Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Tuesday 20th March

Rodney Bay
St. Lucia

14 04.435 N
60 56.997 W

Gerry was up early to run the Generator and try to get the freezer temperature down. Once I had surfaced he took off in the dink to see if the propane refill store was open yet – who was he kidding?! Naturally it wasn’t so we were going to have to try and get back from our island tour before the store closed in the evening. During the night a tri-maran just a bit further over from where we are anchored went up in flames around midnight. Lorie had seen it catch fire as she was in their cockpit typing at the time. When Gerry came back to collect me and then Dale and Lorie he detoured over to the boat so that we could have a look at the damage – it was dreadful, on hull was completely burnt out, all the rigging had gone and the rest was pretty charcoaled. Lorie told us that it happened in the short time of just 30 minutes and even though the flames were dowsed it kept re igniting. It was a sorry sight to behold, we thought it was lucky that none of the boats near it caught fire. After detouring to look at it we docked the dinghy and met up with Terri and Mike from MT Nest and went in search of our tour guide. CJ (Chris) was to be our guide for the day, we were doing a trip all around the island hitting the highlights. Mike negotiated the cost down a little and we took off in a very nice, clean, air conditioned 16 seat bus. Chris told us that the fire on the tri-maran was arson, apparently the owner has upset some local people with his building of a new restaurant and they took it out on his boat, as yet the culprits haven’t been caught. Our tour took us Southwards towards the capital of Castries where we saw that a Carnival cruise ship had docked. From this point onwards our tour coincided with the tours being undertaken by the cruise ship passengers so at each stop it was a crush to get the best pictures and we were constantly harassed by souvenir sellers. We stopped at several beautiful viewing spots, taking pictures of the bays that they overlooked – ones which we would possibly be anchoring in over the next day or two. We made our way around the coast via Marigot, Canaries, Anse Chastanet to Soufriere where we visited The Diamond botanical Gardens, baths and waterfall. The place was lovely but I have to say that I didn’t think it was as nice as the botanical gardens in Deshaise or the Emerald Pool in Martinique. Then it was time for lunch which we ate in a small local restaurant, it was very good food and cheap. After lunch we were back in the bus and moving on to the Sulphur Springs which are the result of volcanic action. In 1766 a volcano erupted here, blowing the top off of the mountain and leaving the exposed dish shaped caldera with barren, brightly coloured earth, bubbling pools of hot black liquid and huge spurts of extremely unpleasant smelling steam (it smells like rotten eggs). The volcano is still considered to be an active one even though it has not erupted for the past 200 odd years. It was quite fascinating to see the bubbling pools and steam, apparently the temperature of the pools is high enough to cause second degree burns as one unfortunate tour guides found out when he fell into one of them. After doing the tour of the “walk in volcano” it was back on the bus and a short while later we were climbing out again to view The Pitons from the Ladera Resort. This resort overlooks the forest out to the sea between the two Pitons and is just spectacular. There is a bar and lounge which has views that take your breath away. Apparently the cost of the resort rooms will also take your breath away! The Pitons are two mountains right on the coast which are separated by a bay, they are not the largest mountains on the island but are possibly the most spectacular. After taking our photos of the Pitons we returned to the bus and began to head East and then North along the coast road back towards Rodney Bay. The Eastern side of the island didn’t have so many interesting things to see, the roads were very windy but the scenery was nice and we got some great views of the Atlantic – looking quite revolting, glad we weren’t out there sailing! We made it back to the dock by 17.10hrs, paid Chris for our day out and, after collecting our propane tank, headed straight into the bar at Scuttlebutts for a drink and a light dinner. Once we were all filled to capacity we jumped in the dinks and made our way to our boats. We turned on the generator and then joined Dale, Lorie, Terri and Mike on Gypsy Palace for a nightcap (admittedly an early nightcap but we were tired!). After this it was back to our boat, type up blog notes and check the emails before going to bed



Post a Comment

<< Home