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FAT AND BROKE January 27, 2015

Posted by sailingnightwatch in Carabbean, Durbeck, FL, Florida, ICW, Pensacola, Racing, Repairs, Restoration, Sailing, Sailing the ICW.

I love that island, St. Bart’s. After a week we are satiated with pastries. We also ate twice at our favorite restaurant, found another at the ”beach”, found another beach that is 100 percent seashells. We also shopped and walked from one end of Gustavia to the other.

About the “beach”. It starts at a cliff, goes about ½ miles runs into another cliff with a resort perched on it, follow by another short stretch of beach. It ranges from about 20 feet wide to maybe 80 feet. The sand is tan and nice and soft. Not much beach. The water is crystal clear. The land side is either resorts, restaurants or shops of various kinds. It is a bust if you are used to the beaches at Pensacola Beach.

There are a couple of unique features of the beach. One is cultural the other is the island airport. The runway ends about 10 feet above and 200 feet from the waters edge. You can land both ways, from the water side, up hill or from the hill side, down hill. You can only take off down hill. The aircraft are mostly airlines of the one and two engine variety. The type you would expect to see in Alaska flown by bush pilots. You can also see the small jets of the rich and famous. When taking off, you get to your roll up point pull up hard and turn left , hard. That helps you miss the hill on the other side of the beach. Remember cliff, This one has another resort on it with the rooms facing the runway.

Landing has its own little excitements. Less then a mile from the end of the runway you pass over the saddle of this hill at 1-200 feet, dip down, pull up hard, touchdown and slam on the brakes. One of our boat buddies said it is an memorable experience.

The cultural feature, French women occasionally go topless on the beach. Perfectly acceptable. Some are young and attractive and some are my age and not so much. It is a rare occurrence, but we are batting 100%.

Along the beach and a block inland you can find all kinds of interesting shops from typical beach shops, art studios to very expensive boutiques. I am not a shopper, but it makes it fun and interesting.

We left St. Bart’s and went to the Ile Fourchue. It is a very rugged private island that no one lives on. You can go ashore and hike. Hiking is of the up and down variety. There are about a dozen boats on mooring balls and that is it. It is a sanctuary for everything. And the night is the best. It is dark. I mean really dark, like a cave. But there are billions and billions of stars. So many you can not find the stars of the night that you are used to. It is an amazing, beautiful experience.

The next day we sailed to Simpson Bay St. Maarten. We will be here through most of February. We are here for repairs and additions. Minor repairs and a big addition for me.

Simpson Bay is one of the most rollie anchorages we go into. It is close to the shops we need and that is good. We do have WiFi. Ohh soo sslloooow. Lets see if it will work.



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