On-Site St. Martin: Cooling Off With the Ice Cream Lady of Pinel Island
You’ll find lots of nice girls on the beaches of St. Martin, though none are as sweet as the one at the helm of this boat.
Her name is Lily, and no, my sacchariferous declaration has nothing to do with her looks.
(Okay, maybe her looks play into this a little, but stay with me…)
Lily is the lady behind the Ice Cream Boat, a seagoing version of Mister Softee, minus the creepy conehead dude, that makes the rounds most every day in the shallows around Pinel Island.
Originally from Normandy, Lily set sail to see the world several years back, eventually settling in St. Martin. Soon after arriving, she acquired her Mako, rigged it up with enough solar panels to power her super sub-zero freezer, and set about serving the sweet treat needs of beach goers along Pinel’s shores.
In place of the usual ice cream truck jingle, Lily blows her horn, though when I saw her last week she didn’t even need to do that. Mere sight of her boat brought kids of all ages rushing into the water much in the same way my kids and I often run down the ice cream truck as it passes through our neighborhood.
Lily got the idea for her Ice Cream Boat after coming across similar such vessels on the Mediterranean leg of her world travels. Her ice cream, though, is mostly local, sourced from St. Martin and elsewhere across the Caribbean, so you enjoy a nice taste of the islands.
Lily also fulfills requests for grocery staples like bread, milk, and beer from yachties mooring in the area overnight, taking orders as she leaves for the day, then returning with the goods in the morning.
Lily’s been operating her Ice Cream Boat for nearly two years. She tells me it’s been a lot of fun, but it hasn’t tempered her wanderlust.
I’d like to do this for maybe another couple years, then sail again to Tahiti.
Could there be a sweeter business opportunity in the Caribbean? I think not…
Look for Lily in and around Pinel Island each day except Monday. If you’re moored in the area, you can reach her on VHF channel 77, or call her at Tel: (+59) 06.90.12.41.84.