Sunday, May 17, 2009

Grand Case, St-Barth and visiting friends.

Leaving Marigot we made it in a first step to Grand Case just a few miles north of Marigot on the St-Martin Island. We are now in the company of two friends from Ottawa, Garry and Darlene, who came to spend a few days with us under the sun. In Grand Case we had the pleasure of eating quite a Caribbean meal in town where they have tables and BBQs setup in a sort of plaza. We had grilled chicken, plantain, shrimps Creole, stuffed cristophine and rice and beans. Everything the palate needs to be delighted! We stayed just a single day in Grand Case but still we had the time to go snorkeling on the Rocher Creole where we were greeted by many fishes hoping we would bring some bread crumbs as they were used by all the usual tourists. But we are not usual so no bread! To go ashore we have to use our inflatable dinghy and to take us to the city dock. Our guest Garry and Darlene reminded us of the grace we use to have when trying to get from a boat rocked up and down by the waves into an inflatable balloon floating on the same rocking waves and then trying to get out of the same balloon to climb a 4 feet wall with only a rusted cleat, barely holding on the dock, to hold on! Danielle and I had our share of “spectacular” embarking in the dinghy but we are now getting better at it, well at least that’s what we think.

We then made it to the city of Gustavia on the island of St-Barth, which is probably the most expensive place in the Caribbean. Within one or two blocks you can do your usual shopping at Christian Dior, Cartier or Lacoste and spend 12,000.00 Euros ($16,200.00 US) for a watch and buy a hand bag at 50% discount for only 350.00 Euros ($473.00 US)! We honestly don’t know who can afford to shop here but they are surely not jobless sailors like us who have to spend ¾ of their budget on boat repairs! We nevertheless, treated ourselves by eating out one night, with no appetizers or desserts but still enjoying one of the best foods we had for years. French peoples do know how to cook even in the most remote islands.

While in Marigot Danielle cut her finger on the city dock. She asked me to look for a splinter that she could somehow feel. I looked but all I could see was a little cut so she cleaned it and we moved on. There is not a week that we don’t spill our blood in one way or another in this trip so far, so a little cut was not something to be concerned about. However, after about four days, the cut started to get infected and we started to be concerned. So we went to the hospital in St-Barth where the doctor opened the wound to clean it and to try to find the possible splinter or whatever started the infection but nothing was to be found. He disinfected everything and put a stitch to seal the wound. The next day her finger was swollen and the blood had spread a bit more but at this point we think this is just a reaction to the cleaning and searching of the wound. We now keep a close eye on this and Danielle is now put on the disability list and is forbidden to use her hand until the situation comes back to normal.