Cruisers have access to special "shopping busses" several times a week that pick us up at the closest dinghy dock and take us around to the main shopping outlets in the area. The advantage is that we can make several stops for about what we would pay for public busses with multiple stops, but bus waits for us and we can pile on loads of groceries without having to squeeze in with the locals.
|Grand Anse Beach
Today for instance, we made the short walk up to the main road and caught a public van, same as so many times before. We asked to be let off near the IGA market and when the bus spit us out just outside the park we've been passing with the promise of checking it out... someday! Well check your calendar, because Someday is today!
The smell of fresh-mowed grass filled the air as all over the island people are preparing for the upcoming Carnival Celebration. You can feel the anticipation and it's contagious!
We walked toward Grand Anse Beach thinking this would be a great place for a picnic, when suddenly I spotted a man I had been looking for for weeks, just sitting on a bench in the shade.
Jacob Scott is a marvel. A friend posted some of his work on Facebook some time ago, but I wasn't able to find him... until today!
|Jacob pulled some small bowls from a flour sack and offered them for sale
|Jacob was working on this bottom depicting a "football" Soccer game when we found him
|Several smaller bowls were for sale, but the larger one was commissioned.
|Jacob describing how he makes these beautiful and unique bowls
Bruce is normally the Enforcer of our self-imposed "no buy" rule... but today, even HE melted when I began turning one after another of these beautiful pieces over in my hands... We were no match for the temptation - it wasn't a matter of "if", only of "which one"!
Before Bruce had a chance to come to his senses and change his mind... I had this one picked out and paid for! Of course the hidden sailboat inside combined with the fact that its colours mirrored the Caribbean waters just beyond the beach, made the choice simple!
Jacob answered our many questions and told us of his life in the islands and his travels in the US. He has sold his treasures to notables such as Mick Jagger, Walter Mondale, and Stephen Spielberg! Can you believe that I own a piece of art that is coveted by people who can afford to buy anything in the world they want???
He told us of many places his work has been sold and talked of how many times people have tried to get him to produce pieces to be sold in exclusive art galleries all over the world, but he just can't keep up with the demand, so he doesn't even try.
I asked him if ever thought of teaching an apprentice his craft so that it can be carried on into the next generation. He told us a story of how he had once tried teaching some young men, but they saw how much money he was paid for his work, and later in the evening, they attacked him on the beach and beat him for his money. They only got $10EC (about $3.70 US), but Jacob spent three weeks in the hospital recuperating and almost lost his life. What a waste!
|Thanks for the article Cindy!
Eventually a friend of Jacob's arrived and we said our goodbyes, promising to come back again to see what new pieces he had from time to time... Not only have we found a lovely beach to lie on and pristine waters in which to soak our hot bodies, but now we have a new friend to tell us stories of Grenada and many other islands we have visited along the way.
We walked back to the IGA and after sitting with friends over ice cream, we finished our grocery shopping and headed for the main road to catch a bus back home. As usual, one of the van conductors saw us coming and waved us over. Smiles greeted us as the conductor asked us if we were going to "the end" as he made a circling motion with his hands to signify the round-about where we get off... They know. I laughed as I asked him if we were that obvious!
We lugged our heavy bags onto the bus, squeezing into the seat next to a young woman and off we went. The music was pounding out an infectious beat and I struggled to keep from dancing in my seat. Nobody else was bobbing, so I had to keep still and act as if I were unaffected - while inside I was dancing! The song lyrics repeated over and over - Crab in the saltfish-crab in the saltfish - and Pig tails - pig snout - pig tails - pig snout! Now and then I caught the words callaloo and JabJab... I smiled to myself and though about how absurd this would sound to me back in my former life. These are the things that fill the lives of the Grenadian people and now they fill ours!
Watching out the window as we whizzed through the streets, I saw snippets of Grenadian life. Young women walking along the street carrying sacks, their faces impassive and impervious to the glances of the young men.... but maybe their hips swung just a little bit more than before. The bus always stops for the pretty girls and we pile on as many as possible! The smell of delicious food, sweat, and flowers fill my nostrils as I breathe it all in. I love this island!
The music moves my blood. The people everywhere are getting ready for Carnival. Little kids in colorful school uniforms are preparing for the parade, people bustle here and there laying on groceries before everything closes for the festivities. Cruisers are getting ready too! I've got my swag all ready for the Monday night Mas. I'm a little anxious, but I don't want to miss it. We're here. And we are VIBRANT too!