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- - - 2002 Hurricane Season - - -

- broke her what?
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2003 18:49:54 EDT
Soon, the weather reports will return.  You may have noticed there has been a bit of silence here.

DearMissMermaid broke her tail and it hurt to sit on to write funny tales!

But, rest assured, the weather has been absolutely gorgeous, with loads of sunshine and tradewinds.

See ya soon!

Smugglers Cove Beach  (click for info)

- White January
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Mon, 20 Jan 2003 09:20:07 EST
       We are having a white January with white sand at the beach, white caps on the water, white coconut cream in our drinks, and white tourists (boy do they NEED a tan!)
       Weather is balmy and quite cool at night.  Air conditioning is just not needed unless you are in some windowless environment.
       No snow is predicted this year.
       New restaurants have sprung up.  One of note is Pisces in West End, across the street from Ample Hamper, has indoor and garden dining for breakfast, lunch and dinner. 

Dinner Buffet at  Smugglers View Beach Villa
Provided by  TortolaPrivateChef.Com

- Rum is the Answer. What's the problem?
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Sat, 28 Dec 2002 16:33:39 EST
       Beautiful day today.  Rather flat seas for this time of year but moderate winds prevail and it is a gorgeous day to be out sailing.
       Christmas abounds with spectacular light displays.  Many were even up by Christmas Day!
       We have white lines.  In the road.  Painted down the middle.  From West End to Road Town, you can see white lines down the middle of the road.
       Wait until Vernon on Vieques hears about this!  First we got a traffic light and now white lines down the middle of the road!

       If you are what you eat.....

       Does that make me Fast, Easy and Cheap?


- Yuletide & Message in a Bottle
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 26 Dec 2002 08:12:56 EST
       Christmas in the islands was gorgeous as usual.  Santa Claus had to shimmy down a few coconut trees and up some mango branches to reach us all.
       His sled on skis, pulled by Dolphins, goes from island, and is  a sight to see!
       Today is Boxing Day in the islands, and a national hoiliday.  It is 78 degrees with balmy trade winds interspersed with traditional short lived rain showers.  Much of the island is lush and green, looking very tropical.

Ho Ho Ho
and Ha Hee Hee

Groovy Dabba Doobie
wouldn't you agree?

You're just the kind of mermaid
we'd like to meet

Only problem is
we've still got feet!

Yet time will tell
and if all goes well

bright shiny magic scales,
island adventures
and FUN shall prevail!

come this january
is when we'll arrive

and the more we know the merrier-
can you catch our jive?

so please oh please miss mermaid
by all means be in touch

happy times to you and all
and many more much much!!

Caviar Sailboats


- 28 degrees!
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Sat, 21 Dec 2002 16:36:52 EST
       28 degrees!  No wonder I was so cold all night.  Then I realized that I had accidentally pushed the wrong button on my electronic thermometer and it was reading Celsius now.
       It is down to the 70's (Fahrenheit) now.  Early this morning, the Sir Francis Drake Channel looked like a sheet of glass.  Now, if I were out there sailing, I would go upwind, like to Virgin Gorda on a day like today.  But everyone I saw was sailing west and no one going east.
       No snow is predicted for Christmas, so we just have to have a white Christmas at the beach on the sand.
       I had to move my office.  I brought in  an empty box and told my Assistant (who lays around doing nothing quite often) to get busy and  pack up!
       And he did...


- Ho Ho Ho
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 8 Dec 2002 11:25:18 EST
       Tis the season.  Winter is almost upon us, temperatures have plummeted to 82 degrees.  Gentle winds waft by, nights are cooler.

