Day 38: Lost In Translation

Day 38: Lost In Translation

February 8, 2009 by  
Filed under St. Martin, The Odyssey Expedition

07.02.09:

Kerri is a Kiwi and Andrew is British, but lived in South Africa for many years. We had spent the night sailing, eating Pringles and chewing the fat – politics, religion, and why the Caribbean has no damn ferry services…

I was going to take watch for a few hours, but they let me sleep. We reached St. Martin in the morning.

St Martin’s a funny place – a tiny island split horizontally between two countries; France and the Netherlands. It has two dialling codes, two currencies (Euro and US Dollar), different mobile networks depending which ‘side’ of the island you’re on.

Put bluntly, St. Martin (or Sint Maartin if you’re Dutch) is a little silly. Plus, it’s not a nation, so I have no intention of spending more than a few hours here.

My new friends on Antigua helped me out with some contacts and Dino got in touch with a company that runs charter boats up to the British Virgin Islands. They had a boat I could hitch onboard and it was leaving today at 4.30pm.

Perfect.

So I dragged poor Kerri (sorry Kerri) all the way to the other side of the island only to discover when we got there that the boat wasn’t leaving until tomorrow at 4.30pm.

Something had gotten lost in translation.

By then it was too late to find an alternative, so I had to bite the bullet. It’s a guaranteed jaunt off this island, and after Antigua, I’m not looking that particular gift horse in the mouth.

Kerri and Andrew agreed to let me kip on their boat and for the first time in god-knows-how-long, I can relax and write up my blog and edit my vlog safe in the knowledge that my onward passage is sorted.

So now I’m sitting out on deck. It’s dark but the moon is bright above. Kerri and Andrew are watching House on their laptop down below. It sounds like the episode where Foreman messes up and the woman dies. The wind is picking up.



Day 39: Bill And Ben

Day 39: Bill And Ben

February 9, 2009 by  
Filed under St. Martin, The Odyssey Expedition

08.02.09:

I was going to work late into the evening, but I ended up crashing out at about nine like a big sissy. But that’s alright – I woke up at 4am, made sure Mandy was alright after hearing about the terrible bush fires in Australia, watched the latest episode of ‘Lost’ on youtube (hurrah for YouTube!) and got on (finally) with editing Week 4.

There is just so much stuff I had to edit out – exactly four hours and fifty minutes worth of stuff! For this reason, I’m going to be editing and uploading The Odyssey Encounters – snippets of the people I’ve met on the road and other random stuff. I hope you all enjoy them as they filter out…

Kerri and Andrew woke at about 9am – Andrew, the hero he is, made breakfast – beans, hash brown, SAUSAGES!! Bliss.

We had a good chat about the remaining logistics for the Caribbean and I’ve decided it’s best to attack the Bahamas from Florida rather than Dominican Republic.

I also got to meet their friends from the US – Bill and his young son Ben (as in the flowerpot men) randomly pulled up alongside the Mariposa to say hello – the yachties have got a great little community over here, they all know at least a few people on each island they visit. I like that.

But before long I was in the dingy saying my goodbyes to Andrew and Kerri as I headed off to Oyster Pond to hitch my lift to the British Virgin Isles.

I’m now aboard Vivo Libre with Sylvie, my French captain, Cyril a fellow freerider (and fellow couchsurfer) and Terry, an Irish skipper who has lived in St. Martin for the last seventeen years. The sails are up, the boat is rocking and rolling all over the shop, it’s very cloudy, but the moon is fat and bright and tomorrow I will wake in Tortola, the main British Virgin Island. One step closer to Panama.