Jan 11, 2007

So, we're going to study eventually, right?


STILL loving this place. Today exemplified the dry season by being overcast and raining off and on all day. Wahoo!

I was initially planning on doing the tour of the capital, but my parents were late from the hotel due to the misadventures of one taxi driver.

They were at the Rex waiting for the Number 1 bus to take them to the junction where they could catch the SGU bus for the first week (they're not as strict about IDs). A taxi came up and was persistant about driving them to SGU "all the way" for only ten bucks (EC), so they caved to pressure, hopped in the van, and got a pretty cheap tour of the island, which involved winding through the back roads, picking up school children, driving through St. George's proper, and so forth. After thinking this was less and less cute over the course of 45 minutes, my dad tapped the guy on the shoulder and said "SGU???" D'oh! They forgot! So they wind around, my parents see an SGU bus, tell the guy to pull over, but he doesn't, he has to go forward up a half mile to drop another guy off, so they end up walking, in the pouring rain, all the way to campus, and boy were they mad! Whew! But we made the walking tour of campus, which was cool enough, though orated in a VERY soft voice.

Learned where Sugar Shack is!

At the end of the tour, I ran into a couple that I saw on the bus to the tarmac in Puerto Rico, and they gave me the heads up about book distribution! Wahoo! So with parents in tow as again, pack mules, I headed over to, apparently, the back of a warehouse, so they could back up a truck load of books and dump them on me. I have to learn all this by May?!?! Aiiieeee!!!!!

Afternoon brought a nature hike... er... tour of Ammandale Falls and the Grand Etang rainforest. The bus ride took us on an impromptu tour of the island that included an impressively large, Candlestick Park sized cricket stadium. The island is jungley almost all the way through but as you get toward the top (in the middle of the island), the roads get more precarious (turn off the air conditioning; we're going uphill!), and the settlements thin out, though not sufficiently to keep people from alternating between laughing at us, staring at us, and waving at us. Heh heh.

You also saw things like this and got to play the "old ruins or hurricane ivan?" game:

Ammandale Falls was great:

The falls go into a nice lake that two guys (who were not bad in the muscled chest department wink wink) dove into. Ah, for a swimsuit... or to not be holding my camera. There's a trail that leads away from the falls that is lined with nutmeg, and oh the smell is wonderful!!!! That led through vegetation, flowers, callaloo (which, as I discovered through dinner at Banana's, makes a wonderful soup) and such.

At the falls, there were a group of locals there that were a bunch of fun, so I took a picture of them, and then cropped out one gentleman who absolutely was NOT doing anything illegal at all. Nope. Nothing. Nice foliage they have in Grenada though. Very green.

Then it was off to Grand Etang lake, where I was in desperate and fruitless search of mona monkeys. Curse you, elusive mona monkeys! I did find, by way of the SGU tour guides, a brand of ginger beer called "Cool" that tastes like gingered heaven... but I'm back on food (and drink) again!

That area of the rainforest is higher elevation, cool temperature, and extremely misty. Being an original Bay Areaite, that made it feel like home:

And dinner at Banana's, where I had my first Carib!! Mmm... tastes.. well, a bit like Corona. I'm still trying to adapt to liking beer and I'm on my way.

Tomorrow is the orientation cruise. Why do I think when class actually starts, it's going to hit my vacation-addled brain like a stack of bricks; or textbooks, which seem to be, if mine are any indication, denser than bricks?


Saora1 said...

Yay, another update. I actually checked several times today to see if you'd written more to entertain me. *grin* Keep 'em coming.

Sorry about your parents' misadventure but glad it all worked out in the end.

Also not a beer drinker (prefer a Johnny Walker Green or Gold Label or a nice Glenfiddich) but I agree that Carib does taste a lot like Corona except that it has a bit of an aftertaste. A lot of students tend to prefer Piton or Carlsberg.

Enjoy those books. You will actually go through pretty much everything except for the BLS book (do they still give that?). Unfortunately it's not like undergrad where you do a few chapters (like half of the book or less). *sigh*

Enjoy the cruise tomorrow. One of my classmates met his girlfriend on there and they're still together 2 years later. So perhaps you should leave mom and dad home...


Carsten said...

Have fun with the books. If you do have the CPR book, don't bother reading it yet. You will get an "outline" during the class of which pages to "focus on." (i.e. which pages the answers are on.)

Comparing Carib and Corona? What are you thinking?!?! Obviously you got a non-formaldehyde infused batch. :-) Though I must admit I am a bit of a beer snob and ended up drinking mostly Heineken when I was on the rock... (Even though it wasn't real Heineken - it was brewed in St. Lucia...) St. Vincent brews a nice beer (Hairoun), but unfortunately no Hefeweizen's to be found anywhere.

Ishie said...

Thanks guys!

The cruise, as noted, was awesome... don't think I met a husband though due to my commitment-phobia. Heh heh.

On beer, I will defend myself by saying I didn't drink the stuff at all until recently, have very little basis for comparison, and will tend to be fine with anything that isn't too hoppy or the discolored sewer water known as Budweiser. I do prefer the Piton though.