Sunday, June 29, 2008

Bananas Soon Come

Bananas Soon Come, originally uploaded by captainjay.

The banana tree that was planted when we first moved in is doing really well. We should have bananas by this fall. We also have a soursop tree with fruit on it but I can't get to the tree. I would really like to try one ....I've been told they are really good.

On a different note, we are having some issues with the blog. I can post to it and can bring up google dashboard to edit it, but I can't view it. I can't bring up any google blogs. So I thought google was just having issues. But we've been getting comments on some of our posts so that means other people can view the blog, just not us. Doesn't make sense.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Refreshing Cocktail

Refreshing Cocktail, originally uploaded by captainjay.

Thought I would share my new drink that is very refreshing for the summer. I'm normally a Captain and Diet with lime girl, bit since coming here I've noticed that a lot of places have Pepsi products intead of Coke which does not taste good with Captain. So I had to find something else. Jim at Hook Line Sinker helped me come up with Stoli Raz, splash of cranberry, soda and lots of lime. Its very good and very refreshing on a hot day. It probably has a name but I haven't
found one yet. Have a great weekend!

BTW - Jay was off today so I took off early so we could hang out since he has to work all weekend.

ALSO, I guess I should have mentioned that Jim doesn't work at Hook Line anymore. Like CaptRD said in his comment, Jim and Ellen left a couple months ago to go state side and they are definitly missed..........Jim if you're reading this, let us know how you guys are doing!!!!!

Friday Beach Picture

Another beautiful installment of the Friday Beach Pic taken by a forumite. One of these days I'll spend some time and take my own pictures. But for now, the forum members are doing such a great job and have no problem sharing them. This picture was taken by Ken McGuire, he has excellet photos of the Carribbean. You can check out his other photos at


Thursday, June 26, 2008

Captain Morgan moving to the VI

Great News! Diageo is moving the Captain Morgan plant to the Virgin Islands! I am a huge Captain fan but I've been migrating more towards Cruzan since it's the local rum, but now I'll have two local rums to choose from. WooHoo!!

Here are the articles in St. Thomas source:

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Relay for Life

Here is the article in the UVI Campus paper along with a video of pics and a link to a YouTube video of the Karaoke contest.

UVI has Strong Showing for Relay for Life
More than 50 UVI employees, their families and friends participated in UVI's effort for the 2008 Relay for Life. Held on June 21 and 22 on the Charlotte Amalie High School track, the American Cancer Society fund-raiser has become a major community event. UVI's theme was "Pirates of the Cure-ibbean" and members of the UVI teams wore pirate-inspired gear such as bandanas, eye patches, and bracelets. Inez Bartlette and Curtis Gilpin were co-captains for the UVI effort. Bartlette said she was pleased with the support from the UVI community and thanked everyone for their hard work and participation. She called UVI's participation in the event "a huge success" and has asked the UVI community to start gathering their ideas for the 2009 Relay for Life.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Tropical Waves

Well we have had some tropical weather over the last week or so and it appears to be hanging around. We have had a little rain and some nasty winds. Some of the winds have been reported in the forty plus mile an hour range. A couple of days ago a charter boat, (not one of CYOA's) in the BVI's sunk after getting caught is a rain squall that they were apparently ill prepared for. The same front turned over a 28 foot boat on its mooring in St Thomas and broke another boat loose from its mooring in St John and put it on the rocks.

Here is the definition of a tropical wave.

A tropical wave is normally preceded by an area of sinking, intensely dry air, oriented as a northeast wind. With the passage of the trough line, the wind veers to the southeast, the humidity abruptly rises, and the atmosphere destabilizes, producing widespread showers and thunderstorms, occasionally severe. As the wave moves off westward, the showers gradually diminish.
A notable exception to the general characteristic of widespread precipitation behind a tropical wave occurs in the Atlantic. Periodically, a surge of intensely dry air known as the Saharan Air Layer (SAL) is entrained behind a tropical wave, resulting in cloudless or nearly cloudless skies as convection is capped by the dry layer inversion. Additionally, any dust which may be present within the SAL reflects solar radiation, slightly cooling the atmosphere below it.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Relay for Life

Relay for Life, originally uploaded by captainjay.

