Weather; Beautiful red sunrises and sunsets are quite common here in Barbados and that’s due to the Sahara Sand blowing across the Atlantic. However there is a draw back for allergy sufferers, particularly those where “dust” is an issue. Turns out that not only are the sand particles quite small, microscopic but the winds also pick up dry camel dung that is something that also triggers allergies. Now before anyone gets upset and questions this, it’s a scientific fact and this was discovered when balloons were sent up with sticky paper to see what was coming across in the wind. So as someone who has such an allergy pack your medication also. It also affects those with asthma.
Sunday the waters of Rockley were rough in spots, west of the breakwater and red flags were put up. East of the breakwater there were yellow flags. Not many people on the beach so walking and swimming was easy, no congestion, a nice quiet morning. Then we decided to have lunch and went from going to Chefettes for a roti, to oh let’s go to Speightstown to Orange Street Grocer where we found it closed on this Sunday. So okay then we said let’s head up to the Fish Pot, which was busy but could accommodate us in 30 minutes, then headed south and stopped in at Lone Star where we ate.
The rest of the week was sunny, with a few scattered clouds, the odd very short sprinkle and breezy but humidity was higher. A few nights there were showers but nothing to affect daytime activities. Except Saturday just before noon there was a brief intense shower and then everything cleard out for a beautiful day.
Restaurants; Lone Star, hadn’t been there in quite a while. The hostess kind of looked at us with a withering glance when we asked if there were tables available. She wasn’t sure so headed down the steps, stopped about halfway and in a stage whisper asked if there was something available. She came back up the stairs and said, go on down they have something and sure enough we met the head person who took us to a sea side table. Our waitress was charming, took out order, got us our drinks and we enjoyed our barracuda on a bed of christophene, peppers, onion, capers with a reduction from the veggies. The barracuda though grilled was cooked to perfection and moist. The Sauvignon Blanc was perfect as was the dessert of chocolate ganache between layers (12) of crêpes with a strawberry on top. My dearest had an apple crumble but it came in the shape of a large muffin but inside was the apple with a delicate sauce, plus coffee. Quite a lunch compared to when we started to think of having just a roti.
The setting was beautiful with the turquoise Caribbean gently rolling onto the beach while Tiami and Calabazza catamarans had people swimming around them. A group of young boys were continually boogie boarding having a great time. Disappointingly though the beach was extremely narrow. Then back down the west coast to home and numerous laps in the pool.
Bert’s Bar twice the same day Friday, once during the tour we gave our friends and then that evening a friend called and wanted to go out and since he was driving, voilà there we were again. Lunch was a flying fish cutter and dinner was a pear and gorgonzola salad. Everything was typical pub grub, well prepared, service was friendly and prompt and inexpensive.
Fish Pot; Saturday for lunch accompanied by some friends we made our way up the coast and enjoyed ourselves immensely. It was rather quiet so we picked the corner table inside by the big window where the breeze blew across us while we had a view of the turquoise Caribbean with some catamarans sailing by, young people slowly walking the beach and the slow lazy waves easily lapping the shore.
For lunch two had marinated seacat (octopus) one a great potato & broccoli (cold)soup and one crab cake, all perfectly prepared and presented. For the main course three of us had the swordfish with basil risotto and a bed of greens. The swordfish had a creamy tangy piquant sauce that was just right. One had curried shrimp stir fry with aubergine chips. The wine was a Hunters Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand, crisp and refreshing. Dessert was vanilla ice cream, spiced carrot cake, lemon chocolate tart all with coffee.
When anywhere watching people is part of life, it’s natural and interesting. This day we were (treated?) to a bevy of beautiful young ladies not together or anything just happened that way, who were wearing white see through clothes (best description possible) that did not leave much or anything to the imagination. Just one of those things that happens in life c’est la vie!
Afterwards we took our friends up to Apes Hill to look around and if you’ve never been there before go and see for yourself. We go there now and again for a coffee at the small restaurant sales area, it’s a spectacular view over the Caribbean and golf course, really beautiful, peaceful and relaxing. We had a great time chatting with the staff and driving around the property. If you happen to have a few pennies to spare it would be a good investment in time.
