Adventures of s/v WILD HAIR


Our land life took on form, solidity, routine. We had mastery of a limited set of skills. We had habitual expectations of others and ourselves. Going sailing, we let go of our attachments to our roles, views, and rituals. We persist because we are growing in this shapeless and dynamic world.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Sharks of St. Barts

At present, we are tied to a mooring ball here in St Bart's in a French national marine park. We will not be visiting the shore as we're moving quickly now to get the boat south. No need to bother about customs. Tomorrow (Friday) we'll depart early for St. Kitts. Then we'll sail overnight Saturday/Sunday to Guadeloupe.

When we departed St Martin today we first had to take our dinghy into town to clear out of customs. After waiting about 5 minutes for the office to open, I investigated around the corner. The ferry dock people said that no one from customs showed up to work today. The office was closed. So, we had to visit a local mega-yacht marina office and talk them into letting us clear out using their computer system for a $22 service charge.

Such is island life.

Tonight's unusual food experiment incorporating new-to-us items from the St Martin market includes: Catofine--a large, pear-shapped, Kermit-the-frog green vegetable that I will slice in half longways, boil in salt water, scoop out, mix with spiced meat, and restuff into the skin to bake. Plus, I'll cook a giant white yam and serve all with a tossed salad. Tonight's special cocktail will be a repeat of last night's: a guavaberry rum white wine spritzer.

But now it is time to snorkel this unique marine park!

Yikes. I took a quick snorkel and visibility wasn’t great so I hopped out and showered. Dave did laps in the water for exercise only to start thrashing oddly. First, he tried to climb up the anchor chain to the bow. Then, he made a dash to the boarding ladder. It seems a very large bull head shark spotted him and turned to approach. Eerily, when Dave tried to escape the water up the anchor chain, he lost sight of the beast. He felt lucky to get out of the water alive given the fact that the creatures jaw was wider than Dave’s shoulders.

There is something natural and unnatural about being part of the food chain.

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