This is our family tradition to charter a boat in the spring for a "kids trip". Plus I just started a not for profit company that will bring nurses and doctors down to the Caribbean to volunteer during sailing trips. We also will be donating medical supplies and equipment to the Eastern Caribbean Islands that need it.
We chartered a Moorings 4300 Catamaran "Club" boat based out of Marigot Bay, St. Lucia. We were on the boat starting the night of April 21st then set sail to the south on April 22nd. The boat we were assigned was 5 years old named "Ucello III", which was built in 2005 and flew a French flag as the ships country of the owner.
We had a wonderful time sailing our way down the Windward Island chain stopping off in Walliabou Bay where they filmed the first part of "Pirates of the Carribean". Most of the movie set props and building were still there but in bad repair. Pretty bay and was a great stop for lunch.
We continued on south to Bequia and stayed the night in Admiralty Bay. Our main sail had malfunctioned between St. Vincent and Bequia, so the next day we set said for the Moorings base on Canouan. They repaired what they could and got our main sail working again and set sail for the Tobago Cays. Tobago was absolutely fantastic with the most clear water I have ever seen.
We made it as far south of the Island of Carriocu which is in the country of Grenada. At this point we only had 3 days left of our trip so we decided to make a long sail from Carriocu back up the chain to St. Lucia.
We spent the night in Sioufree Bay arriving at 1900 hours. We were helped by one of the "boat people" in locating an empty mooring ball. The person who said his name was Daniel stated that he owned the ball and wanted 50.00 EC for the ball. We referenced our cruising guide that stated all the blue and white mooring balls belonged to the Marine Management Association. We argued with Daniel for quite some time and told him if we established he indeed own the ball we would leave the money on his boat in the morning.
The next morning we left Sioufree Bay and headed north. Approximately half a mile north of the bay on the west side of St. Vincent we saw Daniel approaching our boat from the south. He was very angry and I told him he could follow us to a police station where we would tell them that he was attempting to collect money on a mooring ball that did not belong to him.
This WHACKED OUT CRACKHEAD WHIPS OUT A MACHETTE AND STARTS ATTACKING OUR BOAT! He cut the line to our fishing rod and stole our fishing pole, attempted to swing the machette at one of my crew, went around to the other side of the boat and cut our fishing line on the port side then left the area.
I reached the French Coast Guard on the emergency frequency and they relayed my distress call to the St. Lucia police who arrived in their boat about 15 minutes later.
I really don't know what the last recorded incident was of piracy in St. Lucia was but we just reset the clock! If I would have had the flare gun more accessible I would have shot the man dead!
We checked in at Marigot Bay where the Moorings base was and made our police reports as to what happened. Then we set sail for Martinique, just out of Marigot Bay a man in a dingy from the Moorings base approached and told us we were not allowed to go to Martinique or our boat would be impounded. I guess the French do their own tax schemes with keeping their boats in different countries to avoid taxes.
So we headed north and took a slip at the Rodney Bay Marina which made the whole trip. Lot's of restaurants and tons of security. Explored the volcano the next day with our guide and local Rasta man Malachai. He took us to a volcanic mud bath that made me feel better than I have felt in a very long time!
We checked out and flew home yesterday 4/30/10. My crew and I will have to fly back to St. Lucia for the hearing when our pirate attacker goes to court.
All in all it was another great sail! From now on however, I will be packing heat during our sails in and around the Caribbean.
Here is our official press release from HUMANITARIAN VENTURES FOUNDATION: http://www.humanitarianventuresfoundation.org/pirate_attack_off_st_lucia.html