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Jul 1, 2005

A TOURIST IN ST. BARTH

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stuart Every once in a while it's fun to be a tourist in St Barth. Or at least see the island through the eyes of a St Barth virgin (not that this is a virgin island...). That's exactly what we did the first Saturday in July when a colleague from St. Kitts came for an overnight stay at Château Greaux (the overblown nickname for our house). Actually we were all taking a pretty big chance. We had never met this guy before (and he never met us) except via telephone and email about 10 years ago when we started the St. Barth Film Festival and this fellow, Stuart Black, was booking the film "The Harder They Come" in Canada. To make a long story short, here he is turning up 10 years later in St. Kitts. He actually spent much of his childhood in Jamaica so he feels pretty much at home in the Caribbean and has been in St. Kitts since February of this year as an international business consultant. It seems as if the government in St. Kitts wants to replace sugarcane, which is the island's prime business, to something easier to do, or easier to sell, but the fate of sugarcane in the Caribbean is quite another story. In Stuart's case, he wanted to do some island hopping and we invited him to hop over and spend a day or so in St. Barth. He flew from St. Kitts to St. Martin and took the rapid ferry to Gustavia, where we met him in the harbor master's office. Since there aren't many boats at this time of year, we figured we could easily spot him there. We did a quick tour of town, then headed over to Corossol where we stopped for a morning beer at the Regal, then found sailor Luc Poupon helping the crew of Joshua (one of the island's traditional wooden sailboats) with some new sails. Then we went back to Gustavia for the obligatory drink at Le Select, where oddly enough I had an appointment to interview the very same Luc Poupon for an article about this year's traditional sailboat championship as he was the skipper of Dedet's Girl, the winning boat. During the interview, Stuart wandered over to LouLou's Marine and bought two bathing suits at the astounding sale price of five euros (for both!). We went on to a nice lunch, with our feet in the sand at Cocoloba, the beachfront restaurant next to La Gloriette, before a quick run up to the top of Colombier to the lookout point. Then down to Flamands, but with the detour through Corossol still in effect,we kept making a loop past the same places. After a quick swim and a baggie of sand for Stuart's collection, we finally headed to Château Greaux for a little nap before dinner with friends at Le Repaire. The evening continued at Ti Zouk Cafe where there was a zouk (dancing) competition. My husband, Rosemond and I, did our best to win the two round trip tickets to St. Martin from St. Barth but after not changing partners, not leaving the dance floor, and almost sweating to death, we were not the winners. But a good time was had by all and I can assure you that Stuart got a taste of St. Barth that not too many tourists ever get. And he promises to come back for more!

More to come,

 

Ellen Lampert-Greaux


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