Posts Tagged grenada

Another Quick Note from WFR On Island Time in Paradise – Grenada

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Almost to Carriacou and posting on the sat phone. John and Jill and I thought it was time to get out of the rat race. Actually, we have been having a blast on Grenada. St. Georges has been a real trip, but we thought we would head to a little more traditional spot in the Southern Grenadines. Today has been a little hazy and our voyage has been uneventful. A high cloud cover has threatened rain, off and on all day and, it is almost 6:00 p.m., time for a Cuba Libre and a sunset. I hope to post on my blog tonight or in the morning. …until then, WFR on island time in paradise.

Another Quick Note from WFR – On Island Time In Paradise

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It has turned out to be a fabulous day in Grenada. We have spent the day wandering the streets of Lance Aux Epines. We had a well needed lunch at “The Red Crab Restaurant and Bar.” I had their Lambie “Calliste.” Wonderful conch, tomato and cheese dish. I washed it down with a couple of Carib Beers and sat around talking to locals and travelers about fun and good places to go. John and Jill went shopping and I have been wandering through the streets. We are supposed to meet at sunset at “BB’s Crabback Restaurant” in St. Georges. I haven’t quite figured out how I am going to get there, but that is a minor problem. For now, the feet are hitting the road and I have at least an hour and a half to get there. I think I am about five miles from the Crabback so I will probably just catch one of these little tiny minivan cabs.

Hope to write on my blog tomorrow.
WFR…on island time in paradise

On Island Time in Paradise – Between Tobago and Grenada

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April 19, 2012

I am sending this via a satellite connection.  We are underway to
Grenada and had hoped that we would be anchored off the southeast end
of the island by sunset, but it is not looking likely.  The seas are a
little rough and we have been running in and out of showers and
squalls since we left Tobago.  The winds are out of the southeast at
about 15 knots so while sailing is not a challenge, it is requiring
that we keep our eyes peeled on the horizon and someone keep their
hand on the wheel. This boat has the latest in equipment and let’s
just say, none of will have to be peering through a sexton into the
heavens tonight, but we will arrive safely unless something completely
unexpected happens.

I was hoping to have my feet in the sand on the beach outside of
Garfield’s Beach Bar tonight and that probably won’t happen.  If our
ETA is correct we should be dropping anchor around 10:00 p.m.  In
between the showers we are seeing beautiful deep blue skies and seas
so clear you can imagine that you are able to peer all the way to the
bottom.  This has been a great crossing so far and as is my tradition,
we will raise a glass to our safe arrival once the anchor is resting
on the bottom of the sea.

I can hear the sounds of the music from the speakers on deck above me.
When I came below Bob Marley was singing Zion Train but now I hear
refrains of “Mississippi Sunshine” by Les Kerr so it is time for me to
finish this up and join them above.  So, for now, I am going back on
deck to listen to a little music, lend a hand and swap tales with my
shipmates.

William Fair Roberts…on island time in paradise.

On Island Time in Paradise – Trinidad & Tobago

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April 13, 2012

It has been a while since I wrote last. It is not that I haven’t had
a lot to write about, rather it because I have been staying so active
that I haven’t found the time to check in with my friends in other
parts of the world. Every time I post I could write about the
wonderful weather, but I suspect the weather is pretty good back in
the much of the United States now, too. It is great here as always.
The crowds are diminishing and the islands are more to my liking as
they slow down and revert back to the relaxed pace of the off-peak
season. I am still on the island of Tobago and honestly, I have
stayed here longer than I expected to. I am growing to love this land
and her people and her relaxed way of life. I have done a bit of
camping on some of the remote beaches. Hiked and walked and ridden my
scooter all over the island.
Earlier in the week I was invited to play golf with a couple of guys
from Florida. They were down here for a 14 day fishing trip. They
said they had chartered a boat and spent the past few days fishing and
drinking rum. After going with them the Blue Horizon Resort where
they had stayed since they have been here, I suspect they have been
drinking more than fishing. I haven’t played much golf in the past 20
years and don’t really see much point in the game as a whole but I do
realize that I am in the minority in many parts of the world. You
know the main reason that I probably feel this way is that I am not
much good at it. At any rate, I decided to go with them to play.
Once I got to the course I decided after my first drive I figured I
would enjoy the day a lot more if I didn’t swing clubs. So, I made it
my task to drink beer and watch them play. I drove a cart and really
enjoyed to company. The course was pretty and the experience was a
good one so I considered the day a success. These guys told me that I
should find my way to the King’s Bay Café. They said it is known for
its great food and as they said “the most beautiful view on the
island.”

