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15th November, 2014

Kingstown, St. Vincent

The next day turned out to be rather different, in more ways than one. We had been advised a few weeks before that another larger vessel would be on our berth in Kingstown, but we could take the inside of the pier or anchor, whichever we liked. The former was not an option as the depth alongside shoaled dramatically and if I had berthed further aft our gangway would have been floating in mid-air.

Both ships had an ETA of the same time, and the advice we received was the pilot would take the other vessel first. ‘No problem’ I said (a very acceptable Caribbean phrase) and carried on to the anchorage with the pilot ladder rigged, but by the time we had anchored he had still not arrived. He did come out with the officials though, but just so that I could sign his chit. Very civil I thought. The Harbour Master, on the other hand, seemed somewhat nonplussed by my questions regarding the loss of a berth booked over a year ago, the answers as anticipated were not forthcoming.

Fortunately conditions were fine for tendering, a calm sea and a short distance for the boats to run to the passenger terminal. Heavy showers came and went, but there were enough shops to keep most folk dry while they waited. Like many of the other islands, the real beauty lies in its countryside and those who just took the shuttle bus into town were not, so I heard, particularly impressed. By far the most successful trip was the catamaran cruise over to Bequia, a much smaller island a little way to the south, where time seems to have not quite caught up with the 21st century. Great comments from those who participated.

We sailed, without a pilot, just as the sun was passing beneath the horizon, another beautiful Caribbean evening.

Captain Philip Rentell

The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.