John Bridges

Ever Onward

John Bridges

Having been made an offer I couldn't refuse, I left 30 years of (office) work behind and now 'work' outdoors.

As Nehru so neatly said, we live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open.

Thus, with eyes open and asking questions, I hope to continue learning through experience and travel, as these are as education in themselves.

Happy reading - I shall be happy travelling ...

c",)





Not too much to say about today ... except that it was a very early start, not as hot as on previous days, and didn't go to plan :-(... read more
Rather like walking in the Lake District, but hotter, more humid and slightly more of a rain forest setting
La Pointe
Aglaonema


After yesterday’s treat, I was planning that today would be more relaxing. So, after a lovely lay in, the morning temperature demanded that I was up, showered, cooled and in breakfast by 08h00! Refreshing watermelon and fresh pineapple, and cool tamarind juice preceded a cheese and onion omelette, all washed down by coffee. My transport arrived shortly after 09h00 and we set off across the island to the Atlantic coast, climbing through the rain forest before dropping into the (relative) coolness of the East Coast. Just over an hour after leaving, we pulled off the main road and arrived at the Mamiku Gardens. The Historical Gardens are set in 12 acres of natural woodland and are considered to be the best in the Caribbean. A series of different gardens are hidden throughout the forest, and contain ... read more
Bird of Paradise
Cat's Tail
Ginger


How lucky can one man be? Here I am on a tiny Caribbean Island (27 miles x 14 miles). The sun shining, the temperature is into the middle thirties, and I'm visiting a Jazz Festival. What's more, I've had two weeks of jazz in the sun and tonight is the last night. Even better, Brian Culbertson is on stage. Even even better, I was treated as a member of staff and had my tea on the beach, in a tent with the other staff. It pays to get to know people when on holiday; you never know what surprises will come your way! I am a very lucky man!... read more
Jazz ... and Arts
Some of the wonderful arts available
The Girl with the Pearl Earring


Last night’s sunset was stunning. It’s not that the sky was suffused with an orange glow but rather that the tall, rain bearing clouds, were tinged grey and green. There was some rain overnight, but this morning, it was still hot and sticky. I lay in bed almost dreading having to go outside. After a shower, I did go outside – for breakfast. I was not proved wrong; it was already hot and sticky. Packing some water, I set off from the hotel for a round trip to Pigeon Island (VIEW ROUTE). The first part of the walk was rather tedious, being alongside the main road. Even the land crabs were not bothered about coming out into the heat. Cars passed by slowly as I trudged along the rough ground, passing Pirate Rentals and arriving at ... read more
St. David moored in the Marina.
Rodney Bay Marina
"Unicorn" (aka, "The Black Pearl")


After yesterday’s temperature, I was hoping for a cooler day. Sadly, judging by the humidity at 07h00, it was not going to be. Indeed, the day would prove to be the hottest thus far, at 37°C. After a gentle breakfast, my driver collected me at a more civilised hour and we drove a short distance into the extreme north of the island. Here is the dividing line between the great unwashed and the rich and famous. The names of the roads indicate the obvious wealth in this area, not to mention the size of the houses. With the sun already hot, I set off (VIEW ROUTE) up Flamboyant Drive (yes that really is an address). Climbing higher, the houses got bigger. At the lower end, the properties were probably owned by the wealthy middle ... read more
Rodney Bay, Mount Gimie and the Pitons
Not what you'd expect to find here - from WWII
Towards Martinique


There comes a time when you can bear it no longer. 06h30 was that time. Humidity was high and the temperature was already in the high 20s. I just had to get up and shower. After my breakfast, my driver came to collect me at 08h05 and we headed off through the rush hour traffic towards Castries. No cruise ships were in town but the traffic was just as bad. Once through Castries, we headed through Cul de Sac, a wide valley in which bananas are grown. Stopping in the middle of the plantation, my driver talked through the growing process, noting that this variety (Valerie) was for the UK market. He added that these were not the best tasting but, when ripe, their skins went yellow. Apparently, this was something the UK supermarkets wanted and ... read more
Millet Bird Sanctuary Trail
Spot the lizard - not a competition
Millet Bird Sanctuary Trail


An evening with Michele Henderson at the Crescendo Jazz Lounge... read more
Michele Henderson
Michele Henderson
The Michele Henderson Band


It was very hot overnight and I had an uncomfortable sleep. To make matters worse, today was a sightseeing day (with little walking) and an early start. Before the alarm, at 06h00, I was getting up and taking a shower. Somehow, the water always got hot overnight and I always had to let it run a while until it cooled. This morning, it seemed to take for ever to become cool, but maybe that was just because I was tight for time. Fresh pineapple was again on offer, probably because this is the start of the pineapple season and these have travelled no further than the other side of the village. Watermelon too, these also having not travelled that far. For me though, there would be quite some travelling to do. My driver arrived at 08h00 ... read more
Mount Gimie - St. Lucia's highest point
Marigot Bay
Anse La Raye


Another sunny day dawned in Paradise. After a shower, another breakfast began with fresh pineapple and watermelon. At 09h30, my driver arrived. We headed straight out onto the main road and, almost immediately, turned left, up a narrow road towards Monchy. Pretty little houses lined the road and in Monchy itself, folk were busy setting up tents in preparation for Tuesday’s lime. We passed along narrow roads, winding our way up around hairpin bends until we arrived in La Borne. This little community consists mainly of subsistence farmers, making a living out of the amazing valley head on which we found ourselves. My guide for the day appeared. For the first time on this trip, I was not to be led by a Rasta. Sheena introduced herself and immediately we set off down the track (VIEW ... read more
The ripe fruit of the Cashew, with the nut just below
View across the Dauphin basin
Breadfruit


I slept through to the alarm this morning. When I awoke, the sun had been up for some time and was already hot. Sneaking out from under the covers, I showered and went for breakfast. Fresh pineapple was on the menu today as was watermelon. This was followed by coffee, and a mushroom and onion omelette. Bread and banana provided the finale. Back in my room, I emptied the fridge of my frozen water and ensured it was hidden from the sun in my backpack. After liberal coverings of sun cream, I donned my hat and headed down to meet my driver. There are not that many roads in St. Lucia (it’s only 27x14 miles) and again, we headed through Castries, by the hospital in Cul de Sac and up into the central hills. Today, this ... read more
Preparing to make charcoal
Hang in there ...
Deep in the Rain Forest




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