St Vincent Week 2

Having somehow managed to make some friends, we headed off to have some fun together. The Doyle guide told us that Montreal Gardens would be a highlight of the island, and we were not disappointed. Its creator had planted tons of flowers all around a meandering series of paths, and allowed it to grow dense and wild. Our local guides, however, were nonplussed: “it’s just a bunch of jungle”.

Having thoroughly wasted a morning, in their opinion, we headed off to one of their favorite food trucks, and had an tasty local lunch sitting in the otherwise abandoned club space next door.

The next morning we got up to find a rainbow on the horizon…

.. and went scuba diving. One of the gents who came with us was kind enough to take and send us these pictures. I wish our camera were up for the task, but we were too deep, so you’ll have to take my word that this was some of the healthiest coral I’ve seen on our trip so far, teeming with all kinds of fish, eels, and rock shrimp. Although I also saw several of the biggest lionfish I’d seen, so that’s not ideal. Death to lionfish.

Later in the afternoon, we took the cat for a walk up to the fort on the nearby hill. All three of us really enjoyed the hike, and we ended up repeating the experience just about every morning for the rest of our stay. These photos are jumbled from the various trips up and down. Captain loves going up the steps, but doesn’t much care for down, so he gets carried in the backpack.

We made plans to go out with Kimmy and her sisters the next night, but things came up, and we ended up going out alone. The bar scene is a little desolate, though we did see a group of young girls driving by in what appeared to be the pickup truck equivalent of a party bus.

The next day, after another trip up to the fort, Kimmy and her sisters came out to the boat, and they barbecued and we all got in the water, despite the fact that two of them can’t swim. Such bravery!

It was getting on towards time for us to move on, so Kimmy and her sister took us on one last big adventure. Possibly to prove that St Vincent had cooler places than Montreal Gardens. We headed up the east coast towards Georgetown, stopping to pick up the first of many beers and some driving snacks. First stop: Black Point Tunnel, which used to connect a sugar plantation to a major port. As far as I can tell, both are gone now, but the park is pretty.

The next destination was a swimming hole that the ladies had heard of but never visited. To get there, we first had to pass through Georgetown; we thought the architecture was pretty interesting.

There were some other cool sights from the window along the way, like this old aqueduct, some neatly sorted piles of different-sized rocks, and some coconut palms that missed the memo about staying short for harvest.

Finding the spring was a bit of an adventure, and when we got there, we were all a little nonplussed. It’s clear that people swim there often, and we didn’t feel super compelled to join them.

So we took a turn in a different direction, to find a creek that the ladies had been to a long time ago. We drove through a mountain town, and were amused by the chickens on a number of fences. And the old stone church, and the giant rock growing out of somebody’s front yard.

The river was nice, and Kimmy surprised us with a packed lunch, a local variation of pilaf that was delicious. The rocks were a little hard to sit on, and Jazz caught me lying on my side looking like a mermaid; this observation had predictable consequences, which are your reward for scrolling this far through a super long post.

On the way back out, we stopped at Kimmy’s house and discovered that her cat had had kittens.

For our final act of the evening, we cleaned ourselves up a little and went out to Karaoke. (Remember, gentle American reader, at the time of this event there were zero cases of COVID here!) The Tree Bar & Grill is part outdoor space, part tree house, and we had a great time enjoying the freedom to congregate freely with other people.

We’d meant to leave in the morning, and we did eventually sail to Bequia. But not before we managed to spend at least a few minutes snorkeling the wall we’d been moored next to for the last two weeks. It’s not quite at the level of the scuba diving, but it was still a pretty magical fishscape.