Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Time flies

It's been almost a month since we arrived in St. Martin and we keep sort of making plans to leave. It's relatively easy to tend to boat projects here since there are marine shops that service the sizable boat crowd. There's almost no wifi in the lagoon so we go ashore for wifi as well as provisioning and exploring. We saw quite a bit of the island along the coast when we were here back in the spring so if you need another look at St. Martin you can look back here or here.

I've been a bit lax with the camera lately, but here's a bit of what we've been seeing/doing since we returned.

Me among the roots in Sandy Ground, Marigot
Beautiful BIG mosaic on the wall at a hotel in Sandy Ground, Marigot

You are HERE.... and everywhere else is far away
We found ourselves with old and new friends at a pre-holiday beach party on Explorer Island in the middle of the lagoon. There was music, food and young chefs! The cool kids from s/v Demeter took care of the cooking while the grownups played music, drank and told stories.

Beach BBQ crowd 
The cool kids from s/v Demeter
We ran into the Demeter crew anchored at Ile Pinel too and walked around the island taking in the views. I love the bleached out trees around the island. We were anchored on the left side of the photo and dinghied around to the beach on the right side of the photo for a swim and snorkel.

It's always a good time to do boat projects and since our grill was on it's last legs, it was on the 'fix it!' list. We got some new parts and Skip proceeded to 'modify' them, ignoring entirely the dire warning on the packaging that said "Under NO circumstances should any of the enclosed parts be modified in any way". We've grilled a few times since the modification and nothing's exploded so I guess we're OK.

We also tended to a few cracked stanchion bases (bottom right) and Skip perked up the dinghy box, making compartments for all the stuff we toss in it and then can't find. The lid was falling apart so he made a new lid too. I think it was just an excuse to varnish something, but it does look pretty swanky now.

Clockwise from top left: grill modification step one, grill mod step two, stanchion fix, dinghy box prep 

Dinghy box divided.

Varnish makes everything look good.
The Dutch and the French sides both have something to offer.... we shop for food on both sides and go to both the big and small markets. The great cheese and artisan sausage from southern France is a big draw at one of the French markets. We need to eat some need veggies.

The proprietress at the table full of sausage
When we were here in the spring we came across a quiet little French bistro (with great wifi!) and thought we'd check it out again when we were in Marigot looking for a place to do some work. We were both sad and happy to see that it had changed hands.... instead of a little French bistro it was now a Thai restaurant! Pad thai makes my day.

Clockwise from top left (below): great paint job on Ragin Cajun (who seems not to be from New Orleans, but from Australia), Cupecoy beach washes away in the big waves brought on by a north swell, a quiet table in the Thai cafe in Marigot, collection of mailboxes in Marigot.

Clockwise from top left (below): music man at the monthly marine flea market, going out the Sandy Ground bridge, the Thai restaurant owner's young daughter attracting customers, and keeping herself entertained, during a slow afternoon, group of kids on the dock in Grand Case.

We spent a few days anchored in Grand Case and walked the beach and ate at the roadside barbeques. There was some interesting holiday graffiti...

Skeletal Santa brings plantains for all the kids?
Bad landing in Grand Case
For now we're back in the lagoon sitting out the high winds and catching up with friends. Though the dinghy ride into the Dutch side or to Marigot on the French side means a certain drenching these days, there's dinghy dock near us at Sandy Ground and from there it's an easy walk to the beach facing Marigot. The surf is bringing up all kinds of little gems and it's good to get off the boat and stretch.

Dinghy dock at Sandy Ground

It looks like the high winds that have kept us (and most everyone else) pinned down for a while may let up over the weekend. If the forecast holds, we'll pull up the anchor and move on.


Anonymous said...

What an amazing assortment of people and places and things you have come across in your wanderings. Love that hotel mosaic. xo

Cindy Barnard said...

That first comment is from me. I hit "something" and blam, my comment was posted before I was ready!

Miles said...

Why do I even bother trying to be first? Clearly my mother sits on the blog and hits referesh every 15minutes waiting for an update... Hi mom. Hi guys. Lex and I are headed to Maho on Friday. Looks like it will be the last hurrah as the property sold a few weeks ago. :(

clay said...

I spent three days on the beach in Grand Case after a delivery. It's my favorite place to be in St Martin. Nice to see the pictures of it.

Have Fun