Martinique
Arrondissement de Fort-de-France

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40 travelers at this place:

  • Day53

    Martinique

    February 24, 2018 in Martinique ⋅ ☁️ 27 °C

    Today is a day we weren’t supposed to have, on several counts. On our original schedule, we were supposed to be going to St Maarten, until some bloody hurricane did us the discourtesy of flattening half of the island towards the back end of last year (thousands homeless, quite horrific, #prayforstmaarten, etc). So, the itinerary was shifted to Martinique, but still we weren’t supposed to be arriving until tomorrow. Today should’ve been a day spent at sea, but given the islands close proximity to St Lucia, we’ve arrived at day ahead of schedule, and will be spending the night in port. What a bonus. We have an organised tour booked for tomorrow, so today we’re free to go ashore and explore.

    And explore we do, at least until we get thirsty.

    Being on this boat, I’d forgotten how unaccustomed I’ve become to the presence of children. This isn’t an adults-only boat, but by virtue of the length of the itinerary there are no children onboard—social services tend to freak out if you try to take your kid away for even a day in term time, so one can only imagine their reaction at a 2½ month absence for little Harry or Charmaine to float around South America. I heartily disagree with such disapproval, by the way—the educational opportunities of travel are too undervalued by the prescriptive state system… but I digress. Anyway, no sooner are we ashore when we bear witness to a doozey of a temper tantrum thrown by a young boy. Heartily dissatisfied with the cuddly toy his grandfather has bought him, he proceeds to run screaming to the edge of the dock and launches said toy into the briny deep. Cue one angry mother and an even more irate grandfather, who swears blind he will never buy the child another toy as long as he lives. I’m left to shake my head with the disapproval that only a man who has never had children can have, whilst Damien is dragged off into the distance, still screaming blue murder.

    We’ve docked in the capital, Fort-de-France, and it seems very pretty. There’s a big fortress, the Fort Saint Louis, on the other side of the small bay, and an interesting church steeple poking out of the town centre. We start by walking along to the base of the fortress, where there’s a small sandy beach, before heading back in the direction of the town through the large open park, La Savane.

    In the town centre we walk around the church square, enjoying the added ambience created by an impromptu gospel choir who are drumming up interest for their upcoming concert. From here we wander down a few side streets and eventually end up back at La Savane, where we find a little café for a drink. Their menu consists of black coffee, beer, prune juice and water. So that’ll be one beer and two waters, all to be consumed on a yellow plastic chair that is threatening to buckle under me. We do know how to choose the very finest of local establishments, don’t we?

    After a while, we tire of battling with the wind and make our way back to the ship. We’re not bothered about running ourselves ragged today, as we’re on an all-day tour of the island tomorrow, so we head back for some R&R. After all, this holiday is frightfully strenuous, I’m sure you understand.

    Don’t worry, I’d hate me too...

    Tonight, we are dining under the stars. Or, to be more precise, under some sketchy looking clouds that have already given the assembled company a light dowsing.
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Arrondissement de Fort-de-France

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