We arrived safely in Portsmouth/Dominica (not to confuse with the Dominican Republic!) yesterday afternoon.
Our passage starting early morning from Saint-Pierre in Martinique was overall a fast but not a too pleasant one. In the channel between the two islands the swell hit us almost from 90 degrees and was more 9 than the predicted 6 feet - a feeling like on a roller coaster. Marco and I swallowed each a seasickness tablet just out of precaution... After this rather bumpy ride as soon we were in the lee of Dominica the wind died as usual, the sea became flat like a mirror and we turned on the engine. But to our surprise we encountered some stretches along the coast where we could unfurl our genoa again and had a fantastic sail - this time in flat seas! While approaching the anchorage in Portsmouth the wind peaked with 25 knots which made it difficult to get the timing right to furl our mainsail (an in-mast roller furling, always to handle with highest care that it doesn't get stuck) - but we managed it. Then we had to choose an anchor spot among all the mooring balls while we were welcomed by a boat boy. We made sure that the anchor was well set as the wind seems to be brisk here all the time. Marco then agreed with Monty, the boat boy, on a price to drive him with his speed boat to customs as it was short before closing time. The immigration process went quite smooth as you can check in and out at the same time. We now can stay up to two weeks and don't have to go back to customs. We like Dominica already!
Our stroll through town this morning was very pleasant: people seem to be very friendly but not obtrusive. It is an interesting mix of poor and rich, of modern and traditional. We are glad to be here to spend "Christmas" and are looking forward to explore Dominica's highly praised natural beauty.
With love from another paradise