Well today is the day for Relay for Life event. We are here decorating our tents. Since UVI's mascot is the Buccaneers, our theme is Pirates of the Cure...ibbean, a little corny but cute. Thanks to everyone for the donations. I raised over $600! I'll take more pics later this afternoon once the activities kick off.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Friday Beach Pic

Friday Beach Pic, originally uploaded by captainjay.

Its Friday!!! I'm sitting in the dentist parking lot waiting for my 8am appt to get my cap fixed and realized I hadn't done my Friday Beach pic post. I don't think I've used this one yet. Taken by a forumite and thought it was beautiful.

Laptop Is Still Working

Well here I sit with a working laptop for the first time in over a month there aren't any lines or checkerboards on the screen. The new card is working well and only took about an hour to install.


Thursday, June 19, 2008

The Dell Saga Comes to an End

Another mail miracle. The part for the laptop was shipped Tuesday night and was here by Wednesday afternoon. So as soon as we got home this evening, Jay printed out the instructions on how to dismantal the laptop and install the new video card from Dell's website (even though it said not to open the case unless you were a certified technician, who wouldn't need step-by-step instructions). But Jay followed the instructions and installed the new card and its working like a charm. So hopefully this is the end of the Dell craziness. I want to send a
big Thank You to Larry the Dell Customer Advocate, without his involvement who knows where in the process we would Thank You Larry!!

By the way the card was ordered from Latin American, shipped on the 17th from Ohio, yep good ole USA and delivered overnight by DHL. No doubt after all this Dell lost money on the $20 they charged for shipping.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Who's Birthday Is It?

Who's Birthday Is It?, originally uploaded by captainjay.

I think Deb is having a better time than I am. NOT
By the way we are at Fungi's.

Coki Beach

Coki Beach, originally uploaded by captainjay.

Well since we got a late start we gave up on Tortola. We decided to go somewhere on St. Thomas where we havn't been before. So we decided on Coki Beach. It is way crowded and it's off season. I would hate to see it in high season. But it's a decent beach with plenty of amenities. Here's Jay enjoying a cocktail with the obligatory bday sand sign.

Coki Beach

Coki Beach, originally uploaded by captainjay.

Here's a pic of Coki Beach looking towards Coral World. I can't tell how good the pic is because the sun is so bright I can't see the screen. :-)

Happy Birthday Jay

Well, today is Jay's birthday. I want to do something special today, but we haven't really decided yet what that might be, so we'll have to report later. Maybe Tortola, maybe St. John, who knows, so many choices. Normally, back in WV, for Jay's birthday we would have a very large party at the house. It started out small when we first moved in our house on the river, but it quickly grew into the "Unofficial Nitro Regatta". We would have a 70ft barge at our house with 30 boats tied around it, DJ, food (cooked by a great cook), kegs of beer, ski shots, jello shots, you name it and 200 of our closest friends!! I was a major river event for 11 years. So how do we compete with that kind of party being here, without all our friends and family........ Go take in something special that the island has to offer, beach, water, sunshine, rum, you get the picture.

My episode yesterday with my cap has kinda put a kink in the plan. I have to go into work this morning just for a few minutes to turn in my Relay for Life donations. They were supposed to be turned in yesterday, but that didn't happen. Then we thought about going diving, but I can't grip the regulator with my front tooth loose, it might break again, so that's out. But I'm sure we'll figure out something fun. So stay tuned for more.......

Happy Birthday Jay, I love you, my island boy!!!!!

