Guadeloupe - Île des Saintes - The French Episode.

The French know how to live.

I’m sitting on an island balcony, overlooking a beautiful bay. 
Colorful little birds fly by.

Turtles crawl through a garden filled with fruits: 

bananas, papayas, 
breadfruit, coconuts, 
guavas, pomegranates, 
mangoes, limes, 
passion fruit, 
tomatoes and plantains. 

We had a number of these for breakfast. 
And - fed the turtles.

Everything looks tropical and very European at the same time.  

It’s ridiculously perfect.

Very French. 
-No one speaks English. 

We’re on Terre de Haut, on an island in the archipelago of Guadeloupe.

The food is EXCELLENT. 

Good wines, fine cheeses, crusty baguettes, baked fresh every 4 hours.
Delicious yogurt, fresh fruits and tasty vegetables. 

Not expensive. Many grown here.

Starter, main course, (usually fresh fish, and delicious).
And dessert, for a set price - just like in France

With a half bottle of good French wine.

The restaurants, are ON the sand. 

They call it "les pieds dans l'eau". The first time I heard that phrase was here. 
Our feet WERE actually IN the water. 
The waves lapped over our toes as we ate. 

Ah, how wonderful.

Everything closes down completely from 12:30-3 pm for lunch. 
Just like in France.

It really is the main part of their day.

A long lunch, spent with friends and families.
Talking, lingering at the table, taking time. 

No wonder they think we tend to eat and run. 

In comparison, we do.

No crime - everyone knows each other. 
Doors are open and nothing is locked. 

It feels colorful and organized. 

The houses are freshly painted, gardens are tidy. 
Of course, the population on this island is only about 1400.  

The bays are glass-clear. 

Sailboats scattered tastefully about. 

Visitors can rent scooters, or golf carts.
Most people walk. 

It takes an hour or two to cross the island. 

This - Les Iles des Saintes - Terre Haut - is now one of my favorites, too. 
We took a ferry from Guadeloupe to get here, after exploring a bit of the main island.
(The ferry wasn't easy to find!)

It's another world. Even from Guadeloupe.
Each island here in the Caribbean is SO different from the next! 

I guess that's the whole idea of "islands". 

If so - I like it!