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More recent 2002 reports can be found elsewhere.

- - - 2002 Hurricane Season - - -

- So far, So good!
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Mon, 28 Oct 2002 12:53:30 EST
       No hurricanes.
       Highs in the low 80's, lows in the high 70's.
       Winds are moderate, sea swell good for surfers.

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

- Surf Is Up!
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 25 Oct 2002 19:24:18 EDT
       In the afternoons, the swell seems to increase and dozens of surfers were out yesterday, waiting for the big one to roll in. 
       Today is is 86 degrees at high noon, with balmy tradewinds wafting by.  The humidity is 70%  but hardly felt as long as the winds blow.
       Sky is blue and great day for sailing, though a bit swelly on the North side.

Picture of de islands last night with plenty of power in sight.
Island Wisdom.....
If you want your spouse to LISTEN to you and pay strict attention to everything you say.....
TALK in your SLEEP!

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

- Surf Is Up!
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 25 Oct 2002 12:16:47 EDT
       In the afternoons, the swell seems to increase and dozens of surfers were out yesterday, waiting for the big one to roll in. 
       Today is is 86 degrees at high noon, with balmy tradewinds wafting by.  The humidity is 70%  but hardly felt as long as the winds blow.
       Sky is blue and great day for sailing, though a bit swelly on the North side.

Picture of de islands last night with plenty of power in sight.
Island Wisdom.....
If you want your spouse to LISTEN to you and pay strict attention to everything you say.....
TALK in your SLEEP!

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

- Get the blankets!
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 24 Oct 2002 04:42:53 EDT
       There are 3 tropical waves east of us.  A large swell will bring great surfing (and hopefully some surfing pictures for you to enjoy!)
       None of the waves thrill me much, as my crystal ball predicts the potential for storm activity right up through December. 
       Now don't get alarmed, especially if you don't believe in crystal balls.  But I've discovered my crystal ball is often more accurate than anything else I've found.
       The nights are getting cooler and I've resorted to huddling under my blanket, because it got down to 78 degrees, brrrrrr.......

       But, every morning is the dawn of a new error!

       I was at a dock party in Venezuela.  The languages being spoken were many and English was not the dominant one. 
       It was a bit chaotic as I tried my rusty Spanish on an Italian who was getting a translation from a Peruvian.  Two Frenchmen were hosting the party and I tried to thank them in French, much to their amusement. 
       The Germans were alternately crunching out Dutch and offering interpretations in English and Russian.
       My Czechoslovakian captain was flirting with a young lady of striking beauty  who arrived. 
       Her beauty became the instant focus of attention and the party kind of quieted down, as we listened to the Czech interview her in English, which was not her native language.
       He asked her what she liked to do in her spare time.  She replied to the hushed crowd,  "My family and I love to go pissing!  Every chance we get, we go out and piss.  I like to piss every day, or every night, though sometimes we don't get to.  But, to me, being able to piss every chance I get,  just makes life worth living. I just got back from pissing, that is why I was late to the party. I think tomorrow, I will go out and piss some more.  I just can't get enough of pissing. If you like, I can bring you fresh piss tomorrow!"
       This was met by quiet astonishment then laughter from the English speaking contingent, then it had to be translated into many other languages so everyone could appreciate her odd activities.
       The poor girl looked aghast and after several attempts, somebody finally got it all translated back to her, and of course she turned beet red while the laughter died down around her.
       Finally, a young Venezuelan, who was still learning the English language, figured it all out and with great glee, he grabbed the hapless beauty,  taking her near the water's edge, he pointed to his head and said "Remember!"
       Then he pointed at the water and said "Piss, IN!"  and then while pointing upwards he yelled "Fish OUT!"
       "You and your  family love to go FISHING!"

