We have all day to get across the island which if we were in a hurry would take about an hour. Breakfast at the regular 7:30. We discuss what we should do today. There are a couple of hikes we have not done so we look at the possiblities. Jaco’s Steps is a good possiblity and is on the way we choose to follow.
As we pack the car I realize I am missing my hat. It is a Tilley hat and although it defines me as a tourist even though I try to fit in, that hat has travelled the world and has done a yeoman’s job of it. I’m quite sure I left it at the place we stopped to eat last night. A short detour to LCHQ to see if perhaps the owner had found it and left it somewhere available. But alas my hat is nowhere to be found and I resign myself to wearing Debbie’s straw hat that is 2 sizes too small. Nobody here knows me and fashion is not high on my priority list.
We get a bit over exuberent and by pass the entrance to Jaco’s Steps and drive a kilometer or so down the road before we ask a couple of folks and they indicate we should turn around. There is a place at the roadside where we could park the car but since someone smashed our window while we were parked in a similar spot and today the car is full of our stuff I do not want to park there, so we head down the goat track to the parking below. It is steep, even for this island, and it is gravel. I jokingly comment we may not make it out. Ha, quite a joke.
At the bottom it is not really a National Park and the parking and trail look pretty rustic. We decide not the leave the unattended car there either. About half way back up the track to the highway the car spins out. We are not going any farther. I will have to back down and take another run at it. The three passengers get out and C guides me backwards down the goat path. Thinking the lighter the car the better we divest the auto of most of our luggage which C and Debbie haul up the track. I get a pretty good run and I slip, slide my way up. The entire road is only about 2′ wider than the car and I use the entire width. Full gas and I don’t back off the accelerator. I get past the steep part and still don’t back off, spinning tires all the way with mud and gravel being spewed behind me as I go. This could have been a major development in our travel education but it turned out OK. We learned without dire consequences. Some roads are not for 2 wheel drives loaded to the hilt with passengers and luggage.
The rest of our trip north along the east coast is quite pleasent. The Atlantic Ocean displays its might with powerful surf and crashing waves. It is my last long drive and I think I am far more relaxed than when I started a couple of weeks ago.
We find our way back to the Coffee River Cottages and get settled in. There is a swimable river on the property and we take advantage of it to douse our sweaty bodies. It is quite fun really, the hotel has a couple of car tire tubes and we spend our time paddling upstream and floating back down until the rocks impede any further travel.
Last day on this island. Debbie and I board a plane to Barbados at 7am and D&Ccatch a flight to St. Maartin at about 9.30. It is sad to go. I like this place. It has not be soiled with resort development and the life is much like I expect it to be on a Caribbean Island. Ciao for now we MAY return.