A PERIPATETIC JOURNEY
not all who wander are lost
After a lot of time spent on school work, boat work, and provisioning, we decided to rent a car and spend a day exploring the island. As we drove uphill away from St. George’s the road curved back and forth providing beautiful vistas of the harbor and Caribbean below. One of our stops was Grand Etang Lake. This crater lake in an extinct volcano is located in the mountains of south central Grenada. There is evidence that Grand Etang is connected to the active underwater volcano, Kick Em Jenny, as it was seen bubbling at the same time as Kick Em Jenny. There is also supposed to be a mermaid living in the lake, although we did not see her. There is a small visitor center at Grand Etang, where we read about the geology of the Caribbean. While there, we took a short walk to an overlook from which we could see Carriacou (also part of Grenada; see last May’s blog post).
Another stop on our Grenada road trip was Belmont Estate. Kendall had been wanting to visit since we first came to Grenada, and since it was her birthday...A popular agri-tourism destination, Belmont Estate dates back to the 1600s when large plantations were established in Grenada. Although very few plantations remain in Grenada today, the Belmont Estate’s agri-tourism approach has enabled its continued survival. Although Hurricane Ivan hit the estate hard, many spices are still grown there, including cinnamon, pepper, cloves, bay leaf, ginger, turmeric, nutmeg and mace, and of course, cocoa. There is a restaurant onsite serving delicious food with both West and East Indian flavors, tours, a shop, and a museum.
After having a wonderful birthday lunch at the restaurant, we took a tour of the estate with Kelly. He showed us the entire chocolate-making process beginning with the cocoa trees and ending with a taste of cocoa tea and a visit to the estate’s chocolate shop. We also walked through the beautiful property. Kelly pointed out all the wonderful edible delights growing on the estate, often picking a sample for us to try. Among many other treats, he opened an immature cocoa pod so we could taste the beans inside (Marin especially liked these). He pulled a small pod off another tree (it looked like a large peapod) and opened it to show us three very fuzzy seeds inside. They weren’t to be eaten, just held in your mouth to enjoy the sweetness before spitting them out. We can’t remember what they were called, but they were like nothing we’d ever tasted before.
From Belmont Estate, we drove down the Atlantic side of the island to St. George’s University at the southern end. For some reason, we have a tendency to visit college campuses along our travels. St. George’s began as a medical school in the 1970s and has expanded to include veterinary medicine, graduate studies, and arts and sciences. The campus is stunningly located on a hill overlooking the Caribbean. We all concluded that it would be a lovely place to go to college – we cannot imagine a college campus with more beautiful views.
We ended the day with snacks and drinks at West Indies Beer Company. Kendall is particularly fond of their Sundown Cider.
McGlynn family 5 (Isla, Marin, Eoin, Kendall, and Brian) sailing Counting Stars