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

- Fruits, Nuts and Hangovers
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Wed, 23 Oct 2002 13:23:45 EDT
       There is a little tropical wave out there, so the surf may be up soon (for all those surfer chicks!)
       Today, is just a beautifully gorgeous day.  I am in the tree house, watching the palms gently sway aginst the mango trees. 
       Life seemed so peaceful and serene....
       THEN, with a crunch, whoop, crash, thud, one eager nut broke free of the tree, and bounced on my car hood.  It left a big dent like a crater from outer space hit it.  I haven't opened the hood yet, to see if I still have an engine (saving that drama for later). 
       Guess I should drive a tank, my poor jeep was no match for that nut!

       Some pepole drank a bit too much on the fool moon.  Here is a picture of their hangover...


- Fool Moon Party
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Mon, 21 Oct 2002 15:58:25 EDT
       Scattered showers have dotted the islands, but the sun is out and the beach is terrific and it's the full moon tonight.

Miss Mermaid knows one crazy guy. 
On a hot sultry day, he came home with:
1 outdoor chaise lounge
50 balloons
1 ball of twine
1 tank of helium for balloons
1 length of small rope, about 100 feet long
1 small cooler with 12 beers in it
1 small disposable camera
AND what do you think he did next?  Why he took the picture, shown above!

       He tied the lounge chair to his pick up truck, then he sat there, in his new chair, filling up his 50 balloons and tying them to his lounge chair. He felt that the air would be cooler if he could just hover up over his back yard and enjoy the breezes.  After he had most of the balloons blown up and tied to his chair, he shot up in the air, while relaxing in his chaise lounge, tethered to his 100 foot rope.  He opened up a beer and drank it, toasting to his success.  The chair floated nicely over his yard, so he pulled out his camera and took a picture of his yard and house.
       He opened up another beer and suddenly, he heard that awful noise, of rope giving way, and SNAP!  He was shot up in the air!  He flew so high that he took this picture of the moon and earth before drifting back down.....

       OK, I did not make this up.  All of this is true EXCEPT he did not really take any pictures!
       In reality, this happened in California (can't remember, if it was a fruit or nut that did this...)  and he really did shoot out into the stratosphere, only to find himself in direct line with approaching planes going to the airport.
       Can you imagine what the control tower must have thought when the pilot came over the radio that a guy was sitting in a lounge chair, with beer and helium balloons, hovering about their airspace? 
       Anyhow, they sent up a plane to investigate who reported the same thing, so they sent up a helicopter who somehow rescued the guy, who was ever so grateful (as he was in desperate need of a change of pants!!!)

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

- Check Out That Moon Pic...
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 20 Oct 2002 09:03:39 EDT
       Well today is a beautiful day, the island is getting greener thanks to sporadic showers, but we still need more rain as the cisterns are still begging.
       The sky is an incredible color of blue, I don't think Crayola can make that shade, though they have come close.
       This is the eve of a full moon and tomorrow is a holiday in the island. 

       It was a gorgeous Sunday and two of us were on a sailboat, anchored in front of a small secluded, nude beach.  We hadn't bothered to dress, since there were no other boats around and the beach goers weren't wearing much either. 
       A friend of mine, at the beach, who I owed $50 to, saw us on the boat, and decided to swim out to see us.  He arrived naked and climbed aboard.  We sat around talking, and I gave him a $50 bill.
       Due to an injury, I could not swim the distance to the beach, so the 3 of us hopped in my dinghy and I fired up the engine to drive us ashore.
       We are used to going to the beach with very little and we hadn't bothered to bring towels or sarongs or clothes.  Just the three of us, naked in a dinghy, heading for the nude beach.
       Out of nowhere came a big speed boat with a park ranger in it.  He pulled us over and we scrambled around to cover up, but alas!  All we had were the $50 bill and the two emergency oars in the dinghy.  Oars don't cover much when you are naked.
      On shore, the nude beach goers had run for cover in the bushes and I was trying not to laugh at the very pregnant woman trying to hide behind a coconut tree!  Needless to say, she was well hidden, but her baby was not.  This park ranger was known for hating the nude beach goers and often harassed them for no good reason.
       He stared at us, two naked men and a woman in a near empty dinghy.  He saw my friend had his fist balled up, so he made him open his hand slowly, to reveal the $50 bill.
       The ranger looked at us and you could tell he too, was wondering why we had no towels or clothes in the dinghy.  Finally he asked the inevitable "WHAT are you three doing?"
       My friend with the $50 bill, held it up and said "We are going shopping for clothes!"
       The park ranger, shook his head, as if in a very bad dream and decided to let us go.

