Sunday, June 11, 2006



Hello all, Carriacou was a very beautiful laid back island. There is over a hundred rum shops and only one gasoline station. The local rum is Iron Jack and they say it fries your brain. From talking to some of the locals we think there is truth in it. It is a peaceful place though, you can see a pelican sitting on a bouy, with a seagull sitting on the pelicans head, both very content. It is 17 miles northeast of Grenada, a rural island with small villages and great beaches. The island has about 6000 people, lots of dogs, cats, goats, sheep and donkeys. The people here live by farming, fishing and seafaring and they are all very friendly. We arrived first in Hillsborough to check in with Customs, Immigration and Port Authority. We only stayed one night in that anchorage as the holding was very bad. The next morning we headed over to Tyrrel Bay on the southwest end of the island. It is a deep, protected bay with a sandy beach that fronts the village. Tyrrel Bay is very peaceful, only two boat vendors to speak of, one sold mangrove oyster and the other wines and champagne. This is Robert, he is the mangrove oyster guy. He will harvest the oysters from the mangrove that are in a narrow lagoon in the northern part of the bay. It is an islet that goes back quiet a ways. He will harvest them then bring them back to your boat and shuck them for you. They are very small - and cost about $1 US dollar apiece. Well, we wanted to try the oysters, but also wanted the experience of seeing them get harvested. So Michael struck up a deal with Robert that for $20 US dollars we would tow him to the oyster beds (as he just had oars on his boat) to watch and film him as he was harvesting them. Robert said sure and made a date for the next day. So we tow Robert to the mangrove and we have our cameras on and shooting. The process - Robert gets out of his boat and steps on to the mangrove - but "Wait" he says, "don't laugh but I have to take my shorts off." Okay we think this is part of it, we have often seen local fisherman shed their clothes before they dive in the water to check their nets or traps, so didn't think much of it. They don't want to get salt water on their clothes. Remember fresh water is a commodity on any island. So we keep filming, next think you know we turn around and yep completely naked. So Kim turns away not wanting to be too intrusive and Robert continues to harvest approximately 30 oysters. We then tow him back to the boat (after he put his clothes on) and he shucks them for us. We find out a lot about Robert while he is shucking the oysters. It turns out his real name is John Bedeau and he has a reputation on the island for being an adventurous entrepreneur. He once owned a 100 year old Carriacou sloop on which he sailed, but its gone now. His latest venture, he told us, was to harvest oysters and sail them up to St. Martin to sell them. He is also very fond of Iron Jack, so we took everything with a grain of salt.

We took a hike over to the hill to another bay, and found a beautiful beach. With a guest house and a little restaurant. The beach is called L'Esterre. The guest house is called Hope's Inn and is located on the north side of L'Esterre. We had lunch here and enjoyed the view and the waitresses son, who kept us entertained. There were quiet a few characters along the main road in the village along Tyrrel Bay. We met a woman, Venus, but she introduced herself to us as Sexy Venus on our first introduction. She had a fruit stand in front of her house and sold us some very good fruit. She lived in the house behind, but it was a very bad disrepair. She also said she owned the land the house was on, beachfront property. She told us the local people were not nice to her, we never got the story of why. We told her they must be jealous, because she owns that nice beachfront property. She had a litter of Kittens also. The momma cat was gone and she was taking care of the kittens. We brought her some tuna to feed them, and a bag of dog food - none of the stores carried cat food so we thought that was better than nothing. We also met Sally a former cruiser who had opened a restaurant in Tyrrel Bay. She did have a business in Grenada - but the hurricanes destroyed them, so she ended up in Tyrrel Bay. Her breakfasts were great, and she said if you don't see it on the menu just ask. Her kitchen in the her house and the seating was on here patio. It was great and the stories she had, definitely and old salt. She also told us that she had come here because of the peaceful atmosphere, but the local currents ran very deep - but we never got the hear those stories.
We found this guy on the beach who was teaching the local kids to sail. The kids were great, and were enjoying it. The liked to show off a bit, when they saw someone watching.
Thats all from Carriacou, Cheers Mike and Kim

1 comment :

  1. Anonymous5:53 PM

    where's the pictures of the oyster operation? Great pictures & very interesting - mom



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