Monthly Archives: October 2011

Returning to island life 2011

Island life…….it’s all good but not easy….our friend Mark Cave says “If it was easy everybody would be here!”
Leaving the states wasn’t easy…we flew out of Ft. Lauderdale on Bahamas Air. A few of you may not understand, but there are many sayings that give an understanding about Bahamas Air.
“Bahamas Air is a Christian airlines….only God know when it’s leaving and only God knows when it will arrive”!! Another is “ if you don’t care, fly Bahamas Air”!

John and I finally got to the check in line with way too much luggage and all the computers went down for over 45 minutes. They assured us no one would miss the flight and that only meant everyone would be late getting into Nassau. Our flight to Long Island was to leave Nassau at 1:30. We didn’t arrive til 12:30. But that became a blessing as we were carted on a golf cart across the tarmac to immigration to the head of the long lines and flew thru customs. Because we had come in on Bahamas Air and were leaving on Bahamas Air they were holding the plane for us, which was wonderful for us but not the others who were now ½ hour late!

50 minutes later we were “home” on our beloved Long Island with our “bestest Bahamian buddies”- Gloria and Gregory waiting to pick us up. Driving down Queens Highway we began to see some of the destruction of hurricane Irene. Roofs covered with blue tarps, palm trees uprooted, flooded yards and parts of the main (well only road!) washed out. Arriving at our house we were relieved to see no damage except for our driveway having a bit of ruts because we built on a big slanted hill. Weeds were abundant although a friend Gerry had gotten most of the yard weeded for us, there was still lots of work to be done. But first we had to begin the task of taking everything out of the house we had stored for the summer-deck furniture, tables and chairs, grill…just to get into the house. Thankfully Gregory and Gerry had taken the hurricane shutters off for us! Because we have no electricity –long story for another time- we knew we only had a few hours of daylight to work. So we did what we absolutely had to do and then sat on our deck to enjoy our view and the sunset….the first of many!

We slept like content babies after falling into bed right at dark-barely 7:30!! Daylight brought a whole new list of things to be done and sweating was on the top of the list! HOT, HUMID and NO BREEZE! John and I have never been on island this early in Oct. and it felt a lot like Florida we had just left and August in Ohio! AND MISQUITOES……hungry little devils they are!

I unpacked our 5 large and 3 small suitcases trying to put things away and find other things. We only lived in the house last April for 3 weeks so neither of us could remember what was where! John worked on getting the generator hooked up so we could have power later….we NEEDED fans to sleep but that wouldn’t happen for a few days when he and Mark got our solar up and running! Gloria had us over Saturday morning for souse-a Bahamian soup that fills you wonderfully. After our breakfast together we left our friends to drop things off at our “cottage” we had rented for 2 years before building. That’s where our van decided it needed a break and sat for 3 days before being towed to our local repair guy where it is still setting. This guy is good but very, very busy so he is “getting to us”. The good news is our 89 Ford p/u truck runs beautiful-well after John fixed the 3 leaks in the radiator! We had to be careful not to drive in the rain because the hurricane blew out the driver’s side window and John hadn’t had time to put it in yet!

RAIN?? Oh we have had it come in droves everyday!!! It was a welcome difference in weather for us. Usually we reach the island in time for hard east winter winds and barely any rain, so we were enjoying the refreshment. However, it did have a down side….the mosquitoes were worse after every rain, our driveway was rutted more with each downpour and it got more humid with the wind dropping right off! The good news was that our cistern stays at overflowing no matter how much water we use!

John has been busy besides fixings vehicles getting things set up so we could “live”. We literally spent so much time trying to find things we were dancing circles, so we needed to get a place for everything and my John is very good at that. However, that meant moving something before we could use it, sometimes 2 and 3 times. Most of his tools or needed items are down the driveway in his “Homeboy Depot” as our 53 ft storage trailer is known as! So he gets his exercise many times over during the day! Getting the solar here and installed was a huge stress for him mostly because he really didn’t know how any of it goes in. We are very thankful for our great friend Mark Cave, as I said! We ordered 6 solar panels from Kansas solar way back in early Aug. 4 of the 6 arrived fine but 2 were smashed although they tested ok so they did put them up and so far so good. John has gotten so many projects up and running but I am so proud of him that he has slowed down and is living the “island life”-willing to let projects rest while we head to a beach! Most of you know John, know this is huge….HUGE!!!