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

- Fool Moon Soon Come!
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 18 Oct 2002 17:41:01 EDT
86 degrees with gentle trade winds blowing.  A northerly swell has brought in some small surfer dude waves.

Monday is a local holida, St Ursula's Day.  It is also th Full Moon and two Fool Moon parties will be at either end of the island.

The weather conditions have bbenperfect for the s'hrooms that are so famous at the fool moon parties.

I don't expect anyone to get any work done on Tortola until about next Thursday.

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

- Run Before You Melt!
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 17 Oct 2002 04:19:33 EDT
Monserratt recently had another volcano eruption and part of the dome fell off.  Rumblings could be heard across the BVI, like bad thunder.

Our sunsets have been especially colorful, due to the fallout.

Local weather men reported that we would have storms throughout the week with more lightning, but fortunately, they were wrong again.

However, we have had some nice rain showers.

Not much gets done on Tortola when it rains.  Matter of fact,many folks still believe that if they get wet, they will melt!  Screams and screeches are heard when a sudden rain starts.  Folks run for cover ,as if their very life depended on it.

People are hours late for appointments, and then innocently say  "But, it was raining!"

My Staff Likes To Sleep When It Rains

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

- Lightning Strikes Tortola
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 13 Oct 2002 12:30:12 EDT
       The heavens opened up, the thunder roared and the lightning arced through the evening.
       Power outages were intermittent, phones were hit, TV's knocked out, reports of lightning strikes came from East End, West End and parts in between!
       One apartment building was struck particularly hard and the residents were astonished that when power was restored sometime later, much of their equipment was fried.

       Today, brought out a gorgeous day with gentle trade winds meandering by.

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

- Anchors Aweigh!
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 11 Oct 2002 20:28:42 EDT
From the mailbag:
We are hoping to go on a cruise next END OF OCT TO FIRST WEEK IN NOVEMBER 2003 to the Caribbean and would like some good information on what weather we could expect. We hear so much about hurricanes and have 2 children who may be more than a little scared (let alone us),,, kind regards
Faithful Believer in Crystal Ball

       Well, I know my crystal ball is world famous... and the impossible, I do immediately, but miracles take a little longer.....

       However, typically the weather in October and November is quite gorgeous with a slim to none chance of a hurricane or himmacane.
       GOOD NEWS!
       If you are on a big cruise ship, (as ooposed to a small sailboat)  the cruise ship can OUT RUN the hurricane!
       Chances are too (I used to work on cruise ships) is that IF there is a hurricane in the area, the cruise ship folks may not even tell you.  So there is LESS to worry about!
       Often they just come up with a convoluted reason as to why your next port of call has changed from  St Thomas to Hong Kong.
       So you should be safe and sound on the cruise ship. Nothing to be scared of  (except the casino sharks)!

       Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
Tortola & Virgin Gorda (BVI) - Local Reports (Caribbean Hurricane Network) 

Hoisting the Anchor on the Cruise Ship

- 82 degrees and dropping
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Wed, 9 Oct 2002 21:23:37 EDT
Weather is gorgeous, a tiny shower now and then, nights are cooler. 

Never take life seriously...

Nobody gets out alive anyway...

