There is a beautiful lighthouse at Matthew Town and we were able to take a self-guided tour simply by walking inside and signing the guestbook. Our friend, George, shared with us that up until last year this lighthouse still ran on kerosene and was maintained by a keeper; now it is electric. George was a bit saddened by this because kerosene lighthouses are few and far between these days. Still, it is a beautiful sight by night and day and we were excited to check it out.
These stairs gave us cruisers quite a workout! Hi, Matt & Jess…we’re catching our breath but I’m sure we’ll make it up to you soon!
Pause to examine how these tanks may have operated for the kerosene lamp.
One more steep climb…
Don’t look down!
View of the salt ponds.
On our walk to/from the lighthouse we spotted some wildlife. This little hawk posed for a photo shoot.
The roosters weren’t quite as patient, but we still captured a glimpse of this guy.
This wild donkey isn’t so wild anymore…I think someone is holding onto him for supper! Poor donkey, I feel a rescue mission coming on!
We arrived at Great Inagua, Bahamas late morning and anchored just north of Matthew Town. We’d been forewarned that this anchorage was rolly – boy was it! But visiting Inagua was well worth the rockin’ and rollin’ because the people we met really made us feel at home. Brian and I took a walk through Matthew Town to get our bearings after a mid-day brunch on the boat. Every person we encountered was friendly, talkative, helpful, and just as curious about us as we were about them. This was not a touristy town and we were thrilled to get to know Bahamians. We paused for several sidewalk chats, during one of which we were directed down the street to sample some delicious lemonade. We spent the rest of our afternoon with three sisters; Bo, Debbie, and Shea and their cousin Kayla. The family’s roots lie at Inagua but the sisters now live in the US and visit Inagua annually. The sisters have a lemonade and grill stand open in the afternoons for take-out orders. This is sort of a start-up business in preparation for a restaurant that Shea is building. We had a lovely afternoon in the lemonade stand getting to know the gals and meeting some of their extended family and neighbors. We also used the shelter of their tent to hide out from a series of rain storms. We felt very welcomed! Bo invited us to celebrate her birthday the following afternoon…and that is just what we did.
Brian made a home made birthday cake for Bo and the next afternoon we revisited the lemonade stand. As the day progressed more and more family, friends, and neighbors joined the fun. We met Bernie, and the sisters’ parents, and their cousins Jeff, Darcy, and Stafford. We hailed Serendipity on the handheld VHF and invited Matt and Jess to join the party. We ate, drank, sang, danced, and were thoroughly entertained listening to stories about life at Inagua. Shea took us for at tour of her restaurant site. It’s going to be beautiful!
Brian and I could have spent days, or even weeks with this amazing family. But we were still on the move and had a great weather window to sail to Jamaica. So, unfortunately without saying goodbyes, we got underway. I do hope to be in touch with the gals and I certainly plan to revisit Inagua and enjoy a meal in Shea’s restaurant.