Published: January 26th 2010January 26th 2010
Hello, Mr. Brick
Saint Lawrence Gap
I like walking around. I especially like walking around when I am traveling, never knowing exactly what is going to be around the next corner.
I took the attached photos walking around the south coast of Barbados between Bridgetown and Saint Lawrence Gap. I’ve also included some bits of information to help puts things in context.
• Green monkeys are native to Barbados. They roam freely around the island, and while they are fun to look at, they can be quite a nuisance. On my morning walks, I’ve seen them trying to break into parked cars, rummaging through garbage cans, and stealing fruit from backyard trees. (Kind of like juvenile delinquents.) They can be quite devastating to farm crops, and farmers regard them as troublesome pests. I still think they are kinda cute.
• Barbados gained its independence from Great Britain in 1967. It retains the English Parliamentary form of government and rule of law. The Parliament Building in Bridgetown is a great example of English architecture adapted to Caribbean weather.
• Barbados was important to the English both as a military and trade outpost. Bridgetown is very definitely a port city. The Careenage in the middle
of town was once used as a place to repair ships. Now it is a popular meeting place with restaurants and impromptu markets.
• Since Barbados was important militarily, there are a lot of old cannon around. It is not unusual to find cannon used as the corner posts in stone fences, or built into walls. And there is the great collection of cannon on display at the Garrison Savannah.
• Like many forward-thinking countries, Barbados has a lively public service ad campaign promoting condom use to help stop the spread of AIDS. Many of the ads play off the Bajan love of cricket with text that refers to “Protect your wicket, use a condom.” But perhaps my favorite is the one on the bus stop outside the Barbados Defense Force, whose motto is “Protect, Serve, and Defend.” The ad says “We protect. We serve. We defend. We use condoms. The Barbados Defense Force.” Can’t argue with that.
• The south coast was once home to a number of embassies, though many of them have now moved to the interior. The Chinese Embassy is still on the south coast, in a former hotel. Even though I have
walked past the embassy many times, I have never seen anyone on the grounds.
• Saint Lawrence Gap is known as party central on the south coast. It is an unbroken string of restaurants, bars, and hotels until you get to Dover Beach where some very upscale condos have recently appeared. The Gap can get rowdy, but the Anglican Church of St. Lawrence (conveniently situated directly across from the Café Sol Margarita Bar) spreads its benevolent presence over all.
• Some Bajans still make their living from the sea. If you time it right, you can buy fresh fish right off the boat from fishermen in Bridgetown, The Gap, and Oistins.
There are more photos below