- We be Limin' Mon!
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Tue, 8 Oct 2002 12:00:38 EDT
       Nights are getting cooler, the sun is out but less intense.   Scattered clouds hint of the occasional rain shower.
       Well, it just rained for all of 2 minutes, right after I typed that in!
       Looks like, my original predictions, for no storms for the BVI, listed a few months back,  (based on my crystal ball) may turn out to be right again this year!
They tested the traffic lights again.  Major congestion occurred for about 30 minutes and traffic was backed up about a mile in either direction.
       THis won't work, but they (the powers that be)  don't know that!

Today is a great day to do some serious limin', mon!

Limin' is local lingo for relaxin' or partyin'

Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com

- Just Another Pretty Day
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Sat, 5 Oct 2002 10:47:08 EDT
       No storms in sight here. Just a gorgeous day.  We had some early morning rain, that made for good sleeping weather, then the sun came up and all was beautiful.

       Well, they tested the traffic lights again.  It caused major congestion.
       So they turned then back off.  The congestion cleared up.
       This week's newspaper has a quarter page advertisement, advising how to read the traffic lights. The only problem was, the ad was designed in color and the ad was printed in black and white.
       So it was a picture of a traffic light with the top one blacked out and says this means STOP and then it shows a blacked out middle light and explains you should stop if you have not crossed the line at the intersection.  Then it shows a blacked out bottom light and says this means GO.
       If the ad had been printed in color as they intended, it might make a little more sense. 
       But nothing on Tortola makes much sense.....

Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
2002Tortola & Virgin Gorda (BVI) - Local Reports (Caribbean Hurricane Network)

- Oooops!
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 3 Oct 2002 10:30:43 EDT
       When you scroll down some,  a picture appears that is sort of labeled wrong.  Frenchman's Cay is in the middle of the picture, not the top and the top is St John. The harbor in the middle is Sopers Hole.  Sorry about the confusion. 
       Miss Mermaid should use tooth picks to prop open her eyes open, when she writes this early in the day!

- What's a traffic light?
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 3 Oct 2002 10:21:48 EDT
       86 degrees this morning with balmy trade winds wafting by at a leisurely pace, (similar to how the workers operate here.)  The sky is a nice shade of blue, as if waiting for a painter to show up and do a masterpiece.

       From the mailbag:
       Vernon in Vieques writes "What is a traffic light?"
       ***  Vieques is a tiny island off Puerto Rico and doesn't have traffic lights either.
       Well, Vernon, you are not alone.  Over half of Tortola is saying "What is a traffic light?"  (the other half is too young to drive.)
       I tried to explain it to my friend the other day, since I have traveled around the western hemisphere, a good bit and I know what traffic lights are.
       It is this stick at the intersection with three lights stuck on it.  When the Red is lit up, you stop, when the green is lit up, you go.  When the orange is lit up, you stop if you can and go if you can't.
       He wrinkled up his forehead and stared at me to see if I was making a joke.  Then he sucked his teethe loudly and muttered "Cheese & bread!  THAT will NEVER work!"
       And I have to agree.

       Tortolians are a friendly lot and prefer speaking in person rather than over that newfangled phone system that requires you dial all 7 numbers now instead of the usual 5 numbers.
       So, at a red light, folks will seize the opportunity to chat up their neighbors in other cars and totally ignore the red-yellow-green lights.  When they are through chatting, they will have forgotten why they stopped in the first place, and simply hit the gas and go forward, whether the light is red, yellow or green.
       Furthermore, many pedestrians use this intersection, and there is no provision for them, so they too, will merrily ignore the lights and cross the road when they please, cause they know that everyone on Tortola will stop for a pedestrian in the road anyhow.
       Then there are the cows.  Yes, the cows. 
       This particular intersection has a roving herd of cattle.  They often walk down the grassy median, munching their way to town and back.  However, since palm trees were recently planted in the median (the car body  shops wanted more work, and trees in the median seemed like a good idea.)  Anyhow, the cows now have to wonder out into traffic to get around the palm trees and cows do NOT care what color the traffic light is!
       Also, the drag racers that use that road at night for their pleasure, have decided that since the traffic lights have a sequence of green-yellow-red, they will line up for the start of the race on the green light.  Then when it turns yellow, they rev their engines up, when the light turns red, that signals the start of the race and varooooom! They are off to a night of drag racing.

