View from our balcony.
Adam's Eve Apartments, Paradise Beach
What a spot to relax.
Your table is waiting...
The bar below our bedroom played Parang on the radio.
When your room has
mosquito nets, use them!
Pretty walkways to the beach.
Nearby beach bar.
Carving up huge angel fish.
Bananas ripening, out of reach of
goats and cows.
Water truck "I'm Forever Greatful" delivers
water next door.
Pumping water into the rooftop
The local grocery store.
A mural advertises the local department store.
Hillsborough town streets.
Buildings in Hillsborough.
Downtown taxi stand by the ferry dock.
Grenada became independent from Britain
February 7, 1974
Carriacou Island in Grenada (2)
Late December, 2009 - Our days in Carriacou were divine.
Paradise Beach is a magical spot, and our little apartment on the
beach at Adam's Eve was lovely. One happy day dreamily melted
into the next.
The nights were another story, however. Christmas was fast
approaching, and Parang, the local three-day Christmas music festival,
was in full swing. Each evening, as the sun began to set, the noise from the stadium nearby where Parang takes place began to
rise. Parang is a music festival that features both professional Caribbean bands and local garage bands. One of the highlights of
Parang is the local band competition. One after another, local bands starring kids and teens came to the microphone and sang
"Angels We Have Heard On High" while fans and judges decided whose rendition was the best. The repeated wailing of "Glooooria
gloooria glooooria" by each of these bands, not always sung in tune, wore us down after a while.
To top it off, the concert came to us in delayed stereo. We could hear the live music, the screams
and cheers of fans and the raucous shouting of the announcers directly from the stadium, but at
the same time the bar below our bedroom decided to play the radio broadcast of the show at top
volume too. There was a one second delay between the live show and the radio broadcast, and
the resulting cacophony was painful to listen to. Hardly a brief celebration, we discovered that
Parang goes on well into the wee hours of the morning.
The bitter icing on this noisy nighttime
cake was the mosquitos. Few buildings
on the island have screens, but you
absolutely have to keep the windows
open or you will suffocate in the intense
heat and humidity at night. We learned
the hard way that the beds are
decorated with mosquito nets for a very
good reason. It is pure folly not to use
them. Not hearing any mosquitos when we turned out the lights (Parang
was too loud!), I slept without a top sheet and kept my nose towards the
window in hopes of a breeze. A few hours later I had so many mosquito
bites that I looked like I had chicken pox.
Fortunately, the days were exquisite, making the hot, loud, itchy,
sleepless nights worthwhile. We could never get enough of the
beautiful beaches and scenery around us. Besides, no one ever said
that paradise was free.
Strolling the beach one afternoon, we came across a man carving up
angel fish fillets. He worked steadily, chopping the heads and tails off
with a cleaver and expertly separating the meat from the skeleton.
As we walked all over the island we ran into lots
and lots of goats. Most had a leash that
dragged on the ground behind them, and all of
them ran free. Our hostess at our apartment explained that when
she was a little girl in the 1950's and 60's, most islanders had a
vegetable garden and kept goats for milk and meat. But because
of the change of culture and ideals that has swept this island since
then, goats are now kept more as pets, not for milk or meat, and
they are allowed to run free all over the island. Their incessant
munching makes it impossible for anyone to maintain a vegetable
garden without spending a fortune on fencing. Oddly, islanders
instead pay a premium for imported produce and meat.
Wandering cows are another challenge. Our hostess had done
some lovely landscaping beneath her balcony, but a group of cows
came in off the beach one morning, got in her gate and ate all the
fresh yummy tops off of every plant. Her pretty yard was still in
recovery. Her bananas were just about to ripen, however, and we carefully closed the gate behind us each time we
came and went from the beach. Unfortunately, the bananas were still two weeks from
ripening and we weren't able to try them.
Being a desert island, Carriacou is
suffering a terrible drought these days.
Water is collected in cisterns on the
rooftops, but there has not been enough
rain to keep the cisterns full. A water truck
delivered water to the house next door
one day, and we watched in fascination as
water was pumped from the truck into the
Away from the main town of Hillsborough,
shops and stores look a little different.
Searching for groceries, we were pointed
to a building that gave
indication that it
housed a little
Inside we found
all kinds of
staples and a
Hillsborough itself has a
main street and a few
side streets. We got a
few shots of town early
Sunday morning when
most folks were still
sleeping off Parang.
The most scenic spots are
out of town, however, and we
enjoyed one stunning walk
after another. This aspect of
the Caribbean is what
tropical dreams are made of.
To our happy surprise, when we
journeyed on to Union Island, the
neighboring Grenadine island in the
country of St. Vincent & The
Grenadines, we continued our
travels in dreamland.