaning the tuna for dinner

Three hours later they were back with one tuna.  Such is fishing.  But at 2 1/2 lbs it was just perfect for the two of us for dinner.  Tom cleaned it up and that evening we tossed it on the grill.  YUM!         

Charlotteville Tobago

sv Honey Ryder at anchor in Store Bay with sy Tango

After spending several weeks anchored in Store Bay, basically using it as our base to explore more of Tobago as a whole, we decided to move up to Charlotteville on the north end of Tobago.  Man of War Bay there is huge.  We tucked up in a small corner of the bigger bay called Pirates Bay.  It was lovely, simply lovely.
Man of War Bay - Charlotteville
sv Honey Ryder anchored in Pirate Bay
"Wilson!  Ohhhhh Wilson I'm sorry"  OR "A three hour tour...."

Maybe the professor off Gilligan's Island fashioned this

Charlotteville is a sleepy little fishing village of approximately 2600 people.  It is somewhat isolated.  Resources are slightly limited.  There are a few small shops selling basics.  Once a week on Thursday night a guy comes to town and sets up a fresh fruit and veg market that runs through Friday evening.  There is one gas station.  It ran out of gas twice in the week and a half we were there.  There is one ATM but it only works with that bank's debt cards.  A one way trip down to the capitol city of Scarborough on the windward side of the island is an hour and 15 mins by big bus or Maxi Taxi on a good day, often times longer.
View into town from our anchorage in Pirates Bay
Beach workshop for dinghies - this one belonged to a German boat with two small boys - this was THEIR dinghy

In a small village like this, many are related, everyone knows everyone else and there are NO secrets.  The sense of community is strong and they are proud.  Many, many people stopped us to say hello and to ask if we are enjoying their community/bay.  While some they offered their services as hiking, bird and tour guides, for beach trips and BBQ's, fishing, diving/snorkeling and such, they were also genuine in wanting to be sure we were finding the things we needed to make our stay a good one.  
Info board

A community chalkboard helps kept locals informed of specific events.  However, it soon became obvious that the daily gathering at the outdoor fish market was where real community things get discussed, argued and settled.  Or at the card game of gin rummy that took place near the pier each afternoon.
The fish market - I took this late.  Normally it was buzzing with people
Sunset at the pier

Each night the lights of the cricket field in the middle of the village came on in case anyone wanted to use it.  Several times saw kids playing cricket and football (soccer) there.  The local library was very nice and we used it often for internet as did the locals.      
Very nice

ATM but NOT for us
There were never more than six yachts anchored in Man of War Bay during the time we were there. We briefly shared Pirates Bay with one other yacht but most of the time we had it all to ourselves.  Locals said this is the low/slow season.  December and January are high season as well as hurricane season.  Although there are NO yacht services in Tobago (so you better be self sufficient), apparently many yachts choose it as their hurricane hideout.  Probably a good one given it's south of the hurricane zone.

Oh what
It didn't take long to get to know many locals.  Especially the fishermen.  Tom even went out fishing with one local guy but more later on that.   

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Happy Anniversary Honey Ryder - 6th

The adventures continue.  

Annual Easter Goat Races in Tobago - Final

Random things we heard via the commentators in two days of Goat Racing.  In no particular order.  And these are only a few.  There were so many!

"If you are parked where you shouldn't be, please move your car."

"The person with license plate PDA 372, you are blocking in the Minister of Tourism, please tend to it now."

"It's rather embarrassing for you parents to be losing your children."

"Please hold on to your children.  You took the time to make them, now hang on to them." 

"We have a missing child announcement.  Hello Ms.   I am going to let you tell us so you are embarrassed and this won't happen again."

"Please get your youngsters off the rails near the track and back from the actual track."

"Please clear the run off area so you don't get injured by a goat." 

"Where is Tash?  Where is my co-host?  Well, she is off doing something."

"Hello?  Girl signing people up for the beer drinking contest.  Hello?  Where are you going?  We have more people to sign up.  Hello?  Where are you going?  Well....she is not listening."

"Where are the foreigners?  I need my foreigners to come forward for the next event.  Ohhh, I mean visitors.  I am told I need to say visitors and not foreigners."

"It's a lovely evening for racing and a colorful crowd."

Tom asked a guy -"How did you get that cooler in?  The sign at the gate said no coolers?"  Answer - "You just bring it in."

Goat Names we came up with if we owned a Racing Goat
Shadow Bennie - herb in Trinidad and Tobago (chadon beni)
Mr Illustrious
Kid Charlemagne
Deep Purple
Buss up - food dish in Trini
Tall Cool One
Mighty Sparrow - famous Trini Calypso singer
Racer x
Pirate of the Caribbean
Mission Control
Rock Me Amadeus
One is One
One Love
I am Spartacus
Vegas Baby
Breaking Bad
Feed Bag
Scotch Bonnet - Trini hot pepper

Yeah....we had fun.  

