Wild Horses arrived in Carriacou, Grenada on Oct 28th and we immediately started to prepare for our trip to St. Vincent & The Grenadines (SVG). The first island in SVG is just a few hours away and we were excited to start island hopping our way through the beautiful waterways of the Grenadines, including Union Island, Canouan and Bequia.
Cue “screeching stop” sound.
After almost two weeks, we still have not received a pet permit to SVG for Ocean. All necessary paperwork was submitted, but we haven’t even so much as received a confirmation of receipt. Processing time is supposed to be three days. I have emailed several times to get an idea of the status of our application. No response. I have also tried calling (probably more than fifty times). No answer. Yeesh. It helps to know that I am not alone in this. I have met several other cruisers with the same experience. Only one was able to finally get someone on the phone at the St. Vincent Government Veterinary Office. They pleaded their case and was issued a permit. Hence, I keep calling the office with the hope of winning the Pet Permit lottery 😉.
In the interim, we have been exploring the beautiful island of Carriacou. Last week, our boat buddies (Kemana and Caretta) and the three crew from Wild Horses took the city bus out to Windward, on the northeast region of the island. This area is ripe with wooden boat building and we were able to see a few in progress as well as chat with a few locals. It took two buses to get to windward and two for the return. In each case, we had to ask if Ocean could board. All but one gladly had her ride, albeit under our seats. She was a champ about it though! The one bus driver who resisted, complained about Ocean’s size, her fur and just about everything dog-like about her. But he finally still let her ride, even though he scowled his way through it. Funny thing though, since that day our scowl-faced bus driver has stopped twice to ask if we want a ride while we were walking Ocean along the street. I guess she warmed his heart a little bit!
We have also had some fun hanging out on a nearby beach, and checking out some local stores, events and great restaurants. And, with our days and nights getting a little cooler (just one or two degrees but we’ll take it), we have enjoyed some very nice walks around town.
Although we haven’t minded waiting a few weeks in Carriacou for our pet permit, there might be a weather window early next week to start moving north and we don’t want to miss this window.
Cue “Plan B”.
The next country north of St. Vincent is St. Lucia. This country is near and dear to our hearts as we visited a resort there several years ago. We absolutely fell in love with the island and the people and have been excited to visit on our own sailboat. On our way south, we had to skip St. Lucia (and St. Vincent) as Tropical Storm Bret was hot on our tail and we wanted to be the furthest south we could safely get. That was Grenada, which is south of both St. Vincent and St, Lucia.
This past week, I requested the pet permit for St. Lucia. Not only did I get a “thanks for your email” receipt but I received the actual pet permit the very next day. Yay! Our new plan now is to head to St. Lucia. Sadly, our boat buddies will not be joining us as they, rightly so, will be exploring SVG. No worries though. We have plans to meet up with them either in St. Lucia or Martinique.
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Victoria is a hiker, dog-lover, blog writer and planner extraordinaire. Oh, yeah and she is kind of fond of living on a boat.