Posts Tagged ‘Portsmouth’

The Lost Eden

Thursday, May 6th, 2010

Dominica, land of Eden. Truly the bread basket of the Caribbean. We stopped here en-route to our summer hurricane hideaway, Trinidad. We wish we could have stayed longer but Mother Nature and her fury waits for no one. So we continue our wandering at a leisurely pace south.

I’ve concluded that what we’re doing is merely browsing the islands for later. Really;  we can’t do any of the islands justice by staying only a week or two!  In years past we would travel somewhere and stay as long as our work schedule would allow; usually, about 6 weeks in one place. We found a month or so agreeable to our style,  to seeing the area, meeting people and for R & R (rest and relaxation as opposed to Repair and or Replace).

Providence, aka Martin

Providence, aka Martin

But here in Dominica we stayed for a week. We called Providence (Martin) on the radio as we approached. In Dominica there are men that cater to the boating community and they host land / river tours as well as intercede on keeping others away. So it’s good to secure an individual to refer to for what’s what and what’s where and who’s who.

Martin helped with the mooring as we missed it the first time 🙁  (I wasn’t happy) and we were now secure and within wi-fi range of the Purple Turtle restaurant (which isn’t purple). There they are reputed to have the best burgers around; and maybe that is the case but I haven’t found any burgers in the islands that compare to a good Iowa burger cooked on a grill with all the trimmings including the midwest’s  famous Boetje’s mustard.

In the years past cruisers and the locals that make their livelihood from them have complained to the government about the clearance procedures and how customs and immigration make it difficult for the curisers and thus those that need them for an income;  and ironically,  the government has listened and made the clearance procedures much better. (Note: They’re still not as easy as the French Islands). Martin showed where the office was and offered to take me there but I felt like stretching my legs so I walked. Whew!  It was a long walk through Portsmouth to the

Portsmouth, Dominica

Portsmouth, Dominica

commercial dock where the office is located. A long walk!  There I cleared in for 13 EC  (Eastern Caribbean Dollars).  Luckily I walked by the bank and was able to change some more money.  I let W/ know that she had the good end of the deal.

Since we had a  wet ride down from the Saintes we were now  hoping for rain and were soon sweetly rewarded with a natural rinsing of the all the Salt off the boat. In Dominica it is reputed to have two seasons, wet and dry. During the wet season it rains all the time; during the dry season it rains …… most of the time.

With the boat rinsed from it’s now daily shower we spoke w/ Martin about a land tour. Dominica is becoming known for eco tours and we had heard from Lison Life that a tour was not to be missed. (But they never did offer to pay for it for us –  LOL).  We received some info from Martin and emailed Angel of London (Barbara and Tom) who were coming the next day or so  hoping that we would share the trip.

That evening we settled in a  restful night on the water. Flash; another boat had been in Dominica a few months earlier and told us of a boarding so we were a little concerned. We had asked Martin about safety and he said they’re aware of the issues and the community has hired a security patrol to keep an eye on this end of the bay and the boats during the night. We kept our ladder up, and one eye was on full alert;  but we had no need.

We slept well and in the am all was as it should be.

Fair Winds