Another Day in Paradise

Tomorrow marks 2 weeks of living in Dominica aka Paradise.

We started our day by calling around different ministries looking for the right person to ask about our extension of stay, residence and work permits. It was fun, as usual playing phone tag, calling one office, being forwarded to another, then back again. Getting several versions of what should be the same information and finding out that before we can do any of these things we need ‘a return ticket’. That took us on a tangent of looking at possibilities for tickets off the island that we could easily exchange for when we actually want to travel off island, or if perhaps a weekend in Puerto Rico is in our near future. Anything to get us the ticket off island we need to show that if they don’t want us, we can get out. Meanwhile, the government website and the residence application say you can pay a deposit for the price of tickets without actually buying them. Of course the people over the phone said this  wasn’t the case and an actual ticket was required. So instead of running in circles we decided to put off buying the tickets until the evening and enjoy the daylight hours especially while it was sunny.

flower capuchin.jpg

Rich and I decided before coming to the island we wanted to try living by the PADI motto – “Go Places, Meet People, Do Things” It might seem silly or simple but we figured why not use that motto to guide some of our experiences, get us out of our comfort zones and live this life we’ve made for ourselves to the fullest.

Each day we try to go out of our way to go somewhere new, meet new people and do things … all kinds of things! Today we set off to Capuchin, the northernmost town on the island set above breathtaking cliffs. We started by driving up the coast through Toucari up into the lush hillside where we picked up a hitchhiker. This is a common thing on Dominica, if you have room in your ‘transport’ or vehicle and someone needs a ride the way you are going, its the polite thing to do. In doing so we met an nice guy named Mika, he was just getting off work at 11am. He had picked up some fruits for his father, and along our drive north he asked us to stop for a moment to drop off the little package. When we got back on the road he asked if we were going to walk the Watukubuli trail since we were headed towards the northernmost section. We talked about the abundance of fresh fruit on the island and how lucky we all feel to live in such a beautiful and fertile place! It’s truly refreshing when people don’t take their surroundings for granted, and they appreciate what mother nature offers us all. Finally we arrived at his house and he wished us a good day and fun in Capuchin.

At the ‘end of the road’ there was an opening in the thick brush. Canna Heritage park, where battles were once fought is where you can find the entrance to segment 14 of the Watukubuli trail.

While watching waves crash about a hundred feet below us we took photos and basked in the sun all while taking in the breathtaking view.

 The roads are littered with fruits, mostly mango right now, and there is plenty of land to forage from, sometimes you will even get lucky to have a friend with overflowing fruit trees who just need to get rid of them! We were able to pluck a papaya straight from the tree, perfectly ripe and ready to eat!

papaya-kayla

 So, on our way back to Toucari from Capuchin we split open the papaya we got with a dive knife, scooped out the seeds with our hands and ate the flesh without utensils! Perfect fuel for a snorkel in the ‘secret garden’ of Toucari Bay. The sky was overcast, but that didn’t stop us, rain doesn’t stop water babies like me from getting wet! I am thrilled we went for a dip. Our snorkel included some great finds, like giant table coral and a few little baby tables, a carpet of anemone on a rocky outcropping, porcupine fish, yellow tube sponge, spotted drum, squirrelfish, princess parrotfish, bluehead wrasse, foureye butterflyfish, spotted scorpionfish, trumpet fish, yellowtail snapper, spotted trunkfish and so many more including a crazy huge school of bait fish.  I tried to get as much of it on the gopro as I could and will add the video to this post as soon as it’s edited!

The rain was had been on and off since we got in the water at Toucari, so I’ve been cozied up in long pants drinking coffee (with cinnamon and coconut oil) since our late lunch. Since we finally found BASIL, LETTUCE AND KALE  at the store I fixed up some vegan pesto, chopped up tomatoes and cucumbers from the market and poured it over the greens! We devoured it so quickly there weren’t time for photos! I know I speak of the abundance of this island frequently, but there are some things like lettuce and basil specifically that can be really hard to find here so when you do find them, you find yourself even more grateful and humbled and treat them with care, not wasting any of their goodness.

And now it’s time for me to sit back, relax and unwind before bed, tomorrow is another BIG DAY!

Stay Salty

Kayla

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