       "What's a traffic light?"  is bound to be asked all over Tortola for next few years. 

       Just like when we got fax machines.  I know the rest of you (who live anywhere but Tortola) were getting Internet access and we were just getting up to speed, using fax machines. Because I had been faxing for 10 years, many questions were targeted at me.
       What is fax?  Is it like sex?  Wanna fax with me  *wink*  *wink* ?
       Can I have safe fax? 
       Do I need anyone to fax with or can I fax alone?
       Is it OK to fax in a group? 
       Will fax be served in the bars now? 
       Will fax be available at happy hour prices?
       Will fax only be served on the fool moon parties?
       Should I keep my faxing a secret or is it OK if my wife knows? 
       Can I fax with just anyone or only just friends? 
       What do I tell the kids about fax?  And at what age? 
       Should I warn them about adult faxers?
       Can I get a disease from faxing with strangers?

Sopers Hole, Sand spit to the left, Frenchman's Cay at top


Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
2002Tortola & Virgin Gorda (BVI) - Local Reports (Caribbean Hurricane Network)

- Just a little turburlance...
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Wed, 2 Oct 2002 15:04:48 EDT
       Scattered rains and occasional thunder rumble through the island.  No hurricanes are threatening us but my heart goes out to those about to feel Lili's wrath of 135 mile per hour winds.
       The airline regatta is in the islands this week. Last night was a big kick off party at Jolly Roger in West End Tortola.  Intermittent showers did nothing to dampen the crowd. 
       Boy, can those people party!  Airline employees from all over the world, vacation here this week and in between parties, they race the boats from island to island. 
       But today, at the start of the race, the sailboats were leaving the harbor, when the thunder roared in and that great bath tub in the sky, pulled the plug.
       I guess you could say they experienced some turbulence...


       After hurricane Hugo had hit St Thomas in 1989, I found myself in a small plane, flying low over the island, a few weeks later.  Winds of 200 miles per hour had devastated the island.  Blue tarps dotted the barren landscape.  The beauty seemed inexplicably gone. 
       Incredibly, it looked like a huge giant of immense weight had angrily stomped across the island.  Some neighborhoods were wiped out, others totally in tact.  It scared me and I cried on the plane.
       After the hurricane, I took refuge in the strangest places, including a shipping container I slept in one night with my then boyfriend.   Our floating home, a boat, had vanished with the storm, and no one ever found a stick or piece of it anywhere.  Like so many others, we had become homeless.
       One night it was raining.  The island had a curfew after the hurricane. Police were on the patrol to pick up curfew breakers.  We ducked into the container to hide from them and we slept there all night, nice and dry.
       Funny how we were so humble, so grateful for an old rusty container to call our home, for a night.
       The next day, we were invited to Hassle Island for complimentary showers.  Someone had discovered an old cistern.  We stood under the garden hose, naked, and were so grateful to get a fresh water bath in the heat of the day, when the cold water seemed less cold.
       Ker-plap!  Ker-splash!  The water hose begin acting erratically and that's when we noticed that tadpoles or some such similar creature, were coming through the hose and hitting us, then landing on the ground and wiggling.  It was incredible.  There were hundreds of them.
       Some folks say this story sounds fishy, but I was there and it really happened.

View from Sky World, on Tortola


Your Correspondent
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com

This Report Sponsored By
Vacation in Paradise

- Tortola got its FIRST TRAFFIC LIGHT!!!!
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Tue, 1 Oct 2002 00:03:19 EDT
       Weather has been gorgeous but I study the satellite pictures first thing everyday and make my own assumptions with the help of my crystal ball.  I still believe that all storms will miss us this year, and I said that at the start of the season, that we were sending them all to the states this year, and by golly, that is what happened (so far!)

