04 May 2020 | Rodney Bay Marina, St. Lucia
The weather report tells me it will be the same today as it was yesterday and will probably be the same tomorrow. The only change is an occasional rain shower that lasts about 5 minutes as the raincloud moves over the island.
Time to get off the boat and go for a walk. We are still living in a stay at home order unless you need something essential. Essentials include grocery stores, hardware stores, restaurants that can supply take out, and office supplies. For all of you non drinkers you will appreciate that liquor stores is not classified as an essential. I tried to get some bootleg rum for $60ec dollars ($20 US which is normally $10 US) The next morning I was told the price went up to $120ec. I passed on that price and decided it was time for a cleanse. Exercise is not considered an essential either so many of us are ignoring that thinking.
I find two other people that want to join my lawbreaking adventure to hike over to the Atlantic side of the island. Off we go in stealth mode. Crouching behind parked cars, then looking for an opening so we can run to the next tree to camouflage our illegal movements. Crawling through muddy ditches popping our heads out to see if the coast is clear, then sprinting to the safety of the next building. We slowly and carefully move towards our destination. Looking overhead we see a helicopter that I assume is now out looking for escaped fugitives from the marina. Someone must have ratted us out.
Well its not quite that bad. We could use some kind of excitement though. We walk past homes greeting those that live there. I think they are happy to see some different faces around. An hour later, hot and sweaty we reach the other side of St. Lucia. The beaches here are not as nice or picturesque as on the Caribbean side. Seaweed washes up in shore and the waves traveling form Africa crash up on the rock walls spraying saltwater 10' into the air. This area is a big kite surfing area with a natural reef calming the waters in the bay and still having the strong constant trade winds. Unfortunately all the kite surfing businesses are closed and we see one lone kite surfer challenging the wind and her kite surfing skills.
Going a little further along the shore we see a dingy just sitting on the rocky shore. High tide was an hour ago so the tide is now rolling out. The dingy is in good shape, still inflated, with a fairly new outboard motor attached with a partially full gas tank. We look around and do not see anyone near by.
"This makes no sense. Where is the owner?" my one hiking partner asks.
"I don't see anyone and it isn't tied up. Its just floating." I reply
"Lets try and pull it up on higher ground and see if we can tie it to something so it won't float away." My other partner in crime says.
Draining the water out it is a little lighter. The heavy outboard hinders us in moving it very far. We find a rock nub to tie the painter around and then then take a picture.
We have Telephone, telegraph and tell a Marsha (our local no it all at the marina) as options to get the word out. We text Marsha knowing this will be the most effective and the fastest way to get the word out on a lost dingy. Sure enough, by the the time get back to the marina an hour later, the news has gone out to officials and boaters in St. Lucia, Martinique, the island 24 miles north of us, and even to Barbados the Island 100 miles southeast of us.
To our surprise, within hours the dingy's owner notifies the local police that it came loose from their boat in Barbados and floated the 100 miles to St. Lucia. Amazing. Im not sure what he is going to do now with the found dingy since the owner is not allowed in the country. That is his problem now.
Exciting times in St. Lucia. Our notifications of finding the dingy did lead us to receiving a mild reprimand that hiking over to other side of the Island is non essential and we are not suppose to be doing that.