Whenever I spend a little time at Beau Rive in the Castle Bruce area on Dominica`s east coast, I always make a stop at the Emerald Pool on my way there. It`s an easy 20 minute loop trail and the waterfall is found about halfway along the path. Although only 20 minutes from my destination, I enjoy stretching my legs and breathing in the pure air in this rainforest setting.
I had a little refreshment at the on-site snack bar and then I was on the road again. But not for long. It was early afternoon by the time I arrived on the east coast and I`d worked up an appetite from my little outing in the forest. I headed straight to Islet View Restaurant, run by a Canadian-Dominican named Rudy. He can really cook up a storm and this time was no different, confirmed by the fact that every seat in the dining room was filled with visitors, mainly from the neighbouring
French islands. They were in Dominica to enjoy the 18th annual World Creole Music Festival. I found a little space at a back table where I enjoyed my overflowing plate of Mahi-mahi fish, ground provisions, stewed beans, rice and green salad. I ate as much of it as I could.
I felt it was enough for two people, and I was also holding back. I was well aware that I would receive another large meal at Beau Rive a few hours later.
The next morning, I set off from my quaint east coast home base to explore the village of Castle Bruce and its expansive beach. The pretty little hamlet is situated near to the ocean. Although there was no storm that day, the persistent surf made its presence known, whether one was at sea level or higher up the steep slope of this compact residential area. I admired the church and its serene setting and then drove along the road that skirted the ocean.
I stopped when I came upon a bright blue building set against the beach. It was in fact a little hotel, called the Sea Breeze Inn and I was on time for a late morning snack! But first, I took a leisurely stroll along the long stretch of sand. Storm clouds were moving in, and I walked as quickly as I could to its far end, where I came upon the mouth of the Castle Bruce River. There, I saw a man with a fishing net. I assumed he knew where he would make a catch. I waved at him and hastened back to the inn for my treat. Before I reached
the entrance way, a squall caught me off-guard.My umbrella was no help in the stiff breeze and driving rain. Although a little damp, I dried off in no time, as it was actually a very warm day. Ms. Lockhart, the proprietor served me the freshest guava juice, along with a tuna bake and a special surprise: her homemade pumpkin fritters.
This delicious local snack quelled my hunger pangs so that I was ready for the next part of the day`s adventure: a southerly drive along the coast to the well-known historic fishing village of San Sauveur.
As I drove along the steep and winding road, it was difficult to admire the gorgeous views of Grand Marigot Bay
and the surrounding quaint villages high above the ocean. Therefore,
when I reached the hamlet of Good Hope, a friendly lady named Rachelle directed me to a safe parking spot so I could walk and admire the sights instead. I switched from sandals to walking shoes and headed `down`to the coastline. After 20 minutes, I stood in front of the historic Catholic church in San Sauveur.
Despite hurricanes and occasional strong storms, it offers regular worship services to faithful followers in this somewhat remote area.
I continued along behind the church for a few minutes until I came upon a number of fishing boats at their moorings.
A few had been out and had come in a short time earlier. The fishermen rushed over to me to enquire about my interest in a purchase of fish. I of course declined as I was being served meals at Beau Rive, which included such fare. They were disappointed as it was a quiet afternoon. As I turned to go, they asked where I had parked my vehicle. When I replied that I had walked down from the neighbouring village of Good Hope, they were collectively shocked!
As I commenced the steep ascent, I was glad that I had carried my umbrella, not for protection against rain though. It was early afternoon and strong sunshine prevailed high above me. I didn`t mind the sweat and distracted myself with all the breathtaking vistas below me. After a short while, I was back in Good Hope. The villagers who had watched me leave were surprised that I had been able to do the trek so quickly! I proudly proclaimed that I had hiked over large parts of Dominica and was now getting back in shape after my bout of Chikungunya. I purchased a cold bottle of spring water from a tiny snackette and returned to the car. After this lovely outing, I headed back to Beau Rive on the quiet road. About half an hour later, I was sitting on my porch chair, looking forward to dinner and contemplating the routes for my excursions over the next couple of days.
You`ll read about my visits to Pagua Bay, Richmond Bay and Rosalie Bay in the next post!