I wish I could say that we got all the boat issues solved, but despite endless, desperate begging to get workmen to come and have a look during what was high season in the marina, (bad timing on our part), followed by a steady stream of workers parading through our boat, we only got a fraction of the issues solved and the three major problems; the generator, water maker and wifi booster, remain unusable. Zut alors! We did eventually get a diagnosis, which means we now know what is wrong and can order the necessary parts, but the work will have to be done back in Trinidad as we are out of time here
On a positive note, we did get few minor things on the list fixed as well as a few new ones including the damage done to Taka’s underside by yet another evil rope from a fishing buoy that we picked up on our way from Sainte-Anne to the marina in Le Marin, URGGH! Thankfully the engine did not quit on us when it happened, but we lost the ability to reverse and that’s not good. It’s bad enough this darn boat doesn’t have brakes, but not being able to reverse, well that’s just adding insult to injury.
Thanks to a very savvy dock master’s help, we managed to ease onto a wide berth next to the fuel dock without hitting anything along the way, except for a channel marker—oops! Although, it's not the most restful place in a marina, it's a great place to meet people, especially for an extrovert like Patrice. and we did have a nice view of the old marina and town from our cockpit.
No worries friends, interspersed amongst these trials and tribulations, we were still able to enjoy some of the delights of this beautiful island, as well as fun times with good friends. It was more than enough to keep us going. Allow me to share a few of the highlights with you:
Ti-Punch chez Martine in Sainte-Anne
Saint Patrice Day Party onboard Taka Trois
Hiking in Southern Martinique
Sadly we didn’t have time to do much exploring or hiking this time, but we did squeeze some walks around the marina area, a sunrise hike up to Mont Gommier to take in the view of Sainte-Anne and Le Marin, as well as a few hikes along the southern coast, including a ten-mile trek with a group of cruisers one Saturday: From Sainte-Anne, we cut across the island to the east coast through sugar cane fields and then down to the cliffs at the bottom tip of the island, and finally back along the coast where we joined the week-end revelers at a beach hut serving grilled poulet boucané and ice cold Lorraine (local beer)—much needed sustenance to complete the last few miles.
Wine Shopping, Tasting, Shopping…etc.
On the day that T3 got hauled out, our friends Ann and Steve rescued me from the dockyard with their rental car and took me out on a shopping excursion. Yes, I brazenly abandoned the skipper in the dockyard (with his blessing, I should add). Our main stop was a giant Carrefour where I went on a mission to stock my French galley with Amora Dijon mustard, Maille cornichons, verveine herbal tea, fleur de sel, pâte feuilleté, confit de canard, and fromage, to name but a few necessities.
While I was there, Patrice had asked me to check out the box wines. No, friends and neighbors, we are not ashamed to admit that we do indeed drink wine from a bag in a box. The trick is to find the right one and I confess that when I’m faced with a mammoth display of wine in a hyper market, I am hopeless at making a choice. Thanks to i-technology however, help is just a touch away. With a few flicks and clicks, I sent a picture of the wine display to my personal wine consultant in the dockyard and within minutes I had a verdict.