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07 July 2011

St Barthélemy

My 26th birthday was last week. Conveniently, Owen had a 3 day weekend and was able to take a day off to explore another island to celebrate. We decided on St Barthélemy since it is accessible by ferry and we had a good excuse to go (St Barths is one of the most expensive islands). St Barthélemy is known by everyone as St Barths, except Americans who call it St Barts. We decided to go with St Barths since we do our best to adhere to local customs. 

Anyway we went with our friends Alie and Sean. It was a 45 minute ferry ride, which was very rough! We decided to sit outside, to avoid getting sea sick or being around those who do. Thankfully none of us are prone to getting sea sick and did not get sick this trip. Apparently we picked the wrong section to sit in and all the waves splashed directly on us! Alie and I decided to move (tricky task on a boat that's seriously moving!) to the other side, Owen stuck it out as you can see by the second picture. 

After arriving, we grabbed a quick breakfast and rented a car and toured around the island a bit. We stopped by a few beaches looking for snorkeling, but the waves were too rough everywhere. Eventually we stopped for lunch at a local burger joint. It was good but very expensive! After lunch we tried one more beach. It was still pretty rough but Owen and Sean went out anyway, since we did bring all the snorkel gear with us. Alie and I napped on the beach while getting blasted with sand the whole time. After a little while, the weather turned so we headed back to town. It then poured! We hung out in a covered shopping area for a while then braved the rain and shopped a little. After that we headed back to the ferry to head home. All in all it was a great day, even though the weather wasn't great. St Barths has a much better feel to it than St Maarten. It is clean, safe, well maintained and just plain nicer. It was a good birthday trip!

Making the best of the waves

Gustavia Harbour

Overlooking St Barths

Owen on a cliff edge; typical.

Trying to get a picture of our crazy hair...come to find out Owen was looking up my skirt! (I had a swim suit on)
Tiny car, tiny roads, large cliff edges (okay this edge is small, but most were huge)

Another crazy runway, planes come over the road and have to stop before the water

2 way road? as long as you utilize the edges!

Highest Point on St Barths- Morne de Vitet, 286m

Reminded me more of New England style beaches (not the water of course)

Owen's Advanced Dives

Heading down to Fushang Wreck at 110ft!
A few weekends ago, Owen went for his Advanced Open Water Certification. Two of Owen's friends did the course with him. They did a search and recovery dive, an underwater navigation dive, and 2 wreck dives. One wreck at 60ft and the other at 110ft! His next goal is to get rescue diver certification. Michelle de Villiers from Octopus Diving took these pictures during their dives (Owen has the gray sleeves). I love how blue it is at depth compared to the pictures from my dive, however Owen may be the only one in our family to see those depths! 

Hey Owen!
Owen and Eero by the prop
Lots more fish and cool stuff on the wreck

Inside a wreck, tight spaces!

Being goofy at Gregory Wreck
The Guys