Sunday, May 29, 2011

New Tastes

The internet has been off as often as it has been on. So I am writing down my thoughts in Word so I can post them when the net comes back up.

New tastes….many new tastes to tickle my taste buds this vacation. Mangos…I have never liked them when trying the ones we get in the store in Idaho. They have an aftertaste like paint thinner or .something like that. But the mangos here are sweet, sweet, sweet and not a bit of aftertaste.  They have a faint taste like Papaya, but not exactly. So much better than the mangos taken green off a tree from who knows where and shipped up north.   Fresh bananas off the tree from a neighbor,  is another taste I never would have expected.

Another new taste is Conch, pronounced conk. You know those beautiful shells that the Hawaiians blow as a horn when lighting torches in tourist ceremonies. They are so common here that people use them and just throw them around their gardens. The Bahamians have used them as a staple food for hundreds of years. Cracked conch, conch fritters, conch burgers, conch chowder and finally conch salad are the main dishes they make. The first three involve deep frying, and yes I have thrown my diet to the wind to try the first one and the burger. Being deep friend they have not been my favorites, because I just don’t eat deep friend anything.   Conch chowder has no appeal when it is so hot outside that you feel sweaty after just stepping out of the shower. Chowder is a dish to have when the snow is flying, the fire is lit and you are snuggled up with some fresh sourdough, a glass of wine, and a steaming bowl of fresh clam chowder. I just went to Norma’s Take Away and got a small cup of conch salad. Not much to look at I must say, but the first taste blew my taste buds out of the water. Lime, sour orange, garlic, onions, peppers, tomatoes,  and fresh conch all cut up in tiny pieces. My mouth was amazed by the explosion of flavors. I guess it is a bit like ceviche which is fish that is put raw into lemon or lime juice and the acidity of the citrus cooks the fish.  When I think of any fish salad, like crab or tuna, I think of the main ingredient smothered in mayo, with green onions, seasoning, celery and maybe a few other ingredients. This was so unexpected that I was really shocked. I am in love with conch salad. It is like an amazing gazpacho, or something like that but different. We go off to Harbor Island tomorrow to try scuba diving and we were told to visit the Conch Queen restaurant and try their conch salad. I will see how different people make it differently. Can’t wait!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


Today I figured out that there will be no snorkeling for me. Probably that means diving too. The boats have little platforms on the back and you have to pull yourself up on them and then flip over on your behind to sit. One boat had a small ladder but the hand rail is on my bum side. There is no way that I could get up out of the water. I am very disappointed but there are other things to do.

Bill, however, made arrangements to go fishing with Capt. Ron tomorrow morning. I can't fish either, so I will stay here at the house, take a walk on the beach, read a book, go to the shell shop, look at touristy stuff. He'll be gone a half day, and I hope he has fun and catches dinner.  He deserves to have fun on his R&R!  I can drive the golf cart which is driven on the wrong side of the road. The funny thing is that the steering wheel is on the left instead of on the right in other countries that are "wrong" side driving. The speed limit is 25, but there is no way we can go over that.

The sun is out today with scattered clouds. The temperature is balmy and not too hot. What a beautiful place. The people are all very friendly, and everyone waves when you pass. We went out in the little boat last night and went around the whole island. We'll do it again this afternoon and I will take some pictures from the water. The water is very shallow in places. It could be tricky for big boats if they aren't careful.The reef that is about 1/2 mile out is called the Devil's Backbone  There have been many wrecks including the original settlers of Spanish Wells in the 17th century, so they tell you not to go out there.
More to come later!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Internet Finally

So many thoughts and no internet to write them down. Flew out of Seattle Friday night at 10:35 and was able to sleep fairly well. First class is amazing and one could definitely get used to it.  Bill met me at the airport, we had breakfast and boarded our plane for Eleuthera (pronounced El oo' te ra) island. As we flew we could see the colors of the water change. How many words for blue are there? Turquoise, azure and aqua come to mind. We could see many different greens and blues, even something that looked like neon green and electric turquoise. We wondered what the big dark patches in the water were. The white fluffy clouds made dark patches on the beautiful water. We landed at a tiny little airport and taxi #146 driven by David Albury was waiting for us. He drove us to the ferry dock, loaded our luggage on the boat, and gave us a minute to stock up on wine and beer at the liquor store. Spanish Wells is a dry island. The ride was uneventful, the weather is hot and humid, but the breeze flows over your skin in welcome relief.

My first view of the island was of pretty houses, painted in white, pink, and yellow with darker trim in the same colors. As we pulled up to the concrete pier and stairs which was the dock, our rental agent Lorraine was waiting for us. We drove along the streets, a whole 2 miles to our beautiful place on the north end of the island. As we drove, golf carts passed us almost every minute.  We are staying in Conch Shell Villa which has conch shells everywhere. They are cemented into the walls, on all the paths, ringing the trees, and just thrown into the underbrush. Our golf cart was waiting in our driveway. Spanish Wells is only 2 miles long and 1 mile wide and everyone drives golf carts to get around. People also own cars and there were cars on the road, but golf carts are prefered. Some are really tricked out with flames painted on and big bass stereos. There are teens on this island, but that bass noise seems very out of place. Our house is totally quiet. Only the sound of birds, crickets, and 2 kitties meowing. Evidently they were born here, the agent had them fixed, and the renters feed them. We are off to buy kitty food today.