BTW - Jay got a birthday gift from Dell. We got an email confirmation this morning indicating that the part for the computer was shipped! Estimated delivery date of the 24th-30th. Yea!!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Dentist Fun

Dentist Fun, originally uploaded by captainjay.

Well I just spent the last three hours at the dentist because the cap on my front tooth broke in half. If you've been reading the blog for awhile, then you know I broke it the day before we were moving to St. Thomas and my dentist got me in right away and cemented it back on. So I was supposed to find a dentist here as soon as we got here so that in CASE it broke again, I already had a dentist lined up to fix it. Well that didn't happen. So today when it broke, my stomach just sank and I thought there was no way I would be able to get in somewhere. But one of the girls in my office gave me a reference to a Dr. Connor and they got me in right away. I was so happy!! Until I got the news that it is not repairable and I have to get a new one made. Bummer.
But they somehow put my broken one back on temporarily and made an appointment for first thing Friday morning. The office staff was so nice and so was Dr. Connor. The office looks brand new. The area was a little rough when I was trying to find the place but once I got there
and saw how nice their place was, all was well. I definitely recommend them if you're looking for a dentist.

The Mysteries Of Mail

Well since my birthday is this week, I have received a few birthday cards. They are the normal birthday card fare, but the funny thing is trying to figure out the mail time. Deb's dad sent me a card, he is in Anchorage Alaska on vacation and mailed it on June 10th it arrived here on June 16th. Not bad considering the distance. The one from Deb's mom was mailed on June 13th from West Virginia and got here on the same day. Shaunda sent us a card from Hawaii on June 7 and we received it on June 12th. So all of these were sent via standard postage. That's not that bad all in all.


Monday, June 16, 2008

The Griswald's Caribbean Summer Tour

Well since yesterday was father's day we talked to the families. My family is planning a trip down next month in mass so it should be another Griswald's Vacation. Both of my sister's, my parents, two nieces and a nephew will all be here at the same time. There will also be a friend of my older sisters with her daughter as well. The only person that's not going to make it is my little brother. It should make for some big fun. We are actually looking forward to having people around since we haven't had any company for a while. They are renting a nice villa on St Thomas, a few miles from our house since we just don't have room for that many people. So look out in the next few weeks for continuing Griswald updates.


Sunday, June 15, 2008

Bushwacker time!

Bushwacker time!, originally uploaded by captainjay.

I went to Cost-U-Less today and bought the ingredients for Bushwackers. The cashier was like "party".... Jay got off work a little early so we sat by the pool, had a few Bushwackers and threw a couple of filets on the grill. We're planning on going back to Tortola on Wednesday (Jays birthday) to look at the boats again. So hopefully a boat is in our future.


Bushwacker recipe: equal parts of Bailys (or Carolans, a cheaper version of Bailys), Kahlua, Vodka, Rum (Cruzan of course), Amaretto, Cream of coconut. Blend with ice, top with fresh nutmeg. Yummy!

Happy Father's Day

Just wanted to say Happy Father's Day to all you dads out there. Have a great Day!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Gas price increase soon come

I thought it was strange that with all the gas price increases in the states that we hadn't seen any increase here. Now I know why. Hovensa, which is the oil refinery on St. Croix, and the only provider of petroleum to the US Virgin Islands, reviews their price once a month and then sets it accordingly. This month the gas stations will see a 24 cent increase in the price of gas. We won't see the increase until the stations make their next purchase and who knows how much they will kick it up. St. Thomas prices have been holding at 4.29 to 4.41, so at minimum it will go up to at least 4.55. We'll keep you posted.

Here's the article in the St. Thomas Source.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Friday Beach Picture

Here is another installment of the Friday Beach pic taken by a forumite. Thanks Cptnkirk for some great pics.


Thursday, June 12, 2008

Weather is Great!

Well Jay said the forecast was rain and thunderstorms, but that hasn't happened yet. Just walked outside and it's beautiful. Hot and sunny and no rain clouds. So apparently the weather man was wrong again.


