Saturday, June 18, 2011

Vacation Journal, part 7- St. Lucia

Ok- Long hiatus from blogging. Mainly cuz I've just been too lazy to write, then once I wrote I was too lazy to upload the pictures.  Pair that with this crazy week of hurting my back, not being able to move around or walk and then later in the week Kaydin throwing up multiple times on Wednesday and Friday, well blogging has taken the back burner.  I'm glad to say my movement is almost back to 100% and Kaydin seems to be past her throwing up and back to her normal energetic self.  Now back to finishing our travel reviews....

Today (May 5) we had a tour with James Touring Service.  James was a great guide and we saw LOTS of the island.  Today we ran into lots of rain and it was cloudy and overcast most of the day.  We started out seeing downtown Canaries and the largest tree on the island.  We also saw many calabash trees, their state tree or country tree, whatever you would call it..  The fruit is huge but not eaten, only hollowed out and dried and used for bowl-type uses.  We also saw the governor’s house- beautiful.  And she’s a woman! Woop!!  We drove through the windy roads and went from one end of the island to the other.  We went up some pretty steep and winy roads- thank goodness Tim and I do not get motion sickness. 

The Governor's Mansion

A cashew

Banana plantation

We saw many banana plantations throughout the day and stopped at one.  People were selling bananas there.  James bought some for the group to try.  They were really sweet! Better than the ones we have here.  They also were selling banana ketchup and banana BBQ sauce in a stand along side the road. This was one the things I read about.  Kaydin and Tim use ketchup or ranch on almost EVERYthing so wanted to bring some back home.  Surprisingly, they have not opened the bottles yet!  We sampled the ketchup and it was very good, didn’t try the BBQ sauce but I’m sure that is very good, too.
During the drive James stopped (well his driver did) and jumped out to pick a cashew nut. I had no idea it grew like this.  No wonder they can be so expensive.  Only one nut is inside this and he said it was a lot of work to grow and harvest the nuts.  He bit into one and it gushed juice. Later in the day he picked a cocoa fruit.  Inside were the individual cocoa beans.  We tried it and it was juicy and tart, but REALLY slimy and gross feeling.

We saw the small fishing village of Anse La Raye.  Here they have a Friday Night Fish Fry and party into the night, EVERY Friday.  That would be fun to attend.  IT seemed that a good deal of the island was pretty poor but we saw some massive houses also that were very cool!!  And going for a cheap price, too!  St. Lucia is where the Piton (Pee-tawn) Mountains are.  Very pretty! St. Lucia had some great views. Would have been even better in the sunshine.

Along the road was a man with a python.  We stopped to see the snake and were able to take pictures. In my head the whole time I KNEW I would NOT touch that thing.  Well somehow this happened---


We were able to pick the places we wanted to see with James. I did want to see the bubbling volcano of sulphur but he said it would be an additional $8 entry fee and that you don’t get to see too much and suggested going to the botanical gardens and Diamond Falls.  Here it was still an additional $5 fee for entry but as a group we decided on that.  The waterfall was really cool and all the plants and flowers here were really cool.  Tim lagged behind the group and tour guide and took lots of great pictures.  I never knew he liked flowers so much!!  ;) Actually I think it is mainly the picture taking that he really enjoyed.  But he said this was his favorite place of the day.  The waterfall is fresh spring water and we saw the area where it starts.

After this stop we traveled further south so hit a beach. The one that he normally stopped at was getting rain and thought if we traveled further down we would find some sunshine, and we did.  It was cool being able to see so much of the island but Tim thought it was too much time in the car- he was right but still a good tour and saw many things!