BOAT = Bring Out Another Thousand
22 January 2017
Anyone who read our blog of Martinique may recall that our fridge was playing up but we got it fixed there. Well, 3 weeks later, on Christmas Eve to be exact, it stopped working completely. We were in Dominica then, going to the Saintes and neither places had anyone who could diagnose or repair the fridge, so we kept it stocked with bags of ice-cubes, which worked very well, until we could get to Guadeloupe to sort it out.
We booked into the marina for 3 days in Pointe a Pitre as that was the easiest place for our fridge man to see us. Richard arrived, as promised, first thing Monday morning and by the afternoon, we had a completely working fridge again, which meant cold beers and gin & tonic – hurray!! Turned out that a connection had loosened and some gaskets needed replacing. The refrigerant was then taken out to make sure that there were no blockages anywhere and then replaced.
PP is a great place to get anything sorted for boats and Chris took the opportunity of replacing the starter motor battery. We washed the boat and got ready to leave. However, when going under the floorboards to get something, we found fresh water under there sloshing around (about 2 litres). Some boats do have systems that mean they have water under the floor but our boat doesn’t and so we had to find the leak. We traced it back to the hot water heater/storage but to mend if meant getting it out and this involved Chris doing a Houdini act to get into a very small space, turn upside down and get the tank out. The washer at the top of the tank had split and was letting water out, so we replaced it and put the tank back and turned it on. Straight away, the electric popped off. There was a short somewhere. More investigation proved that one of the heater elements had corroded the inside of the tank and so the tank had to come out again but this time could not be fixed. Thank goodness that the chandlers had a replacement that worked for the space that we had and so a new tank was purchased (600 euros later) and installed.
Together with jobs and then making the most of being tied to the land for shopping and laundry, we spent a week there and lots of euros!!!! So much for just a 3 night stop.
However, we did visit Pointe a Pitre which was just like being back in France but with a Caribbean twist. The central market was very colourful with the flower ladies stalls brimming with flowers and the fruit and vegetables piled high on tables. Strolling past the fish stall, a Yellow Fin tuna had just arrived and so we bought a steak each for dinner.
There is a very good holding anchorage just outside the marina from where you can dinghy into town or just sit and watch the happenings when the big container ships come into port to deliver or take on goods for other destinations. Huge cruise ships came in most days too and it did take a little getting used to, sitting in the cockpit watching these huge vessels of all shapes and sizes passing quite close by.
Marina Bas du Fort – 33 euros per night incl. water, elec and wifi (which hardly worked). On site laundry, post office, supermarket and several chandlers.
Fridge Doctor – Richard Dubois. email@example.com