       Downtown they installed a brand new traffic light!  The first ever on Tortola.  I absolutely hate it.  I think it is a dumb idea and everybody here is betting it will cause a few wrecks.
       They cut it on and the timing was messed up real bad.  It was red on all four directions, then it turned green, in all four directions!  Finally they reset it to flashing yellow and installed a cop to direct traffic.  I felt real sorry for the cop, he was almost killed.
       We could hear screeching tires every few seconds, cause folks here just aren't used to traffic lights or a cop directing traffic either.  Folks here are used to driving any which way they please!
     The poor cop must be the real low man on the totem pole, to draw such an assignment, or else they did it as a joke to the new man on the beat.
       One time I was downtown, in a bar drinking, because there was a big traffic snarl in town and I figured I would relax until it cleared up.  A cop came in to order a cold drink and someone asked him why he wasn't directing traffic to ease the snarl.   He said "WHAT?  The folks here drive real crazy mon! I could get killed doing that!"
       Every day on the local radio station, for an hour, they have instructions on how to use a traffic light and what all those pretty colors mean. 
       I am starting a betting pool on how many wrecks and mashups we have the first week it is in operation.
       You see, it must have been someone from off island who came up with this lame brain idea. A Tortolian would know better than to introduce something so foolish!  WHY?
       Because Tortolians like to do as they please.  To do anything less is a loss of freedom.  Drivers here stop in the middle of the road, to talk with pedestrians to pickup and discharge hitchhikers, to fix the carburetor or to wash the car.  Yes!  I had to drive up on the sidewalk one day to get around a car that was parked in the street, blocking traffic, and  being washed.  How does a traffic light help ease that problem?
       Drivers here just stop, in the middle of the road and run inside a business and stay gone for 20 minutes while the traffic just backs up behind them.  How does a traffic light help ease that problem?
       I see folks park in the road and block the entrance to a parking lot!
       I stopped at  a store in West End that has parking for about 20 cars.  When I pulled in, there was not a car in sight. I parked nice and neatly (unheard of around here!)
       When I came out, there were now 3 cars in the parking lot.  Mine and the two that were blocking me in, while a big empty expanse of parking lot, lay around us.

- Kyle is meandering
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Mon, 30 Sep 2002 09:33:06 EDT
       I am watching Kyle.  I don't trust him one  bit!  He goes south then north, then west, he goes for Bermuda, then he leaves, then he goes back. 
       We had a day of clouds and rains on Saturday, most unusual for us!
       At 6am, it is 84 degrees, but it feels much cooler.

       I think some more rain is on the way.
Sunset at Smuggler's Cove Beach

Your Correspondent
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com

This Report Sponsored By
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- Cloudy, Rainy, Cool
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 27 Sep 2002 09:16:58 EDT
       West end Tortola, intermittent showers, peak a boo sun.
       I don't like Kyle's track, but hopefully he knows better than to mess with us.

       This is our lucky  year, no hurricanes, no himmacanes!
West End of Tortola
Little Thatch shown bottom right, Frenchmans Cay, above that.

Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
2002Tortola & Virgin Gorda (BVI) - Local Reports (Caribbean Hurricane Network)

- From the mailbag
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 26 Sep 2002 17:31:56 EDT
Dear Miss Mermaid,

Just wondering how things are looking in Tortola. The satellite images have
us slightly concerned.My fiancée and I will be honeymooning there the first
two weeks of October.  What are the high and low temps that we can expect
for our stay and do you have any recommendations on things to do or places
to go?
We purchased trip insurance but are hoping for the best : )
Signed-Almost Married

