Sunday, May 6, 2012

The Jacmel adventure

From Port au prince we drove though the mountains down to Jacmel and spent the night at the hotel La Florita.  It’s 2 blocks up from the beach and had great atmosphere.  It’s a gingerbread house built in 1888.  We had the top suite to ourselves.  An artist, Rose Marie Lamour, was having a reception, and there was a jazz/kompa band.  The room came with complimentary breakfast (bread, fruit, coffee) and you can also order other food.  They serve lunch and dinner too.  And did a good job rebuilding after the earthquake (see scary earthquake damage photos here).

The beach right in Jacmel has so much trash!  We saw people dumping trash near the wetland early in the morning, and concluded it was the city dump.  People let their goats and pigs run loose in it.  We came across a couple kids throwing stones to try to hit swallows, so used it as an opportunity to teach about birds and how to use the binoculars.  Attracted about 10 kids and one woman who brought a puppy in a sack to wash off in the ocean.  I gave them each a birds of Haiti laminated card.

We drove down the coast and found a beautiful rocky beach in Caye Jacmel.  We stopped along the road near a bridge and walked along the shore.  Found tiny hermit crabs.  We cut through a small banana tree field to get back to the road to walk back.  Found a talented woodworker and also give his kids some of the bird cards.  He said he was glad we didn’t humiliate him by not stopping to talk. I'll post images from this nice beach in the next blog post.

That day we drove to the north shore along the bay, and ate dinner at Samaritan’sPurse at Jax Beach, then stayed overnight with Rhoda’s friends who run the Kodep guest house and program.  They have demonstration forests up in the mountains, and will open a school this fall.  At their house is a tilapia farm.  In the morning we went snorkeling in their back yard!  Saw fish, sea urchins, star fish, coral, etc. 

Hotel La Florita


Band at the La Forita

Inside the La Forita

Debbie & Rhoda at the La Florita

My room at the La Florita

Don't throw trash here!  Scouts & UN
Trash heap on the Jacmel beach
Teaching birding on the Jacmel beach

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