It is time to head off again, and I needed to provision a bit so I shared the cost of a rental car with Stephen and the family on Katzenellenbogen. We got a Hyundai and the five of us headed off for some shopping on Front Street in Philipsburg. Despite not having any plans for buying anything except a circular polarizing filter for the Sigma lens on my camera I ended up spending more than I'd planned on - I now have new sunglasses from Serengeti and finally replaced my old backpack, which had done heavy service for a couple of seasons and was literally falling apart at the seams. After the main street we went to Cost-U-Less and subsequently to Grand Marché and I've now turned my second unit back to a freezer from its duty as a fridge so that I can freeze all the beef that I'd purchased. I even got some Edamame in the freezer for those special happy hour occasions and don't think I'll be able to stock up again until I hit Guadeloupe.
We'll probably do one more trip tomorrow morning as I have the rental car until around 10AM, but I'm done for today and all of us had to get freshened up aboard our boats so that we could head to the Simpson Bay Yacht Club for the volunteer party - something which few volunteers would miss since there was going to be free beer and everyone knows that boaties will never, ever pass up an opportunity for free liquor; even if the beer is limited to that of the main sponsor, Heineken.
The party was a lot of fun, they were projecting pictures taken by the volunteers on a screen and also used some of my photos. The accolades and speeches at the beginning of the party went on a bit too long but as I was in the back and couldn't understand a word anyway I ended up talking with Mark as well as Carmen and Bernd. Unfortunately part of being in the back row was that I found out about the food quite late and only snagged two little marble-sized fried cheese thingies before all the food was gone so at after having partaken of frothy brewed beverages without much food I returned to the boat before midnight so that I could get a bit to eat inside me to ward off the almost inevitable hangover the following day.

Sunrise clouds in St. Martin Sunrise clouds in St. Martin
(2014-03-12 06:33:10 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/11.0, 1/60s] ISO 100)
Sunrise clouds in St. Martin
Clear view to Saba The view from St. Martin to Saba is exceptionally clear today. At night one could see the lights on the road leading up the hill.
(2014-03-12 10:13:37 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/5.3, 1/1000s] ISO 100)
Clear view to Saba
Saba Island from St. Martin The air was clear and Saba Island could be seen in detail from St. Martin today.
(2014-03-12 10:12:57 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/9.0, 1/320s] ISO 100)
Saba Island from St. Martin
Cruise ship off St. Martin A cruise ship sailing to Philipsburg in the morning hours seen from Simpson Bay.
(2014-03-12 06:34:49 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/9.0, 1/50s] ISO 100)
Cruise ship off St. Martin
Volunteer Party The final party for the volunteers at the Heineken Regatta was well-organized, just like the main event. While the liquor was plentiful and free, the food disappeared very quickly.
(2014-03-12 19:31:23 NIKON D7100 with a "35.0 mm f/1.8" lens. [f/4.5, 1/60s] ISO 1000)
Volunteer Party
Water Taxi crew posing The final party for the volunteers at the Heineken Regatta was well-organized, just like the main event. While the liquor was plentiful and free, the food disappeared very quickly.
(2014-03-12 21:37:22 NIKON D7100 with a "35.0 mm f/1.8" lens. [f/3.2, 1/60s] ISO 1000)
Water Taxi crew posing
Our committee boat crew! The final party for the volunteers at the Heineken Regatta was well-organized, just like the main event. While the liquor was plentiful and free, the food disappeared very quickly.
(2014-03-12 21:36:52 NIKON D7100 with a "35.0 mm f/1.8" lens. [f/3.2, 1/60s] ISO 1000)
Our committee boat crew!
Our committee boat crew! The final party for the volunteers at the Heineken Regatta was well-organized, just like the main event. While the liquor was plentiful and free, the food disappeared very quickly.
(2014-03-12 21:36:57 NIKON D7100 with a "35.0 mm f/1.8" lens. [f/3.2, 1/60s] ISO 1000)
Our committee boat crew!
Our committee boat crew! The final party for the volunteers at the Heineken Regatta was well-organized, just like the main event. While the liquor was plentiful and free, the food disappeared very quickly.
(2014-03-12 21:36:55 NIKON D7100 with a "35.0 mm f/1.8" lens. [f/3.2, 1/60s] ISO 1000)
Our committee boat crew!
     
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