Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Simpson Bay Snot & Half Hikes

The floating snot of Simpson Bay Lagoon

We are starting to get itchy feet to leave St Maarten and move on to pastures new.  For nearly seven weeks we have been mostly anchored inside the murky waters of the inner lagoon with its floating weed that can only be described as dragon snot; Snot so yucky and slimy that it sticks to any rope, lines or ladders that you have dangling in the water.  We are longing to be anchored in blue seas with clear water and balmy days.  St Maarten has plenty of these idyllic beaches but the anchorages can often be rolly – the bain of my life or miles from all the places and people we want to hang out with.  Time has flown by in a blink and we would like to start pressing on with our journey northwards.....before we change our mind!
Days have been filled with stocking the boat with spares and food, fuel and water; chores taking so long as we travel from one end of the lagoon to the other.  Evenings filled at “happy hours” ashore or drinks on boats with the company of friends old and new, some heading in the same direction as us others sadly not.  I can’t always say I enjoy our time in St Maarten but this season it has been fantastic.
One of the wonderful views from our half hike on Sunday

Last Sunday Mark from ''Sealife'' organised a walk from the top of the highest point on the French side, Pic Paradis 411m above sea level.  Over 30 cruisers turned up for the hike.  New Dutch friends Jolanda and John from SY "Joho" picked me up 8.30am Sunday morning - as we all know Sim avoids most walks if possible - and dinghied us over to Port Royal.  A bus picked us up and took us up to the highest point so that we could walk back down (approx 4hrs).  It was a very lovely, scenic walk; we had views out across to the neighbouring islands of Saba, St Barts and beyond and to  Anguilla on the other side.  Only after an hour or so of walking it was decided that we had taken the wrong trail and needed to climb back up the way we had come and start again.  Hmf! The party spilt in two – those that were going back up and the "half hikers"- those that would continue down the road. Being at the mercy of Jolanda and John I waited for them to make a decision.  After a few fraught moments of thinking they wanted to go back up, they too also wanted to go down.  I must be very unfit! My feet hurt and I was a little tired, I was very happy to continue down.  It was still a long walk in the hot sun only relived by a brief break in an air conditioned supermarket we found that was open.  It was however a very enjoyable way to spend a Sunday morning. Sim enjoyed a few hours of peace and quiet, achieving more in a short time than he would when I am constantly nattering to him!
Walking past the sugar cane vats and old well.

We hope to be out of here by the end of the week.  But that waits to be seen to be believed.  In the mean time we won’t complain too much about being here for a few extra days J.
30+ cruisers on a hike in SXM

With some great views


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