Posted tagged ‘Grand Bahama Island’

Picture Postcard Kind of Day

January 25, 2015
Banana.Bay.1.25.2015

© paula boyd farrington 2015

 

Enjoying the afternoon at Banana Bay … a true Grand Bahama paradise kind of day … straight out of a picture postcard. The combination of brilliant and soft-blended blues, an intensely-gentle warming sun, a just-enough breeze, and low humidity all came together today in one stellar “Ahhhhh ….” that begs both simple enjoyment and a cyber-singing of its praises.

It is after all High Gratitude season here.  When I first moved here, people told me this idyllic time of year was sometimes referred to as “gloating season”—that is not my intent here. And we year-round island residents have waded through our share of summer heat and high humidity to get to these glorious days of dewy-free revelry. These slice-of-heaven days may already be well-enough celebrated in the tourism brochures, but those images don’t capture all the little moments of day-to-day warm winter bliss …  the long rays of dawn glinting off the cat’s fur …

cat.w.sun.glinting

… the delight of finding that the avocado tree in the back garden is offering up yet one more late-ripening gift of green goodness …

late.ripening.avocado.1.2015the silhouette of a shorebird wading in late afternoon liquid gold glimmers …

silhouettes.shorebirdsAhhhh indeed.  Perhaps today is received with extra gratitude and thanks because it was blustery and somewhat gray yesterday—a grand day in its own way with the palm fronds applauding madly in gusts, as if cheering wildly for the cool front to get here—sweeping a path clear for silky sun and cyan sky kisses that take your breath away. And give you pause to take an extra-deep breath and offer up a quiet hallelujah for natural wonders—and absolutely exquisite island days.  Here’s to the sunshine of the heart, wherever your paradise …

 

Crepe Paper & Cardboard, Costumes & Creativity — Junior Junkanoo 2013

March 5, 2013
Jr.Junkanoo.5.2013

photos by Paula Boyd Farrington

Junkanoo—that distinctly Bahamian combination of colorful handmade costumes, cow bells, horns, and rhythmic goat-skin drums pounding out a steady island beat were proudly on display at last month’s Junior Junkanoo Parade, February 2nd, 2013. Parents, teachers, children, and community volunteers dedicated countless hours through the year crafting costumes of hand-cut and finely fringed crepe paper, carefully pasted in layers onto cardboard forms sized to fit student performers—the next generation—who are learning first-hand about the history, design, and production of this unique cultural art form. The detailed costumes, dance routines, and fun themes chosen by participating schools are a delight to see, and a true celebration of island creativity. Here are a few photos from this year’s event:

Jr.Junkanoo.1.2013Jr.Junkanoo.2.2013

 

Jr.Junkanoo.8.2013Jr.Junkanoo.10.2013

Jr.Junkanoo.7.2013

Jr.Junkanoo.3.2013Jr.Junkanoo.4.2013Jr.Junkanoo.9.2013Junkanoo.Horn.Player2013Junkanoo.Jr.2013Congratulations to all the Junior Junkanoo participants, parents, teachers, coordinators, designers, artists, dancers, musicians, parade officials, volunteers, sponsors, food vendors, and support teams who made this lovely and lively Grand Bahama event possible.

Ka-lik, Ka-lik, Ka-lik. Hear that? That’s the sound the metal clanger in the cow bell makes when it rings—and it’s calling you to come see next year’s Parade. The Junior Junkanoo Parade is usually held in late January or early February each year, and the full scale holiday Junkanoo Parade in Grand Bahama is held in the evening on New Year’s Day. The Junkanoo Summer Festival is scheduled here for July 4 – 25, 2013.

Move to the rhythm. Move to the beat. Dance along. It’s a heartwarming treat!

 

From My Grand Bahama Garden: Tomato Bounty

March 11, 2012

I posted about my Warm Winter Garden just a few weeks ago when everything was still green and ripening. Just had to post a pic of this platter of lusciousness now that we’re harvesting ripe red tomatoes and having a good time adding these beauties into omelets, sandwiches, and of course, salads, but mostly just enjoying their bright freshness simple and plain with a hint of salt and pepper. And some of the green ones might get turned into Fried Green Tomatoes. (I do love that movie. And especially the book.)

Nothing like a homegrown tomato for ramping up your appreciation of how va-va-voom life is. There’s something about their vibrant red-ness that acts like a natural can’t-miss-it 4-way Stop sign for pausing and noticing all the wonder that abounds when you look for it. What gladness is growing is your paradise? Whatever and wherever it is — enjoy!

