After a month spent at the Bas du Fort marina, what a joy to see our Small Floating Laboratory of Humanities come back to life!
On February 2nd, we cast off for a ten-day trip from Guadeloupe to Martinique.
On board the Étoile: Cyril Flouard: captain, Cathy, Bernard, Franck, Jean-Michel, Loup, Auguste and Olivia.
From 22 to 65 years old each crew member brought in their suitcases the precious ingredients that are sharing, thirst for learning, passion for transmitting, curiosity and benevolence (and a 5kg sheep's tome brought by Bernard, which largely had its role played in the collective good mood 😀).
They never left the edge, proving once again that the power of the collective is immense!
It was in Marie-Galante that we dropped anchor on the first evening.
Tino, an old friend from the Hexagon who has been living here for two years, joined us on board, discovering Estrella for the first time. He will be our guide during our (too) short stay.
Stroll in the village, small market, lobster lunch at the Skipper, swimming at the incredible Anse Canot, viewpoint of Gueule Grand Gouffre, (not very practicable with a wheelchair but with a good team it's ok), obligatory passage at Henri's for the aperitif...
This little piece of paradise where time seems to be suspended caught our eye and we would have stayed longer if the rest of the program wasn't so tempting...
See the photo slideshow below:
We left for Les Saintes, taking with us little bits of Marie Galante: rum, of course, and Tino, curious to know what a 60-footer like Estrella can have in the belly. The conditions being right, we took out our magnificent spinnaker to show her off. Not for long, unfortunately, since we discovered two little snags in the sail 😢. One more thing to add to the Job List of things to do in Le Marin...
But for the moment it's time to enjoy ourselves, we'll sort out the problems later.
Then we put the spinnaker back in its sock and we take the ship again for the small village of Terre de Haut that Estrella is beginning to know.
Walk on land for some, rest for others, disembarkation for our two small mousses who take advantage of our passage here to spend a moment with their friends met when they worked on the island, and evening karaoke improvised for the rest of the crew. Cathy on fire 🔥 dancing on the sounds of her youth, Jean-Mi who surprises us with music from the time when he lived in Zaire, mix of genres and eras... A good karaoke what!
The next day, a little muddy it is necessary to recognize it, we are going to look for Loup & Auguste in annex and we take advantage of it to bring back torments of love, these delicious Saintoise pastry... Then small anchorage/swimming to the îlet Cabri to put back the ideas in place and to test our new chair of mast of launching handi.
Tino left us to go back to his island, and we left for the leeward coast, towards Malendure and its Cousteau reserve. Arrival at sunset, anchorage with a view on the Pigeon islets, promising a beautiful day to come...
Disembarkation on the beach, lunch of good fat bokits at Mélo's (Bernard will remember it 😉 ) and an improbable meeting with Jean-Didier Martial, director of Seaview Progress, one of our partners from the beginning! Then back on the water in a dinghy, accompanied by the wild music of a small wild carnival... before going to discover the seabed of the mythical Cousteau reserve. In waveski solo for Jean-Mi, a fine kayaker who discovers the machine, in double for Gusto and Loup and the rest of the group in dinghy.
Small dream beach, crystal clear water, swarming underwater life... Even if we know it, we are still amazed.
we are still amazed.
We enjoy it thoroughly before returning to the boat in waveski pulled by the dinghy, rowing and swimming for Olivia (a good little km anyway) in perspective of the night navigation.
And what a navigation! The sky gave us a breathtaking sunset in a relaxing wind before we entered the canals.
They did not fail to their reputation!
Safety briefing by our ultra educational Captain, watch distribution, windy night, especially after leaving Dominica behind. Quite an experience for our two little mousses who discovered this for the first time!
Look at the diap :
And here we are, 17 hours later, the Martinique coasts welcome us with a perfect rainbow that accompanies us almost to our new destination: Les Anses d'Arlet.
Ahlala, the skies at sea my friends!
The Anses d'Arlet was dreamed of since La Rochelle.
Why did we dream about it?
First of all because it is magnificent of course, and it means that Estrella has gone a little further in her new life.
But ESPECIALLY because in Anses d'Arlet we knew that we were going to find another boat that we carry very high in our hearts... A boat from La Rochelle, one of the most beautiful, one of those that have supported us from the beginning and especially in the hard times, a boat with an incredible history that has largely inspired us, carried by its captain who is just as much.
This boat is THE NOTRE DAME DES FLOTS (friends from La Rochelle, I feel a little bit of jealousy ;-)).
The evening of our arrival, we found ourselves on land, as a small foretaste of the evening we were dreaming of.
The next day, a big program for Estrella and her crew!
Échappées Belles, the program that had devoted a short passage to us in its program on La Rochelle, was back on board for an afternoon.
Not to talk about the project this time, but to show that even on a boat you can have a good meal!
