Monday, March 4, 2013

Walking the Line

Walking is a chance to think - ponder a question, examine a point of view, wonder at the beauty of nature or tap into the creativity of your mind by exploring a shape or color. As I left the house this morning I was struck by the number of lines - both straight and crooked - that were in front of me.  Walking down the bumpy line (Victoria Street) that hugs the west side of Salt Cay, I took the opportunity to record a few of the lines.

Lines of Stone. The Main Salinas is a network of lines build with stone.  The lines of stone served to separate the salt ponds to allow the harvesting of salt for many generations on the island.  They represent hours and hours of hard work by the forefathers of the island.  Without these lines, Salt Cay may have just been a small, uninhabited desert island. Sweat, stone and salt lines.

Disappearing White Line is a cement cap on the wall that runs the length of Victoria Street dividing the Salinas and the road.  There are breaks in the wall in places that allowed the donkey carts in to collect the salt in days gone by.  Today you can see the names of some of the guys who have repaired it and worked on the roads within the past ten years.

Holy Bell! Lines.  This is the bell tower outside of the St. John's Anglican Church.  Once rung to announce time to come to church, it is one of three bells that are still left on the island.  There's another at the Methodist Church.  And there used to be a bell by the Mary Robinson Elementary School to let the island children know they'd better hurry or they'd be late!

There may have been other bells too but these are the only three that I know are still around.  We don't hear them ring anymore but walking past them, you can't help think of a simpler time when it was a bell and not a telephone call that would serve to get a person going!
Holy Disappearing Line with a disappearing shadow line on the ground and a bisecting line from the power line.  Okay, I may digress a bit from time to time - or is it just a stretch of my imagination?  But this wall around the Anglican Church was calling to my camera and when I took a good look at the photo I enjoyed thinking about how this wall disappears into the Sea.  

It doesn't actually disappear into the Sea. Located on the west side of Victoria Street, the church grounds overlook the Sea.  These sturdy walls keep the winds and animals out of the graveyard and church.  This particular wall goes all the way back to the Sea before it wraps around the Sea side of the church grounds to protect the graveyard from the Sea.
Shadows of Tin Lines from the roof on top of the Government Cistern by Deane's Dock. Interesting observation goes with this one.  If you really look at the shadows of anything white or light grey, you'll find the shadows are blue - reflections of the sea.  Fantastic.

The sun has only been up for about an hour when these photos were taken and the intensity and number of lines are great.  Standing back to get a view of side of the cistern adds another dimension.  

This cistern and all of the other Government cisterns on the island have been empty for a number of months now.  Everyone is waiting for rain and begging the TCI Government to replace the outdated RO System on the island.  (Update in April - we're still waiting for rain and water resources are very, very limited.)
Communication Lines. A close up of the pegs to climb to the top of the Cable & Wireless Tower that first brought telephone to Salt Cay.  This tower has been collapsed for years now and one of the local osprey families have enjoyed building a home and using it.

A few years ago Cable & Wireless (now Lime) were going to clean up the area they don't use anymore but because of the osprey nest on the top, they left the tower (and all the other stuff too).

There are no birds in the nest this year and I'm not really sure what their nesting habits are.  We have three nesting places on island currently.  There used to be a nest on one of the windmills in the Salinas but a hurricane took that one away.  Of the two on the East side of the island (see earlier blog), only one of them is currently in use.  The Northeast nesting platform has a partially completed nest, guess they didn't like that location.
Lines Up or Down.  The first set of steps that were put in at Dunscombe Point swimming pool this year.  Left over from the salt industry days, the little pool area is a great place to snorkel and swim even when the Sea is fairly rough.  A great place to snorkel out of and I have enjoyed kayaking from my house to the pool too.  

Bird Line.  One of the two osprey nesting areas that a bunch of guys did a few years ago (see earlier blog for the whole story).  If you look closely you'll see that this osprey is really into Salt Cay Island Grunge decor and have included bits and pieces of rope with buoy attached. The lines on the pole seem to twist as they rise to the sky.(Hey don't forget that you can click on any of the pictures to take a look at it in full screen... some of them are fantastic that way.)

The Ultimate Endless Line, not to be confused with the End of the Line.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Oldest Bike on Salt Cay

This is my bike... it's a little over 16 years old now and has seen a lot of dirt roads, rocks, acacia thorns, donkey and cow droppings and has crashed & burned twice.  Only two crashes - one in some soft sand, the bike went one way and I went the other but was able to catch myself.  The second time was up by the water transfer station by Ms. Natalie's house.

It had been raining on Salt Cay for a couple of days and the sand/salt roads were slick.  I had to get out of the house and decided to take a short bike ride up to the airport and back.  For whatever reason, on the way back I thought I'd take the side road behind Ms. Natalie's that runs along the salinas.  The mud was so slick that the bike went flying out to the right and my butt landed firmly (and jarringly!) in the mud.  To this day you can see the butt print in the road and the shorts I was wearing never came clean.  Okay, maybe not the butt print in the road...

I used to have a front basket but it disappeared a few years ago when my bike went missing for a week. That's another story.  Anyway, the back baskets were on a bike that Diver Mike had.  He got a new bike and was sad to think about his baskets going to the dump... fortunately we talked and I inherited the fantastic back baskets!  They come in handy for carrying groceries, stuff that I find along the road, my computer when I have to bike somewhere for a connection, and my towel and a bottle of water when going to North Beach or Candy's pool.