Glimpses of A Warm Winter Garden

February 20, 2012

a soon-to-be red plum tomato ripening in the sun. photos by paula boyd farrington

There is green goodness on the vine in my Grand Bahama garden. The strong summer sun is sometimes too intense for growing these beauties, but it is just right just now in our warm winter. Fresh basil flourishes in a small patch …

… and Italian flat-leaf parsley basks alongside the full broccoli …

Along the fence, the pods of pigeon peas begin (and will be used in the traditional Bahamian dish of peas ‘n rice … the pea is similar to a black-eyed pea).

Elsewhere in the garden, it looks more like a traditional northern fall … the almond tree loses its leaves this time of year …

… and the Royal Poinciana tree that will bloom flame-red in May or June is in full winter … leafless … and busy growing its long slender seed pods …

The sunny faces of the impatiens that wilt in the bold summers smile in the shade of a tree …

… while avocados still hang heavy and heavenly on the tree …

Such a bounty of warm winter blessings. What abundance blooms in the appreciative eyes and happy heart of your paradise right now? Enjoy, enjoy ….

Grand Bahama’s Junior Junkanoo Parade

January 22, 2012

Playing the Cowbells. photo by Paula Boyd Farrington

I love a parade. Especially Junkanoo Parades—those uniquely Bahamian celebrations of sound and bold colors and creativity—pulsed to the steady heartbeat rhythms of goatskin drums, cowbells, whistles, horns, and dancing feet.  The Junior Junkanoo Parade is one of my all time favorites. Students, dedicated teachers, parents, and a host of volunteers from all over the island work countless hours creating meticulously-crafted, handmade costumes, and rehearsing lively music and dance routines to parade through the downtown streets of Grand Bahama. This year’s parade was held Saturday evening, January 14th, 2012, with a big crowd of friends and well wishers lining the streets to cheer the students of all ages on.

Junkanoo is loud. It’s proud. And totally adorable. Here’s a peek at some of the fun … congrats to all who participated and made it possible!

photo by Paula Boyd Farrington

photo by Paula Boyd Farrington

photo by Paula Boyd Farrington

photo by Paula Boyd Farrington

photo by Paula Boyd Farrington
photo by Paula Boyd Farrington

Goldilocks Season

November 4, 2011

We entering into Goldilocks Season on Grand Bahama. The weather is not too hot, not too cold … it’s juuuuust right. It’s the kind of weather that makes you say “aaaahh” and draws your eye extra-much to every bright yellow bit of tropical bliss … … from cerasee bush medicine growing along the garden wall … … to fresh guava in the kitchen … … to more yellow elder (the national flower of The Bahamas) …

… to the way the sun bathes the palm fronds in warmth while a woodpecker taps his tat-a-tat-tat tune …… a soft light glowing on everything … ripening the sea grapes

  

photo by Caitlin Farrington

… renewed gratitude alighting in our hearts, and reminding us of so many golden days … giving thanks for the not-too-hot, hot-too-cold glories of November in The Bahamas! (And to how marvelous it is when the weather matches your mood … here’s to the glow of your internal paradise keeping you warm if you’re bouncing back from that too-cold-too-soon snow storm up north, or still waiting for a touch of fall—like we’ve been doing during the high humidity the past couple of months! Here’s to paying attention to the subtle and not-so-subtle shifts of season and keeping a weathered eye on the blessings that abound everywhere.) Tra-la.

Avast! It’s International Talk Like A Pirate Day

September 19, 2011

September 19th is International Talk Like A Pirate Day. This is the official day to practice saying “arrrggghh, matey”—and other plank-walkin’ talk—an occasion dreamed up by a couple fun guys who were bored one day, but had plenty of Pirattitude. They told funny guy/author, Dave Barry, about it back in 2002, and he put it in his Miami Herald column. The rest is shiver-me-timbers history, and people all over the world now use this date as an excuse to swagger about in their swashbuckling finest and to think about stirring some rum into their coffee. Or maybe that’s just me. Anyway, it’s all about having fun—and got me thinking about Grand Bahama’s own brush with fictional pirate fame.

Filming for some of Disney’s Pirates of The Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest and Pirates of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides took place on Grand Bahama Island, back in 2006/2007. It was a thrill to see The Black Pearl and Davy Jones’ Flying Dutchman cinema-ships up close and to catch random sightings of the cast and crew out and about on the island.

We were all swept up in the movie-making excitement—especially my daughter and her friends, who had a great time devising their own buccaneer ensembles in which to search for treasure and adventure during Ye Olde Playtimes.Halloween at our house that year included a rather commanding and fierce-looking Pirate Princess known as Sparrowla—an imaginary long-lost sister of Captain Jack Sparrow:Here’s to sailing the Seven Seas of Imagination and Laughter for as long as you can! Yo ho, me hearties, yo ho!

 

 

 


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