27 June 2009

Photos: Deciding where to go for dinner, sunset on Grand Anse, view of sea from our villa

Grenada Day 2

This was a mostly lazy day for us. Breakfast by the pool, then dressed and into St. George’s. Parked by the Carenage so we wouldn’t have to negotiate one way streets downtown. Walked toward the market, stopped in Tikal to do a little shopping for Emmie. At the market it’s a maze of people and I want to buy a little bit from everybody. But I don’t want to buy spices or spice necklaces. We want lime, mangoes, cucumbers. We end up with two packages of nutmeg, too, because I cannot say no to Therese. So only four sellers are appeased—I feel tremendously guilty. There’s a cruise ship in town but I don’t see many people who look like cruisers in the marketplace.

On the walk back to the car a man falls in step with my husband. His name is Herman and he claims he’s the go-to guy of St. George’s. Maybe he is. He offers us a taxi. We say no, thanks, because we have our own car. He offers to drive with us up north to Sauteurs to show us around. We say no, thanks, we prefer to make our own way—it’s part of the fun to stop and talk to folks along the way and ask directions. As we pass the statue on the carenage commemorating the Bianca C, he then asks us if we know what it is. I say, yes, sir. It’s a statue of thanks to the people of Grenada for rescuing the people aboard a boat that eventually sank. Undaunted, he keeps pace with us as we continue to our car. As we reach it, he asks for a little money—enough to buy himself a cold drink. It’s a small enough request and we’re happy enough to acquiesce. But it’s the first time I’ve felt uncomfortable about a transaction in our travels to Grenada and I think the reasons are a little complicated. Do we look like an easy mark, that a guy can ask us for money just because he walked along with us and was friendly? Or are times really that hard, that a guy is desperate enough to just ask for money when all of his other offers to earn money from us are rebuffed? Am I reading the situation completely incorrectly? Are there rules of etiquette at play that I’m completely ignorant of? In joining Herman in conversation, did we unknowingly enter into some social contract? It seems to me that it would be unspeakably rude to rebuff his approach, but perhaps to Herman it was unspeakably rude of us not to tip him after our walk together. I really have no idea. With a distinct feeling of ambivalence we made our way to the grocery store and from there back to the villa for lunch.

Reading, swimming, and relaxing. It’s amazing how tired an afternoon of this can make me feel. We had cocktails and cheese & crackers around 5:00 and made plans to go to the Beach House for dinner at 7:00. After two previous meals out where we were one of only two tables filled it was a relief to arrive at the Beach House to see a few other parties already seated. By the time we left it looked like they had a pretty full house. The ambience was light & breezy with jalousied windows and white curtains billowing in the soft night air. Still no lambi on the menu, much to my husband’s disappointment. I tell him that we may have to wait until we’re at Boots’ place to get any.

Anyway, dinner was very pleasant. We began with a Caesar salad (DH) and mixed greens & herb salad (me). Barry had the escargots, prepared with garlic, Pernod, mushrooms, and spinach. I had the Thai Teepee – three skewers with beef in a slightly spicy peanut sauce. Both very good. We then shared the rum cake a la mode. A rum punch, two martinis, a cappuccino, and a shot of Old Grog brought the meal to EC $210, including tax and tip.

In other news, Anthon tried to figure out our problem connecting to the internet. The air port is giving off a strong signal and I’ve tried every configuration that I know (admittedly it’s not much) but nothing is working. Now the phone in our room has gone dead. Minor frustrations.

I did finish off the Coetzee book and start & finish two others: How Elizabeth Barrett Browning Saved My Life by Mameve Medwed and Jane Eyre’s Daughter by Elizabeth Newark.


  1. Really entertaining work here Emily! Considering the twin poles of your existence I hope uou picked up the new book Novel Destinations and have taken in Ann Fadiman's great essay in Ex-Libris "You Are There".

  2. Hi, Kenny. I haven't read either book, but I clearly will have to change that state of affairs, pronto!


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