Jon Sanders 11th Solo Circumnavigation | Report from St Maarten Caribbean

Hi all

From St Maarten Caribbean

Thanks to my iPhone connected to The mariner I kinda know what’s happening in Australia And the world Got plenty of time to read the Iphone.

Lock down here like Australia including night curfew I’m Limited to yacht but can walk to near well stocked Super Market. Apparently plenty food on the Island The local Prime Minister is telling people to stock up because if silly Billy’s keep going out and not distancing she is going to lock everything including Super Markets and total curfew Except emergency whatever.

Paul was worried about his and everybody socialising at the Heineken Regatta a week before I arrived. Biggest yachting regatta in the Caribbean Lot of mega rich Holliday etc here. But she said on the radio (the other day) she stopped all incoming flights at regatta time Got a lot of flak for it But it worked She said last night Dutch St Maarten has had two hospitalised. One of those died More with virus. Not many all caught overseas.

St Maarten / St Martin Is a small well populated Island France has 60% of land Dutch 40% Population local citizens About 40,000 French And near same Dutch The division was by treaty 1648 It is the only common border France and Holland have. On the island there is no visible border. The French President appoints a Prefect and islanders have seats in French parliament similar to other French territories France has the largest economic zone in the world France has islets in the Coral Sea In other words France is not far from Australia’s Gt Barrier Reef.

The king of Holland appoints a Governor and the Dutch side of island elect a membership parliament like our State Parliament. The Dutch have 3 similar parliaments in the region St Maarten – here Curaçao and Aruba. The Dutch also have other Islands Direct control from Holland.

The British U.S. France And Holland Have island territories in the region.

I am locked here in the lagoon mariner Paul is in the super yacht section across the harbour. A Irish guy in charge of a Swan yacht at end of my jetty In his 30s And I went across the harbour in his fast tender to have a couple of drinks with Paul and his lady partner other night. I’m permitted to be over there because I’m part of Pauls setup. But not the other guy.

When I got here I sent all the ocean samples to Curtin University by FedEx. They said would take 40 odd days I suppose it will get there in due course.

I might be coming up 81 years age with pre-existing whatever but better Perie Banou 11 than a cruise liner Like the rest of the lazy twits travel on.

Iv ordered via Paul a shade cloth for this yacht from North Sails. They bit expensive that lot but will be good. I would like it here maybe Tropical but compulsory Panama Canal. Anything can change but at moment when time comes the Panama Canal remains open to me.

I would have to wait 2 weeks at Panama – isolation before transit Meantime locked in here etc And French Polynesia to South Pacific closed . I could resupply at sea I believe I’ve got plenty of time. Weeks or months- who knows. Then Nuka Hiva, Tahiti, Bora Bora will be open again.

So I am locked in here. Worse than that I hear the Quokka Arms at Rottnest Island (That’s the other end of the earth) Has locked me out. Gosh that’s terrible.

British Virgin Islands closed (overnight 16 hr sail). I’ve got plenty supplies on board. I need Paul to put some Credit on my Samsung. I’m fuelled and watered up. In due course need a bottom paint. I believe, and always have believed over last 45 years I’m 12 hours time behind WA.

That is Perth is + 8 hrs gmt And St Martin/St Maarten is – 4 hrs gmt According to my dumb brain = gmt – 12 hrs to WA. Any way I just B&G Bermuda north of me. If one had a melt down at HMAS Stirling Rockingham and burnt a hole thru the centre of the earth the hole would come out in Bermuda. David Dicks knows all about this 180degrees different longitude and same latitude. Except N north.

Thank you Rob Martin for keeping this channel open Hard for him too. Every one closing slowing stopping.

Kindest regards to all

Jon Sanders | 6th April 2020