Eluthera - June 15

Oceans and Seas
June 15th 2011
Published: June 14th 2011
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Today we are in Eluthera – its name means freedom, and it is the island of the Bahamas furthest out in the Atlantic. It’s long (100 miles) and skinny – at some place you can look both ways and see both the Atlantic and the Caribbean – two very different views. The Atlantic is…well, the Atlantic – dark blue and full of waves. The Caribbean in these parts is bright turquoise, calm and shallow enough to walk hundreds of feet out into.
Yesterday we had an interesting day in Nassau. The old town of Nassau is charming and full of shops, but also entirely dependent on the giant cruise ships that come there. For all you big ship cruising types remember that the town you visit is totally different when you’re there than when you’re not. We saw this in Dubrovnik too. In Nassau it was a holiday so the shops were only open until the cruise ship – the Roral Caribbean Allure of the Seas (one of the world’s biggest) tooted the horn calling everyone back and left – then they promptly closed and the place became a ghost town.
But we arranged to go on a glass bottom boat tour and snorkel trip. It was very rustic and lots of fun. About 12 people gathered on a tiny boat with a oblong hole down the middle covered by glass. The captain was a salty old black man with lots of jokes. We sailed down the shore of Paradise Island where just about every movie star you can think of has a mansion and the captain knew them all. He also explained to us about the harbor. It can hold up to eight cruise ships and is the biggest cruise ship harbor anywhere. They dredge it to a depth of 48 feet and use the slurry to build roads etc. He said the biggest boat has 38 feet underwater, so it’s tight, but they used to come when the harbor was only 40 feet deep – pretty tight quarters..
We went to a sea preserve area and the glass bottom really was fascinating there. Saw two big sharks sitting on the bottom – asleep I guess and a plentitude of fish. No one seemed to care about the sharks and went in snorkeling. Such fun – the water was perfect and the captain fed the fish so there were lots. When we got back on board we all had Bahama Mamas - very strong.
Last night we went by cab to a nice Italian / Bahamanian restaurant – excellent fish chowder was my dish.
Today we had to fly Pineapple Air to Eluthera and Janel was dreading that. But it wasn’t so small a plane after all – nineteen seats and it didn’t go very high. The trip took twenty minutes and was actually fun since all the beautiful island.s and turquoise sea was visible.
Now we’re at the Sky Beach Club. The car rental guy failed to pick us up at the airport with a rental car, so we took a cab. Everyone knows everyone else here so the hotel staff is going to figure everything out for us and get us a car. In the meantime this is a great place….http://www.skybeachclub.com/. They’ve got houses and bungalows – we’re in a bungalow – the houses can be rented but are for sale also – at 2.3M$.
The heat of the day is somewhat past so we’re off to explore the beach.


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