So yesterday was Latin Fiesta at Spice Mill down on Cockleshell Beach. We all absolutely have to give a big thank you to Kajola-Kristada, Ltd. who pretty much financed the whole thing and organized it all. KKL is a manufacturer (of unromantic parts like connectors, filters, trap and surface mounts) and has been on-island for about 12 years now, employing about 200 people (I think). The company is involved in a lot of things that help the community (volunteering, training, sponsoring, etc.) and deserves a mention. Of course, thanks to Roger at Spice Mill for hosting the event.
The singers, musicians, and one flamenco dancer were flown in from various places, like Puerto Rico, to show us all a good time. Some of the musicians live here as well (from Puerto Rico, Colombia, Venezuela, and Cuba). I don't care who you are, there's something about Latin music that is infectious and the Latino people are so friendly and uninhibited that you can't help but be drawn into the action (even if it's just people watching Tina!).
The event was supposed to start at noon, so we drove down and checked it out. Well, the tents were up.
But the stage was empty. Que pasa?
There were some folks from the cruise ship lounging though.
What the heck happened to the beach? Hope that was just a high tide!
We ran into Jose, our pal and general manager of KKL, and he told us the action wouldn't really get going until 2 or 3, so we decided to head to Sandy Bank for a bit. The tide was high there too (must be that full moon) and boy was it windy! The water was much colder, as well, so I'm hoping that means two things: 1) That we're done with hurricane season (at least in our section of the Caribbean); and 2) That we'll actually have a winter this year (the water is colder now that it was all of last winter). Northeast winds and lower humidity make it much more comfortable, believe me. Unfortunately, northeast winds on Sandy Bank mean a serious sand exfoliation. I still have sand up my nose and in my ears, By the time we left, all of my skin was tingling from the sand-blasting I endured for 2 hours. Ouch!
Once back, the music was just starting and the place was much more crowded.
Let the flamenco dancing commence!
The video's only about 5 seconds long, I didn't think it was recording....
If you would like to salsa with us while you read, here's some music for you (we recorded it on Michael's Blackberry so...).
A few little bystanders wanted to get in on the action too.
The woman was beautiful and really performed her heart out. For her final dance, she let out her hair, took off her shoes, and let loose.
They played soca, merengue, salsa, bachata, and even a little reggaeton. I kept thinking of our time in the Dominican Republic, not to mention our boater pals we spent so much time there with (like Wendy on Merengue who got a case of the dancing feet every time bachata music came on) and got all misty eyed. Miss you guys!
Time to make some new memories - let's dance! This older couple in white were out on the dance floor almost the entire 4-hour performance.
Ok, the moon is up. Buenas noches a todos!
Anyone who missed that, really missed a good time. The musicians talked about coming back to do this again, Spice Mill is hoping to make a habit out of these mini-concerts, and even the Shiggidy Shack is hoping to get into the action next year when they throw their anniversary celebration (probably around May). Si, por favor!