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How our trip to BVI came to be!
Our trip in February 1997 to the British Virgin Islands qualifies as a "once in a lifetime" experience and included a surprise ending that Anne and I never expect to experience again. We have some wonderful memories that will always make this vacation stand out as one of our best. I want you to share in the surprise also, so, for that reason, I won't tell you about it now. You'll just have to read the pages and discover the surprise for yourself. Before looking at the pictures from our BVI Album you should understand how this trip came about.
Many years ago we formed a good friendship with Ken Brown, one of my coworkers. Ken and I shared many interest, among them an enjoyment of good food, good wine and travel. When we traveled together on business we enjoyed some exquisite dinners and good conversation. That friendship extended beyond work to become a personal friendship. Over the years our circle grew and we formed an informal gourmet club. At first there were three couples. Ken and Darla from Maryland, Derek and Rose from New York, and Anne and I from New Jersey. While we lived some distance apart we met regularly for a night out on the town, or a gourmet meal and wine tasting at someone's house. After a few years Derek and Rose moved to Bangkok and we welcomed Jim and Cheryl from Connecticut into our circle. Shortly thereafter we were joined by two others, Mike and Janet from Maryland. We alternated every four to six months visiting one of the couple's home for a gourmet weekend. Our meals were often seven-course meals with a different wine accompanying each course. We had a fine time, enjoyed the friendship and, of course, the food and wine. Not necessarily the pounds we put on having enjoyed that great food and wine. We also traveled with Ken and Darla to Europe (1989) and Asia (1994) and thoroughly enjoyed the trips. Ken and Darla
Ken and Darla
Jim and Cheryl
Jim and Cheryl
Darla's parents were retired and lived St. Croix where Ken and Darla were married in the early 90's. Unfortunately, because of work commitment, we could not attend, and I have kicked myself ever since for being the reason we missed their wedding. Cheryl also, for some years, had a home in the Virgin Islands and visited often, and Anne and I had vacationed in the British Virgin Islands. As you can imagine, the topic of the Virgin Islands came up often, and we all dreamed of going back and enjoying a week together there. I don't recall exactly who came up with the idea first, I believe it was Cheryl, but it was suggested we charter a sail boat and sail the British Virgin Islands rather than be confined to one island and one hotel. We all agreed it was a wonderful idea and the plans were set in motion. We scheduled one of our gourmet weekends in March, 1996 at our house to meet and discuss the details. The theme for the weekend would be an island theme to put us in the mood for our trip. Cheryl was put in charge of securing the chartered sail boat and we were on our way, after two years of talking about it, to a wonderful vacation sailing the British Virgin Islands.
We all agreed that February 1997 would be the date for our vacation. We were excited and couldn't wait. But, as life is cruel sometimes we had no choice but wait the year for the time to finally arrive. But there was much work to be done in the meantime. A suitable sail boat needed to be found, and a final decision on the dates needed to be resolved. When the weekend was over we all began the wait to hear from Cheryl to find out what the arrangements were.

The Grand Oasis
The Grand Oasis
Thankfully we didn't have to wait all that long. Cheryl quickly found a suitable boat with crew that was available for the time we wanted, mid-February, and we began to make our final plans.

Our home for the week of sailing would be the "Grand Oasis." A 63 foot tri-marine complete with Captain Jeff Hurd (the owner), cook Mary, and first mate Lisa. To our delight and surprise there would also be a mascot, Daisy, Captain Jeff's Cocker Spaniel.

Now all that remained was the waiting and passing of the next 10 months for the departure date to finally arrive. Anne and I are not accustomed to waiting such a long time for our vacations to happen. We usually make our plans just weeks before leaving so this was a new experience for us. But we managed to pass the time somehow.
The crew of the Grand Oasis
Cook Mary, First Mate Lisa and
Captain Jeff
Daisy, our Cocker Spaniel mascot
Daisy, our mascot and
faithful companion for the week
Mike and Janet
Mike and Janet

the link
below to join
us on a
sailing around
the magnificent

British Virgin

Vacations Home Page | Next
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Introducing the "Merry Wanderers" | Tortolla, Prospect Reef Hotel and Cane Garden Bay | Full Moon Party | The Grand Oasis
Sailing Road Town To Norman Island | Diving The Indians and Jost Van Dyke | Jost Van Dyke | Sandy Cay, Green Cay and Cane Garden Bay
Cane Garden Bay, West End and Brewer's Bay | Brewer's Bay and Puntinday Bay | The Dogs, Mosquito Island and Virgin Gorda
Diving The Chimney at the Dogs | Virgin Gorda | The Baths | Surprise For Everyone | Diving The RMS Rhone and Our Last Full Day Aboard The Grand Oasis
Getting Ready | A Special Time | The Party | The Party After | Our Last Morning