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  • Writer's pictureSailing Koinonia

S/V Koinonia Weekly Sailing Log - Hauled Out in Saint Martin (Wed Jan 3rd - Tue Jan 9th, 2024)

Updated: Mar 6

Highlights this week:  we haul out via crane for paint and misc maintenance projects in Saint Martin; we meet lots of other boat families from around the world; get new batteries installed; learning about a fun French tradition for celebrating Epiphany; visiting Parrot Ville in the Dutch Quarter of Sint Maarten with our friends from Germany; multiple boat projects commence with contractors simultaneously.

Wed Jan 3 - regular school and trading day.  Ben went ashore at 11:30 to meet with the employees at the yard where we are hauling the boat out tomorrow, then coordinated with the owner of the company where we purchased our new batteries.  Then, dropped off our laundry and went to ACE Hardware to grab a few essentials. On the way back from the store, Ben rescued an Island Water World employee who was stranded in the lagoon because his engine had stopped. He was in a fiberglass Jon boat and was towing an inflatable rib, all of which he towed back to shore. In the afternoon, the whole crew went to Kim Sha beach and met up with five or six other boat families, all with kids. It was the most kids and teens our crew have been around in a long time. Epic sunset and we saw the “green flash” for the first time (others were present and also saw it).

Thu Jan 4 - raised anchor and took the boat to the marina called Time Out Boat Yard (TOBY). Amber to the kids to the bakery while the crew lifted the boat out via crane while Ben monitored. The yard guys did an excellent job and took great care of our boat.  Ben rented a gas powered pressure washer, which was notably cheaper than purchasing a power transformer to run our electric pressure washer. Met some of the other people in the yard and everyone was very friendly and the staff at the yard were helpful.  Ben met with the welder to discuss the anchor roller extension. The guys from Tradewind Marine Electronics arrived and swapped out our Lifeline AGMs for RELiON LiFePO4 batteries.  Ben modified the settings on the charge controllers and monitors for the new batteries.  Very calm winds in the marina, so it was quite warm on the boat. Amber made pasta with sausage and broccoli for dinner.

Fri Jan 5 - went first thing in the morning at 8:00 to drop off our propane tanks to have them filled; came back to the boat for a regular school and trading day. Ben had a red day and hit his max loss. That’s why it’s important to have a max loss rule as a trader!  Met with the welder to dry fit the anchor roller extension. Took the kids and Amber to the beach. Met with the contractors who are going to paint the boat and got a quote for topsides and bottom, which will take approx 4 weeks.  Ran into some cruising friends, David and Jennifer, at Lagoonies and had a caught up over a few drinks. Went back to Kim Sha beach and had dinner at then Buccaneer Beach Club on Kim Sha beach with some cruising friends. Returned to the marina and got hot showers, then went to bed.

Sat Jan 6 - woke up and attended the cruisers swap meet at TOBY where Maddy set up shop to sell some of her jewelry. Lots of folks came to mingle but very few folks were buying or selling.  Ben and Amber went to Island Water World to buy some parts and also bought a surprise body board and tow rope for the girls to ride on at the beach and behind the dinghy. Ate BBQ at the swap meet, then got ready and went to Kim Sha beach where we met with friends to experience a traditional Epiphany celebration to “draw the kings,” where a small figurine of a king is hidden in a special cake (galette des rois) and the person who gets the little hidden figurine gets a crown (see above).  Left the beach and returned home where we got showers and made quesadillas from the leftover BBQ chicken we ate for lunch.

Sun Jan 7 - breakfast casserole and coffee, then took the dinghy across the lagoon and parked on the Dutch side at Lagoonies. Walked up the hill to Union St and caught a bus to Philipsburg, then changed buses to go to Dutch Quarter and Parrot Ville. Our friends on SV Auralis met us and everyone got to feed a diverse menagerie of bird species in the aviary. Went to lunch at Lolos Talk of the Town in Grande Case. Returned to Lagoonies and joined our friends for coffee on their boat. Returned to Koinonia and Amber made simple pita pizzas for dinner.

Mon Jan 8 - Boat work in the boat yard begins in earnest; bottom sanding, welding, and replacing the drive shaft seal have all commenced.  Ben repaired the overhead hatch screen by replacing the hinges and also re-wired the solar charge controller. The kids did school and Amber did laundry; no trading today. Ben had to make a bunch of trips back and forth to Island Water World for various parts throughout the day. Filled the water tanks. Amber made a vegetable beef stew for dinner.

Tue Jan 9 - kids do school; Ben took no trades on the market today.  Boat work continues feverishly. Worked with the welder to position the bow roller extension as well as the mechanic who successfully removed the drive shaft seal without breaking anything, which was a bit of a miracle. Sanding the bottom continues to progress slowly, due to some very tenacious hard bottom paint. Made chicken fajitas with fire roasted peppers and onions for dinner. Took the kids to the skate park at 6pm on the Dutch side of the island and met several other boat families.  There was a decent crowd of kids. Went home and got showers and started watching “A River Runs Through It.”

God Bless

S/V Koinonia


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