       Over the years, I have watched the islands attempt to come up to speed on holiday retailing.  I remember my first Christmas in the islands, over 15 years ago, away from my native home.  I was astonished to  receive over 100 Christmas Cards in one week alone.  However, they all arrived the last week in February.
       One year, in August, the Post Office found a shipping container, lost since December, and crammed with Christmas packages. They gallantly made every effort to deliver the packages inside.  Many folks received moldy cookies, blue fuzzy fruit cakes, and dried up remains of expensive rotten fruit.  You can only imagine what Christmas chocolates, candy canes  and holiday candles looked like, after 8 months of sitting in a steel container under the gaze of tropical heat.
       Things have improved.  Last year I received four cards before Christmas and packages and other cards arrived by the end of January.
       I remember years ago, trying to shop on the quirky schedules of the purchasers for small local stores in the islands.  Halloween candy was generally available by Christmas.  At Valentine's Day you could treat your sweetie to Chocolate Santas and holiday turkeys.  On a good year, the Valentine Chocolates would be on display in time for Mother's Day.
       Just last week, I noticed that one pathetic store, is still selling paper napkins and party accouterments, all decorated  for the millennium ... and at full price!
       During the summer bridal season, one can gaily wrap wedding gifts in locally found green and red ribbons.  During Christmas, packages are adorned with pale pastel ribbons and bows, more suited for bridal showers.
       Tortola and many islands, live in a different time, at a unique pace. 
       White is the preferred color for decorating with outdoor lights at Christmas, in the islands.  This is because the lights are rarely taken down, until they burn out, be it 2 months or two years later.
       This year, Tortola is already festively decorated, at least in Road Town. We are slowly coming up to speed.

       For some bizarre reason, a unique Christmas tale comes to mind and I will share it with you, my gentle reader.

       BAH HUMBUG!
       St John is an American Virgin Island, a tiny cross roads and culture *crash* of native islanders, mainland transplants, aged hippies, self-rehabilitated ex-cons, eccentric tourists, wayward drunks, lost sailors and excessive government agencies and enforcers.
       One year, a man agreed to substitute for Santa Claus since he already had an authentic,  home grown, flowing white beard and a small belly to play the part effectively.  Some of his friends dressed up as elves to help him out.
       On Christmas Eve, after playing Santa and elves, all around town, much to the merriment of children, parents and drunks, Santa was in need of a short break, to rejuvenate his spirits.  He and the  elves trotted off to a dark corner at the remote end of the beach near town. They sat down and rested. Santa rubbed his tired thighs from too many tots having perched there all day. They sat under the sea grapes and thought they were alone.
       Someone lit up some holiday cheer in the form of island grown wacky tobacky and it was enjoyed and shared by all. 
       But not for long. 
       Out of the bushes, sprang a few misguided humbugs and scrooges, dressed as DEA (drug enforcement agents)  and they arrested the whole lot and seized some minuscule evidence.
       Handcuffed together, Santa and the elves were paraded on foot, down the beach and through the heart of town.
       Along the route,  children shrieked and cried, parents pleaded, and drunks hurled insults at the agents, but nothing would deter their firm determination as they  marched  their bounty, into the police station, where Santa and the elves  were locked up for the night until a pricey bond could be raised.
       The towns folk quickly gathered a bag of contributions and sprang St Nick and the elves out of jail.  It was the talk of the town and heated debate for months as the hapless defendants awaited for trial.
       Meanwhile, the local Santa grew his beard longer and his belly bigger, and vowed to never play Jolly ole Saint Nick,  ever again, after such public humiliation.   Lawyers were secured, at a great price, to represent the group.
       Somehow, some way, they ended up in court finally, before an old grizzly judge, who had the markings to have played Santa himself, complete with his own white beard and belly.
       As the government presented their case, the judge stopped them in mid sentence and roared across the court room, "YOU ARRESTED SANTA CLAUS ON CHRISTMAS EVE?"
       He threw the case out of court, and rightly so.
       Later, a small celebration was held at several bars in honor of the belated justice but Santa and the elves were none too merry, just a tad relieved.
       My  infamous friend, has never played Santa Claus since. 
       Once was enough for him.

       Not to make you sad, my dear reader, but all is not always perfect, in the land of sun and fun.  There is no moral to this story.  It's funny, it's sad, it's true.
       Perhaps the true meaning of Christmas, really is the art of giving.
       Giving tolerance and latitude, to others, of different lifestyles, habits and quirks, is a grand gift in itself.
       May you all have a happy and joyous holiday season. 

