Life & Travels Afloat in our Moody
Since we started out, our hope was that the best plan would be to have ‘no plan’ and to just take things as they come. So far it is working well, and after some very enjoyable days in St Anne on Martinique, we find ourselves further South again on St Lucia once more. In truth, previous visits were very superficial, but we arranged to hire a car with Jim and Janet (Y-Knot), a delightful American couple, and drove round the island.
Surprisingly we found it noticeably different to other islands we had driven round. After a minor navigational detour, we ventured across the interior. Despite volcanic origins, there are fewer vertiginous slopes there is more subsistence cultivation. Also there are dwellings scattered all over. The roads are generally in fair condition, so the driving was easy. However the damage from the Christmas floods was very evident. Roads washed away (the one in the photo had a gap of about 30ft – wide and deep!). The east cost had some beautiful bays, but they are not for yachts.
Along the road, some of the geology was really puzzling, and we hope that a more knowledgeable reader may be able to shed some light on it. There is a layer of small boulders in the middle of the cross-section!
At the South-western corner of St Lucia there are the two Pitons, formidable pinnacles rising steeply from the shore. On the saddle between the two is the Dasheen restaurant, surely one of the most spectacular places to eat in the Caribbean. The view is simply jaw-dropping. Oh and the food is great too! It was a really great day out.
The main reason for coming back to this island was a medical one. A bit of a bind, but necessary, especially as it will probably keep us here for several weeks. Nothing serious, but it necessitated heading in on the local bus to the hospital in the capital Castries. Public transport is wildly different to that in Europe, and much more fun. These are 9-seater minibuses that ply fixed routes. Stand at the bus stop, and if there is room, you will be travelling in only a few minutes. Somehow there is that much more banter and laughter on the way out of Castries… When you want to get off, just call out “Bus Stop”, and squeeze your way out.
I confess to having felt a bit intimidated the first time we went to Castries, not least because there are few other fair-skinned folk wandering the streets. However today’s visit was more enlightening, and everyone we met could not have been nicer or more helpful. One hardware shop we went into did not have the tool I wanted, but did have a set of guitar strings for Annemarie! If one shop did not have what you needed, they would happily tell you where to try or even take you to a competitor to try there.
Which brings me back to where I started. We brought out the instrument thinking we would have lots of time to learn things on the crossing, (but never started one!), and the poor thing had been neglected until last week. Fetched out of hiding, it sang hideously to start with, and even when tamed there was something missing. Over a fun supper on Ocean Rainbow, Clare, Janet and Annemarie agreed to have a session the following morning, using the 2 available guitars. Much progress was reported, but sadly the ancient strings were already stretched excessively on their rack, and replacements were essential.
May the chords be with you……..