Day 2 – Rodney Bay, St. Lucia

Kelley & Loren at the Helm, heading for St. Lucia
Kelley & Loren at the Helm, heading for St. Lucia

Awoke with the sun, and motored back to Le Marin. The salon door was stuck open, so we docked and asked Pierre to fix it while I went to customs to clear out.

Overall, we are happy with our boat Ginger. I had wanted to rent a Leopard 46 because I’ve never sailed on one, however the only place around here that had a newer model Leopard 46 is The Moorings. The Moorings cat cost almost three times more than the boat we got from Regis Guillemot. We just couldn’t rationalize paying that much more.

Ginger is a nice boat – just a few configuration things seem strange. There is no chartplotter by the helm, it’s inside at the nav desk and thus unusable while sailing. We ended up using my iPad at the helm with the Navionics app for navigation.

I cleared out at Customs, then went back to the charter company office for another embarrassing round of credit card declines. Amazingly, they let us leave with the boat again, with me promising to call the bank with our Sat phone and call the charter company on Tuesday.

Susan testing the trampoline
Susan testing the trampoline

We aimed for St. Lucia, Rodney Bay. Totally perfect sailing conditions. Wind was 15-20 knots straight from the east. This is typical of the trade winds here and as I’ve watched the weather over the last months, pretty much every day has the same conditions. Ginger averages about 8 knots with one reef in the main.

When we get between Martinique and St. Lucia we get some big rolling Atlantic swells – 10+ FT high. The repetitive rolling on the swells causes an unnamed crew member to lose their breakfast over the transom. They were good sports about it, though.

We didn’t see much boat traffic between the two islands. When we get off of St. Lucia, a couple of rain squalls dump rain on us for a few minutes. The iPad, our chartplotter, goes into a big ziplock bag to stay dry.

We anchor in Rodney Bay – we arrived too late to clear in a customs, so we stay on the boat, dining, swimming, and watching the sun set. We marvel at how fast the sun sets here – and bam! It’s dark.

We had our first visits from “Boat Boys”. I’d read about this previously – men/boys in skiffs come out to sell things. I guy came out loaded with fruit and vegetables. We bought a dozen fresh limes and half dozen tomatos, for about $6. We gave him a beer for a tip. These guys make a living servicing the yachts anchored in the bays. I’ve heard that the fresh baked bread in the morning is not to be missed.

Our first 'Boat Boy' experience was good.
Our first ‘Boat Boy’ experience was good.

We fly our yellow flag to indicate that we haven’t cleared in through Customs yet. We are not supposed to leave the boat until we are cleared, so we are boat bound. There are worse places to be trapped. More card games. Late dinner of chicken & beans, then I jump off the bimini top into the awesome warm water for a night swim. When I did this in Greece in April, the water was shockingly cold – here it is truly a perfect temperature.

Sunset at our anchorage
Sunset at our anchorage

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