St. Barts - Yellow Submarine. Dreams and reality

Trip Start Oct 19, 2012
Trip End Jan 07, 2013

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, St. Barth?lemy,
Friday, December 28, 2012

All slept right through alarms and shower rota and breakfast a bit of a scramble to get on deck for our arrival in the super exclusive St. Barts harbour. We weigh anchor just outside the bay. There are many mega yachts including Eclipse (Roman Abramovich) and Sultan of Oman. They all congregate here for the most exclusive NYE party in the WI, a spectacular sight. In amongst the ostentatious floating palaces are a few beautiful yachts and then there are the smaller yachts. Peter's talk on the sun deck today is about the trading in the spice routes and the currencies the contestants used. He has a selection of coins from the last 400 years including one minted in Potosi (silver mine). he solved one of my life's puzzles. I used to sit with Captain Money and ask him about the trading on his uncle's ship Persian Empire. I had learned that it used to bring back Rice Tea Coffee and spices (isle no. 12 at M&S) but was always puzzled as to what it gave in exchange........he whispered to me sypholis! So I was delighted to learn coins coal and other things were used to trade.
All aboard our tender to the marina for today's selected excursion. Today we are going aboard the Yellow Submarine. We wait expectantly on the chaotic dock area. The activity is frenetic as mega yachts crews come ashore. The town area is orientated towards the profile of the peeps on the mega yachts. Real estate, 4 bed villas £15m, shoes for a $1000.
The yellow submarine appears by our pier. It appears to be a surface vessel. Certainly in terms of trades description it is yellow? The sub marine bit well let's see. At our first "stop" we see a ship wreck (circa 1995 hurricane) in the bay entrance. We go down below. It is a surface vessel but with a glass bottomed area below the surface, feels like being in a submarine. The wreck is surrounded by sharks, tropical fish and sea turtles. Next stop an area beside some rocks again marine life fantastic. Finally an area of sea grass where green sea turtles feed. Spectacular viewing as they surface majestically for air.
Back to our ship for lunch. The tender trip in amongst the moored vessels is interesting. Another buffet, chicken satay and a sweet and sour pork the highlights. We are given the option
to move to our second weeks cabin a day early. As it is a category 2 room rather than category 4 (of 6) we readily accept and Fendy our ever smiling Philippine housekeeping attendant helps us move all our belongings to our new home. Our room 125 is on the lower deck - The Slipper Deck. Our new room no. 333 is close the the restaurant and on a higher deck - The Commodore Deck and apart from that we couldn't detect much of a difference. One concern it is a mirror image of our last room, the bathroom and wardrobe are reversed, hoping after a few Long Island Iced teas that doesn't cause a problem in the night.
We board the tender service to the marina with Marilyn and explore the town. Expensive and not our scene so after ogling a few super yachts moored effectively beside the main street we move further out around the shore and find a place to sit and harbour watch. Then on to shell beach with steel drum band and a sunset. Our ship Star Clipper is lit up and sits on the horizon. Ever since I have been a kid i have looked out to see or into the bay and thought wouldn't it be lovely if i was leaving on that ship, today I am. A walk through what id=s now an even livelier town after sunset is fun.
Back on the boat we scurry to tonight's Peter's chat, on Piracy. Again what an insight into something that the press has given you one image and the peeps on the inside give you another. Dinner tonight with Marilyn and two couples from the UK. Much hilarity at our end of the table as the girls decide M is much too beautiful to be single and set about finding her company. Tonight's target is the Maitre D! Giant prawns for main and for a change half decent soup. The girls Heaven Salad again defies its name, admittedly Salad from Hell doesn't probably sell. Up on the aft deck we watch a fantastic film show advertised as Moonshine Movie. It is full moon tonight and they show a 45 minute movie of life on the Clipper ships rounding Cape Horn in the 30's narrated by the film maker now in his 90's. we have seen the same movie when sailing around SA on Evohe but great viewing.
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