Dear Almost Married,
       Thank you for your email.  Things are looking really pretty on Tortola.  We had all the overcast days this week, so that next week when you arrive, all will be bright and sunny.
       The satellite images had us slightly concerned too, but then we decided "no problem, mon!"
       The highs and lows you can expect are from the high 70's to the high 80's with moderate humidity, but as long as the tradewinds blow, you won't feel it.
       Recommendations on things to do and places to go...
       Well, if you are on your honeymoon, you will have plenty to do and many fun out of the way places to do it!
       As for places to go, the beaches are terrific, the rain forest and the botanical gardens are both very romantic.
       For wildness, hang your undies at the Bomba shack and see if you can garner a free punch or T-shirt.
       For great food at a very reasonable price, try a new restaurant in West End, across from the Big Ben's Gas Station.
       The name of the place is the Road House, the chef Rick is awesome and his wife, Sherry,  is a great bartender and Sabina, the waitress is very sweet and attentive.  They also make terrific to-go food for lunch and dinner if you want to take it with you.  I ate there four times last week, cause I am hooked on their great food!     
       You are smart to buy trip insurance for something as important as your honeymoon.
       See ya at the beach!

Your Correspondent
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com

This Report Sponsored By ReservationsBVI.com

Smuggler's View Beach Villa

- Bright and Breezy
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Tue, 24 Sep 2002 06:57:41 EDT
       The trees are rustling, the wind is tickling them.  I spent yesterday getting ready for the storm, better safe than sorry.  Many folks did nothing to get ready.  So let's hope nothing happens.
       Our only Internet provider, Cable & Wireless, should be renamed Fable & Worthless, we are having numerous problems trying to get on the Internet. The local weather channel isn't  reporting anything, it is as if no one cares an iota about this storm Lili.
       So perhaps I should quit worrying about her too.

Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
2002Tortola & Virgin Gorda (BVI) - Local Reports (Caribbean Hurricane Network)

- Tropical Storm 13 on her way
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Mon, 23 Sep 2002 09:24:55 EDT

       Looks like we can expect some winds and rains out of #13.  Today it is bright and sunny with some gentle breezes.  Temperature is 82 degrees.  Tomorrow will be a different story though.

Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
2002Tortola & Virgin Gorda (BVI) - Local Reports (Caribbean Hurricane Network)

- Something to Watch Closely
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 22 Sep 2002 14:37:27 EDT

Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
2002Tortola & Virgin Gorda (BVI) - Local Reports (Caribbean Hurricane Network)

- Uh oh........
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 22 Sep 2002 13:56:12 EDT

Well, this image tends to cut off storm 13 in the right hand corner.
Tortola is in that small patch of blue north of Venezuela.

In this land of Fun & Sun,
We don't flush for number one!
But if you take a sh*t, we don't mind a bit!
If it's Yellow, Let it Mellow,
If it's brown, flush it down

Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
2002Tortola & Virgin Gorda (BVI) - Local Reports (Caribbean Hurricane Network)