We swam yesterday in water that is so blue, and warm that it feels like bathwater. Saw tons of tiny little fish swimming in the shallow waters in schools and wondered what kind they are. The big dark patches we saw from the plane are sea grass. There are all kinds of wonderful sea creatures inhabiting the grass from baby lobsters, to conch, fish, starfish and who knows what else. The internet is back on...for how long I don't know so I am going to get this posted. We will find out about scuba and snorkeling in a day or 2. I am hoping that I can do either or both with a bum arm.  I hope the internet will be still be on for another post later.

Be an explorer. The universe is filled with wonder and magical things.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Murphy's at it again!

Murphy has been hard at work here in the Northwest the past 2 days. I, however refuse to give in to his law," If something can go wrong it will."  I believe in a better law, "God works all things together for good."  As I sit here at my house, yes, at my house and not in Seattle, I am reflecting on this idea. Let me recap for you!

Yesterday, I took the dog out to potty in the morning. The yard is still under construction and so I had him on a leash. He zigged instead of zagging and tripped me with the leash, leading to a serious confrontation with the concrete. This led to a visit to urgent care and xrays. A few hours later, the radiologist said that my arm isn't broken, just strained, and pulled ligaments. Take that Murphy!  I can still go to the Bahamas and swim. I am wearing a splint and a sling and believing for a quick healing.

This morning I got up at 3 am, took a 1 handed shower, got dressed and ran out the door at 3:30. Got 25 miles down the road, and realized I had forgotten my passport. Drove back home, grabbed it, and back to the airport. Muscled my 2 suicases and 1 backpack up to the check in with 1 hand, no small feat, called for assistance, got through security with the help of a very nice man named Jay, got to the gate to find that the flight was cancelled due to mechanical difficulties. Now with the help of Jay, all of us disgruntled passengers ran back out of security, to the check in to try and fix out problem. The flight was supposed to leave at 6 and it's now 7.  I got up to the desk and told the lady that I don't care about anything but getting to Miami in time for our flight tomorrow.  She booked me on the red eye out of Seattle leaving at 10:30, and my flight from Spokane leaves at 6:30. I asked if there was any chance of an upgrade and she said,"Yes!"  She bumped me to first class and didn't charge me.  Yes...Murphy is defeated once again! Hooray!
Things do work out if you keep a good attitude, and look for the blessing in everything.

"Most travel is best of all in the anticipation or the remembering; the reality has more to do with losing your luggage."  ~Regina Nadelson

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Adventures Around the World

      Well,  2 days till lift off. I've got everything I need...extra batteries, snacks for the plane, (all low carb), clothes, clothes for Bill, extra glasses, sunglasses, camera memory cards...and the list goes on.  Our front and back yard have been under construction for 2 weeks, and that has made the time go faster. We have had the yard in our neighborhood with trees and dirt, (and weeds), for 6 years.  I am elated to finally be able to look outside and see something else. I don't know if they will finish in 2 days. Today the cement curbing is going in, front and back. HOORAY for cement curbing!
       Bill calls me every day, and he is excited about this trip. We have traveled all over the world.  So many beautiful places and amazing people that we have been privileged to meet. This trip is the first we've taken in our own hemisphere.  The Bahamas are just a hop skip and a jump from Florida.  We meet Friday night in Miami, spend the night, and then catch a plane in the morning to paradise.
       We are going to Eleuthera Island, actually a small island off the tip or Eleuthera, called Spanish Wells. It was settled hundreds of years ago by Europeans fleeing persecution. Spanish Wells is a tiny island, with nothing touristy on it. We are renting a house on the beach, that comes with a small outboard boat, a kayak, a golf cart for getting around the island, and hooray for modern technology...internet. There are fun and interesting things to do, a water taxi ride away, and we will be doing those. All in all a time for relaxation!
      Tonight I am going with my friend Shannon to see the Broadway musical Wicked. Tomorrow is packing, and Friday at 4:30 in the morning I leave for the airport. I am going to post my way through this trip. Hope I can think of interesting things to say!

 “When preparing to travel, lay out all your clothes and all your money. Then take half the clothes and twice the money”. – Unknown

Saturday, May 14, 2011


This blogging is a little complicated. I am trying to add my testimony under Adventures with Jesus and I've had to erase it twice.  Too long, and other things. I will keep working on it. Jesus and I have had a pretty interesting time together over the past 30 years. I am hoping I have some good and profitable things to say that will minister to some friends.  I leave next Friday for quality time with my wonderful hubby. We are going to the Bahamas for 2 weeks. I will be working on writing some interesting travel things as we go. I hope Sunday is wonderful for everyone.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Blogging Newbie

Well here I sit, with my great friend Shelley from Mermaids of the Lake. We are creating this crazy blog adventure. I am hovering between excitment about writing, and the thought that no one will want to read anything I have to say. Oh well...I will just jump off the cliff and yell..."Geronimo"!!!!