Le Marin, Martinique

Perhaps it is a good thing that I am trying to post regularly again, as the days really do seem to slip away from us when we aren’t paying attention.

Panoramic view of Le Marin at sunrise

We arrived in Le Marin on January 3rd (as mentioned in the last post) and spent that day resting up after our overnight sail. One night of watch rotations doesn’t make you a complete zombie, but you definitely feel the need for a good afternoon nap once you’ve set your anchor, checked in with customs, and stopped at the local grocery to pick up a few provisions.

Le Marin is located at the end of a bay, in what was probably a mangrove swamp at some point. There is a side bay to the south of the bigger bay which is actually used as a hurricane hole in the event of an oncoming storm – you’re not actually allowed to anchor there unless a storm is coming. The town seems entirely boat-focussed. There is a large marina – one of the largest in the Caribbean – with space for 830 boats at the dock, and another 100 on mooring buoys just out front. There is also a large boatyard at the other side of the bay, with over 150 acres of space to store boats on land. If you don’t want to pay for a mooring ball (we rarely do), you can try to find a place to anchor in Le Marin. It’s very busy though, and space isn’t always available. We were lucky to find a place fairly easily just off one of the main channels, so we were only a few minutes dinghy ride to the grocery stores, and maybe 10 minutes from the main marina dock.

Despite all the services and boat shops available, we weren’t able to find a new alternator. We did find a shop that could fix the old one, but unfortunately it took us (well, Mike), a 1.5 hr bus ride to get to it. By day two (Thursday) we had delivered the alternator to the shop, and had moved on our other chores. Laundry, groceries, cleaning the boat, doing work work (by which I mean Mike’s job), some pattern work for me… the usual. Mix that in with a few dinghy trips to the fuel dock to get water (we didn’t want to use the watermaker in that busy harbour!), runs to shore to visit chandleries and grocery stores, and a few evenings socializing with friends, and it’s amazing how quickly a week will go by. The alternator was ready on Tuesday. We installed it on Wednesday; went shopping in town with friends on Thursday (a few big-box stores up near Fort-de-France); and now suddenly it is Friday, more than a week from our last post. Where does the time go?!

You know it’s a sailing town when the grocery store provides it’s own dinghy dock

This morning we left Le Marin, and moved around the corner to Ste. Anne, a beautiful little town about 30 min drive from Le Marin (only 15-20 min by boat). Despite the 300-ish boats anchored here (yes, in addition to those in Le Marin!) the water is much clearer, so we are already making water and contemplating a long swim. Tomorrow we will go for a hike in town to stretch our legs and catch up on some exercise. We have a few days until a friend is coming down for a visit, so we’re also hoping to squeeze in a few more chores before she arrives. But first we need a day or two to go play. 😉