The next day I found my way to the café and discovered that if
anything they had undersold it. Since then I have been there four
more times. It looks a little like a brightly colored small cottage
overlooking the sea. The view is wonderful and so is the food.
Sitting on the porch looking out over the bay below, you can almost
imagine seeing Captain Edward Teach (Blackbeard) sailing his ship into
the safety of the tall hills surrounding the protected waters far
below you, under his frightening demonic black white and red flag of a
satanic skeleton, stabbing a heart with a huge arrow shaped spear.
This island was a haven to pirates. Buccaneers from the early 18th
century chose Trinidad and Tobago as a jumping off point to “take
advantage” of the Spanish and Portuguese shipping lanes. They moored
in these harbors and bays to steal away and hide until they were
ready for their next encounter with a ship loaded with rum, sugar and
gold. If you are ever on this island, I highly recommend you find
your way to the King’s Bay Café. It is a gem in this jewel of an
island and let your imagination transport you back to a time when
pirates worked these waters and enjoyed the relative safety of these
islands.

You know, when you are traveling in this part of the world you need to
remember that there really is an island of Margarita. I don’t know if
this is the place that Jimmy Buffett has found in the bottom of a
tequila bottle, but just may be. This trip isn’t taking me there, but
rest just north of the coast of South America and is about 200 miles
west of Tobago. In fact, this was there that Captain “Red Legs”
Greaves claimed his biggest booty. He captured a huge quantity of
gold and pearls there and spared the towns and villages by not
plundering them in the process. If there is truly honor among
thieves, Red Legs was the most honorable. He is known for “rewriting”
the pirate code to make certain that women and prisoners were treated
properly when they were captured. He was never known to rob the poor
so, in a sense, he was the Robin Hood of the Caribbean pirates. He
is probably best known for being captured in Jamaica where he escaped
from jail during the terrible earthquake that submerged the old city
of Port Royal, being one of the few that escaped alive from that
horrific natural disaster. Okay, that is pirate history lesson for the
day. Back to Tobago where, I have to share, that I have honestly
thought over the past few days that I might like to settle…if I ever
decide to settle in just one place.

Tomorrow, I will be grabbing my pack and my sleeping bag, turning in
my rental scooter in order to find passage to another piece of
paradise. I am trying to find my way to Grenada and, if I can get a
cheap enough ticket, find a friend with a sailboat headed in that
direction or someone that is willing to let me crew for them for the
trip, I will be underway. It is only about 90 or 100 miles from here
to there, but that is too far to swim so, tonight I will be searching
for a lift to Grenada. Hopefully tomorrow I will be in Garfield’s
beach bar
.

William Fair Roberts…on island time in paradise

On Island Time in Paradise – Tobago

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March 18, 2012

It was not easy to roll out of my sleeping bag this morning. I have been on the small island of Tobago for almost a week now.  I think this island is closer to paradise than its sister Trinidad.  Trinidad is very commercial and I like things a little more natural than you find in Trinidad.  Not that it is not a very natural place; in fact it is.  I think the fact that we are still in the high season is one of the reasons I am not totally overwhelmed with Trinidad.  Tobago is just more my style.  Less people that don’t seem to belong here. I
think it is important to try to become a part of the culture you are in at the time.  Maybe that comes from my training as a journalist or maybe, just maybe it is common sense.  If you want to enjoy a culture, you become a part of it as much as you can. That is enough about my preferences and philosophy.

