Sunday, 23 September 2012

Sunday storm a'raging in Barbados

The wind is whipping up a rage and the rain has been pouring all through the night. No, it's not Ireland :) This smaller island is tucked away just shy of the scalp of Venezuela. Barbados is a Caribbean beauty that has always evoked for me those stereotypical images of tall palms and warm green waters, with sunshine a constant. So why has the rain followed us from lovely Ireland?

Barbados is not immune to the odd heavy shower...not unusual at all, and necessary to get all those sugar cane plants sugaring! The island has been spared a hurricane since 1956 but does get a light bruising from those raging beasts that batter her other more northern island neighbours. Barbados sits at the bottom of a chain of small islands - Grenadines, St. Lucia, St. Vincent....smaller cousins of northerly Jamaica, Haiti, Cuba. This escape for the urbanites of Europe and North America and home to thousands of native Bajans, is surprisingly densely populated on the west and southern coasts but beautifully rural on the east coast. The east has shades of Mayo's lonely beaches with surfers' dream waves. We drove from Speightstown on the west, over the hills into the 'Scotland district' to find tree lined hills and the Atlantic Ocean. We stopped for a swim just north of Bathsheba, alone save for a hardy rasta fisherman who wasn't catching much. The fishing season has been bad here this year - none of the usual bounty of flying fish. When I hear local folk talking about unusual patterns in weather, new species of seaweed turning up on beaches, changes in fish stocks.....well, I guess I get a foreboding of changes that may come. Everything changes - change is the signature tune of the universe. Stephen Hawking says that intelligence is the ability to adapt to change. I just wonder if the change comes too fast, there may be a lot of us left behind. 

Anyway, it's a family day today. So, rain - go your way to Cuba! Cars are being loaded now with Gran's homemade curry, seasoned pork, bottles of delicious coconut water and maybe even more sweet rum ;) The Bajans know how to cook and in the time we've been here I've tasted local delicacies like pudding and souse, roti, pickled to follow, I need to let it all sink in first! 

A restful Sunday to all ;)

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