what storms can do

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Visiting the property today brought a shocking sight. I figure on some changes, maybe a little more overgrowth and such but what met our gaze was enough to make Bryan and I think we were in the worng place or somehow lost our minds.

The beach was gone.

No lie.

Surveying the view we found no sand where our beautiful beach had been. Confused we tried to think back on what we knew(or thought we knew) it looked like. The cove to the north was completely filled with churning surf. Below the rocks that once met the sand was now a bit of a cliff with churning surf. As the three of us tried to analyze what this meant, we kept our moods to ourselves. Of course looking at the bright side of everything we checked out the new tidal pools and the beautiful (new) nature-sculpted rock formations and surmised what this might change in our building choices. If any changes were needed.

Ok... we will deal with it.

The sky was still beautiful.

The sea was still its amazing tourquoise color.

But now we had a whole different kind of view.

So, after living with that notion for a while I got down to why we came. I was going to collect leaf samples and photos of the various plants so that I could educate myself on what grows how and how fast...etc. The lot has lots of small (8-10') palm trees, agave, sea grape, and some other trees I am not sure what they are. And a few dilly fruit trees(sopa dilla). So I started collecting and the guys posed for pictures to ad scale so that when we got home I could tell if a tree was three feet tall or ten.

After that we piled into the car and went for lunch, later we went shelling on what used to be the most beautiful beach on the island....

except now it was covered with garbage. Big stuff like chairs, rugs, and old vespa, and lots and lots of clothes.

Had this place changed so much in a year that the locals are dumping their trash here?

Feeling a sense of disappointment we collected some shells (still huge and beautiful) we went back to our car to go take one more look at our sand before heading back. (maybe high tide and low tide made a difference...yea right).

Of course it was still the same rocky, churning surf, only the sun was starting to set.

So we drive the hour back to chez pierre's for dinner. Pretty quiet in the car as we each consider the change in our beach. Our friend Presley happens to be waiting when we get there.

"Presley... Our beach is gone!", we express to him couching our mild disappointment in humor.

He says, "Oh that happens all the time... don't worry mon, it will come back".


At dinner we mention this phenomenon to our waitress (which happens to be Oramae, Presley's wife)...

"Oh yea, don't worry it will come back. It is the way of the island".

Ok, now we are all starting to feel a little better. And Bryan reveals his relief, as he had been concealing how deeply disappointed he actually was. Now we start to laugh about how someone "stole our sand" (and we are talking tons of sand).

We mention this to Pierre.... same response, only in a french accent....

"Oh it will come back. I lost part of my beach a couple years ago too... it always comes back."

wow... the power of mother nature.

But then the other thing that had been bothering me... the garbage on the other beach... so I asked Oramae...

"Oh that was a ship wreck... three haitian refugee boats crashed there. All those clothes and stuff are from the wreck... I had a friend get a really pretty scarf from that."

"So the locals don't dump their garbage?", I ask.

"Oh, no. In fact we may organize a clean up day for everyone to help...maybe a saturday."

Now I am feeling better. She makes it clear that not only do they like their beaches clean, but the haitian refugees get collected and shipped out... nothing illegal going on here. In fact she jokes that they would have been aiming for Exuma or Nassau and missed. Because the authorities are strict here the haitians have this idea that people "disappear" on long island...

Oremae, laughed and said, "They think we eat them". "Don't go to Long Island because they eat Haitians",...more laugher.

By now Bryan and I are in much better moods and we continue to joke about the disappearing sand. It is clear that depending on the storms and the tides our "paradise" will have an ever changing view which isn't all bad. Oremae comments that some of the advantages to the exposed "shelf" of rock is that the small lobster (they call them crawfish) will crawl up in this shelf and you can just pick them up. Bryan perked up at this idea.

It's all good.

The next several years will be filled with new lessons of what this island is like. Building will be a real adventure and promises to have some serious ups and downs. Part of what it costs to have a dream.


a year ago

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Blair published on January 7, 2008 9:48 AM.

baby lobster was the previous entry in this blog.

breakfast at pierre's is the next entry in this blog.

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