More Nassau

Here are some more pictures of our bus trip through Nassau.

The Yield Signs say “Give Way”

Large plantation mansions live along the side of smaller run down shacks.

“Water Stations” dot the corners to provide locals with large plastic drums of clean potable drinking water.

Construction is everywhere along the main highway to the airport.

Businesses and strip malls all have security guards.  Yes, even McDonald’s.

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Daily Prompt: Pat on the Back

I am trying something new with WordPress.  They have a daily writing challenge/ weekly photo challenge.  Today’s topic is a Pat on the Back.  Show someone’s success and how proud you are of them.

As I go through our trip pictures, my favorite picture of “success” is this one.  Sean had just finished his final dive certification for Scuba.

Sean Day completes Scuba certification in Bahama's

Sean Day completes Scuba certification in Bahama’s

 

Nassau starts the Adventure

I have been working to organize my pictures and thoughts of our Blackbeard’s Scuba trip.  Off the map and onto the water, The Bahama’s are quite large.  Our Captain, Nate, said that if we were going to visit each Island, it would probably take minimum of 3 weeks!  That is quite remarkable once you think about how long it took to motor from one island/cay to another.

Our Trip centered around only a small part of the Exuma Cay’s.  The entire Exumas chain are an archipelago of about 365 cays (small islands) beginning about 35 miles South East of Nassau.  I found this map online that gives the view of most of our trip on the Pirate’s Lady.

AquacatMap1

Arrival Nassau

After clearing immigration and customs (no, we don’t have any tobacco, alcohol or drugs thank you), Our group took a chartered shuttle from the airport to the marina. All of us piled into one shuttle and the luggage was tossed into a shabby /rusty hollowed out minivan. We zoomed down the left side of narrow streets towards the center of town.

Nassau was still decked out with bunting and banners celebrating their 40th year as a country.  Small compound residences were tucked behind white washed walls.  The tree foliage was much lower to the ground than I had imagined.  While there were some large flowering trees, most of the plants seemed more scrub like in nature.  They dotted the road side, low and gangly to the ground.

As we got to the main center of town, through the tiny streets, you could see the large Cruise ships at the main docks.  These massive structures towered above Nassau’s colorful buildings.  Shops selling shirts, shells and rum cakes lined the streets with bars and restaurants promising the best (and cheapest) conch fritters and drinks available. Bahama’s finest, decked out in snappy uniforms & white pith hats, chatted up the local ladies as they directed traffic around the congested corners of Bay Street.

After getting settled onto our boat, Pirate’s Lady, we left the dock and headed out to sea.  The sun was setting to the west of us.  You can see the large bridge that goes from Nassau to Paradise Island (where Atlantis Hotel is).  Hotels, condo’s and mansions lined the water-way as we headed out to sea.

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There is a bit of wind a chop as we left port.  Our goal for the evening was to get across and anchor in the lee of Highbourne Cay for the night.  It took about 4 hours to make it across the distance. We got settled for the night about 10pm at night.

More tomorrow from Highbourne Cay!

Scout was NAUGHTY!!!!

Go Figure.  I know.  Tell you a story you don’t know.

After a day of laundry and moderate put away, Rob and I picked up the dogs at Sidney’s in the afternoon.  Same questions.  How was your trip?  Great!  How were the Dogs?

“Well”, the nice young lady said, “Buck is just the best dog ever.”  Yeah we know!

Then she says, “and Scout decided that he could jump the 5 foot fence to get out of the day care area so he could visit the ladies at the front desk.”

jaws dropping a bit. . . I ask, “Did he scale the wall or just go over?”

“Nope, he essentially did the steeple chase.  Gazelle to the top of the first low 3 foot wall and then up and over the taller wall to the front of the shop.”

I seriously felt like I was in the principal’s office.  If she wasn’t trying to hide her OMG smirk I think I would have felt worse.

Go Figure.  He IS THAT DOG.

Scout is THAT DOGAND he grew at least 2 inches!!!  Scout is now taller than Buck.

