13N 61.14W Not many photos of our visit to St Lucia – we arrived
on New Year’s Eve – everything was closed on the 1st and
2nd when Oscar flew home………… and it rained
(a lot)! A bit like falling off a horse and getting back on, I really hoped
for a good sail to Bequia – a tiny island in the St Vincent and
Grenadines - on the 3rd and when we set off at 4.00am we were not
sure what was in store but were blessed with a glorious dawn with sun behind
the Pitons, a sunny day, great winds from the right direction and a speedy
We heard disturbing news over the radio as we passed St.
Vincent where a lone motor vessel at anchor had been robbed at gun
point. We avoided this island as it has a bad reputation for theft and drugs.
It is hard to describe the difference between the islands but they are like
chalk and cheese. Antigua with its heritage and British architecture – St Lucia
seemingly more affluent and Bequia, our favourite to date, best described as
‘shabby chic’ without a dishonest bone its body! Such a tiny place
with such a big heart – we have loved it! The harbour literally heaves
with activity – boat boys with boat names ‘pink panther’
‘burning flames’ and ‘bay watch’ greet you as you motor
in to hook you up to a buoy for 30EC Dollars per night (around 5 pounds).
Another 15EC and they’ll take you ashore to Customs and Immigration.
Ferries, painted in vivid colours, career in and out of the harbour –
ribs, so laden with people that the waves are lapping at their bottoms,
whizzing to the pontoons - massive schooners arriving and departing on day
trips such as Mustique and barges offering diesel, water and laundry services
come right alongside your yacht. We have embraced it all and not even bothered
to put down our own tender.
Burning Flames getting us hooked up to our buoy……
Walking along the shore where there are all the bars and
Bequia high street!
The side stalls along the road are full of fresh fruit and vegetables;
there are local art and craft shops – beautiful paintings, pottery, books
and poetry jumbled up with internet cafes, music, vivid coloured flowers and
happy smiling local people. We enjoyed a wonderful curry dinner and had an
early night! An island tour the next day with ‘Fat Man’ alias
‘Blinks’ took in the fort with great views of the bay
….. and then we were three!
And then we went to see the turtle sanctuary which frankly seemed a
mixed blessing to the poor turtles who are ‘rescued’ at birth and
kept in a round container for five years until they are old enough to look
However, if they are poorly or deformed they may stay for up to 25
years! They like to fight so there is a turtle ‘hospital’ where the
sickly are painstakingly covered in gentian violet and looked after (looks more
like solitary confinement to you or me) but the argument is that they are being
saved from extinction – and they live to be 200 years of age so what is a
mere 5 to 25 in a tub? Over 800 babies have been hatched so far and reared and
liberated so who am I to question?
We are planning to leave in the morning to head for Tobago Cays –
then we think we will check out of the ‘country’ in Union Island
before setting off on quite a long haul to the ‘ABC’ islands
– Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao – before Porvenir in the San Blas
Islands which is the next Rally support venue…..