Sunday, September 16, 2012

Walking St. Lucia

St. Lucia is a beautiful island, still. My home has changed very much over the 40+ years I've lived here but natural beauty can still be found at a glance, thank goodness for that! We are still a nature isle, though if we want to stay this way, we have lots of work to do on being better custodians of our heritage.

So, Saturday 6:30am, I went with a group of women, for a walk around my favourite teen summer haunt - the eastern coast of Cap Estate going into Cas en Bas.
Looking South from Cap Estate
The rolling windswept hills give way to a succession of coves: a tiny rock and shell covered arc between rocky hills, next to a yellow sand, wave pounded beach, next to a wave cut smooth rock platform.
First Glimpse of the East Coast with markers for 'development'
Rocky Coast and tiny islands in a calm Atlantic
Wave Cut Platform quiet today overlooking Comerette
Rolling Hills Looking North over Donkey Beach
Paths abound - a bit different to my teen years when you had to know where to look to find the tiny footpath entrance hidden by the surrounding bushes; today there are wider paths cut in the lead-up to the failed (thank goodness) planned development of a 2nd golf course by Raffles; this would have torn up the native cacti (only home of the barrel cactus in St. Lucia), wild frangipani, and all sorts of other native plants - shrubs with gnarled stems and bent over limbs borne down by the relentless Atlantic winds.

The ground is scattered with colourful stones, green and red jaspers and occasionally sparking quartz - I just pick up one tiny piece today. Horses graze quietly in the early morning sun and come to greet us as we walk by - tiny baby hermit crabs scuttle out of our way in the shady parts of the path and birds sing unseen from bushes here an there.
Friendly Horses
It's blazing hot though it's barely an hour or so past dawn and the area is surreal in its quietness; it's been an odd couple of weeks moving from August to September - the air has been still and this morning we can see the Atlantic Ocean is still too; no waves crash over the rocks.
Pillar Cacti and Windswept Trees
Back up a big hill - the path we would have come down as kids, cleared now of most of the bush, we find a pond, man-made at the top: I feel like I've never been here before - same spot, but not the same place. But I'm glad that for now, and hopefully for ever to come, this unique part of St. Lucia still clings on to its beauty.

The Old Path to Donkey Beach, circa 1980
A new pond greets us at the top of the old path
Birds make their home in the new pond
Early Morning St. Lucia
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