2013 Deck – Week 49

It is almost shameful that I’ve lived all of my life upon these shores (with the few exceptions of travelling abroad), and the majority of my time has been spent in the City, when there are so many beautiful places to see across our land, but that is how life is, and I am thankful that I got to see the little that I have seen.

I’ve seen the Rainforest and the Rupununi Savannahs, the Pakaraima mountains, Orinduik Falls and Kaieteur Falls, but there is so much more to see…

Recently I was fortunate to be among a group of people who had dinner at Fort Island, photographically it wasn’t a great trip, but for me it was almost priceless.

My wife and I joined more than a hundred other patrons who dined outside the Court of Policy on the Island, and were entertained by the legendary Dave Martins and his friends.

I did manage to take some photos of the fort, but finding one without a dozen people in it was tough 🙂

I hope you like this one:



Click on the image to see it in the Gallery

Fort Amsterdam and The Plane

The eighth day of our stay in Sint Maarten, we started off with a visit to Fort Amsterdam, its ruins are a bit unusual, a part of it was apparently used as a radio station at one time.  The attractions at the fort are things like the cistern or reservoir, long unused, the old buildings or what’s left of them, the canons of course, the views from the different parts of the fort, and while we were there one attraction was wildlife, specifically a young bird who let me get close enough for a few nice photographs.

The Cistern/Reservoir at Fort Amsterdam

Canon at Fort Amsterdam

Resident at Fort Amsterdam

A view from Fort Amsterdam

The fort, although something that would be considered a national heritage site, is located on private land behind a Hotel/Resort, so I had to take at least one photo in the compounds 🙂

We then went off to the beach near Maho where the beach curves around behind the airport, and the aircraft head straight down the sea, over the beach and onto the runway for landing, there was a photograph by Jesse Diamond that my brother had forwarded to me prior to this trip, and both he and Nikhil insisted that I try to take an inspired photograph like it, so that was the main purpose of going there, getting Coronas at more than twice the normal price was just incidental 🙂

Beach Flyover, Princess Julianna Airport, Sint Maarten

Before heading home, we took a stop at a Nature Reserve where they have horseback riding among other activities, got a few photos, but only managed to really like these:

Cactus

Duck!

Back home I waited for the evening to arrive so that I could play with the setting sun, seated on the veranda, camera at my side and a cold Heineken to my lips, life is good.

Walk along the beach

As usual, on this trip, I can’t put all the photos in the blog, so click on the ones here and go straight to the site for all 42 new additions to the Sint Maarten 2010 album.

Sunset, Simpson Bay, Sint Maarten.

Sint Maarten Day 7, and Fort St. Louis

The first shot of the day was what might have been called the “Catch of the Day”, Justin (the son of the people at whom we are staying here) and some of his friends had done some spear fishing the previous day and was about to prepare the catch for a Soup.

Catch of the Day

During the morning, we took a walk down Simpson Bay Road, there were a few older buildings along the road that I had wanted to photograph, although I took a few,there are still a few more that I want a snap at  🙂

on Simpson Bay Road, Sint Marten

The real object of our walk was to get a closer look at the Simpson Bay Market, a nice structure on the Simpson Bay Lagoon across from the Police Station and next to the Coast Guard.  I wanted to see what was there to photograph, and my wife wanted to see if any stalls were open, there was only one stall open at that time 🙂 (of course I am not counting the bar or food shop)

Simpson Bay Market

And a short walk to the Shipwrecked Pirate, a nice little shop, good footwear, and some unique gift ideas I think, but then I’m a man, what do I know, except that the barrel outside looked nice  🙂  If only it had rum in it, and a tap  🙂

at The Shipwrecked Pirate Shop

Afterwards, we were taken to do a little climbing, I can’t remember exactly where, I think it was near Baie Rouge, but it had a beautiful view as we climbed and the destination was also a spectacular view at two “seaside”caves that let water into a nestled area, but I wasn’t climbing down there!

The View

For the two caves I tried an HDR image, I didn’t get it perfect, the image has some rotational misalignment, but I liked the scene so much, I decided to keep the resulting image anyway.

HDR - Double arched natural entranceway

We then went on into Marigot (the capital of St Martin, French West Indies) for a short walk around before heading up to the fort, which was the next attraction for us.  Marigot also has more that I’d like to photograph, time permitting.

La Vie en Rose, Marigot, St Martin
Bandstand / Gazebo, The Marketplace, Marigot, St Martin
The Marketplace, Marigot, St Martin

Then we left Marigot (not really left it, since it’s a short drive up the hill to the entrance) to see the Fort Saint Louis, or rather the ruins of the fort, I can only imagine what it would look like on a stormy day (not that I really want to be there when a storm hits).

The Dungeons?
Fort Saint Louis, St Martin.
The requisite Canon

Of course, there are a lot more photos than these added to the Sint Maarten album on my site.  Be sure to check them out.  The parting shot is one taken as we were exiting the Fort proper.

Vive Le France