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Annual Easter Goat Races in Tobago - Day Two

Go, go, go, go, go, gooooooo
Day one definitely made an impression on us.  Tom dreamt about goat last night.  Too funny.  Now that we had Day One under our belt, we knew a little bit more what to expect and we prepared a tad more. Hats-check, umbrellas for shade-check, sunscreen for reapplication-check, pen for recording race results-check, water-check, rum-check.  We departed our boats around noon, caught a P car and arrived 15 mins later.  This time to the city of Bucoo for the 91st Annual Bucoo Goat and Crab Race Festival!  91 years!!  Serious stuff.
Bucoo Goat Racing stadium
So serious that in Bucoo they have a fancy stadium just for Goat Racing.  We had seen it previously when we were in Bucoo for Sunday School - aka weekly street party.  Let me tell you, this stadium is NICE.  We arrived just before the first race - island time is a given.  However, unlike the day before, the main stands were nearly full.  Whoa!  We headed to the uncovered stands which were along the track between the finish line and the starting gate.  The paddock is an actual building on the grounds - not a tent like the day before.  The only tents were the food and beverage tents set up on the far side.  There was a huge stage where a male and female announcer kept us informed and entertained throughout the day.  There was also a big screen next to the stage so we could see things happening on the stage better but more importantly so we could see the finish line close up and get instant replays in slow motion of the finish - awesome!  FYI -this was handy as there was more than one photo finish in Day Two racing.  Additionally, a professional news team was broadcasting track side across from the stands we were in.  They did crowd interviews and such.  Someone mentioned that the actual races are also broadcasted in Tobago but I am not 100% sure on that one.  There was even a drone above the track off and on throughout the day.  The track is still grass.  I assume that is the best surface for goats and jockeys.  All in all this facility made good impression on us from the start for Day Two racing. 
Owners bring the goats to the track for the next race
The bugler tells us it's almost race time

See how they can get all bunched up on one side of the track
Injured jockey
 There were 15 Goat Races total including the Champ of Champs race.  Only two children's foot races.  In between Goat Racing, there were cultural events as well as crowd involvement events with giveaways.  
Old west cowboy - I don't know why
Fake Gun fight - I don't know why
?? They were handing out Easter eggs -  Easter pimps?
Think Harlem Globetrotter but with only one guy and a soccer ball
It's Superman and Batman - of course it's blury, they are superheros
One such event was the international beer drinking contest.  A handful of macho guys volunteered for that.  They were surprised to find it was not a guzzle down beers shotgun style contest like most beer drinking contest but instead finishing two beers via straws - ahhh......not so macho now and not so easy!  
Showing the crowd the crabs used for the crab racing
Crab "chippin" - go go silly crab - No, not that way.  The other way
Turns out crabs don't really go in a straight line
The crab races were another event that took place mid way through the day.  We were not so excited about these.  As I said in a previous post, where is the skill and training in crab race?   Train the crab to race into my pot and then I will be impressed!  As suspected, upon seeing the actual racing, there is no skill in crab racing.  A big bin of crabs was brought out, each crab had a small string around it that acted as a leash.  Each constant tried to get their crab to cross the finish line first on a very, very short track.  They were not allowed to drag it or lift it up in any way but rather they stomped their feet on each side of the crab trying to get it to go.  I suggested to a local guy that it was "crab chipping" aka like traditional chipping (Trini dancing) but with crabs.  It took him a minute to get it but then he thought it was funny - worth a chuckle at least.  All in all, the crab races were just a silly distraction.  And that is ok.  We took the opportunity to go to the bathrooms, get potato wedges and another cool beverage.  
Getting race advice - "I going for Born To Run - I think he's going to win"
Jumping for bubbles from the big bubble machine is always fun
Overall Day Two had a much more professional feel to it.  There were still many, many families in attendance.  
From across the track we watched this woman work ALL day making roti's and buss up's
She made gigantic roti skins on the big flat griddle on the left - yum
With our pen we closely tracked the race results and started looking for winning patterns in goats/owners/jockeys.  We didn't see any official betting either day.  A large group of families next to us Day Two were doing small bets amongst themselves.  Prior to each race, we each picked our winner and then cheered them on when the gates opened.  It was fun and exciting.  Prize money was similar to the day before it not a bit more.  We were determined to stay to the end on Day Two.  The Champ of Champs Race went off at 21:06.  Flash Light - the goat I picked won.  Woo hoo!  
Sometimes the racing goats pulled the jockeys down the track towards the starting gate
GOoooo Flash Light - Winning goat
Racing Goats are tall
"Let's go already" says Mr Racing Goat - not his real name
We hung around a bit longer because there was a free concert after by Trini Soca star Olatunji.  One of my favorite Soca stars.  Of course it took a bit for him to take the stage so we only stayed for two or three songs.  
Olatunji - Ola

Upon exiting the Goat Racing stadium, we found a full street party gearing up.  This was going to be massive.  However, we were tired an decided it was time to head home.  It took us a bit to get a P car, in the mean time more and more people were pouring into Bucoo.  We got back to our boats around 23:00 and fell into solid Goat Racing sleep.
Bucoo party central - Goat Races AND "Sunday School"
I don't know if we are oddballs or what because we were so excited to see the Goat Races.  Wait.....yes I do....we are oddballs.  Regardless, we thoroughly enjoyed the Tobago Goat Races.  It was an absolute hoot.  Both days.  And while both days were different, we did see some themes carry through Day One and Day Two.  Many locals and Trinidadians have made this an Easter tradition.  Families, groups of families and groups of friends turned out to enjoy the events along with us tourists.  And everyone really did enjoy it......being there IN the day.  We saw very few people on their smart phones.  Really!  Even teens and kids seemed to be into the day vs texting.  Really!  It was shocking.  I said it was a hoot (and it was) but actually the long history of these events gave it a deeper, authentic feel.  Through this unusual two day event, we got a closer look at a rich, vibrant and varied culture.      

Goat named Obama
PS -
Omg - I can't believe I almost forgot to tell you.....there was a racing goat both days called Obama.  Yes!  And I know there are some of you that want to input a bunch of political jokes here.  Don't.  Keep them to yourselves.  While I agree a goat named Obama is worth at least a smile or a small giggle, I am not publishing those types of comments.  I thought it was pretty cool.