Long Island road trip part 2
Phil & Nikki Hoskins
Thu 16 Feb 2017 21:14
The following day we set off again heading south this time. Same crowd of six + a very well behaved doggie. It was warmer and brighter. Our four friends had spent much time and effort the previous season helping the Long Island community to recover from the effects of Hurricane Joaquin in 2015. It caused havoc when the storm stalled and lingered for many hours making matters a whole lot worse for many of the residents. There was a storm surge of sixteen feet – difficult to believe. Boats that started out floating on the normally protected water of the banks were washed inland ending up in trees and bushes further up the slopes. Rooves were blown away, cars destroyed and services cut off. The glass fibre swimming pool at the now defunct Long Island Breeze resort was uprooted when the empty water storage tanks located beneath the pool became buoyant in the rising waters forcing the pool out of the wooden dock where the 200 mph winds lifted it into the air and blew it some 150 yards into the fuel storage area at Long Island Petroleum.
With limited resources available from central government the locals relied on donations and skills from outside to get back to some sort of normality. We were sharing our outing with cruising saints who think nothing of giving up their time to help less fortunate souls in a country situated just miles from the vast wealth of the USA.
First stop of the day was for a beer at Bling Bling............. ..................They encourage folk like us to drop by
The museum is still closed from the hurricane as the place is not suitable for people to be in due to dampness. We found the curator was sitting outside when we stopped by.
Next stop was Dean’s Blue Hole at Turtle Cove Sound. Dean’s is world famous especially if you are a free diver, that most dangerous of all watersports. It’s a place of tragedy and great beauty combined as lives have been lost here over the years. Until recently it was the deepest blue hole known in the world with a depth of 663 ft. Hard to imagine that area of deep blue where the white raft floats so close to shore can be such a depth. Free divers come from all over the world to experience this place. The poignant plague on the bluff is dedicated to three almost simultaneous deaths when a young local girl got into difficulties whilst wading in the sand and slipped into the deeper water. Her two older companions went in to help and all were drowned. Apparently none of them could swim.
It’s a stunningly beautiful place
Next stop was Clarence Town and the Flying Fish Marina on the waterfront. Clarence Town is on the ocean side of Long Island and is not frequently visited by yachties except in very settled weather.
Flying Fish Marina
Then on to Rowdy Boys Restaurant for a very pleasant lunch overlooking the ocean.
Clarence Town has some interesting churches perched on hill tops. We visited the most distinctive St Paul’s Catholic Church built by Father Jerome who also built the Hermitage on Cat Island we visited some years ago.
The church was locked but the ‘Admiral’ found the keyhole large enough to take a snapshot of the inside.
Some nice views from the top of the steps across Clarence Town. If all churches could have such views!
So we came to the end of our road trip. The car was due back and after a quick stop at a liquor store, a gift shop, several hardware stores, a few groceries stores and the garage it was back to the boat at Thompson Bay. Having visited the island in previous years it was wonderful to have the opportunity to explore inland – thanks guys!