Once back home we went for a relaxing swim in the pool and had a late afternoon quiet time with a group of local friends just talking about different things, nothing serious just a good time.
Touring the Island with friends; We had friends stopping off during a 14 day cruise so we took them on a tour of the island. We were to pick them up at 9 AM at the port, so based on dire comments by friends about how terrible the traffic is and how long it takes to get anywhere we figured okay, we’ll leave at 8 and should get there with a few minutes to spare. So off we go along Golf Club Road, up along Dayrells Road and over to Savannah, the race track where the horses were being worked and then around, up and down into Bridgetown and the Port. Total time 15 minutes, huh? I guess we were in front of the traffic tsunami for the morning. Anyway we parked in Pelican Village, walked to the Port and spoke to the security people confirming the ship was in and permission to disembark by immigration was complete.
While waiting for our friends there were a few Pedi cabs waiting with the taxis, the fellows had bright yellow flowered shirts and were very visible, something that I think would be god for a slow leisurely ride into town or a ride around town. Unfortunately there was one person who aggressively would go up to people coming out of the Port entrance and stat his sales pitch. When the visitor declined he would insult them by stating “why visit if you’re not going to spend any money?” “How do you expect us to make a living?” In one case he did his thing right in front of us with a couple from the UK who as it turns out had been here before and knew where to go and what to do, plus as it turns out they were in training for a marathon. When the belligerent and insulting Pedi Cab driver finally left we went over and spoke to them and explained that he wasn’t the norm and so we spoke for a while and then off they went. Notably even the two other Pedi Cab drivers stayed away from this mouthy person. Not really a very good image for someone just arriving in Barbados.
So off we went, up the West Coast explaining things away, up to Country Club at Sandy Lane where some great pictures were taken, some purchases at the pro shop and spoke with some of the staff. Most impressive for my friend who is an avid golfer and his wife just enjoyed the view and the beautiful surroundings. Fortunately neither are shoppers so we didn’t do any of that, our credit cards rested for the day.
Down the hill through Holetown….slowly then up to Speightstown where we parked, walked the Boardwalk and had a snack and lime squash at the Orange Street Grocer. From there we went up to Cherry Tree Hill, more pictures then down to Morgan Lewis Mill and more picture, continuing to Barclays Park and more pictures, over to Bathsheba more pictures and then onwards to the South Coast. Being a clear sunny day the scenery was quite clear and the colours outstanding.
Once across the valley, down the ABC and to Bert’s Bar. Now my friend was a professional athlete in his younger days, a goal tender for Detroit Red Wings so he really enjoyed Bert’s Hockey Night in Barbados Chairs, yes pictures were taken, the pictures in the bar of players from his era such as Rocket Richard, Bobby Orr’s famous goal and many others. Too bad Eugene Melnyk wasn’t there, I’m sure they would have had a great conversation. So 4 flying fish cutters later we came back to our place at Rockley, walked some of the golf course which he found very narrow and identified accuracy as a premium requirement.
Off along the South Coast to Oistens where we got stuck in traffic jam, turned around and headed west, around Savannah Race Track, up, over and down into Bridgetown and the Port. All in all a very good day and our friends enjoyed themselves as they saw Barbados from a local perspective in many ways yet got to see the main points of the island. They found the people quite friendly, polite and enjoyable, they did not have to deal with the Pedi Cab lout fortunately.
I tell you when we got back to our place we were exhausted, the heat just took the energy out of us so after nap and a wake up swim we went out to dinner as mentioned above.
Beaches this week were a bit rough and wavy on the South Coast yet calm on the West side but all in all a relatively relaxing week.
Now I’ll just finish my book and relax on the deck in the nice refreshing breeze.
Next week it’ll be more beach time and getting psyched up to return to Canada the following week, but more about that later.Edited: 03 April 2011, 01:03