Times of the Islands Winter 2019/20

Presents the "soul of the Turks & Caicos Islands" with in-depth features about local people, culture, history, environment, businesses, resorts, restaurants and activities.

Presents the "soul of the Turks & Caicos Islands" with in-depth features about local people, culture, history, environment, businesses, resorts, restaurants and activities.


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TIMES<br />

OF THE<br />


SAMPLING THE SOUL OF THE TURKS & CAICOS ISLANDS WINTER <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong> /<strong>20</strong> NO. 129<br />


A clear view required<br />


Whales in Grand Turk<br />


TCI funeral traditions<br />


Salt Cay shipwrecks

T U R K S & C A I C O S ’ U LT I M AT E<br />

FA N TA S Y F O O D FA C E - O F F<br />

Two<br />

spectacular<br />

chefs.<br />

Executive Chef Lauren Callighen<br />

Parallel23 at The Palms<br />

Executive Chef Martin Davies<br />

SUI-REN at The Shore Club<br />

S U I - R E N<br />

Award-winning Executive<br />

Chef Martin Davies fuses<br />

Japanese cuisine with<br />

Peruvian flair into a<br />

brilliant blend <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

PA R A L L E L 2 3<br />

Award-winning Executive<br />

freshest seafood and<br />

organic produce.<br />

Chef Lauren Callighen<br />

works her magic with<br />

Caribbean fusion<br />

cuisine featuring <strong>the</strong><br />

freshest local ingredients<br />

And<br />

you're <strong>the</strong><br />

judge.<br />

seasoned with an abundant<br />

dash <strong>of</strong> creativity.<br />

A T T H E P A L M S O N G R A C E B A Y<br />

at The Shore Club on Long Bay Beach<br />

Open nightly 6:00 –10:30pm<br />

649.946.8666 | <strong>the</strong>palmstc.com<br />

Open nightly 6:00 –10:30pm<br />

649.339.8000 | <strong>the</strong>shoreclubtc.com


Generation<br />

Everyone<br />

Everything’s Included for Everyone!<br />

<strong>20</strong>18<br />

<strong>20</strong>18<br />

More Quality<br />

Inclusions than<br />

any o<strong>the</strong>r Resorts<br />

in <strong>the</strong> World<br />

At Beaches ® Turks & Caicos, everyone can create <strong>the</strong>ir<br />

own perfect vacation. For some, it’s <strong>the</strong> white-sand<br />

beaches and calm waters featuring unlimited land and<br />

water sports. For o<strong>the</strong>rs, it’s <strong>the</strong> awesome 45,000 sq.<br />

ft. waterpark with surf simulator. There’s 5-Star Global<br />

Gourmet TM dining at 21 incredible restaurants, and<br />

non-stop bars and entertainment —and it’s always<br />

included. Even <strong>the</strong> tips, taxes, and Beaches transfers*.<br />

We’ve even added trend-setting food trucks, new live<br />

entertainment, and re-styled accommodations<br />

… making <strong>the</strong> World’s Best even better for<br />

Generation Everyone.<br />

BEACHES.COM in <strong>the</strong> U.S. & Canada: 1-800-BEACHES<br />

In <strong>the</strong> Caribbean: 1-888-BEACHES; In Turks & Caicos 649-946-8000<br />

@beachesresorts<br />


21<br />


TM/© <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong> Sesame Workshop<br />

*Airport transfers included. O<strong>the</strong>r transfers may be additional. Beaches ® is a registered trademark. Unique Vacations, Inc., is an affiliate <strong>of</strong> Unique Travel Corp., <strong>the</strong> worldwide representative <strong>of</strong> Beaches Resorts.

