Wednesday, December 24, 2008

December 15

Sorry for the long delay in adding to this. We were without internet service for a couple of weeks. We finally decided to pay for service here in Iles des Saintes, just south of Guadeloupe.

Monday, December 15

We left Antigua Friday. Actually, we left the marina Thursday afternoon. We anchored off the entrance channel, had a good supper and several rums. At midnight, we got up, made coffee and got underway. Things were a bit rough at first and I got a bit nauseous. That was a disappointment, I thought I was over the seasick thing. The wind was blowing at about 15 knots and seas were 6-8 feet. We had hoisted the main and were sailing under 2 reefs. At any rate, Al and I took turns sleeping and morning finally came. and we raised the staysail which steadied the boat even more. The seas calmed considerably and the ride was much more to our liking. We finally reached Deshaies at about 10:30 in the morning--the trip should have taken 8 hours but we tacked far to the east in order to get a more comfortable ride. We went into town to clear in, but since it was Saturday, the customs office was closed. So we decided to proceed the next day to Isles des Saintes and clear in whenever we could. Hello! This is the “she said” part! We left for the Saintes about 7 a.m. Nice ride whilst in the lee of island (Guadaloupe) However when wind howled down through valley at us - we heeled way over!! Not my favorite boat position. Then the island ended and I was back below, huddled in a fetal position - eyes closed tight. Listening to stuff falling off shelves, rolling around on floor!! Didn’t feel real good but didn’t upchuck! Men thought that this ride was “exhilarating”!! --except when waves came crashing into cockpit getting them wet!!! (10 ft seas, 25 knt winds). Arrived about 2:30 - 3 p.m. Al made his famous Chicken Vesuvio for supper!! Quite the technique--Chef Al . . . He chopped elephant garlic into huge hunks, same with onions and potatoes and chicken - threw it all into a pot, poured on evoo turned on the gas, poured a rhum and we all sat and chatted. Humm, time for another rhum, ok, stir the chicken. Sure turned out super yummy!!
The sticky part of the situation was that Al had to get to the airport in Pointe-à-Pitre by early the next afternoon. To clear in at immigration in the Saintes, we had to fill out the forms at the Police office which opened at 8, they had to fax them to Guadeloupe and the clearance would be faxed back to the Saintes. Meantime, the last ferry to Guadeloupe normally leaves at 8:30 so there wouldn’t be time to do everything that needed doing. Wouldn’t you know that today there was a “bateau exceptionel” leaving at 9:30. We arranged for Al to meet up with a guy at the port in Basse Terre who would take him to the airport. So, at 9:30, Al was on the ferry and headed back to Bowling Green and winter in Kentucky. He’ll return January 2. So, C & I are stuck here in paradise.
We took a short walking tour of part of the island, sat at a pleasant café on the waterfront and enjoyed the view and a beer. We walked around a bit more and went to lunch at a beachfront restaurant. We ordered a salade composée and a main dish each of which we shared and a half bottle of rosé. The main dish consisted of grilled fish (locally caught “thazard”), puré of igname (local yams), gratiné of christophe, a local vegetable, and a daube of bananes (plaintains). The waitress kindly explained what each of the vegetables and fruits was. Lunch was delicious.
We sat on a bench on the main street and killed time watching people. We were waiting for the stores to open again so we could buy some sugar syrup and more rum. You’ve probably gotten the picture that we like a rum every now and then--a ‘ti punch as they call it down here.

12/20, 2008 “She said, me here again! Were in town by 8:30 a.m. Straight to Boulanger!!! My oh my! Heaven! Crispy baguette right out of the oven!!!! Have been having lunch ‘in town’ usually sharing a main and a salad then our all time staple (even in Subtle) supper; bread, cheese, olives, sausage, wine for supper. On this day, we walked up to Fort Napoleon. Whew!! Quite a walk! But I was a good gravitationally challenged person and didn’t complain. But Man!! It just kept going up and up!! The fort has been ‘restored’ and every room has really interesting stuff.

No comments: