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Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum or two or three or four …. or nineteen

April 1st, 2009 · No Comments

Just two again but not for long. Jane and Alisdair have agreed to go into the courier service and their first job is to St. Lucia, delivering parts to a yacht in transit. They have allowed themselves one week to find Giselle. However we know the arrival times of planes from London and they are picked up at the airport. On the road from the airport they are caught on camera, drinking, well Alisdair is, Jane keeps a low profile in the car.

Alisdair and his new accomplice David tell us it’s Coconut juice, but they don’t share!

However Jane and I behave ourselves by having just juice in the marina bar while the boys take the bags to the boat out at anchor. Giselle is anchored in Rodney Bay at the north end of St Lucia. Sandals resort is at the Pigeon Island end of the beach and the golden sands stretch about two miles round the bay. Pigeon Island is a must do walk. The reward, the views from the top which are spectacular, north and south, and the knowledge that you can replace lost fluids in the little café on the shore.

Pigeon Island is no longer an island, in 1970 when the Rodney Bay Marina was dredged to provide a better yachting anchorage, the dredged material was used to make a causeway from the island to the mainland.

From Rodney Bay we sail north into the French territory of Martinique. From English to French and from Eastern Caribbean dollars to Euros. Martinique however is on strike, shops with almost empty shelves, no mail being collected, (so if you didn’t get a present or a card from Jane you know why) one dish being served in the restaurants rather than two, local people are finding it hard.

Information extracted from my fluent French spies A&J!

The sun and water was not in short supply and we enjoy bathing in both.

Le Marin to Marigot Bay St Lucia was a lively down wind passage, with Alisdair at the helm. Back in Marigot, Vine our previous boat boy was happy to help us. He came on board to show us his skill in weaving baskets, making fish and roses from palm leaves. Different boat boys come by and try to sell their goods limes, bananas, coconut, etc, now bananas are good for you as they are high in potassium and therefore great for fighting dehydration so having bananas as dessert sounds a good idea. Having banana flambé sounds better, just don’t do as I did and add the double strength rum to the already hot fryingpan, unless you want flambé eyebrows! Vines had suggested going to the rum distillery, he would meet us in the morning so, we met, climbed the hill up to the road, walked down the other side and took the minibus, one stop to the distillery. First the tour then the tasting. The open bar had nineteen bottles of different rums to taste and a challenge to taste them all. No limit. Question is can you remember the ones you liked or do you have to try again?

Back on the minibus, up the hill and into the café, where locals get their takeaway lunch. We sit in and find it difficult to finish the plateful, rice, piece of macaroni cheese, coleslaw, sweet potato, dasheen, then your choice of fish, pork or chicken. (For about £4 a head) Now down hill towards the lagoon, little bit of relaxing then a quick swim, the day is not yet over we’re off to the fish fest at Anse la Raye,

our guide Vine who would not be outdone pricewise with the quote we had for a taxi had managed to come up with the same deal but now he can come too. The fish fest was interesting lots of different types of seafood, visitors of different nationalities and states! Steel band drumming away, dancers dancing, or just hanging about, everyone having fun wandering the streets. (Although I wouldn’t suggest you wander down the back streets on your own) The taxi took us back to Marigot Bay where we hopped into the dinghy. Two American ladies who had been to the fish fest saw us in the dinghy and asked “Are you in a boat?” “Yes we’re in a boat” “Where are you going?” “We’re going to the big boat” and off we went no night cap needed tonight.

Now our two couriers are trying to alter their appearance, one going nicely brown and the other practising for that charity nose day but an all over effect, hopefully will change before he gets back to work. Harmony Bay only a few miles down the coast is our next stop. We like the Soufriere area underneath the Pitons.

Bennie had reserved a buoy for us, and with our line through the buoy and tied onto our bow, two lads, raced out to our boat, they both want the job of taking then tying our stern line ashore, no mean task, they look about eight. We negotiate a deal with them both, they swim ashore with the line, then back to the boat to collect their money. Later Bennie junior comes for our evening meal order, and we ask about the boys and their ability to tie knots, “They know their knots”

Another good meal and rum punches with Bennie, and a chat with the Canadians that we had met before. We were asked about haggis, now as you might expect Alisdair was having them on telling them that haggis had three legs, I felt sorry for them and put them straight, they really have four legs and Alisdair was pulling their leg, but I think deep down they knew he was winding them up.

Another day and another hire car, delivered this time directly to Bennies. Having driven up the east side of St Lucia when Jane and Alisdair arrived now we would drive down the west side, via hot springs and the drive-in volcano. Well that’s what they said, drive in, but we didn’t, we took in the sulphurous fumes, watched the bubbles of mud boil away, then left. No I wasn’t impressed.

Our two tanned crew checked in at the airport, then we all went and had lunch on the beach, it’s such a shame that Jane didn’t have the chance to kitesurf it looked like fun. Next time!

As for the courier service I think they need more practise, perhaps they need to try another country.

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Tags: Atlantic Leg · Friends & Family