Blogs from Central America Caribbean

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Costa Rica!! Whew, getting up at 2:30 to leave at 3:15 was a challenge, but the flights to Miami and then into San Jose were both uneventful. I read a book; David watched a movie. We arrived early and had no problems going thru immigration, etc. Costa Rica does not even require covid tests. We are traveling with Matt & Emily McClung and their children Lauren, 16, and Daniel, 12. This will be fun! Matt had arranged for us to be picked up at the airport. It was a “people mover” van. The only thing was that the man was confused and thought it was just 4, not 6, but everyone fit in with the bags anyway. It only took about 20 minutes to reach our destination of Villa San Ignacio, which to my eyes is ... read more
Cicada body
Crazy huge tree
Daniel in chilly pool


I love it when I yell to taylor “don’t forget to wash your hands after touching the horse poop” and someone else will call out “did you hear your mom?” That’s life on the farm. 3 of the women decided one day that the main house where the owner lived, near the gardens, was a gun free space and that they would be the ones to tell Taylor so I didn’t have to always be the one giving him the rules. Because it takes a village. By gun I mean stick, by the way! I’ve overheard one 20-something guy a few times saying things like “it’s always a good idea to listen to your mom”. There are no other kids here, which would certainly make it more fun for taylor. But having other adults, even adults ... read more
River by the farm
The secluded beach we hiked to
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As usual, we sort of leave our blogs hanging on the last day! We did NOT do a final snorkel on Tuesday morning, unlike many a time in Aruba. Our fin boots are still damp anyway! The plane was reasonably full this time, but we still managed a seat between us from Cayman to Charlotte, and Jess had a middle seat next to her as well. Not so fortunate Charlotte to Cleveland, but that was ok. Few people wore masks, btw, on the flights back home. We were busted for carrots in Charlotte. We had been asked if we were bringing in anything to declare. We know about meat and fruit, and alcohol and tobacco and said “nothing.” Then a sniffer dog came over and that lady handler was a real grouch. She confiscated by 1/3 ... read more


And our last full day. Last night was an amazing lunar eclipse, and we did stay up long enough to watch some of it. The moon turned red too. It said it would rain all day, and it did rain the entire way we drove into George Town for our 10 am Covid tests. Then it stopped just before we arrived, and the sun came out beautifully. We thank God that all 3 of us passed – a quick and not very expensive ($25) 2 hour till results test. Eden Rock was flat, so we jumped in – as we didn’t know if the rain was still coming down further north from there (most winds are from south east), and perhaps up at our East End still. We were in for 1-1/4 hours. Came out to ... read more
Barred Hamlet
Beautiful conch home
Cowfish


Another day of Worship at the Cayman Island Baptist Church, and learning a wonderful song – When Death was Arrested. Really amazing. After lunch we saw the clouds moving on, so we went snorkeling after all. It had rained big time again last night, like around 4 am. The waves at Cemetery Beach were too rough, so we ended up in the millpond of Eden Rock once more. It was lovely and warm though the sun wasn’t shining consistently. Saw some rarer fish: a gray angelfish we usually only see in the Keys, the barred hamlet, and I finally saw the tobaccofish that David had seen and photographed the other day. We had dinner at the Czech Inn and learned a bit more about George, the owner. He emigrated here 15 years ago, was the executive ... read more
Butter hamlet
Flounder
Gecko


And it's John Legan's Birthday!! And we should have been celebrating it together :( The weather was due to be terrible today, but the forecast was somewhat modified by the time we got up (6, as usual), although some were awakened by the thunder and heavy rains at 4 and 5:30) and so we managed to get in a snorkel at Cemetery Beach. First, however, while dry, we went to the Pure Art shop Jean wanted to go to. Didn’t buy any thing, but it truly is a shop of art and more. The first time we went to Cemetery Beach, years ago, we saw no reason to like it. Then the other day it produced THE MOST impressive list of big finds. So we wanted to do it again. This time I counted only 200 ... read more
Enormous green turtle
Fairy baslet maybe 1.5 inch
Jess getting a tan


The weather is changing, but we still managed to do 2 snorkels, as we count down to the day of our leaving, Tuesday. In fact, it cleared up to be a very sunny day. First stop: Spotts’ Beach, to see “just” 2 turtles and our old friend the stingray without a full tail. Then to Eden Rock for our last visit. We bought shirts there and said goodbye to Mario, the man who works all the time. It was incredibly still. Nothing special was seen, just lots of lovelies. We stopped at Hurleys on the way back, sending David in to get the special rock cakes we had ordered. Then lunch at home. Then an interesting visit to Pedro St. James, a very historical house – redone to be like the original built in the 1700s ... read more
1 Turtle at Spotts Beach
2 Large Tarpon receiving a cleaning fro large Remora
3 PedroSt James declarationof abolishment of slavery


Sadly we have come to the “counting down” stage of our trip – when to do the last drift snorkel, or the last visit to this place or that. We are making sure that Jess gets to do everything that she wants, as she probably will never return, and we can’t guarantee that we will either. So, it’s always important to plan for the big rocks first (remember your Steven Covey 7 Habits of Success?). And today’s was the Drift Snorkel to Rum Point – and it was certainly incredible. Before starting, we toured the fancy houses and landscaping one last time. We could see that the boats out to the Coral Gardens were leaving from Kaibo's restaurant and resort, now that Rum Point is closed. It was a bright sunny day. David dropped us off ... read more
Beautiful empty conch but too heavy to drag
Eat more Lionfish!
Fan coral with Flamingo Tongue


St Lucia is one of the most beautiful islands in the Caribbean. While I have been here a few times already, at the beginning of this year I finally got the chance to explore beyond the port area and learned a bit more about the customs and culture of the island. I signed up for a tour to that gave us the opportunity to try ourselves in the art of chocolate making. From the port in Castries it was only a short drive to Howelton Estate. When we arrived they gave us a short introduction into their batik clothing making and then we moved on to their chocolate making process. First we were shown all the ingredients, how these were sourced locally and the steps from raw product to the chocolate bar. Everyone received a small ... read more
Only a few ingredients
Coconut tree
Breathtaking views of Catries


We almost had a dry day but…. As it was quite cloudy, we put on our suits but really didn’t think we’d swim. We headed up to the top of the “West Side,” first stopping in the crazy upscale Camana area, for a French pastry, parking right outside – that’s how quiet it is here. Next stop: Hell. Jess wanted to mail her postcards from there. And we did see the strange limestone formations for which the area was named. We bought a coconut from the vender there too – young coconut meat and very nice coconut “milk.” And then further north to drive slowly thru the national park – not really much to see really. We understand that that mosquitos lay their eggs there and then the govt treats the ponds and hopefully diminishes the ... read more
1 Hope in Hell
1 little lizard showing off in Hell
1 Oh dear




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