31 January: Madinina Kitesurfing and the local PADI diving centre are located at Club Med Les Boucaniers equidistant between Le Marin and St Anne’s, around a 10 minute dingy ride from the boat.
The kitesurfing was a different experience to Union Island (see on Kite Trip Grenadines - click here). Madinina Kitesurfing was much more regulated and safety conscious. We were all kitted out with lifejackets and helmets with little intercoms, through which our instructor Paul could radio instructions. Isabelle and I went first, Francis and Xavier the following day. I missed Union Bay, body dragging in the deep as opposed to here in thigh deep water where a drag risked scraping knees along the rocks and urchins. And I found it boring to return to the basics, an entire lesson devoted to kite control in the wind window without any practice with a board. And being in a group class of four for three hours meant a fair amount of waiting around. Paul quickly saw it wasnt’t the right set up for us and suggested we come to a smaller two hour session with two people maximum at 8am. You really have to be committed for that. Xavier and I persevered in turn. In my case going back to basics really did make sense. I learned far more control than I had done in my rapid escalation on Union Island, and by the end I was able to get up on my board confidently, and even managed to stay there for a bit to boot. No words for a feeling like that.
It wasn’t the kids scene though, and they swapped over instead to a dive course, Francis doing the PADI qualification and Isabelle at 9 years old just old enough to do a French course a grade down. They had a magical time, still not a shark in sight, the highlight for each were the seahorses, along with a whole underwater garden of colour. The experience opened up a new world for them, certified waterbabies now.