Definitely Not Father’s Day


On Mother’s Day I did get some beautiful cards and flowers, all handmade by the children. I didn’t quite manage breakfast in bed – it was available but only after I had got up and been to the bakery so it had lost some of its appeal by the time I got back. My lie in the hammock didn’t materialise either – it was dominated all day by Katie, her friend and all their dolls and teddies.  I did have a lovely home cooked lunch (cooked by me – but I won’t complain as I enjoyed the reprieve from child care and I don’t cook much these days so it was quite relaxing) followed by a walk into town to get an ice cream and then a meander to the beach.

The sun shone all day, the sky was a deep blue and it was indeed for me a day of relaxation, joy and jubilee…..until we started our walk home from the beach….. [Read more…]

All the fun of the fair


Last weekend was the celebration of Altagracia, the patron saint of Dominica.  In her honour, the usual carnival festivities were observed, including marching bands, a carnival queen, blaring music, and a truly dangerous-looking funfair.

The big wheel looked like it was made out of meccano.  The few remaining stirrups on the merry-go-round horses looked scarily like butchers hooks.  Safety harnesses were only notable by their absence. [Read more…]

The Agua in Nagua


Matt and Ben were sitting around the dinner table tonight having a very adult conversation about water here versus water in England. They made some very incisive and thought-provoking observations which are definitely worth summarising.

We can’t drink the water that comes from the tap here – it’s not potable, but it really is no hardship at all and you quickly get used to it.  Drinking water is delivered in 5-gallon plastic bottles – the sort that is put upside-down into water coolers in every office across the UK.  Empty bottles can be exchanged for full ones in one of a hundred places in every street, or alternatively there is a tanker which tours the streets and will refill the bottles you already have.

We don’t expect anything else that we drink to come out of a tap so what is so special about water?   [Read more…]