Written by Mia
Back in May, Jon went home to Newcastle for a short week and before he left we spent some time deciding when would be the best time and where would be the most suitable place for Teo and me to look after Itchy Foot on our own. On a macro level we wanted a protected place that would shield us from any weather that could come our way and we wanted the trip to be sooner rather than later because we are rapidly approaching hurricane season. And we wanted to have some boat company so I could ask my hysterical questions. So, end of May in St. Anne, Martinique with lots of friend boats nearby.
On a micro level, there are a lot of things to think about when you live on a boat: Are the batteries charged to a healthy level? Is the anchor light on? Have we remembered to turn everything unnecessary off so the batteries are happy when the solar panels start charging them in the morning? And is that catamaran anchored WAY too close?
We rented a car and I took Jon to the airport. Sometimes it’s a long way around when you book a ticket using bonus points… still it was funny that he was in South America before I got back to the dinghy. Teo had a sleepover on Emerald Bay so we didn’t have to wake him at 4:30 am, for Jon’s early flight out, and he barely batted an eye when I got back at lunchtime. The lovely Emerald Bay fed us and later took us to the beach On the way back I wanted to see if I could haul the dinghy up on the back of Itchy Foot all by myself…. and I did. But still I was very happy that Emerald Bay were waiting patiently nearby in case I needed a hand. They also brought pastries and bread on Mother’s Day.
We had just gotten back to Itchy Foot on our own and I was wondering if that catamaran WAS too close and what Teo and I could do to lighten the mood when we got back to the empty boat when Pierina appeared to check on us and offered to take us ashore for ice cream…HOOOORAY! The kids have paper airplanes in common and spent a couple of hours flying them in the village square. The adults had a lovely chat, too and we enjoyed ourselves so much we stayed for dinner.
Element were nearby and they checked on said catamaran for us, also they hosted an evening onboard and the kids watched a movie and staged a performance for the adults. We also swapped teaching materials and earlier I hitched a ride with them to do some shopping.
Blue Zulu went out of their way to come and watch over us as well. We were all invited onboard for pizza. Le Marin has a pizza boat that comes out to St. Anne on the weekends and jumped on that opportunity. Teo has a ball playing with the kids and thrives in a smaller group of kids. We had a wonderful afternoon with them walking through the little town, eating Floups (French popcicles) and walking to play on the beach for the afternoon.
Our new friends on Flip Flops were also lovely company and picked us up and took us to the beach, stopped by and called on the radio to make sure everything was OK.
These lovely people checked on us and looked after us, it was incredible! They offered to do our shopping if we were missing anything, made sure we had lots of opportunities to get off the boat to stretch our legs and that Teo had lots of time with other kids. I feel SO fortunate to be part of this lovely community and it really showed when Teo and I were on our own. At this time of the year it also seems that everyone has a lot to do as we all move towards our chosen hurricane season places, especially in Martinique which is the place to provision before heading to other places. But despite having lots to do, everyone made time for us and we are very grateful 🙂