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While the weather didn't look great in the morning, it didn't look too bad and I opted to forgo the doctor's visit on Tuesday and depart the marina. My neighbours on “Sweet Chariot” were leaving as well and I waited for them to depart (for a short passage to the fuel dock) so that my departure would be easier. Once I got out of the marina I stowed the fenders and lines and departed in the direction of Marie Galante. The wind was on the nose and I motored to Îlet Gosier which was quite crowded and I looked at the waves (which were crashing over my clean decks with alarming frequency!) and the wind direction and started rethinking my destination. About halfway across the channel to Marie Galante I finally changed my mind and pointed Zanshin towards the Îles des Saintes. I'd spent a good 10 minutes getting soaked at the bow while re-tying the dinghy, which had loosened and which the winds were threatening to overturn on deck before deciding to change course. The anchorage at Marie Galante looked rather open on the map and winds were coming from a northerly direction so I didn't want to risk a bad night and opted for an anchorage that I knew.
Several squalls varying in intensity from “delicates” to “unable-to-breathe” washed most of the saltwater from my decks and the wind speed varied from zero to 30 knots as well. I made it around the corner to the anchorage at Pain de Sucre but all the mooring balls were taken, so I anchored in 60 feet of water, but unfortunately was somewhat exposed to direct wind and waves. Just as I'd raised my anchor ball I saw a boat drop their line and I immediately set about raising the anchor. While doing this, a boat rounded the corner and aimed towards the only open mooring ball - I am sure that they put on some speed when they saw my intentions, but I was much closer and did a good job of accelerating as well. While I was successful in picking up the mooring ball on the first try, I will now need to purchase a new boat hook as the old one wasn't quite up to the task. I'm not sure if you've ever bruised the bottom of your foot or the inside of your palm, but I managed to do that when I tripped on deck and now I've got two throbbing sources of pain demanding my attention!