Tuesday, we got up a little earlier than usual. Everything was wet from the storm of the night before, and there was another rain storm coming in from the north. When it reached us, we realized that much of the noise of the night before was not wind, but the sound of the rain on our roof.
We were expecting our rental car and a hike on Mount Nevis. The office had to call for the car…and it still wasn’t here by the time we were to leave on the hike, so Reggie our guide, came and picked us up.
Reggie and a cave within the roots of a tree - from our hke up Mt. NevisReggie was tall, very skinny (as in fit), well-spoken and interesting. We drove around the island “the back way” to get to the Golden Rock plantation, and then up onto a road into the jungle. Reggie explained that it was part of a road that linked the sugar plantations in the interior of the island. Now it was in pretty bad repair in a lot of places. Our hike was to take us to “the source”, that is the source of the fresh water on Nevis found by the British back in the 1700s(?). We were following the course of the iron pipes they laid to bring the water down the mountain to the towns along the shore. That pipeline still supplies about 60% of the island’s fresh water.The water pipeline and the jungle
The track was rocky and slick and wet, from the rain. All around us was green! What a dense jungle of trees, ferns and mosses. It wasn’t an easy walk to the lookout point (the farthest point for old farts like us) but it was a satisfyingly physical hike that left us pretty tired by the end. Going up was a workout for the lungs, coming down was a workout for balance. Reggie talked to us about the history of Nevis, about his life, and some of the medicinal uses for plants we saw along the way. He gave us so cinnamon leaves to make bush tea.
After the hike, despite how dirty and sweaty we were, we went to see the Golden Rock Inn and make reservations for dinner. The place is gorgeous. The architecture is very minimalist, based on the sugar mill that is the core. Grey stone, broken by brilliant red doors. Very charming. The gardens are fantastic! That alone is worth a trip.
After Reggie dropped us off, we hopped into our newly rented little “Swift” and head off to find “Lime” a restaurant (so to speak) recommended by several people including Kerry Dore and Reggie. We found it – like a glorified group of shacks on the beach. The decor was very eclectic and unpretentious and there was lots of seating – you could tell at a glance that it was a place a lot of people were likely to come. We had the signature drink: a green flash (A sort of rum punch with blue curacao). The food was delicious! We started with fish fritters that were divine and finished with grouper and lobster.
Two Green Flashes!I had two too many green flashes and felt quite tipsy, but we still walked out to the beach (Pinney’s Beach) to have a look. Not bad at all.Back in the car we set out to find the Botanical Garden. Well, poor Gerry had to try to find it himself as I was constantly falling asleep! I would wake up and try to pretend I hadn’t been asleep, but Gerry can’t really navigate and drive at the same time, and we did not have a proper map - finding the Botanical Garden was not easy. Finally we asked someone, and (as it seemed to me!) happened to drive right by it.The gardens were very beautiful, though not the great variety of plants one might expect. Still, beautiful settings of ponds, plants, flowers and trees, with literally hundreds of orchids. Afterwards (I was still out of it) we drove through Charlestown and came back for a nap.After a glass of wine (given to us by the hotel to celebrate our anniversary) we went back to the Golden Rock Inn for dinner.Dark but very romantic
The place was very dark and quiet at night, lit by little votives along the stairs and the edges of the pool. The restaurant was at the top of the stairs looking down over the darkened pools (for fish). Very nice and atmospheric on that terrace, with lights I especially liked along the columns that gave an elongated triangle of light both upwards and downwards on the columns.
The effect of the lights I liked
Neat. Our food was good. Like at the Mt. Nevis Hotel restaurant we received a little “Chef’s goodie” amuse bouche before our meal. Tonight our appetizers were onion soup for Gerry (followed by snapper) and a beet salad with citrus fruit for me followed by mahi-mahi. I was a little disappointed with the mahi-mahi, it seemed watery somehow as if it had been frozen and not completely thawed before cooking, and I ordered it for the red curry, but that flavor was almost non-existent. Gerry’s red pepper coulis was the hit of the meal. We indulged in desserts: passion fruit flan and coconut crème brule.