We dropped anchor in Soufriere Bay beneath the majestic Pitons. Both Pitons (“Gros” – 2600’ & “Petit” 2500’) are designated world heritage sites and are sentinels guarding the entrance to Soufriere Bay. Our excursion began inside the caldera where the hot sulfuric gasses and molten waters and rock are still quite active. St. Lucia is 238 square miles with a population of 180 thousand and is the birthplace of two Nobel Laureates. The official language is English, but everyone speaks the vernacular Creole French.

Our next stop was the Diamond Botanical Gardens. Plants of every sort abound in profusion. The bamboo, the national plant of St. Lucia, can grow 8 inches a day and reach 30 feet. Our next stop was Hummingbird Beach. The snorkeling was good and is set against the sheer rock cliffs which contains the famous bat cave. We also enjoyed the hospitality and refreshing cold drinks at the Hummingbird Beach Club.

Today’s lunch was a delight: pasta swirled inside a 100-kilo wheel of reggiano parmigiano cheese until fully coated. At night, our captain gave us a wonderful farewell toast to send us off safely to our homes. We boarded Sea Cloud as strangers and left as mates.