Notice the new seat?  That's new this year!!  Enrique Dickenson came up with one for me.  The old one was so rusted out that it was like riding on a board.  This new one might not be blue but I love it!  And be sure to enlarge the photo so you can check out the fenders on my bike.  The back fender is a piece of plastic that Mike found at the dump.  The front fender was so rusted this year that Mike had to attach a wire to keep the fender from rubbing against my tire and making an annoying noise.

I love my bike.  I've thought about getting one of those new fancy aluminum fat tire bikes and maybe some day I will.  The oldest bike on Salt Cay and I still have a lot of adventures left to take together. Ride on.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

5:30AM Moonset out the back door

Be sure you click to see this bigger... it's incredible!
Up early this morning... 5:20AM Mike left to hike to the top of Taylor Hill so that he can catch the reverse Green Flash.  Heather's coming by to go kayaking in the Creek on high tide at 6:45AM.  5:30AM Coffee is on, heading out to the beach deck to sit and enjoy the start of the day.  Hey, look! Coffee cup on the table, grab the camera... the Moon is setting out the back door.

Perfect start of the day.  I'm back from kayaking - we used the Floan's double kayak with me in the front to see how my neck muscles (2-1/2 months after multi-level neck fusion) would do with the paddling. And now - a few hours later, I'm fine!  So there, the test is done.  I can take my kayak out to Sea on a calm day - promising to have someone else put it in and take it out for me this year.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Saturday Morning Walk and the Texture of Water

Walking out the GateHeading South on Victoria Street, Salt Cay

My morning walk usually turns me North but Saturday morning, I grabbed my camera and headed South to The Creek to collect a few pictures and take a look around.
I chose to take the 2nd left as you head down Victoria Street thinking that the road might be a little easier to walk on without flinging myself to the ground by stepping on a rock.  (Body flinging has always been a "favorite" pastime.) The 2nd left is a giant open area that is often filled with island cows and donkeys, floods and gets slippery when wet and is a great wide place to turn around. 

  Turning left it's just a short walk  to the East side of the island.  Walking past (on the left) Franklin's (aka Spigot) house, Ms Mellie's house, Mr. & Mrs. Dickenson's store, Ed Smith's house, Ms Vida's house, Ms. Rosalie's house, the Lightbournes and the Government house.  This early in the morning there's no one outside on the seats in front of Franklin's where you will usually see a bunch of the guys hanging out during the day.  Eugene, Franklin, Ed, Wilce and Hardy are down by Ed Smith's house this morning. 
arriving at the Creek
Creek Road looking right (South)
Creek Road looking left (North)

I've reached the three month mark on the left knee replacement and six months on the right knee replacement... the joy of walking without pain is so incredible.  Totally life changing and wonderful. It's been at least four or five years since I last walked over to the Creek to just snap pictures and relax.  

It was almost high tide, a great time at the Creek.  On Tuesday I'll be heading down here in the morning to kayak a little.  This morning I got carried away looking at the textures of the water.
Facing East and the mouth of the Creek leading out to Sea.

Looking toward the South
Back of the Government House

Beautiful day for a walk... headed home, stopped in for coffee (with Baileys) with my friend Sonia and stopped at the store,  picked up a couple of cans of apple juice from Eloisa (at Mr. & Mrs. Dickenson's Store) and looked forward to checking out the pictures of textures that I took.  Think that I got a few that will translate into fabric design for art quilting pretty nicely!

Textures of the Water

Assorted other Textures that I really liked...

Friday, February 22, 2013

It's been awhile...

Can't believe it's been three years since I've written anything...
Feels good to be thinking about this again.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Pirates of Salt Cay

Pirates over ran the island on Friday night, March 27th as the Salt Cay Women of Action sponsored a Community Pirate Party and Dance for the diverse Salt Cay community that includes Turks Islanders, Dominicans, Haitians, Americans, Canadians, St. Lucians, Filipinos and a number of others countries.
A "finger food" buffet filled two large tables with BBQ chicken, fried chicken, cracked conch, deviled eggs, and numerous other wonderful dishes provided by many Salt Cay residents.  
Festivities began about 7:30PM - actually a little later than that - they started on island time (which is always about 1/2 an hour later than scheduled).
Pirates  of all ages arrived by bicycle, on buggies, trucks and on foot at the Salt Shed Community Center.

We had a great time standing around eating, drinking and visiting with each other for about the first hour while Papa Newt (aka Newton Bassett) got the music started and we waited for the Salt Cay Rake 'n Scrape Band to arrive.
After a few warm up songs with the Women of Action dancing the electric slide and the Cha Cha Slide, the Salt Cay Rake 'n Scrape Band got started and the "serious" dancing began.  Unfortunately we had no microphone and missed a lot of the words to some of the great songs!  And the one brief video that was taken really didn't show the great job the band did on Pirate Night.  
Rogue's Gallery of Salt Cay Pirates include:
Vershina, Anna, Pirate Queen Roxanne, Yvonne, Shiela and Ann
Pirate King Mike
Don and Ms. Rosalie share a laugh
Vershina, Anna and Pirate Queen Roxanne
Little Pirate Gierdy 
Heather, Cynthia, Sharon, Ann and Bobbi 
Ann and Carolyn 
Nurse Barbara and Shiela 
Bobbi and Sharon
Clyde and Kim
Nic and Sharon
Pirate King Mike 
Pirate King Mike's wife
The first Pirate Party on Salt Cay was a number of years ago at Mt. Pleasant Guest House sponsored by Candy Herwin (Pirates Hideaway) and Tim Dunn (Salt Cay White House) - a few years later Porter at Island Thyme Bistro hosted a few great Pirate Parties... and thanks to former Pirate Queen Sharon Herwin, the event has become a fun community event!  We can't wait for next year... and look forward to the children's Pirate Party too!!