- Thirteeen, Unlucky or Not?
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 22 Sep 2002 01:08:02 EDT
       Well, tropical depression 13 is out there making noises and it makes me a tad nervous. 
       Another storm a few years back, Hurricane Marilyn, was also  number 13.  Ten days earlier, we had gone through Luis.  The forecasters thought it would be a big bad one, but it wasn't quite as bad as predicted.  Then when Marilyn snuck up on us, many forecasters thought it would be a weak storm.  It was horrible and so devastating, that it changed every aspect of my life.
       It is how I came to live on Tortola, so something good came out of something bad, though it was an uneasy odyssey for me at times.  See, I never once in my life, planned to live on Tortola. 
       Sure, I had visited here lots and worked on charter and private yachts, sailed a few tall ships and plied these waters many times professionally.  Tortola was another port of call.  I made a few friends in every port.  I loved to travel.
       My work schedule was often erratic and sometimes I ended up with a few weeks off to rest up and get ready for the next bath of assignments.  Sometimes I would work weeks on end, 7 days a week, 12-16 hours a day.  I liked the crazy schedule, I had a tiny pocket calendar that told me where to be on what day or week, which country or which island or which yacht.  I picked up work all over.
       I had a little sailboat stashed as my home, but during Luis, I secured her on six anchors in the harbor and went ashore to stay in a large sturdy villa. During the height of the storm in the middle of the night, I played the grand piano by candle light.
       My boat was found about 50 yards from where I left her, with 2 anchors still attached.  She had a bit of cosmetic damage, matter of fact, I was horrified with her initial appearance.  Red paint was scraped into her white hull, up one side and down the next, like a large giant with a red crayon had scribbled all over her pretty hull.
       I moved back aboard a few days later, cleaned up much of the mess, put the boat back in sailing condition, and one day on a whim, I sailed over to Tortola to meet a friend who was flying in for a week.
       A few days later, I was once again putting out anchors and lines and took refuge at a well protected dock, then moved to a hotel that lied to me about availability, but finally rented us a room.  We checked in, cut on the TV weather channel, made a few phone calls and took a shower.  A few minutes later, the water, power and phone were shut off and remained that way for days. We were on the 2nd floor and it flooded.  We ate apricots and almonds, cause that was all we had.  We read books by  flash light.
       The bathroom had a window and it was partially open.  I went in there and the wind blew the door shut firmly and popped my ears.  I couldn't get it open to get back out! 
       Before the hurricane, I warned my friend that my stomach didn't like storms much and not to worry if I made frequent lengthy trips to the bathroom, which I did.  So when I didn't come out right away, he wasn't concerned and the hurricane was so noisy, he never heard me hollering and banging.  Eventually, I got the window shut and the door open and emerged to the flooded room. 

       The most vivid thing I remember about the storm was the masts howling in the marina and boat yard.  There must have been 1,000 boats within a mile of us.  All the sailboat masts (those sticks in the air)  were all shrieking, as if they all played the flute, but on a different chord, a unique note, and no two the same.  The eight note octave, was replaced with hundreds of notes, endless sustained chords.

Paradise Found


Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
2002Tortola & Virgin Gorda (BVI) - Local Reports (Caribbean Hurricane Network)

- Storm Everywhere but None Here Yet
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Wed, 18 Sep 2002 11:54:17 EDT
       The sky is very dark, suggesting rain clouds.  Temperatures are in the low 80's, winds are around 10mph.  The sun is playing peak a boo.
       Yesterday the beach had 18 people on it!  I wonder how word got out so fast?  Gone are the days of deserted beaches, even in September.

Stone & Conch Shells Form This Wall at  Smuggler's View Vacation Villa

Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
2002Tortola & Virgin Gorda (BVI) - Local Reports (Caribbean Hurricane Network)

- Beautiful Days are Here Again!
  • From: DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
  • Date: Tue, 17 Sep 2002 09:00:25 EDT
       Sunday, the sky clouded over with darkness, the heavens opened up and the winds howled while the seas roared.
       In Wet End Tortola, it was a cozy stormy day.  Through out the night, lightning lit up the skies and thunder grumbled.
       By day break on Monday, the skies were nearly clear, the rains were gone, the sun was playing peak a boo and gardens all over Wet End were standing a tad taller and a smidgen greener.
       Tuesday morning brought calmer seas, blue skies, azure waters and gentle winds wafting by.
       Paradise  restored!
       Come on down, the water is warm, the seas are gentle, the winds are fair.
       Beaches are not too crowded, though the other day I was dismayed to find a huge crowd at the beach, at least 8 people were frolicking around, half of them tourists, half locals.

       Guess we just have to share our peace and paradise with others sometimes...
Flamboyant Tree at  Smuggler's View Vacation Villa, Smuggler's Cove Beach


Warm & Sunny Regards,
DearMissMermaid AT aol.com
2002Tortola & Virgin Gorda (BVI) - Local Reports (Caribbean Hurricane Network)

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