Dell, The Parts Have Been Ordered

Well Larry from Dell has managed to get someone to actually order the card. It is supposed to take 5 to 10 work days to get here. I will stop the Dell bashing in hopes that this saga is over.

As for here, we were both off yesterday and worked on our chores. Some paperwork, bills, mail, cleaned up around the house and a few repairs here as well. The weather here has been a little odd. Hot and calm with an occasional rain storm. There is supposed to be a tropical system coming through. The rain chances are in the 40 to 60 percent range for the next few days. We definitely need it, the weather here has been very dry.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Dell Hell, The Nightmare Continues

So why does a Blog Having to do with relocation to the Virgin Islands have posts about Dell Computers two days in a row? Well instead of talking about boats, bars, and beaches we are talking about one of the less favorable aspects of living on a Rock in the Caribbean. US companies just don't understand where we are and that basically this is, for shipping purposes just like shipping to Kansas, or should be any way. This insane multi week saga to get a part that normally would be a simple phone call or email away state side turns into a huge drama when you add in the geographical location. The fact that a simple one price priority US Mail package can and will arrive here in a week or less from any place in the US is apparently a total mystery to Dell, and in a lot of cases most US retailers.

So here is the continuing saga:

Well yesterday was an interesting day in the continuing Dell saga. Deb received the message and followup emails from Dell Customer Service about our blog post. She sent several back and fourths with additional information about the computer, what we have done to get the parts etc. etc. About 5:00 yesterday I get a cell phone call because I had sent a complaint to customer service asking them to call me. Same drill, order number, service tag, you live were again? "Oh that is a US mailing address we should be able to ship there. Let me double check with the sales department and I will call you back in a half hour." Half hour later, "I am so sorry but you will have to re-order from Latin America. I will email you the number."
We get home and I start calling Latin America Sales, after about the third attempt to get through I finally get a person on the phone. In her broken English she informs me that I need spare parts not sales. So she transfers me to what I think is spare parts, except it is an all Spanish voicemail menu. Guess how that went. So after blindly navigating that I eventually get the all to familiar click/dial tone. I then find a chat for Dell customer service in Latin America. So lets give this a try. Sure enough after about ten minutes of wait time I get a chat agent from LA. He quickly informs me that I need to contact customer service by phone. I explain that this is basically impossible he doesn't believe me. Besides I am in technical support chat not customer service. So I log out of technical support fumble around the Dell Latin America web page and find sales chat. That didn't go much better. I eventually harassed them into giving me a phone number and extension that takes me around the Spanish voice mail. I get a lady on the phone who immediately wants to transfer me to spare parts. So I stop her explain the trouble I am having with spare parts and demand that she not transfer me until she get a human on the other end. She reluctantly does this and now I am talking to Mosses in spare parts. I have at this point given up trying to explain the lost order, I simply want to place a new order for the card. He pulls me up in the system and explains that since I live in the United States, they still had my West Virginia mailing address, they can't ship to me. So I go on to explain that I now live in St Thomas in the Virgin Islands. Oh then we can change your address and ship to you. So I give him the Latin America price quote that I received a few days ago, after waiting over a week, he pulls it up and starts to take my order. I repeated my address about ten times as he is typing it in. He also assures me the DHL won't need my zip code to deliver it. Then I ask him about a projected ship date he puts me on hold to check that and that's the last that I hear from old Moses. After about five minutes on hold, click and dial tone. So I have a Latin America customer number but the odds of the card actually being shipped aren't to good since Moses never took my credit card. When I called back to try to find Moses I am greeted by a voice mail that declares in Spanish and English that they are now closed and please call back during normal hours.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Dell Hell Part Deux

Well two days ago I logged onto Dell's web page only to find that the video card order that I spent untold amounts of time placing had been cancelled. Well since I couldn't get anyone on the phone to tell me why I sent an email to them to determine what the problem is. Well yesterday afternoon I got this ridiculous response from Dell.

