June 2008

Part of living in the Caribbean is traveling.  Since we are on a small island, that means jumping on a plane and going to the USA or elsewhere.  Sometimes its for business, sometimes for pleasure.  I know many people that simply jump on a plane each long week-end and go to Miami, Atlanta or NY for shopping. Anything to get off “the rock” as many expats call Cayman.   Thankfully Cayman is only a 1h flight from Miami ; almost like in my days of Montreal-Toronto trips.

On a recent trip to Miami, I had the opportunity to go up to the heliport where the final scene of the season (2007 season) in CSI:Miami was shot.  Here is the picture of Horatio Caine on top of that building for fans of the show.

And here I am on that same spot:

The 360 degree view of the whole Miami area & the ocean was amazing!  Its quite rare to be able to have such an unobstructed view so high up.  It was also very windy up there (notice my tie) and probably a great place to get a nasty sunburn in a hurry.

After the Miami trip, I headed off to London.  Upon landing at Heathrow, I got to see the plane I had been hoping to spot : The new Airbus A380.  Notice that it is right next to an A340 which is definitely not a small aircraft.  The A380 is noticeably larger with its double deck.

On to London and the ever popular Tower Bridge and the HMS Belfast in the front.   On the day I had in London (I was there on training) it was windy & cold.  Thank goodness I put a thick sweater in my luggage before leaving Cayman!

Ever since I saw the movie “a good year” with Russel Crowe a few months ago, I had been looking forward to seeing this landmark; The Gherkin as the locals call it. (which is a type of pickle) It is virtually all glass and is very spectacular to see.

Finally, the trip home.  A 9h flight via Miami. Here is lovely picture I took of the massive wing on this British Airways Boeing 747. I must admit that the service and overall trip on BA was very pleasant.

Rainy season is now with us and so is hurricane season which started on June 1st. We sure hope that no hurricane will come our way, but thats all we can do, hope!  We get automated email alerts of possible storms and any potential storm gossip quickly spreads to everyone.  Our main reference for hurricane alerts is the national hurricane center in Miami. http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/

Now with rainy season, an annual phenomenon is back : the crabs.  There is a breed of “land crabs” that inhabit the island and that are not seen for most of the year. They live in burrow’s just like rabbits and only come out once there is heavy rain.  They come out since their underground homes are flooded and they cannot breath underwater like their sea cousins (or so were were told by a local group of kids)

In our neighborhood, there are lots of them.  When we go for a walk with Aipa (and often with Niko in tow), we have to watch our step since they come out after dark and cross the street.  Stepping on one and potentially getting our feet snapped is not a good idea.  They have large claws and can potentially cut off a finger (or toe for that matter). The crabs are eaten by many Caymanians.  On one occasion, we saw a car driving around slowly and when a crab was spotted, a person would jump out of the car, grab the crab and jump back into the car.  On another occasion (just last night ; I wish I had my camera), a group of 8-10 kids were walking around our neighborhood with sticks, a bucket and flashlights and were obviously having a great time looking for crabs.  They showed us their bucket; they had caught 6-7 of them. Julie & I have decided not to catch/eat any of these since they have a reputation of being “bottom feeders” and eating pretty much anything they will find, which includes garbage and anything you can imagine.  Some people say they are great to eat ; we will take their word for it.

There was even an article in the local paper about “crabbing safety”, just to show you how popular an even this is.


We even had a hermit crab on our back porch.  These guys are definitely not dangerous though.

Here is Niko chasing a crab and the crab is showing him his claws.  We did not allow Aipa to get anywhere near that crab.  🙂

Now in a concrete driveway.

Here is one resting in the grass.  Quite a large specimen.