If you’ve missed Grand Bahama Island 2017 ~ Week One, you may want to start there.
Here we are, the conclusion of our Grand Bahama Island adventure. The end of living in a swimsuit, ball cap and flip-flops, slathered in sunscreen, and going from beach to beach. The end of living with the ocean and the creatures in and around it. The end of living with a culture that is similar to ours but then very different.
We’ve been to Coral Beach, Fortune Beach, Barbary Bay, Gold Rock Beach, Bishops Bay, Pelican Bay, Paradise Cove, Taino Beach, Crabbing Bay and back again. Each one of these beaches are distinct with what they leave behind and the environment around them. At low tide there are all kinds of secrets revealed; the imprint of the sand, the shells, the amount of seaweed and driftwood, and of course the trash from human existence.
This last week has brought rain everyday around 1:00 for about an hour.
On our way to Gold Rock Beach, we came across this handy platform with benches and a roof just in time to wait for the rain to pass.
Walking on the powdery soft sand after a rain feels like walking on newly fallen snow (familiar to me living in the California Sierra foothills) and leaves a deeper imprint of my feet, too.
When we did get to the beach this little critter wanted his photo taken. These lizards are everywhere, at our apartment, in the forest, everywhere. The largest we have seen was about five inches. They all have a curled tail. So guess what? They’re called Curly Tailed Lizards (the scientific name, Leiocephalidae). They’re found throughout the entire Bahama Islands of which there are 700 islands, cays, and islets.
A little while later a heron came tip toeing along right in front of me to see what she could find for lunch.
And of course the occasional seagull cursing the shoreline. Every once in a while she would nose dive into the water for a tasty morsel of a sea creature.
On our way to Fortune Beach one day, we parked the car under a tree, got out and heard this loud hammering noise up in the tree. When we realized it was a woodpecker, by the sound of it we expected to see a very large bird, but it wasn’t. He was fairly small and so intently focused on what he was doing that he didn’t even notice us.
Fortune Beach soon became my favorite beach. It is also the location of Banana Bay Restaurant. We enjoyed lunch there a few times, as it was so handy only a few feet from where we usually spent the day. The view is amazing and it’s a great place to watch the Sting Rays swim along the shallow, clear water. We saw many of them on most all of the beaches but from here we were elevated to get a birds eye view.
We also, saw some sharks no more than 4 feet long on most beaches. Oh and a highlight, was seeing 3 or 4 dolphins breaching the water about 100 feet from where we were standing on Barbary beach. Didn’t have the camera with me that time.
The Bahama culture is strongly influenced by the UK. Often you’ll see the two flags flying side by side. The Bahamas were under British rule until 1973. They still use British English which was evident when I saw a sign that said, ‘GB Jewellery Store’. It looked so odd to me, I thought it was a huge typo but it was spelled correctly. Many building and larger homes have a British Colonial architecture style.
Across from Taino Beach we discovered a beautiful park with a palm tree lined path to the top of a hill. At the top was a grave stone with the name of ‘Edward Gerald Patrick St George’ 1928 -2004. Because of my inquisitive nature I had to find out who he was. I found that he was a prominent figure in the life of the Bahamas. He served as Chief Magistrate, and was instrumental in the development of Port Lucaya. As a result of many of his developments, Grand Bahama Island became the commercial center of all the Bahamas. What he accomplished must have changed the lives for many Grand Bahama people. It was a magnificent tribute to him.
We ended our week at Cappuccino’s a beautifully decorated Italian restaurant with delicious food.
It’s been a great adventure! But now it’s time to go home…
Oh and for those curious of the progress of the watercolor painting, here you go:
Happy Trails on your next adventure.