"Dear Mr. Pennington,
Thank you for contacting Dell Online Customer Care.
I understand from your e-mail that your order has been cancelled without any notification. I really apologize for the inconvenience caused to you. I will be glad to assist you.
I have checked the account details and it shows that the order has been cancelled as you had requested it.
To place a new order I would request you to contact our Sales Department at the toll free number 1-800-915-3355 between 08:00 AM – 9:00PM (CST), Monday to Sunday. They will be more than happy to assist you."

So since I was pretty sure it wasn't 9:00 PM (CST) I started calling. The first person I got, I am assuming he was at a call center in India, didn't know why my order was cancelled. He gave me different toll free number than the one I was given by Dell. That person, of course after several minutes of voice recognition software prompts telling you that you will receive faster service online, produced a woman with an accent I couldn't make out tells me that they don't ship to the Virgin Islands. I ask to speak to a supervisor and I am promptly hung up on. Well this just gives me the warm fuzzies, so I call back. They inform me that I have to call the original number as I have a sales question not a customer service question. They try to transfer me I am lost in switchboard hell and click it goes. So I call back the original number, ask to speak to a customer service supervisor only to be told the supervisor is in a meeting. I promptly call BS on that one as it is now almost 10:oo pm Atlantic Time. She promptly tells me it is 10:00am were they are located. Now real alarm bells are going off, I politely ask what country are you in? Why Manila of course. So I have a woman from Manila telling me that Dell only ships to the United States. I am thinking maybe we should give the whole damn country back to the Japanese. She repeatedly tried to convince me to have the card shipped to someone that lives in the United States then they can ship it to me. I of course can not understand why they can't put it in a priority mail package to my address and ship it. "In her endless continuing idiot loop voice she calmly states "we don't ship outside the United States."

Since I first orderd the card I also received via email a price quote from Dell Latin American/Puerto Rico. So apparantly now I will have to call Dell Latin America to order the card. So two weeks later the screen still looks like a checker board when it's not locked up and Dell still has their collective head up their arse. We actually considered buying a new computer from them when this all started. You couldn't give me another Dell after this insane run around.


Sunday, June 8, 2008

Trunk Anyone

Trunk Anyone, originally uploaded by captainjay.

Well we decided to go to Trunk Bay after Woodys. The taxi we were on was full of people going to trunk so we went along for the ride. We ended up paying for a season pass since we usually end up coming here and its cheaper than paying each time. We went down to the right side
this time which is much quieter...I like it alot!!

Next it's off to the Beach Bar to meet some forum people. I just love these meetings.

Happy Birthday to Kacey

Happy Birthday to Kacey, originally uploaded by captainjay.

Today is Kaceys birthday (a staff member at Woodys) so Jay added to the birthday collection. Happy Birthday Kacey!

Woodys on a Sunday

Woodys on a Sunday, originally uploaded by captainjay.

Jay got the day off so we hoped on the ferry and came over to St. John for the day. Thought we would stop at Woodys for lunch, then maybe Hawksnest beach and then to the Beach Bar for a forum gathering. This is the second day this week we had off together....I could get used to

Jay got the shark bites which is what he always gets when we are at Woodys and I got the grilled mahi sandwhich, both were excelent.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Afternoon delight

Afternoon delight, originally uploaded by captainjay.

Just thought I would share the view on this Saturday afternoon. Its 84 with a nice little breeze, enjoying some Kenny Chesney and a Captain Morgan, waiting for Jay to get off work.