contents<br />

Departments<br />

6 From <strong>the</strong> Editor<br />

15 Around <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong><br />

Ice Cream in Parrotice<br />

By Jody Rathgeb ~ Photos By Tom Rathgeb<br />

<strong>20</strong> Eye on <strong>the</strong> Sky<br />

Hidden Dangers<br />

By Paul Wilkerson<br />

24 Creature Feature<br />

Big Thrills —<br />

Meeting Humpback whales in Grand Turk<br />

By Brian Heagney<br />

Photos By Brian Heagney & Sabine Frank<br />

71 Faces & Places<br />

MOTTAC Music Festival<br />

Story & Photos By David Newlands<br />

72 About <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>/TCI Map<br />

77 Where to Stay<br />

78 Classified Ads<br />

80 Dining Out<br />

82 Subscription Form<br />

Features<br />

44 Final Goodbyes<br />

By Jody Rathgeb<br />

50 Birds & Binoculars<br />

By William J. Cook ~ Photos By Marta Morton<br />

Green Pages<br />

30 The Mighty Mangrove<br />

By Ewa Krzyszczyk<br />

36 Onus or Bonus?<br />

By Kristy Lee, Sylvia Myers, Debbie Bartlett and<br />

Franziska Elmer<br />

40 Roadmap to Sustainability<br />

By Megan Tierney, Lucy Beagley,<br />

Lormeka Williams, Cherylann S. Jones,<br />

Michelle Fulford-Gardiner and Eric F. Salamanca<br />

Photos By Eric F. Salamanca<br />

TIMES<br />

OF THE<br />


SAMPLING THE SOUL OF THE TURKS & CAICOS ISLANDS WINTER <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> NO. 129<br />

On <strong>the</strong> Cover<br />

Marta Morton caught this ra<strong>the</strong>r disorganized group <strong>of</strong><br />

flamingos at North Creek, during a visit to Salt Cay. The<br />

old salinas and salt pans <strong>the</strong>re provide a varied habitat<br />

for waterbirds <strong>of</strong> all kinds.<br />

Marta documents her life in Turks & Caicos as proprietoress<br />

<strong>of</strong> Harbour Club Villas with her camera, and readers<br />

are well-familiar with <strong>the</strong> magic she creates. To see more<br />

<strong>of</strong> Marta’s images, see “Birds & Binoculars” on page 50<br />

and go to www.harbourclubvillas.com.<br />

15<br />

Astrolabe<br />

60 Going Under<br />

Story & Photos By Dr. Joost Morsink &<br />

Dr. Ruud Stelten<br />

66 TCI in WWII<br />

By Captain Eric Wilberg<br />


4 www.timespub.tc

TurksAndCaicosProperty.com<br />

Mandalay - Long Bay Beachfront<br />

Mandalay is <strong>the</strong> most sophisticated expansive villa built on Providenciales and is set on over <strong>20</strong>0’ <strong>of</strong><br />

pristine white sandy beach. The 7 bedroom luxury property features award-winning architectural<br />

design capturing <strong>the</strong> essence <strong>of</strong> open Caribbean living with a masterful layout that revolves<br />

a ro u n d a s p e c t a c u l a r m u l t i - l eve l p o o l w i t h c e n t r a l l o u n g e , fi re p i t a n d c a s c a d i n g w a t e r f e a t u re s .<br />

US$15,000,000<br />

Bernadette Hunt<br />

Cell ~ 649 231 4029 | Tel ~ 649 941 3361<br />

Bernadette@TurksAndCaicosProperty.com<br />

Bernadette has lived in <strong>the</strong> Turks and Caicos<br />

<strong>Islands</strong> for over 21 years and witnessed <strong>the</strong><br />

development and transition <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> islands<br />

into a significant tourist destination. Based<br />

on independent figures her gross transaction<br />

numbers are unrivalled. Bernadette<br />

has listings on Providenciales, Pine Cay,<br />

Ambergris Cay, North and Middle Caicos<br />

and is delighted to work with sellers and<br />

buyers <strong>of</strong> homes, condos, commercial real<br />

estate and vacant undeveloped sites.<br />

Long Bay Beachfront Land<br />

This highly desirable 2 acre parcel <strong>of</strong> Long Bay beachfront land has an expenasive 150’ <strong>of</strong> beach<br />

frontage and is part <strong>of</strong> a private residential neighborhood with surrounding spectacular multimilliondollar<br />

villas and luxury developments. This vacant estate site is directly adjacent to The Pearl Villas<br />

and <strong>the</strong> property has been subdivded into two seperate 1 acre lots that are ready to be developed.<br />

