Liming in Dominica

The sunrise from our room at Rosalie Bay, Dominica
To Lime or Lymn’: is to relax, hang out or take it easy in Caribbean island slang 
During the month of May I had been scheduled to take a repeat of my Indigo/Katazome workshop in Japan. Sadly the Japanese Prime Minister decided the country was not ready to reopen due to an increase in the Covid count. I had an American Airlines credit that had to be used before October so we decided to get out of town.
The British Commonwealth island of Dominica (pronounced Doe-min-knee-caw) had been on our bucket list for a long time-when we visited Guadeloupe in 2019 we could see it from our room, but we didn’t have time to visit.  Over the years we have visited about two thirds of the Caribbean islands and had heard from friends and reading that Dominica was “The Island of Waterfalls,” or “The Nature Island”. A special deal showed up on back in February and I grabbed it figuring we would go in the fall but because of my plane ticket situation and upcoming hurricane season we would go sooner. 
Dominica was discovered by Columbus in 1493 and claimed for Spain. He named it after his Sunday arrival during the month of November. First settled by the Arawak Indians who were pushed out by the Kalinago, then briefly controlled by the Spanish, Dominca changed hands several times over the last 500 years until Great Britain got it as a war prize in 1763. When the French inhabited the country, they imported African slaves to farm their coffee plantations. It became an independent nation in 1978. Dominica is a mountainous island, with 9 still active volcanoes-more than any other Caribbean country. It has a very large boiling lake as a result. As it is in the center of the Windward island chain of the Lesser Antilles, it is very prone to hurricanes. Hurricane Maria came in 2017 and created substantial damage to the island, from which the it is still recovering.
We had to get up early for our 10 AM direct flight from Miami on American Eagle. We arrived in Miami and quickly moved through security—BTW it is well worth the time and investment in a Global Entry Pass from the TSA. Breakfast was had in the terminal before boarding for the three hour flight. I sat by the window on the flight and enjoyed shooting pictures as we headed south over the beautiful shades of green, brown, blue and turquoise islands.
I have done several batik paintings of these aerial views before (which are now in the collection of 7th South Craft Food and Drink) but saw some new views that I really liked—stay tuned!


When we arrived at Dominica we could not land right away—it was the start of rainy season and the runway was still partly wet so we had to circle while we waited for it to dry out. Once we started to land I could see why—as we steeply descended downward the plane had to dart into a deep valley with mountains and a river running alongside the runway. In fact the road was built to the airport first before the airport was built on the flattest part of the island in 1944. The short runway abruptly stops at the edge of the Atlantic Ocean. The experienced pilot managed to land us with a minimum of braking.
We taxied to the small terminal at Douglas-Charles Airport and walked to an outside building where we first had our temperatures taken and our Covid vaccination cards checked. No vaccinated visitors were also required to take a PCR test before boarding. After collecting our baggage and going through customs, our taxi driver was waiting to take us to our final destination: The Rosalie Bay Resort and Eco Spa.
There are few main roads in Dominica as they have to wind around and go over the mountainous spine of the island. The road from the airport passed through several small seacoast villages before cutting inland and going through the rain forest and the Morne Trois Pitons National Park. It took us an hour to go 18 miles and reach the resort. I sat in the backseat, camera ready shooting the scenery and looking especially for new subject matter for my “Wash Day” or clotheslines series of artwork.

Rosalie Bay Resort is on the Atlantic Coast and is a little off the beaten path. Its location alongside the Rosalie River was originally a part of a large plantation that over the years was subdivided into smaller parcels. As part of our splurge since we had not done any international travel since 2019, I indulged in a room with an oceanfront view.  After we checked in we were lead to a two story building with our room on the second floor. It featured a porch with no mosquitoes and a beautiful view of Rosalie Beach and Rosalie Bay.

The large bedroom featured a beautifully carved and locally made four poster bed along with  a fridge. The humongous bathroom had a large stall shower and the biggest claw footed bathtub I had ever seen!

We briefly rested and then explored the beach around us. Rosalie Bay is one of the few beaches on the island that is a turtle sanctuary.
Starting in the middle of April there are two men stationed on the beach every evening to keep track of sea turtle nestings. Interesting fact that our Naples beach had more turtle nests last year than the entire island of Dominica!  During the pandemic there were problems with poaching as the patrols were not on duty.

While we visited a group of five French hikers camped on the beach with them to see if they might see any turtles(they didn’t).They are very proud of their program and even the bus stop by the resort shows turtles!

We then were asked to pre-order our dinner from the hotel restaurant and dine at 6:30. We found out there were only 3 of 28 rooms occupied, with one of the rooms being occupied by a turtle researcher. We both enjoyed a great dinner of Curry goat stew followed by several rum punches before crashing for the night. 
More to come in this series in my blog.


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