Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Music (at Cockleshell) & Dirty Beaches (Turtle & Sandy Bank)

We had a ton of rain early Sunday morning (like 3am) that came with bright flashes of lightning and immediate deafening thunder claps as well (we were clapping because we were glad not to have a 60' aluminum mast to worry about!). No wind though. Oddly, I had just mentioned to Wendy on Merengue that we really hadn't experienced any lightning since leaving Puerto Rico over 2 years ago, and then we had some while she was here and then this. It was worth it though, because finally, the rain seems to have finally played itself out and the sun is upon us. It was definitely time for a beach day. So, of course, we headed for Sandy Bank.

Michael was expecting lots of waves after the storm so he could finally body surf, but it was dead calm again. It was also full of sea grass. Yuck!

Seriously, doesn't this look a bit like the ribbons of oil you see pictures of in all the depressing articles about the Gulf oil spill?

Every time we go swimming here, I expect to see a shadow pass me in the clear water. This time, one could have had I actually been in the water. A 3' barracuda was coasting in the shallow water along the grass line looking for a munchy. Spooky.

While we were there, Michael got a call that Turtle Beach (one of the beaches he maintains when he's not moving trees or planting plants or corralling cows or picking up trash) was a mess. Boy, they weren't kidding.

It looked like a hurricane had hit. As it turned out, a bridge crossing a Nevis ghaut (mountain pass) split apart and all its debris (and anything else that was in the ghaut at the time) were now hitting St. Kitts beaches. Mike's guys (well, actually his contractor's guys, Mike's on-call guys refused to answer their phones) were initially going to drag a huge, tractor-pulled rake across it, but a) the stuff was just too thick for such a thing; and b) the rake/tractor contraption wasn't working. Ok, how about we put all the crap in the bulldozer scoop? Nope, flat tire. Ok, then move a trailer to the beach and start piling the stuff on! Load #1.

Of course, the trailer got stuck in the sand and the flat-tired bulldozer had to yank it out. Not quite a lazy Sunday, but a typical day at work.

After all the craziness, and a few hours of hard labor, the beach was as clean as it was going to be for a Sunday.

Considering there was still plenty of junk in the water, all they could hope for was that the tide would turn and take it out to the deep ocean (where boaters like Merengue could run into it - sorry!).

Then we decided to see what was going down at Cockleshell Beach (and get Mike a beer). Even that bay was getting bombarded with debris so one of the business owners there had a boat puttering around and snagging large pieces (to keep jet skiiers/boaters/swimmers safe), resulting in 10 truck loads of garbage to whisk away.

Spice Mill was having a mini-music festival and really went all out. They had a big stage and had various performers doing their thing.

That's "Zi" on Saxophone. I'm not normally a big sax fan, but he's really good and quite renowned.

Jazzique & The Green House Band (who just put out a new album), KC-5, and I think Stevy Mahy (click on Saturday Artists if you're curious) played to the crowds (I'm trying to get the full list and will update as appropriate). They only charged $100EC (about $40US) for food, drinks, hours of music, and seating. The music sounded great. It certainly seemed to be a success - there was a really wide variety of onlookers.

We weren't there long, so didn't pay, but did get to see a bunch of friends we hadn't seen in a while. Here's me and Tina.

Tomorrow, I actually may be taking a quick trip to St. Martin with a guy who flies there every Wednesday to pick up groceries for St. Kitts businesses. I refuse to get my hopes up until I am actually on the ground and staring at the freezer section at Le Grand Marche, but this could be a very, very good thing. Strawberries? Blueberries? Oranges? Kung Pao Soy Chicken? Hold on while I clean up my drool...I got a bit teary eyed too, so let me grab a tissue.