Pueblo Fined $61,000

Well Pueblo Supermarket's here on St Thomas just got wacked for large fines for irregular pricing practices. They had thousands of items marked one price on the shelves and they were scanning for higher prices at the register. Apparantly all of the errors were to the high side, which likely makes it a scam as opposed to a mistake.
Here is a link to the article in the paper.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Relay for Life Update

Well, it doesn't look like ACS is going to get the St. Thomas event online tools up and running anytime soon. They got the event listed, but not the ability to donate online. So, If you are interested in sponsoring me for the walk (pretty please) and donating to a worthy cause, send me an email and I will send you the mailing address to mail a check. I can then mail you a receipt for tax deduction purposes. They have been doing this walk for years and have raised lots of money for ACS that stays here in the VI. But, it really surprises me that they've never checked into getting the online tools made available which would help the fund raising abilities tremendously. I guess next year I will have to get more involved and maybe be on the committee to oversee the online activities.
Thanks for your support.
BTW - I guess I should have mentioned that the walk is June 21, so that doesn't leave much time. So open your hearts and your checkbooks, but quickly :-)

Friday Beach Picture

This is one of Deb's favorites. It was actually taken by Mary Beth on St. John. Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Back to St. Thomas

Back to St. Thomas, originally uploaded by captainjay.

Well we're back in St. Thomas after a full day in Tortola. We will definitly have to go back and see more of the island. The only bummer of the trip is having to go to St. John to check back through customs and not being able to stop at the Beach Bar before going back to Red Hook. So we had to stop at Molly Malones for a consolation cocktail. BTW - this pic was taken on Tortola looking back towards Sopers Hole.

Nanny Cay

Nanny Cay, originally uploaded by captainjay.

Spent the day at Nanny Cay on Tortola. Nice beach, nice bar, had a nice lunch and hung out with some fellow boaters (after looking at a couple of boats at BVI Yacht Sales). We're hanging out at Jolly Roger near the ferry dock waiting to take the 4 pm ferry back to Red Hook.


Tortola, originally uploaded by captainjay.

Jay and I both have the day off so we headed over to Tortola in the BVI. We took the 7:45 am ferry out of Red Hook and was through customs on Tortola by 8:25, not too bad.

I'm experimenting with a four day work week so that I can have a day off with Jay (since he works weekends). Its on a trial basis so hopefully it works out.

Stay tuned for more Tortola pics.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Tigger T-Sirt for a Good Cause

I thought I would post this here for the guys at On-StJohn. It is a good cause and they still have some left. This is a quote directly from their blog.

"This is a very special, limited edition t-shirt from in memory of Low Key Watersports mascot Tigger, who died May 1. All net proceeds from your t-shirt purchase will go to the St. John Animal Care Center. We sold some of these at Wagaplooza Saturday.
The shirt has the ACC logo on the front, and a great image of Tigger on the back.
We have priced this shirt high ($40.00), because it’s a fundraiser for the ACC. Consider it a really cool t-shirt in exchange for your generous donation.
This shirt comes in LARGE only, and in GRAY only. Limited quantity. Please allow TWO WEEKS for delivery. Order your limited edition Tigger T, here!"
Ruth is also selling them at St John Spice in Cruz Bay.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Much Needed Rain

Well it rained some last night, then we got up to this view this
morning. Looks like the cistern will be getting a little boost.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Apartment for Rent

Well, Shaunda and Toby made it safely back home yesterday. So the apartment they were staying in is now empty :-(

The landlord has not rented it yet, so I thought I would give it a plug. It's a really nice one bedroom, one bath apartment on the pool level of the house we are renting. It's newly renovated (3 months ago), very clean, fully furnished (all furniture, appliances, dishes, microwave, tv, etc). It rents for $1650 a month, which includes utilities (water, power, cable, wireless internet, local phone), use of the pool, washing machine, parking, private gated property off main road (4wd not required), one month's rent for deposit. Awesome view, awesome landlord and awesome co-tenants!

So if you've thought about making the move down, here is your chance. I made a short video of a few pics of the apartment. If you're interested, send Shelba an email and she will give you more detail on the lease. You can contact her directly at


Also, here is a link to a video I did from the upper level of the house so that you can see the view.