 

Shell Haul

Rules of the road.  You CAN NOT SCUBA and pick up things off the bottom.  PERIOD.  DO NOT PASS GO. Perhaps go to Jail.  So leave them on the bottom.

Sooooooo, if you do want to shell, you actually need to free dive.  One breath.  Fins.  Kick. Equalize ears.  Go down further.  GRAB shell.  Surface fast.  BREATH O2!!!!!!

If you do bring the shells home.  Put into a solution of water and bleach in the sink.  Takes care of all of the STINK.

IMG_2626the big one IS a Conch.  We were in the Exuma’s/  On Iguana Island.  Relative depth 17-20 feet depth.

PS.  shells stink until you clean them.

 

 

Blackbeard’s Cruises

Hard to believe that a year’s preparation is now done.  Just last August, Team Day responded that all four of us would do the Blackbeard’s scuba trip with Troop 10.  Beyond shelling some ducats, this meant, scheduling vacation time, getting pool certified, finding gear that fit Big Tree, doing online training, etc etc etc.

Below is a photo of our last morning in Nassau on Pirate’s Lady.  We had such a wonderful time.  I can’t wait to share all our pictures with you over the coming weeks.

ImageA special thanks to our crew.  Captain Nate.  First Mate Byron, Machinist/Engineer Carlos, Dive Master Sam, and last but certainly not least Wenis, the greatest goddess of a cook the Bahama’s has ever seen.

Our Troop 10 Family was also terrific.  So proud of everyone!!!  Well Done All in deed.  Cameron, Rob, Chris, Nick, Rob, Jeremy, Sean, Todd, Kyle, Greg, Sean, Tim, Brandon, Harrison, Hunter, Brian, Ben, Steve, Spencer, John, Chris, and our Dive Master Maurice.

http://www.blackbeard-cruises.com

 

Hot Lanta

So nice to officially be back in the States.  A BIG thunder storm shut Atlanta airport down for a bit so we (and everyone else from here to Laguardia and beyond) are running about 1/2 hour late.  You know you look like “well something the cat dragged in” when you get the strange looks from the ladies in the airport.

Yeah – but still feeling the rocking ears and don’t have my land legs yet.  My brain is still on Island Time.

sigh

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Kansas Sunsets

Being a Del Mar girl, I am partial to sunsets. Well let me be a little more specific.

           I LOVE THEM!!!!

Not just a little, “oh that’s sooo nice”.  But a lot.  A LOT a LOT.

For me, sunsets are God’s pause on your day.  I mean, no matter how tiring or cranky your day was, a sunset helps you pause for a couple minutes to admire everything that is greater than you.  All of the seemingly important things (your job, troubles, laundry lists, the dishes, that late report, or the “@*%$*#” co-worker) take back a seat to the magnificence in the sky. . .

Think about it.  Even in the movies, the power a sunset holds on our minds and relationships is tremendous.

The 1986 movie, “Running Scared” has Gregory Hines and Billy Crystal taking a (forced) holiday in the Florida Keys. They realize all the hustle and bustle of Chicago is clogging their lives and they just stop on the pier to take in the sunset.  Between two men discovering life’s balance and “dinging donuts”, the sunset gives these friends something to look forward to!

watching the sunset

watching the sunset

1998’s “CIty of Angels”, with Nicholas Cage, has angels congregating at beaches and bluffs to wake the day and see it off.

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Kansas my not have the beaches.  But I am convinced, it really has some of the best sunsets. The high cumulous and stratus clouds help create some of the best sunsets. Deep Purple and Pink hughes scorch across the horizon to herald another day’s passing.  More evenings than not, one of us is looking out the laundry window and then calls the other out to the deck to view the majesty in progress.

This last Saturday’s date night was a perfect night for sunset’s.  After a lovely patio dinner at Sullivan’s, Rob helped chase some sunset’s down.  A perfect date night prolonged driving in a hot rod, trying to capture heaven in a bottle.

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