Position 15:52.46N 61:35.92W

Julian & Anne Whitlock
Mon 22 Nov 2010 13:45
The Saintes - Guadeloupe - 16-17th November
A long days sail up from Martinique anding up with a tight beat up to the Saintes with the wind
coming around into the north east. As a result it was dark by the time we dropped the anchor
behind the 'pain de sucre'. Again so few boats - only one other in this anchorage. When we
were going down to Grenada in the summer it was so busy here we couldn't find a place to
anchor so carried onto Dominica!
The next morning we moved across to our favourite anchorage - Ilet A Cabrit - and had a
long snorkel around the bay. The coral and fish life were excellent and probably better
than we remember 5 years ago when our niece and nephew were with us and learning to
dive here.
The wind was really howling now with very large Atlantic seas coming in so it was
fascinating to see the wind surfers trying to stay upright and needing rescuing by their
safety boats. Before lunch we set off for Des Haies, a very nice and sheltered anchorage
at the top of Guadeloupe. As soon as we cleared the shelter of our island we were into
gale force winds and 3 meter swells and a short, fast sail to the relative shelter off the
main island Basse Terre. For the remainder of the trip to Des Haies we were alternately
hit with up to 50kt squalls or dead calms as the high mountains to windward sheltered
or funneled the wind at us. A wierd experienec at Des Haies. At 1 a.m. we were woken
by cries for help both in French and English. On getting into the cockpit we could see
a small dinghy deifting out to sea in the fresh winds and a man standing up with one oar
appearing to try and make his way back into the anchorage. As we were the furthest out
yacht we felt that it was us he was hailing but then he started to yell that he was going
to kill us and board the yacht (again in French and English!!) With some trepidation we
lifted the anchor and went out to rescue him but on our approach he apologised and said
'he was in error and was ok'. He was a white man of about 40 years of age who did not
appear to be drunk. As we could see that he did have a second oar and could
therefore row in if he wanted to we motored back and reanchored. However whilst
having a cup of tea to recover we once again heard cries for help but this time much
further away. As the moonlight was now obscured by cloud we could not see him so
decided to call the French Coastguard and after a lengthy discussion with them they
 agreed to send out a rescue boat....