The Color of Caribbean Blue


- Not Cold Enough For Snow
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Tue, 3 Dec 2002 07:56:04 EST
       No snow is predicted.  84 degrees with lazy trade winds.


- Simply Gorgeous!
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 1 Dec 2002 06:54:05 EST
       84 degrees and holding with balmy trade winds making for very comfortable weather.  Come on down!  Enjoy some gorgeous weather.

Villa Carousella Vacation House Villa Rental at Smugglers Cove Beach on Tortola

- Airpoprt Trouble
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 22 Nov 2002 08:31:59 EST
       It is 84 degrees Fahrenheit or 29 degrees Celsius.
       Winds are gentle, rustling the palm fronds.
       Big party next Thursday at Jolly Roger for Thanksgiving, although Thanksgiving is not a BVI recognized holiday, some places celebrate it anyhow.  We BV Islanders tend to use all our own 30 something holidays as well as borrow some from the US.  This makes for excellent partying!
We had an incident at our new airport!
Two vultures boarded the airplane, each carrying two dead raccoons!
The stewardess looked  at them and said,
       "I'm sorry, gentlemen, new rules are:
only one carrion allowed per passenger."

This Column is Dedicated in loving memory of  Bob of Smugglers Cove Beach.

Sponsored by
Smugglers View Beach Villa

Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
Tortola BVI - Local Reports

- Rum Barrels & Pork Barrels
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2002 08:11:27 EST
       Good heavens.  Today brought out a glorious sunrise and moderate temperatures.  Gentle trade winds wander by, quietly rustling the mango tree in front the mermaid's cave.
       While strolling the beach, I found a rum barrel rollicking in the surf.  Inside was a note, scribbled in boat paint, across the remnants of an old sail:

Dear Miss mermaid; You speak of this light on a pole that is supposed to do things to the traffic (I also suppose automobile, human and animal traffic). How can the rest of us on other islands be sure your island has one of these things? How about a photo in your next post.   Vernon on an island that hasn't been blessed with a light on a pole.
ps.  What color are the lights? Do they change colors? Do they go on and off? Are they electric? Do they move? Are they a form of entertainment? Many questions...many questions. Please post a photo.

Dear Wondering in Vieques,
     I hope you didn't need that old sail and that you thoroughly enjoyed emptying the rum barrel. *hiccup*
     I went to town to get your picture of lights on a pole.  I was standing in traffic, dodging the cows, ignoring the horns and whistles (guess they don't see the mermaid out much these days!) trying to snap a quick picture for you.
     Suddenly there was a loud noise like SCREECH, KER-RASH, KER-RUNCH  followed by a litany of words (I can't repeat here) from the two hapless drivers that had collided.  Both were arguing they each had a green light in their view when the collision occurred. One cow was slightly bruised, but only had a lone "moo"  to add to this and said nothing about what color the light was.
     Miss mermaid began snapping pictures of the wreck and when the authorities arrived, they confiscated camera and film.  I was admonished (quite loudly, I might add) that mermaids belong at the beach or in the sea and not in traffic.
  Yet nobody yelled at the cows, one which was actively fertilizing the road  (should have been cautioned and ticketed.)
     Basically these lights on a stick, are three in total, green, yellow, red.  You stop on red, go on green and yellow you stop if you can and go if you can't.
     Most folks hit the gas when they see yellow (which invariably turns red long before they cross the intersection)  then inform the cops that it was really yellow and not red when they sped through at 90 miles an hour.
     Yes, these lights cause a great deal of entertainment.  Why they had an opening ceremony for these lights.  They had speeches, free food, free drinks, tents set up, rented chairs, a sound system, entertainment etc.
     They thanked everyone, handed out awards and plaques, praised their expertise in dumping millions of dollars so quickly on one teeny tiny project and pronounced all this, in the name of progress.  It was lauded, prayed upon and worshipped as if Tortola had just gotten their first church.
     I bet the opening party cost more than the lights.  From what I saw, most anyone who did or had ever worked for the government, was there, with a parking lot overflowing with their government cars (much, much nicer than anything the working stiffs can afford to ever buy in a lifetime of working here).  I imagine all these folks were on full pay and not taking a vacation day either.
     The entire ceremony was televised and recorded for prosperity.  It's a darn shame the Queen canceled her visit (to bless this mess), at the last minute.
     During the ceremony, celebrating this glorious light on a stick, two accidents occurred and could be clearly seen behind the speaker (the event was held outdoors at the intersection)  yet he never missed a beat in his long drawn out drone of thanking every last person involved in these lights including the very long list of electricians, engineers, architects, carpenters, designers, steel erectors, crane operators, government bureaucrats, elected and un-elected officials, appointed officials, ministers, dignitaries, prime ministers, lawyers, shippers, packers, clerks, sound engineers, photographers, filmmakers, messengers, laborers, caterers, musicians, speakers, reporters and the girl that handed the speaker a hankie to mop his brow on, while continuously passing him note after note of his long drawn out speech, so that he should not forget one tiny soul that may have even remotely had anything at all to do with this travesty of progress.
     Me thinks Miss Mermaid was the only person left on TOrtola, who was not personally thanked for this disaster (called progress...)
     So, sorry, no pictures of light on a stick yet! 

Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
Tortola BVI - Local Reports

- Message in a Bottle
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Tue, 19 Nov 2002 15:38:36 EST
       It rained so hard last night and for so long, that angels were swimming by, looking for Heaven's Gates. 
       Tortola needed a good washing. 
       Tonight is the full moon and also at least two good Fool Moon parties on Tortola.

Note Found Rolling in the Surf in an old Wine Bottle Outside My Lair

       the boys in the backroom were reading an old newspaper (part of their bed linen) and saw that someone escaped being convicted in court using provocation as his defense miss mermaid in Tortola is gravely provoking the boys and the boys have asked me to look up to see if provocation is a defense to a charge of kidnapping a mermaid. as a result we have increased the security outside their shed.

Dear Kidnappers (AKA Mattress Cowboys)
       Miss Mermaid is too slippery to be kidnapped. 

Found stuffed in a seashell at my door:
I would like to know when hurricane season starts in the Caribbean, I would like to book a Disney cruise for next year in November. 
Dear Mickey Mouse Fan Club,
       hurricane season starts June 1st. Peter Pan will fly you off the ship if a hurricane starts.

Delivered by Carrier Pigeon:
Greetings Miss Mermaid
I enjoy reading your reports.
I am coming down with my wife and five year old son,
we will have a charter boat for a week The last time I
was in the BVI was 9 years ago. I hope it hasn't changed.
If you would like to have a Pain Killer with some northerners
who miss the tropics send a note, we may be in Sopers Hole
on tues night. It would be great to get some local knowledge.
I like the reports on the traffic light and the 50 dollar bill story.
What beach was that?
Keep the reports coming.
We are hoping for stable weather and reasonable swells.

Wishing you fair winds,
Northern Sailor
Dear Yankee,
       Tortola has changed in 9 years. 
       Some of the roads are now paved.
       Bomba shack has a new collection of underwear hanging from he rafters.
       Some folks have phones in their homes now.
       Others are even driving cars.  
       The air strip is now an airport. 
       Quito has several albums out and a cover charge at his bar.
       Some things haven't changed. 
       Life is still slow. 
       Long distance calls remain cumbersome & expensive.
       Rum continues to out sell milk.
WHICH TUESDAY will you be in Sopers Hole?  Look for the mermaid!
       The nude beach is a secret.  Hint;  the initials are S.B.


Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
Tortola BVI - Local Reports

- Lights on a Pole
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Sat, 16 Nov 2002 06:27:16 EST
       Will wonders never cease!  Our lights on a pole made NATIONAL NEWS. 
       Take a peak for yourself!
         11/05: AOL News: Caribbean Town Starts Traffic Lights
        Non-AOLers: Look Here
       Well it is lauded as progress, the residents here HATE the darn traffic lights!
       Weather is great, a tad warm for November, but nobody is complaining!
       No snow is forecast.

Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
Tortola BVI - Local Reports

- Different Strokes
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 15 Nov 2002 18:18:20 EST
       Today was just another lovely day in paradise. 
       We wonder what the rich and poor are doing.
       No one is poor in Tortola.  That rubble of a shack is what we fondly call home.  That rust bucket rattling down the road is lovingly referred to as the family car. The 2 and 3 jobs many folks juggle is referred to as a career.  The goat family wandering around the yard is referred to as "Sunday Supper". 
       There is no food stamps, no public housing and no welfare on Tortola.  Everyone works for a living.  Few have time for crime. People are proud.
       Ask anyone on Tortola where the poor folks live and they will gleefully tell you "Off Island, Mon!"

       The middle aged mother went to the beach in her new one piece bathing suit.  She was grateful to have squeezed into a size 16 and was proud of the new suit.
       Her little boy was playing in the sand when another woman, much younger and in a size 4, came strutting by in the SAME bathing suit, only it accented her curves in all the right places. 
       The middle aged mother sighed, wishing she was that tiny again. 
       The little boy looked at the woman strutting by and then looked at Mom and said "LOOK!  She has the same bathing suit as yours, only HERS is a different shape!"


Several readers have asked  Miss Mermaid for more tales about the nude beach!  (Gives you an idea of the kind of readers I attract!)
       Well, one day a family found themselves unexpectedly at the nude beach and decided to take it all off and stay anyhow.  The little child with them,  runs down the beach and back again.  He asks mommy how come the young blond down the way has such huge breasts.  Mama looks at her own small  breasts and finally explains to him, that the bigger they are, the more stupid  the woman is.  The child accepts this and plays some more, running up and down the beach.
       Then he asks Daddy how come some men have bigger private parts than his.  Daddy looks at his own modest private parts, then says, well the bigger they are, the dumber the men are.  The child says OK and plays some more.
       After a while the mother goes for a swim and then the daddy goes for a stroll down the beach.   When the mother comes back,  she asks the child where the Daddy is. 
       The child replies:
       "Daddy is at the other end of the beach talking to that stupid blond and the longer he talks to her, the dumber he gets


Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
Tortola BVI - Local Reports

- Earthquakes and Volcanos and Gales
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 14 Nov 2002 09:16:51 EST
       Yesterday at 4:27pm we felt an earthquake.  It was long or so it seemed.  It rumbled for about 30 seconds and shook my concrete apartment house.  The neighbors dogs were baying but the cats slept right through it.
       It was a loud rumble like a truck driving across the roof. The room shook!
       I was mystified.  Perhaps Montserrat blew her dome again, though I haven't heard yet.
       There is a small gale south of Bermuda, but no threat to us. 

- Calm but not for long
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 3 Nov 2002 06:24:15 EST
       It is a cool 80 degrees.  The water in the harbor is dead calm and boats are turned all different directions. 
       They tested the traffic lights again.  This time they parked an ambulance nearby.  Some folks brought lawn chairs and coolers to watch the mayhem.  A vendor set up for business on the sidewalk.
       Many folks never even saw the lights.  They are on poles way up high and many drivers here sit slouched in their cars as if they are about to take a nap.  So many just drove right through them no matter what color they were.
       The ambulance was almost hit by one driver.  This will never work.  But the powers that be are going to keep trying.


- Just A Brewin'
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 31 Oct 2002 13:15:51 EST
       Weather is terrific, you should be here, if you aren't already!  If you aren't here and you want to be here, then you should be making arrangements to visit here.
       Come stay at the   Beach Villa and do some serious limin' mon!
       Today it is a tropical 86 degrees.

Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
Tortola BVI - Local Reports

Older 2002 reports are archived elsewhere

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