Monday, April 18, 2011

Ode to the Caribbean part 1

What an eventful 3 weeks! Thomas and I were blessed to join my family on a Caribbean Cruise on the Celebrity Equinox. We got to travel to 5 different Islands in the Southern Caribbean. Our favorites were Dominica and St. Maarten. The other islands we visited were, St. Thomas, Barbados, and St Kitts. I will post about our trip on a few different posts since there is a lot to cover. I will start out with our favorite, Roseau Dominica (Dom-ih-nee-ka).

Dominica is a beautiful Rain Forrest island getting over 250 inches of rain a year!! Luckily it did not rain while we were there. We went on an excursion to visit the Trafalgar Falls and the Emerald Pool. Our tour guide Cynthia was wonderful and she gave us such interesting information regarding Dominica and its people. We learned the long process to roasting cashews takes up to 6 months! and we learned that as soon as your child can walk, talk and use the toilet they are old enough to go to school. Most of their children are potty-trained by 7 months to 1 year and begin school at age 2, which is hard to imagine since children in the US don't start potty training until they are close to 2 years old! Along our tour we got to go through the Botanical Gardens and saw many new and interesting plants and trees. There was even a tree that looked like it was growing giant peanuts the size of two Volleyballs stacked on top of each other!! We went to Mont Bruce which is a lookout point high above in the city of Roseau, giving us a wonderful view of the city and ocean. Cynthia also told us that most people on the island only eat red meat 3 times a year, at Christmas, Weddings and Birthdays, their diet mainly consists of fruits, vegetables and fish with some chicken. Most everything is grown on the island and their main export is Bananas. We learned about their unique health care on the island. Each resident gets one free visit to the health clinic each week and if they need to go to the hospital they must pay about $100 for their visit. Dominican's do not really believe in Western Medicine, if they have an ailment then they make a tea out of their natural resources. The other really cool thing about Dominica is that they filmed Pirates of the Caribbean there. We had such a fabulous time at this island, we now know where we are going to retire to...if only that were to happen in the next couple of years.

On another note, Cooper loves the sun. He follows the sun in our house when he takes naps. This afternoon it got a little chilly so I turned on the heat. I looked around for the puppies and Cooper was laying next to the slider door, odd because it is on the wrong side of the house for the sun...then I realized that he was laying next to our floor vent and enjoying the warm air blowing out. What a cutie!!

May your pockets be heavy -
Your hearts be light
And may good luck pursue you
Each morning and night.

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♥ Ashley