All's quiet on the Northern shore

Published: April 4th 2016
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Our bathroomOur bathroomOur bathroom

You plug the cord in, and the very week exhaust fan comes on.
Yesterday (Saturday) was a lazy day, started with our new morning routine of breakfast beachside under the gazebo...Fred in his skivvies, me in my PJs. The apartment in the main house won't have renters until Wed. so our routine is safe for a few more days. I did laundry...clothesline is electrical wire strung between two coconut trees in our backyard. We plugged in the hot tub on our bedroom deck...its a small soft sided spa, the jets work and I set the temp to 93 F so it'll still be refreshing. There was a water delivery...a company on island delivers fresh water...they filled the underground cistern so no water worries here. We use bottled water for drinking and coffee because the tap water has a slightly off taste. Fred is still deaf in one its not from me yelling "What the hell are you doing". He thinks it's not wax build up, but something else. We called a local fishing guide to set up a day next week for half day fishing trip. It'll all depend on the weather, but Wahoo and Dorado Dolphin are running now. Fred made a turkey sandwich for was Butterball brand turkey and he
Sea BeefSea BeefSea Beef

Aka Chiton...its those segmented shells in the center and right side of the photo.
chose that over bologna because he was worried about the meat not being safe, even though it was frozen. Not sure if it was the reason for his mad dash to the toilet later in the afternoon or not, but it was the only thing we haven't both eaten.

We didn't have the energy for the climb to the lighthouse on the east end but wanted to check out a store called "NIM Things".....Native Island Spot Bay. It's a small shop owned by Tenson Scott featuring paintings done by his daughter, weavings (hats, belts, totes, etc) done by his wife and jewelry made by Tenson. He's 77 years old, born and raised on Cayman Brac as a fisherman...same as his father and grandfather. He uses Caymanite...a surface stone found only in the Cayman Islands....on Brac Tenson has to climb the bluff to get make earrings and necklaces...crosses, turtles, and pendants of different shapes and sizes on very thin round pieces of leather. The stone is in layers...mostly beige like the color of the sand here, with stripes of black, grey, orange and rusty red.

His other jewelry is made from the shells of "chiton"...I've included links
Tenson's jewelryTenson's jewelryTenson's jewelry

Caymanite earring and Dirty Joke necklace. The chiton shell is the striped piece at the center of the necklace.
so you can read about them.

Chiton is a mollusk, about 3" long, with a hard shell made of 8 segments and attaches itself to the rocks in shallow water. Tenson's father named them "Sea Beef". Once the critter meat is removed from the shell, the underside is a beautiful shiny surface with shades of black, brown, white and blue. Tenson is the only person allowed to harvest the chiton in Cayman Islands, anyone else is fined $50,000 if caught. We listened to Tenson's stories of fishing (catching Wahoo using hand lines and a button), growing up on Brac, tradition of harvesting Booby Bird eggs at Christmas time (he says the egg whites have the same effect as Viagra), and how life has changed here. Seems the islands aren't without immigration issues and the bad influences of outside cultures. His wife served us some very tasty lemonade while we listened. Fred bought me a "Dirty Joke" necklace made from one segment of the "Sea Beef" shell and a pair of Caymanite earrings that match well. There's a long story about how the name "Dirty Joke" was chosen...that would be one whole blog entry!

Info on Brown BoobysInfo on Brown BoobysInfo on Brown Boobys

At the Lighthouse at North East Point
went to our favorite swimming hole, this time with noodles so we could just float around, and were surprised to see people there. It was high tide, lots of bait fish, Blue Tang and Sergeant Majors. Chatted with a woman from Montana and folks from New Jersey and Florida. We passed Barry's Golden Jerk on our way to The Market Place to buy more water and misc. groceries. Barry was sitting outside, all the smokers going. Online reviews keep talking about getting to his place early or calling in an order to avoid the lines. So far we haven't seen any. We're making quesadillas tonight for dinner using leftover jerk pork and chicken we got from Barry, very generous portions!!! We also met Hank this afternoon....the care taker of the property we're staying at...nice man.

After dinner, Fred watched the men's Final Four games, I crashed early...had been up since 5:30 am....long day!


Yes breakast on the beach again in our usual daring garb...oooh la la...seems a little cooler today. This blog site no longer allows videos, so Fred has put two of ours on his Facebook of the public beach, the other of the swimming hole.

