St Lucia - 14.05N, 60.57W
Peter and Avril Brookes
Mon 23 Jan 2012 02:12
We checked out of beautiful Bequia on Wednesday afternoon, and left the anchorage, which was becoming increasingly rolly just before sunrise on Thursday morning.
After yet another cruising couple told stories of unwelcomed visits from boat boys in St Vincent, we decided to sail straight to St Lucia. The journey is about the same distance as crossing the English channel, but much more pleasant! The scenery was great, the wind generally fair and the seas calmer than they had been for days. The fishing was singularly disappointing!
We passed St Vincent and thought how sad it was that such a stunningly attractive island could have earned itself such a poor reputation amongst sailors.
The south of St Lucia is similarly troubled, but we headed for Marigot Bay in the North, where we could check in with customs. It is now the height of the sailing season and Marigot bay has gone to great lengths to create a very different, pleasant atmosphere. We were met on arrival by a Marina official in a dinghy but there was no hassle or coercion to employ their services. Instead a very helpful guy helped us tie up to a buoy without expecting payment; it was all included in the price of the mooring for the night, which was collected later in the evening. Whilst the boat boys are only trying to make a living, the manner in which they do so has put off sailors to the point where we have observed very unpleasant behaviour from both boat boys and cruisers.
Marigot Bay North Coast St Lucia
On Friday, we moved up the coast to Rodney Bay and checked into the marina, where we can do the small repair jobs needed on board. The chandlers has ordered the stuff we need and can also loan Pete the tools he needs to complete the repairs.
We were immediately struck by how full the supermarkets are here; even small mini markets carry more items than the supermarkets in the Grenadines. There are also many ARC boats here; perhaps a fifth of the fleet.
Saturday saw Pete commence work on the pole track that buckled in the Atlantic. Avril did a load of washing only to discover that the machine broke half way through the cycle.
The washing machine repair man!
Sunday was put aside for washing machine repairs and the lazarette was unloaded and the machine winched out to have the pump cleaned out. The job solved a couple of mysteries; the location of the underwire from a bikini top, and the source of rust stains that were regularly appearing on the washing.
Rodney Bay; the marina is behind the beach The fort at the top of Pigeon Island
Job done, and the machine repaired, we had the afternoon off to walk up to Pigeon Island to enjoy the wonderful views over the south end of the island.