If You Give a Mara a Conkie…

3 11 2012

Waking up within the light and growth of your own private island garden is absolutely everything you think it must be.

Pancakes this morning, and why-not extra coffee for me, and scrambled eggs dotted with a confetti of peppers and smoked salmon.

A jaunt to Harrison’s Cave is first on the agenda. A taxi hire allows all to take in the rainbow variety of chattel houses and endless sugarcane.

Dad feels rather trepidatious about the excursion, given that the two of us have so recently been privy to the unbelievable formations within Postojna Jama in Slovenia. Harrison’s can’t possibly compete with football fields of cave bacon, and it doesn’t – but it’s a fun little tour regardless, and an interesting thought exercise to consider that the entirety of the cave structure is actually above sea level. Dribbles from the ceiling are inevitable, and we contemplate how many tours one might have to take in order to stimulate cranial stalagmite growth.

The gulley just outside the cave entrance is blooming. Also neat are the free hanging roots of the bearded fig tree, which is thought to be the namesake of the island (“Barbados” means “bearded ones”).

A slight snag when we connect with the driver to head out – the left rear tire is as flat as our breakfast. We fart around while it’s fixed to the point of permissibility, although a distinct woob-woob-woob can be made out on the way back home.

Our arrival is just in time for eats: assemble-your-own grilled fish sammies, pasta tossed with olives and peppers, and an avocado, tomato, and cucumber salad. Evadny – our butler – brings out a plate of conkie to finish us off. The steamed mixture of corn flour, sweet potato, and pumpkin has nutty overtones of the coco- and -meg variety.

Bets, Amah, and I spend our post-lunch lollygagging at the villa pool, while Kory, John, Rich, Linda, and Abs trek northward to the Barbados Wildlife Reserve. Apple piles bring in monkeys galore, plus a host of other seekers-of-fruit, including the jackalope-esque mara (top right).

The latter half of the afternoon is designated for sunsets and Banks.

The seas are rather more agitated that anticipated. Our audaciousness lasts a few furious beat-downs, then we huff and paddle our way back to the sand, precious beers ever-so-slightly on the salty side.

Abby proves stalwart in the surf.

More sensible sunset enjoyment ensues at last.

The evening slides once more into fruity rum drinks, salty little fried things, and insta-nostalgia geekery. Kory shares a sneaky video she grabbed of my surprise arrival, and I tear up a little bit. I choke it back, though – no blubbering on the menu tonight. Malcom’s made chicken curry, accompanied by sweet-and-sour beets that send us reeling.

It might be the sugar rush from the amalgamation of cakes and pies that cap dinner tonight, it might be the white wine, or it might just be our tendency to leap headfirst into the silliest of competitions, but Taboo gets seriously raucous.




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