Our famous Elbow Reef Lighthouse is closed for repairs during the next week. At night it has been so strange not to see the light on. This has been planned for a while, and since it is a navigational aid, everyone possible has been notified including the Bahamas Defense Force, and BASRA (Bahamas Air Sea Rescue). Notices have also been on our cruisers net, at all the ferry landing areas, the Abaconian newspaper, the Hope Town Bulletin online, and I even put it on the HTSC website...and now this blog!
Living next door to the lighthouse, we get a front row seat to what they are doing. First they had to get their tools to the top of the lighthouse...in 25 knots of wind. This is the same way that we get the Christmas lights to the top.
Then a scaffold system was set up (all the materials came in crates on the freight boat). The workers use harnesses with two clips on them, similar to what the procedure is when you go zip-lining. Always have at least one clip on the safety rail.
Then the metal work began. The man doing the work specializes in repairing lighthouses. Click HERE to see an article about him.
FYI, the flagpole has now been lowered too. Late yesterday afternoon, when we returned from the Sunfish races (Dave came in 4th out of 13 boats in 0-5 mph winds), we heard jackhammering. A few minutes later we saw lines on each side of the pole as it was lowered, but then suddenly it came crashing down. We heard a bunch of clapping, so it must be nothing was damaged. It's a good thing volunteers didn't attempt that project. My next photos of the lighthouse from the porch probably won't have the pole in the middle of them...at least for a while, until they figure out how to rig and get it back up.