April 2011

Here in Grand Cayman we are having a very warm springtime. That does not help for water temperatures which ultimately impact hurricanes. We have been lucky in the last two years, no storms whatsoever (in the whole Caribbean); lets hope that continues. However, if this very warm April is an indication, storms may come rolling in sometime later this year.

It it spring time and this tree next to my office is in full bloom.  Funny thing I never noticed it before. I think that bright yellow only lasts a few days since you can see there is already a lot of it on the street.  Anyone know what this is called? Its spectacular!

So after work the other day, or maybe I should say, sometime in the afternoon during a workday, our group at the office had a very important meeting and made some critical decisions!  This meeting was held at Starfish point.  That’s not far from Run Point.  Is that not the coolest office meeting you have ever seen?  Boats, sun, sand and a few cold ones on a Thursday afternoon.  Love it!

So everything is perfect in Cayman right?  Well, not quite! 🙂  The price of gas has gone up globally and we are no exception.  Since its a small island and shipping costs are obviously going to impact the cost of anything that comes here, we are currently paying 5.51CI for 1 imperial gallon.  With some savvy math, that comes to 5.60$US per US gallon and 1.42$CAD per liter.  Ha … gas is virtually same price here than in Canada.

Now, I have wanted to do this for a while now.  Its actually quite trivial, but hear me out.   Those of you who are fans of the Tom Hanks movie Cast Away (I loooove that movie ; Julie cant stand it.   Willlllsonnnn!) will totally understand.  I have never tried to open up a coconut from its “natural” state.   So here I go.  The tool: a machete.  Hanks used some ice skates in the movie. I am not doing that.  haha

The tree. Plenty of them to chose from.

Here I cut down the biggest one I could find.  I used the machete to whack it down. I am pretty much standing on the tips of my toes so so made it fast.

Its now down, so I start hacking away.  Not as easy as it would seem … actually in the movie it seemed tough so no surprise I guess. The “skin” is incredibly thick.  Quite a protection nature have given this fruit.  Is it a fruit? At one point I clued in that I need to chop at a +-45 degree angle and not straight down.  Below you can see the messy job I did, but finally got to the actual prize I was looking for.

Nice and sweet coconut juice.  Very refreshing and fun considering I had to work for it.

Then opened it up. Mission accomplished.

Final thoughts on this Easter week-end. The Caymanians are out in droves camping on all the beaches on the island. I am still not sure where this tradition comes from even though I see this every year.  One thing is for sure, its very popular and there are many people on the beach this week-end.  Places with lots of shade are the most popular. I can assure you that we have no intention of trying this, especially that at this time of year there are often lots of mosquitoes come dusk.    In any case, its not “real” camping! 🙂  People rent a porto-potties, have a gas generator, TV’s, etc.  Its more like taking home to the beach. Here is the scene at Smith Cove this morning.





I recently had the privilege of going to Ireland for a quick business trip. I was not to sure what to expect since Ireland was never on my radar screen for potential work and/or visit.

I must admit I really liked my visit.  I had some time for some sightseeing around town and also a quick trip in the countryside.

First stop, the most important place in town (or so I was told) The Guinness Brewery.  Very interesting.  The founder (Mr. Guinness …) sure had a good feeling that the business would be successful.  In fact, he signed a 9000 year (yes years) lease for the brewery @ £45 per year. (+-75$US as of writing) Impressive and the current operators of the brewery must be laughing to the bank every time they show a profit at the end of the year.

Here I am testing the product at the Gravity bar at the top of the Guinness Brewery.  The bar gives a 360 view of the city. One thing you notice right away is that there are very few high buildings.  In fact, the bar where I was seemed to be the highest point.

Now off to the countryside. Getting there was half the fun.  Rental cars in Europe are generally with manual transmissions.   In Ireland, the wheel is on the right, so … the stick is on the left.  That took some time to get used to.

When driving around, I found Dublin’s surrounding areas to be very pretty. The pastures (or whatever …) are of a crazy green.  The pictures does not do justice to the color I saw.  I also saw countless sheep in the fields that day.  Seems to be pretty big business.

Another lovely sight on my trip.  Isn’t this is just the kind of stream where you wish you had a fishing rod and some worms?

The final picture could really be somewhere in the Caribbean.   The water is not as blue, but the scenery reminded me of some of the places I have visited, especially the British Virgin Islands.  I found the coastline to be very pretty.

Now back to Cayman … next post very soon!

A new restaurant just opened in Cayman

Its specialty is to serve local Iguana’s and bush chickens.  There is a overpopulation of both, so this is a brilliant idea.

In any case, we tried this place the other day, and all I can say is BBQ’s iguana is amazing.  Its a hybrid of pork and chicken.  The fritters were also great.

There is an article about this place in today’s Caymanian Compass.  Here is an excerpt :

“A new restaurant on Seven Mile Beach will feature green iguana on the menu at its signature dish.
The restaurant, called Iguana Have Some Fun, will also offer Cayman chickens, agouti and “other potential road kill”.
Restaurant owner Newt Lizzi said he got the idea when he heard a Mexican radio ad for 
barbecued iguana.
“I went to the restaurant and gave it a try and it was quite tasty,” he said. “I figured with all the green iguanas running around on Grand Cayman these days, why not? I might be on a wavelength far from home, but I think I can make this work.” Lizzi said the restaurant would prepare iguana several ways, including barbecued, it’s 
signature dish.”


Full article


Hope you visit it when you come to Cayman. I certainly plan to go again for lunch next April fools day! 🙂