Dolphins have been scarce this time around but one hit the bow wave for a little while as we came around the headland at Prince Rupert bay. We were only doing 4 knots so he/she did mot stay long as they like boats doing 7 knots for a good bow wave surf. Still it was good to see one, it shows that there is still some mammalian life out here in the sea.
SCRAP STEEL One of the things that has characterized Portsmouth and the Prince Rupert bay waterfront in Dominica is the necklace of rusting wrecks that garlanded the shoreline. Well the CARMAR operation that I saw starting to cut them up and cart them off somewhere has been working hard and they are almost all gone.
We went for a walk in the woods above Fort Shirley today. It has been raining quite a lot recently [ Sandy says I KNOW! ] and this tree stump and log have grown a good crop of fungi.
The Douglas battery overlooking the Saintes was as atmospheric as always. I learned that the Ficus trees loved the walls of the old buildings because of the lime in the mortar. But they soon sought out water and other nutrients through their root systems which sometimes produced angular alterations in direction that were almost mathematical in their exactitude.
It was easy to feel the age of the walls and the guns as the flora and fauna of Dominica reclaimed the battery from the soldiers and the slaves and imprint of man fades from the land.
LAST THOUGHT THERE IS A PUZZLE.
As we walked over the coll to the Douglas battery there is an area of cleared land at the top. Two years ago it was just raw earth, a road had been cut and graded through the trees, some serious machinery had cut down the trees, grubbed out roots and scraped away anything green.
I had thought that this was strange as it is a Dominican National Park but maybe they were going to build something out of sight. I have asked several park workers and they all play dumb on the subject, some even denying knowledge of the clearing.
Anyway nature is fast reclaiming the clearing with thick brush and many saplings already competing for light. No sign of any building or any other use of the land.
But no one will say what it is for. It is a mystery!
We are off down to St Pierre Martinique on Sunday. A long sail!