17th January, 2020
Here we are sailing away from another glorious day in an Caribbean Island, on our way up to the BVI’s.
This morning was greeted, as it can be, with heavy clouds on the northern and eastern horizons and rain squalls were detected on our Radars; away off to the east. Hmm, could be blowy wet day I thought. The Pilot station is a few meters from the pier, well, so it seemed and we embarked the Pilot at 0630. An early arrival, no not for the tours, but to ensure we were ‘in’ and tied-up with the opportunity for Guests to go ashore. Before the ‘tower’ block arrived and hordes would stream ashore.
We were alongside and gangway ‘in’ with the ship cleared at 0700, yep, nice and early, the sun only rose a few minutes before. The wind freshened and a ‘light’ rain shower passed, clearly the squalls detected earlier had ‘dropped’ their energy before getting to Sint Marten, or Saint Martin if you are on the French side.
By 10.00 it was back to glorious ‘wall to wall’ sunshine, with direct sun temperatures in the high 40’s by early afternoon and, remarkably quite dry, it didn’t feel that humid at all, then Sint Maarten is not necessarily that lush.
Taking a stroll around the decks early afternoon, many Guests were either back onboard, or didn’t go ashore. We are only on day two and its already ‘too-hot’! It was lovely day!
The day drew to a close and it was time to think about our departure. Karl, the 3rd officer, took the ship out. It was a similar manoeuvre to Antigua, but with more sea room. Karl made a great job of the swing and set course along the south coast before heading more WNW towards the BVI’s - probably my favourite chain of islands in the Caribbean.
We have ten ports ‘on the trot’ in the Caribbean, it’s going to be great fun but I can imagine that some Guests will tire with the heat of so many days. At least we have the cool of the evening sea-breeze when traveling between the islands, making the open-deck experience quite lovely to enjoy.
Captain Stuart Horne
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