Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Busy Daze in St Maarten

Wandering Star at anchor in Simpson Bay Lagoon.

St Maarten is not a place for sitting still.  Not for us anyway.  We have been working (fairly) hard every day.  Jobs are slowly being ticked of our latest “to do” list.  Most of the jobs or items are to do with our departure to the US which includes some longer sails and stops in more remote anchorages. We need to be more self sufficient than we have been in a while. The engine is having a thorough check over including redoing the fuel system.  The gauges and sender units have been replaced.  Sails are being repaired. The rig inspected.  Running rigging replaced. Navigation chips for our chart plotter bought. More gas bottles purchased. We are making a rain catcher to keep our tanks topped up. All outside items like the gas bottles and the life buoy have had covers made for them.  We are buying a huge bilge pump giving us three in total.  Having had some good advice from my sister’s doctor boyfriend we are revamping our medical kit. Getting the prescriptions from a doctor on the Dutch side and buying from a very reasonable chemist on the French side.  The cat must go to the vet for her health certificate.  And we have a provisioning list as long as your arm with all the food, alcohol and other sundries to add to our stocks.  Not to mention all the spare parts we want to carry.  The grab bag is being up dated and we have to consider buying a new dinghy. Which basically equates to lots of $$$ being spent.  When you live on such a tight budget it stings a little to be spending so much.  But all of these are necessary investments, except perhaps the alcohol. But you have to live for today right? We do like to know there is food in the fridge for tomorrow  ;-)!
Laying out the material for the rain catcher at the local curry house!
St Maarten is also a social place.  The lagoon is starting to get busy.  More and more cruisers arrive every day.  It makes happy hours and get-togethers big social events.  We have eaten out twice in local restaurants where they have had to close their doors to others as there were so many of us. The Shwarmas and Chinese are very good value.  Beer at happy hour is between $1-2.  The days are sunny, the skies are blue, and the lagoon is surrounded by deep green hills.  The beaches are some of the best around with the most amazing hues of blue.  Everything is so colourful and cheery.  It is hard not to like this place and going to be even harder to tear ourselves away.
The lovely Simpson Bay beach
Out for a stroll on Simpson Bay Beach
Fun times for Izzys b'day party on "Izzy R"


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