July 2007


In the last few weeks, we have been seeing more and more snakes around the house and in our area.  Probably mating season or something.  Good news : we are told that there are no venemous snakes in Grand Cayman :-)  I finally got one on camera right outside our front door.  It is quite thin, was a good 20-24 inches long. 

 Here is the picture of the beast!

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As a note if you leave comments on the blog.  Recently, I had been getting lots of “spam comments”.  As a deterrant, when you add a comment, you now have to answer a simple mathematic question such as 5+2.  All you need to do is enter 7 (or whatever the answer is) in the answer box.  Easy enough.

While driving around a while ago, I had noticed a small public beach & cabana sort of area.  It looked really nice, so we decided to go there this morning before it got too hot.  Between 11am and 5pm, it gets VERY hot now outside.  I even washed the car this morning and did some garden maintenance from 8-9am before it got too hot. We got back from our drive around 11:30 am and the outside temperature (according to the gauge in the car) said it was 34 degrees.

The place we went to is Frank Sound.  If you look at a map of Cayman, its on the  southern part (bottom) at about 2/3 of the way east (right), just near where there is a road which crosses the entire island North/South.  It was a great place to read and just take it easy.  Aipa had other ideas and explored the entire area and even went into the water on her own initiative to look around.  

Before the pictures below, on friday evening, Julie & I went with about 50 other people from work to visit Caybrew.  Caybrew is the Cayman Islands new local beer.  The previous beer, Stingray, was destroyed during Hurricane Ivan and had a reputation for a terrible taste anyway. This new one is, in my opinion, very good.  A bit like a Heineken. The visit was really interesting and we got to see all the machines for making the actual beer all the way to the bottling. Anyone who comes to visit us, the company gives tours upon request, so we will for sure take any guests of ours who would like to visit it.  Michel?  Denis? Genevieve?  Here is a very nice article about the new beer which was launched in March of 2007.

http://www.cayjournal.com/logic/story_detail.php?storyid=195

 Below are pictures of the beach at Frank Sound. The hut where we read and just relaxed.

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The view from the water front.

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Here Aipa explores the ocean.  She spent quite a bit of time looking around and hunting down small crabs.

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A nice picture of Julie with Aipa :)

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I flew back to Cayman from Miami tuesday evening.  Upon arrival in at the Cayman airport, the plane was taxiing to the terminal.  All was normal up till here.  The our plane turned to park along side a British Airways plane.   I noticed our plane (American Air.) was quite close to the larger Brisith plane.  I was looking out the window when I saw our wing clip the end of the British 767′s wing shattering a light and giving off a “thud”.  When we got off the plane, the pilots were in a huddle and discussing what to do. The incident made first page of thrusdays local paper.

Here is the article on the web site of the local paper.

http://www.caycompass.com/cgi-bin/CFPnews.cgi?ID=1023658

 

 

Summer is here, thats for sure!

Below are pictures of the outside thermometer we installed.  The first picture was when it was in the direct sunlight around 11am and the second one was when it was out of the sun about 1h later.  As you can see, it was 44 degrees in the direct sunlight and 35 degrees in the shade; now thats hot!

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Some of you who have been reading this blog may remember that when we got our house, the water heater was not working.  We had mentionned that it was not a huge issue since the regular tap water was chilly, but could still take a quick shower.  Currently we keep the water heater off at all times.  The water is now constantly lukewarm and more than warm enough to take a shower.  Not something we could do in Canada!

Anyone want to come and visit us?  You probably want to wait till it gets a bit cooler.

After almost exactly 3 months since we purchased it via an online auction in Japan, our CRV is finally here.  I must admit though, it was worth the wait.  The car is in fantastic shape and works beautifully.  The windows are heavily tinted ; great to keep out the sun. Also, the outside has no dings/dents, only a few very small scratches, quite normal for a 2002 I would think.  Inside, all is perfect.  As an added bonus, the car is equipped with the very bright Xenon headlamps (for those not familiar, these are the very bright white/blue-ish headlights most luxury cars have) which are usually a 1000$ option, so I am quite pleased since the purchase sheet did not mention that this CRV had them. :-)

On tuesday, it took Julie & I pretty much all day to get the car thru Cayman’s “administrative process”.  Here goes :

  1.  9:35am.  Get insurance coverage for the car. Prices are quite similar to Canada.
  2. 10:30am. Go to the bank to get cash.  Most government agencies only accept cash or cheque. I had to wait in line; I am not used to going to the bank anymore.
  3. 11:00. Go to customs to pay the 27.5% duty and 250$ environmental charge
  4. Around 11:30. Pickup Julie in Savannah  (still with the Mazda) and then go to KPMG to park the Mazda.  We then got a lift from a Co-worker for step 5.
  5. Around 12:30. Get dropped off at the Port Authority and pay a small port fee (20$)  Customs then drove our car to us and inspected it to make sure we are not smuggling in anything we are not supposed to.  The battery was dead (we expected this).  We had it boosted and all was fine after driving around and letting the car idle.
  6. Around 2pm. Over to the licencing department.   With the car, we lined up for about 15 minutes.  An inspector then just checked if all the turn lights & headlights worked and a few other things are in good working order; all was fine.  Then we had to go inside, show the inspection report and pay 250$ for the exam and the annual licence fee.  We were also given the licence plates and a sticker to put in the windshield.  
  7. Aound 3pm. Go home.  We are dead tired!  We had supper and of course I had to wash the car and give it two coats of wax. After 3 months at a japanese port & on a boat, it was quite filthy.

Here are some pictures of the day and of our new car. 

This is the Port Authority location in the industrial park in Georgetown.  Our car was stored here.

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Before it was cleared from customs, it was behind these barbed fences.  Its the 3rd one from the left.

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After going from Kobe, Japan - Kingston, Jamaica – Cayman, these are all the markings on the windshield.  We needed rasor blades to get all of this off.

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First picture at home after wash & wax.

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Notice the small rearview mirror on the hood. We are not 100% sure, but think its to see the sidewalk for parking in order not to scrape the wheels.

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From Honda de Brossard to Honda Nagasaki.  I would have never though we would get a car from that dealership! :)

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Notice the small Quebec flag we put on the rear.

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