More about why it was tough getting out of bed this morning.  I can sum it up in one word, Irish.  As my name implies there is a thread in my heritage that leads directly back to Ireland and Scotland and I am always proud of that heritage.  But on one day a year, I search out others that have the same proud heritage in order to share our heritage and hoist a few in honor of those who came before us. Last night was no different.  We found a little bar not far from my beach of choice here.  I think the name of the bar was Bamboo Mile, at any rate it was only a short ride in a friend’s rental car.  We started the night there  with a couple of Stouts and one thing led to another and our party went from three of us to at least twenty five of us laughing and singing and telling tall tales of our travels and our heritage.  All in all, it was a great night and early morning as we closed place after place and eventually ended up on Granville Beach waiting for the sun to rise.  Our crowd had dwindled to a baker’s dozen and we sat on the beach with a full canopy of stars overhead charting our course through this vast universe.

As the sun rose this morning I said good bye to all but two of my friends and lay down for a couple of hours of sleep before the sun got too warm to make my place on the edge of the beach  to warm for comfortable sleeping.  And that is what brings me to now.  I am sitting in a little shop enjoying a couple of bolillo (great local rolls) with fruit spread and plenty of black coffee.  I really love this island and her people and her relaxed way of life.  I don’t know if the high season is waning or if Tobago is just this much more relaxed all the time, but this a  wonderful stop on anyone’s tour of the islands.  It is very important to remember, though that these islands are not tolerant of things we may associate with the islands. Let’s just say, “certain herbs are not welcome.”  Keep that in mind when you are sailing from island to island and find yourself this close to South America.  I am not saying this would not be a great place to stay, but I don’t think I would want to be confined to an 8’ X 8’ room with bars while on my extended visit here.
Over the past few days I have toured this island and all of her pleasures.  I again rented  a scooter and have spent my time traveling from place to place crisscrossing from north to south and east to west in my search of her true character.  The search has been an easy one. It seems everywhere I turn there are islanders intent on sharing their culture, their food and their lives with me, even if it is just for the few hours I have to spend with them.  The southern part of the island is full of  moderately sized towns and a myriad of villages and neighborhoods that offer a fantastic glimpse into island life.  If you take a ride on your scooter you should check with your hotel or local contacts to find the places they don’t recommend you trek.  Take their advice and you will be left with a seemingly infinite number of places to explore.  My travels have carried me along paved roads that look as if they were planned for tourist with a little less adventurous blood to gravel and dirt trails that wind through the hills leading to hidden jewels only the curious will find. If you decide to spend the time to ride these back roads you need to understand that you may travel miles down a road with no signs posted anywhere only to find that it dead ends in to creek or a hillside or in  many cases, just stops because  that is where the road ends.  That, of course, is part of the lure of this island.  When traveling in the north, it is more rural and less spoiled by tourists so you can move at a slower pace taking the time to soak in the culture of the island, get to know her people and understand her customs. I traveled at a much slower pace through the north.  I ate at road side stands along the way and occasionally have been invited in homes to dine with families.  As for the beaches in the north, they are in many cases pristine and unspoiled.  Speyside is a great destination when looking for the flavor of this island.  Be prepared for less of everything in the north except beauty, friendliness, nature and time.  It’s almost like traveling back in time a few decades to wind through these roads and walk along these isolated beaches.  I highly recommend you take the time, if on this island, to slow your travels down and spend some time getting to know northern Tobago and her people. If perfect weather isn’t enough to get you here, the people should do it.  I have enjoyed great food, good beverages, interesting encounters with locals and vistas that are unique to this part of the Caribbean.

Though I have really grown to love this island, over the next few days, I will be trying to find transportation to Grenada a place I am a little more familiar with.

On this, the day after St. Patrick’s day, I think I should leave you with a simple little toast. By Jonathan Swift.  “May you live all of the days of your life.”

William Fair Roberts…on island time in paradise