John – crew member no 3 is leaving us:
And so John left us behind (with a squeaky clean cabin!Thanks John!) … all luggage aboard Scollie, in his formal long pants and long sleeve shirt and shoes in his hand – of to another world! It was with a tag of sadness in my smile that I have seen him leaving with the dinghy disappearing towards the dock. John was great company. I silently hoped that he has enjoyed most of his two weeks? although the crossing was probably not quite his favourite; I have to hope that the BVI, it?s laid back culture, beautiful blue waters and friendly people as well as the beautiful Bermuda would be memories to cherries for time to come. Silence bestowed us aboard Scolamanzi suddenly. We will miss him!
Bermuda: First of all – it is one of the cleanest islands we have been to! Not a paper or bottle anywhere to be seen on the streets… all gardens are extremely well manicured and all the buildings including houses are freshly painted with their lovely soft marshmallow colours and snow white roofs! I had to wonder if the local authorities give them some kick-back or incentives to keep it so fresh looking and tidy! Apparently, not – it is law to have your house and buildings repainted on a very regular basis and being a very rich island, it is not much of a problem to them! The general opinion is that Bermudans are just very proud people and that it flows through to what they own and do!
The people are warm and polite and very friendly. It is a very small limestone island – about 28km long and with only 60 inhabitants and 5 times that in tourists. It seems like there is a lot of money around – people are well kept and you can tell from the size of their houses and the cars that there is enough work and income around. St George with its narrow winding lanes and pastel 18th -19th century houses has a largely a UNESCO World Heritage site revealing the stories of many men, women and events from their English and American history over many years.
What is wonderfully in contrast with just about every other Caribbean island is that you do not see old car wrecks everywhere or old boats sitting forever and rust away in the anchorages. How they manage that is unclear – besides the 500 shipwrecks that have sunk (and provide great diving) no other skeletons are spoiling the beauty of this pristine little island with its blue waters, coral reefs and massive coastal line of white beaches and cute bays! Because the island is so small it is very heavily built up – but all with taste and without massive amount of high rises.
What will always stand out as the typical image to me of Bermuda is the specific roof structures with their pointy little chimneys (It must get very cold here in winter ? every house have one or two chimneys!) Bermuda is a very dry island and with no mountains, dams and rivers they need to catch every drop of rain where possible. The roofs are made of cement tiles that is covered with a thin layer of concrete and then painted white. The contour of the tiles is shaped to slope off into one corner of the house to drain all the water to that one point and then gets collected in a big water tank underneath or to the side of the house. It gives the island a feel of a design that is going through the whole island from St George to Hamilton! Just beautiful to see no other colour of roof but white!(very unusual!)
We have decided to certainly come back here but next time for a holiday and not a stop-over ? it has so much to offer and we just did not have the time! Cannot wait to have another go at it!
We are off to the Azores now! John has left us 3 days ago and the big trip is laying ahead of us… hopefully a good experience – but again with a lot of uncertain elements in the weather! Fingers cross we will get to the other side in one piece!
Sadly this is where we will leave the Jerk Chicken BBQ and Rum Punches behind… for Sangria, wines and a Mediterranean diet!
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