Sunday, December 1, 2013

St. Lucia to Martinique

In the last posting I was crowing about the smooth crossing.  Pay backs are hell!  The crossing from St. Lucia to Martinique was anything but smooth.  On the previous crossing the waves were predicted at .8 meters.  These were supposed to be 1.1 meters and a 1 meter long period swell.  That might have been the case if not for the line of squalls between St. Lucia and Martinique we had to pass through.  The good news was that it was only a 23 nm crossing.

Normally, I like to leave early and miss some of the waves associated with the trade winds filling in during the early afternoon.  In this case we might have done better with a later departure from St. Lucia – hindsight.  However, we arrived early enough that we were able to dinghy into Marin and complete the check in procedures.  That allowed us to go to Accras Alley that evening.

Accras Alley

During the day Accras Alley is just another narrow street in Ste. Anne.  In the evening, the proprietors (three ladies) place table in the street and start serving accras and drinks.


Their accras are reasonably priced.  The “Morue” accras are made from salt fish, while the “Crevettes” are made from shrimp – we think.  We opted for 12 of the Crevettes at 6€.

Pollie waiting for her accras.  I only take her to the finest establishments.

We arrived a little early for French dining habits, but soon all of the tables were full and they were doing a brisk takeout service.

Ah, fine dining, accras and a Lorraine on a plastic table by street light.

Accras are “fritters” cod (salt fish), shrimp or lobster.  Each chef has their own special spices for the dough.  They are deep fried and served hot.  This is Caribbean health food at its finest.

You can only watch so many sunsets in Ste. Anne before it is time to move on.

The 14 nm motor from Ste. Anne to Grande Anse d’Arlet is very pleasant because for the most part you are in the lee of the island.  Petite Anse d’Arlet and Grand Anse d’Arlet are both little beach towns with very low level development.  We prefer Grand Anse because it has not received as much “remuddling” and the air quality is better.  Petite seems to have something burning 24/7.  Both anchorages have installed mooring balls that to date there is no charge for usage.  I saluted the HMS Diamond Rock as we passed.

Lobster fisherman in Grand Anse d’Arlet

French baguettes have a life expectancy of about a day, and then they turn hard as a rock.  These lobster fishermen were recycling baguettes as bait. 

On a previous visit to Gran Anse d’Arlet we noticed the “in place” on Saturday afternoon was Chez Evelyn, a little beach restaurant on the south end of the beach.  Previously we were turned away, but this time we made reservations.  Lunch of salad, accras, lobster, a mysterious but delicious baked squash dish, and desert took 3 ½ hours.  What a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon.  We felt very French – oui!

When we returned from lunch, we had a new neighbor.  A three-masted schooner had anchored in the bay.

We now recognize most of the tall ships plying the waters of the Caribbean, but not this one.  I had to jump in the dinghy for a closer look.

Our next stop in Martinique will be 7 nm north at Fort de France before we cross to Dominique.

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