We like to eat well and discover local flavors on Estrella, so we had fun putting together a menu worthy of a restaurant:
As an appetizer: homemade hummus with Angolan peas served on homemade manioc patties, with a Tit Punch of course
As a starter : Snapper tartar freshly caught by Franck and prepared by Cathy
For the main course: the traditional chicken colombo, Cathy & Olivia's style
For the cheese : some slices of the incredible tome de brebis brought by
For dessert: a recipe brought by Cyril: pineapple cut into pieces to be dipped in rum flambé, accompanied by a little mango compote made by the boys.
For dessert: a recipe brought by Cyril: cut pineapple to dip in flambéed rum and melted chocolate
and melted chocolate, all washed down with a vintage of Estrella Lab arranged rum, with vanilla and maracujas from Didier's garden, a friend from Guadeloupe 😎
We put the small dishes in the big ones for this small sequence, decoration of table included, helped by the tricks of Zina of the restaurant Kas Krut where we were the day before.
A beautiful collective work what!
For those who are interested, our little sequence should be on the show on March 26 at 8:30 pm ;-)
Nice moment shared with the film crew, which ended with a nice aperitif on board, before taking our meal on the Notre Dame des Flots, for a memorable dinner. Friends from La Rochelle, we thought of you! With a special attention for Valou of course 💙
Watch the photo slideshow :
A very nice evening that we had promised ourselves since La Rochelle! Thank you Pepo, Clair, Gael, Maude and the others. The crew of Estrella will remember it!
The next day we left our friends for our final destination: Saint Anne. A short, hard sail along the Diamant, which gave some of the crew some color, as they were not completely unscathed by the evening of the previous day...
Le Diamant bears its name wonderfully well and surprises with its steep cliffs. A rock rising straight out of the sea, it was used as a military base by the English to control the cargoes arriving in Fort de France. The little story tells that a cargo of 100 men had settled there, with a washerwoman...
This being told by Jean-Mi, we tacked to Saint Anne where we settled in the anchorage, adding a star to the immense forest of masts (the biggest anchorage of all the Antilles!). Last evening for Franck and Jean-Michel, we go ashore for a last dinner.
The next day, we miraculously managed to schedule a waveski session before Jean-Michel's return flight, with Julien from All Water!
Early departure for Jean-Mi and Olivia, luggage, chairs and double waveski attached to the dinghy. Julien is waiting for them on the beach to take them to the other side of the island, to Tartane, beach of the Breach exactly. The opportunity to discover the island by land.
Julien is the one who lent us the two waveski from La Rochelle. He organizes every summer a handi-waveski week-end in Mimizan, in collaboration with Vagdespoir.
Former champion, if there is one thing he likes, it's to share his passion !
And I'm just putting this here but he's here until the end of the month, ready to do it again ;-)
He did not hesitate one second to make several hours of road to regale us in the waves, a hair bigger than envisaged, with his tandem. Dream spot relatively accessible, magnificent view of the water, immense pleasure to find ourselves playing in the waves and total admiration in front of the infinite palette of blue which offer us.
Thanks Julien !
But by the way, what is a waveski? 🤔
A hybrid thing between kayak and surfing, that you can use for a quiet ride or anchorage but with which you can mostly surf the wave! And when it's big, it gives this ➡︎➡︎
Poke our second Cyril Samson 😜
We close the session by a good small colombo of the families to the restaurant of beach, before dropping Jean-Mi, still all salted, to the airport. Then return to Saint Anne, just in time to say goodbye to Franck, not without emotion, who in his turn leaves the adventure. It feels the end... And the return of difficulties for Cathy and Olivia.
It's going to blow hard these next few days so we decide, with the Captain, for lack of space on the pontoon, to put ourselves on a buoy in the Marin before the landing of the whole crew.
The rest is going to be rock'nroll: Cathy and Olivia are going to be alone on board, with all the logistics of harness, dinghy, water and energy management that this implies...
But the beauty of these last ten days reminds us why we are doing this and reboosts us to face the next stage.
Thanks again to Cyril for having led us to port and to the crew for having trusted us, for your always joyful involvement in this trip. This confirms us that despite the serious pitfalls, we must not let go of our Little Floating Laboratory of Humanities. The strength of the collective is undoubtedly a super power!
In any case, we have only one desire, it is to do it again. And it's a good thing, Estrella is in the West Indies until May !
so if this trip made you want to come contact-us !
and if you are interested in the return transatlantic trip, we will soon launch the registration process !
06 48 09 30 33 / firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com
See you soon for the continuation of Estrella Lab's adventures!
Join and/or donate to the association: https://www.helloasso.com/associations/hissons-l-etoile/adhesions/hissons-l-etoile-ii-estrella-lab
*Pour rappel vos dons vous permettent de bénéficier d'une réduction fiscale ;-)