So here's some minor observations about life here. The salt air has done a number on the kitchen faucets, cabinet hinges and bathroom sink in the cottage...all greenish and corroded. The hot and cold water faucets are reversed but only at the kitchen sink. Most electrical outlets and switch plates are missing their covers....not sure why? The exhaust fan in the bathroom is turned on by plugging in a cord that's hanging from the wall and the outlets in the bathroom and kitchen aren't GFCI. The windows are all crank out style, the ones over the bed are mounted upside down...the cranks are at the top not the bottom. Most islands have their nuisance animals...goats, donkeys or dogs but here its roosters, chickens and Green Iguanas...same on Grand Cayman too. Items very common on local restaurant menus include oxtail, curried goat, tripe, turtle, and cow hoof.....really, why would anyone want to eat something that spent its whole life in manure????

For lunch we finished off the jerk chicken and headed to the lighthouse on the east end...seems we should be able to drive directly to it via Major Donald Drive that runs down the ridge in the center of the island. We found the road, went through the parrot reserve but didn't see any parrots. Passed a couple cattle ranches and finally made it to the lighthouse...or where it used to was destroyed in a hurricane. There's a light on a metal tower that serves the purpose. We walked along the trail, then going off it to get to the edge of the cliff...I've read its 500' above the sea and rock climbers love it...crazy people! It was a short walk father down the path to the Brown Booby nesting area...the chicks are completely white when born, the brown feathers coming as they get older.

We left there and took the short drive to Peter's Cave in Spot Bay...this is where island residents sheltered during a hurricane...I've read there's a toilet in there but I didn't go crawling around into all the nooks and crannies to find it. The view of Spot Bay is wonderful....could hear all the roosters crowing way up in the cave. We made the brief but steep climb back to the car at the parking area on Peter's Road and headed back to the West End via the South Shore
Bird infoBird infoBird info

At the lighthouse trail
road. Fred wanted to take photos of a few signs..."Highway to Hell" and "Bat Cave"...who know those places really existed and were here on Cayman Brac!!!!

Were very glad to see the gas station was open on Sunday...most businesses are is the Sabbath. Each neighborhood on the island has at least one Baptist Church and the residents are godly people. We filled up and went to find a bar...we were parched! Looked for Brac Reef Beach Resort...a dive resort hotel that is recently renovated and a very popular spot with us tourists. I got us to the wrong neighborhood, Fred got us back on track and found it. It's on the south side of the airport, on the west end of the island. We passed several abandoned hotels on the way...fixer uppers projects for sure! We had beers, pain killers, rum punch, and dinner...chicken curry and jerk Wahoo...yummy!!!!!! Our bar tender was from Oregon and had lived on Grand Cayman for two years. We chatted about areas there and agreed West Bay was a good choice, especially for dogs....most houses had a yard and rents were reasonable. We watched UCONN women in semi finals of Final Four...nice big
The most beautiful blue waterThe most beautiful blue waterThe most beautiful blue water

The color is incredible
flat screen TV at the outside poolside bar where we were sitting. Left during half time...might have to go back to Brac Reef Beach Resort Wed. for trivia to be won!!!

Got home only to find the UCONN game wasn't on the one ESPN channel we get in the cottage...DAMN!!! Our fishing guide called...we're on for 1 pm tomorrow for a half day of fishing....can't wait.

Additional photos below
Photos: 34, Displayed: 28


Brown BoobysBrown Boobys
Brown Boobys

juvenile and adult
No No No...don't go any fartherNo No No...don't go any farther
No No No...don't go any farther

Freddie cliffside on lighthouse trail
Danger, Danger, DangerDanger, Danger, Danger
Danger, Danger, Danger

Good thing we did this before we officially became elderly
Trail to Peter's CaveTrail to Peter's Cave
Trail to Peter's Cave

Spot Bay below.

4th April 2016

Looks like You Guys had a Super weekend. Surprised though,Polish Prince#2 ,didn't do anything crazy or have any major problems.We did see the videos on FB,they were great.. take care be safe, Skip.
4th April 2016

It could all change today
Freddie will post more video from our adventures yesterday. We're fishing this afternoon, not sure what kind of boat rescue service is available here, hope we don't find out.

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