We are firmly strapped to a mooring in Les Saintes. A small group of islands just south of Guadeloupe. A French colony, with all that brings. Fantastic restaurants, well stocked grocery stores, buildings in immaculate condition and an infrastructure that allows our sorted garbage to be shipped to Guadeloupe rather than just becoming landfill somewhere else on the island. Being a part of France also brings French Covid restrictions and a somewhat heavy-handed police force that ensures that regulations developed in Paris are adhered to in the colonies. Or in their overseas territories as they call them now. To us this means that the Gendarmerie is quick to remind us of that we are supposed to wear a mask everywhere we go and that there is a curfew between 8 pm and 5 am.
I am not for a second trying to suggest that this is some sort of minimum security prison. If it was, I would recommend anyone to find a suitable crime to commit. This place is what most people would define as paradise. But it is getting harder to move from country to country and the East Caribbean island chain is made up by numerous sovereign nations. All with their own view on how to limit the spread of Covid. What concerns us most is the potential for anyone of us testing positive as we try to enter a new country and what that would mean to our ‘minimum security’ status in paradise. Some countries reportedly just send you away, while others give you a tracker and confine you to your boat or send you to a government approved corona hotel at your own expense. Now that would probably feel like prison!
There are quite a few French islands out here. I am fully aware of that all locals probably do not want to be governed from Paris but to us ignorant sailors, it means that we are free to move between several islands without nose jobs or other Covid related red tape. It also means that, as EU citizens, we should be granted hospital care should we get ill. We have spent one week in Martinique and one in Les Saintes and we are thinking of going to Marie-Galante next. We still have Guadeloupe, Saint Barths and Saint Martin to go to without any formal entry procedures. Maybe we will be able to find a PADI approved diving school willing to teach us to breathe under water. Among the turtles, seahorses and barracudas. Not a bad way to spend a Caribbean confinement. Beats weaving baskets in a normal prison!
6 thoughts on “46. Lockdown in Paradise”
“Salt of the earth, light of the world” — if I am remembering my French correctly! Love that saying! I was about to message you all to see how things were going. I had checked the tracker the past couple of days and saw that Saorise is in one place — so I assumed that meant you were likely all off enjoying the sights — and from the looks of the pics — indeed you are! Fabulous, incredible pics, as always! As I am an avid animal lover (I have 5 dogs, 4 cats, 4 Miniature horses, and 1 Miniature donkey!), I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for rescuing that adorable little doggie — what ended up happening with the dog, btw? Thank you for sharing your beautiful journey with us; I love reading your posts! All the best, ~ Chelle and SV Sunflower (Sunny) P.S. ‘Saoirse 2.0’ is sure a BIG boat! Another Dufour?
Hi Chelle. Great quote. Never heard that before. That’s a lot of animals. Hard to bring on a boat! We left Kenneth (that’s what we called him) at a vet in Martinique. Saoirse 2.0 is an Oyster. The AIS said it was 121 feet long. Quite possibly out of my price range. I think I will stick to what I have. And I have the same view every morning anyway. This place is fantastic but we will move on tomorrow. Best. Tomas
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Hi, Tomas! A lot of animals, indeed — they’re my furry ‘children!’ Yeah, I’d need a really big boat for all of them — sort of a Noah’s ark! 😉 So glad that you were able to get Kenneth (great name!) to a vet on Martinique — you and your crew are angels! 🙏🥰 Oh my — that IS a big boat — holy cow!!! 3x the size of Soairse, yes? True, tho — the same view! That’s what counts! Can’t wait to learn of where you travel next and what adventures abound! Stay safe and take good care! Fair winds! ~ Chelle
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Hej Saoirse and crew! Love all your updates and pictures, it feels like I am part of your adventure when we read your blogg. Even though the Covid situation it seems like a paradise. Stay safe and take care!
Hello mom! Thank you for taking part in our journey trough the Caribbean. Like you said the corona situation can be a hassle however there is not a better place to be during this pandemic. Thank you for commenting and showing interest. Sincerely, your son Jonathan and the crew of Saoirse.
Hi guys, it is with pleasure that I read the blog reports and looking at the nice photos showing the day to day life for a long distance sailor. Seems like you have a pretty good life over there.
Jonte, you look quite pleased by the big bottle in one of the pictures. What is in the bottle? Apple juice?
Good food, warm weather, nice beaches, no alarm call forcing you to work.
I could do that, I envy you. But you are all worth it.
Have you reached Pigeon Island? It looks like predict wind last update was from last night, going forward with 2.9 knots?