On Island Time in Paradise – Cayman 3

Posted on Saturday, January 28th, 2012 at 5:16 pm
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William Fair Roberts
January 28, 2012
I have been in Cayman Brac for several days now and I have to tell you, the Caymans are wonderful. If you get a chance to come down here you need to hop on a boat or a plane and make the journey. One thing for sure, the Caymans this time of year are a little rich for my blood. You can find a reasonable room or cottage, but it is best if you have a friend or two to share expenses because if you stay in a cottage by the sea with the amenities that provide a little luxury, it may cost you. The ten of us that were on the boat has dissolved into five and that was perfect for the house we found on a little rise about 70 yards from the water’s edge and it cost us slightly less than $100 per night per person. Not bad for this little abode.
I heard Cayman Brac is home of the highest point in the Caymans so I borrowed a bicycle and took a day trip to the hill. Ok, it was a good ride, but it would have been a little lack luster if I hadn’t decided to take Bright Road to the other side of the Bluff. This road took me to the Cayman National Trust Parrot Preserve, a magnificent place. This bird sanctuary is worth a stay on the island if you do nothing else. It is beautiful. I saw scores of parrots and other beautiful colorful birds and the refuge was full of flowers. There were cacti reaching through the trees, finding their way to the sun at the treetops. I spent a whole day in the refuge, wandering around. Restaurants aren’t abundant on Brac, so there aren’t many places to “dine” on the island. And while we are talking about what s not here, I should mention that this is not a shopping mecca either. What you miss in dining and shopping, is made up for beaches, diving, atmosphere and beauty. But while on my bike trip, I was lucky enough to find a guy selling, of all things, Mediterranean food out of an old pickup truck. The food was wonderful, fresh grilled fish, raw veggies, flat bread and humus. He didn’t have wine or beer but the fruit juice he had was great.
Once I was back at our house by the a sea, Gardner introduced me to a guy they met the night before. He is a really interesting guy. He is in his early 50s, named Nate Rackman. Like I said he is an interesting character. He claims to be the great, great, great, great grandson of Mary Reid. If you remember your pirate history Mary Read was the lover of Jack Rackman. He was captured in Jamaica in 1720 and he and Anne Bonnie and Mary Reid were all sentenced to die for piracy. Anne and Mary pleaded “the bellies” and were both allowed to live until their babies were born. Mary became sick and died in prison. It was never confirmed, but some say she died in childbirth and, that is where Nate says he came from. He has a great story and whether it is true or not, it is at the very best doubtful. You have to remember that these islands are full of people with great stories and this guy is definitely one of those people.
Nessy and Gardner have told me of a trip they are planning to take aboard their boat. They say that Nate, the 4 great grandson of Calico Jack has a good idea where his dear granddad X5 spent four months in the summer of 1719 hiding from the Jamaican Governor and the British Navy. They both admit that it is a very farfetched story of a guy that has probably imbibed in a little too much ganga in his time…no probably way to much ganga but, they are on holiday looking for adventure and as I have said, I am not a betting man, but I bet we have all found a ticket to that adventure.
According to Nate, we need to sail to Jamaica where on the north side of the island, where if he is right, we will all share in the booty of his 4 Xs great grandfather. My question of Nate was and is, if he knows where this treasure is and he is some five decades old and many generations removed from a time and place when it was stashed there, why hasn’t someone just picked it up and taken it. His answer was simple…”I will explain later.”
I see a bad ending to this story in my future, but I am up for the adventure. Maybe it will get me away from some of these snowbirds that have migrated down here. I have had my fill of seeing new reddened tattoos on old men and women with no suntan and fat bellies. We have picked up a few things at the store and we are going to have a cookout on the beach tonight to celebrate our last night on the Brac. Tomorrow we will be under sail, on our way to Jamaica. It is just a little over 150 miles from Brac to Jamaica so, it is a relatively short trip.
A big argument ensued about the trip, but I finally won. Me being an American with a US passport, I told them I could not write about our trip if we went where they wanted to go. They wanted to take a side trip to Santiago De Cuba. Thank goodness we are heading straight for Rio Bueno Jamaica.
It is time to crack some ice pull out the rum and head to the beach cause tomorrow I am going to start searching for gold and silver and hidden pirate treasure. I know this guy is full of crap, but I think it is worth the time and will be fun following his whim and imagination on the hunt.
So, I hope you are enjoying yourself as much as I am enjoying mine here in this corner of paradise.
William Fair Roberts…on island time in paradise

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