US$3,600,000<br />

Turks and Caicos Property is <strong>the</strong> leading<br />

independent real estate firm in <strong>the</strong> Turks and<br />

Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> with <strong>of</strong>fices located at Ocean<br />

Club West Resort and Ocean Club West<br />

Plaza on <strong>the</strong> Grace Bay Road.<br />

Bernadette’s reputation and success has been<br />

earned over time through her dedication,<br />

enthusiasm and passion for real estate. Her<br />

personal experience as having practiced law<br />

in <strong>the</strong> islands for more than 10 years toge<strong>the</strong>r<br />

with owning and renovating a number <strong>of</strong><br />

properties means she is well-placed to advise<br />

her customers and developers on what to<br />

anticipate in <strong>the</strong> purchasing and construction<br />

process.<br />

Bernadette delights in working in <strong>the</strong> real<br />

estate industry and her humor and energy<br />

make her a pleasure to work with.<br />

Villa Aquazure - Leeward Beachfront<br />

Villa Aquazure is a beautifully designed beachfront vacation rental villa with a total <strong>of</strong> 4<br />

bedrooms and is located in <strong>the</strong> most desirable neighborhood <strong>of</strong> Leeward on <strong>the</strong> nor<strong>the</strong>astern<br />

corner <strong>of</strong> Providenciales. The villa has been impeccably maintained and is currently operated<br />

as one <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> best vacation rentals in this area generating income in <strong>the</strong> high six figures.<br />

Please contact Bernadette if you would like<br />

to find out more about owning real estate in<br />

<strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>.<br />


from <strong>the</strong> editor<br />


This surreal shot <strong>of</strong> a late-autumn sunset was captured by Marta Morton overlooking <strong>the</strong> Harbour Club Villas and Marina docks at South Side<br />

Marina.<br />

Sunrise, Sunset<br />

As I was looking at this photo, one <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> songs from <strong>the</strong> musical “Fiddler on <strong>the</strong> Ro<strong>of</strong>” came to mind: “Sunrise,<br />

sunset; Sunrise, sunset; Swiftly fly <strong>the</strong> years; One season following ano<strong>the</strong>r; Laden with happiness and tears.” That’s<br />

how I feel <strong>the</strong>se days, as time speeds by and <strong>the</strong> people and places near and dear to me change.<br />

I think that’s why <strong>the</strong> late autumn’s sunlight brings me such joy. It starts with <strong>the</strong> slow arrival <strong>of</strong> dawn, marked by<br />

a conch-shell pink tint to <strong>the</strong> sky, deepening to rose-red at <strong>the</strong> tops <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> billowing clouds at <strong>the</strong> horizon. Afternoons<br />

are dipped in gold, <strong>the</strong> sun painting everything in sight with a burnished beauty. These scenes always remind me<br />

<strong>of</strong> my belief that <strong>the</strong> God <strong>of</strong> creation is a master. Nothing humans create comes close to <strong>the</strong> glorious splendor <strong>of</strong><br />

<strong>the</strong> natural world. This shouts <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> existence <strong>of</strong> a good God, a God <strong>of</strong> love, a God who will never change. And that<br />

brings me great comfort.<br />

Whenever I count my blessings, living in <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> and having this job come near <strong>the</strong> top <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

list. I revel in being able to showcase this country’s “Beautiful by Nature” portraits and stories in each issue. May this<br />

issue bring you <strong>the</strong> same joy, beauty and wonder.<br />

Kathy Borsuk, Editor<br />

timespub@tciway.tc • (649) 431-4788<br />

6 www.timespub.tc

Introducing <strong>the</strong> Boathouses<br />

The Boathouses at South Bank will be conveniently<br />

located on <strong>the</strong> marina waterfront with elevated<br />

water views, most with a private dock keeping<br />

your boat close at hand for when <strong>the</strong> ocean calls.<br />

Cleverly designed to maximize space and light,<br />

each is imbued with a warm, contemporary<br />

aes<strong>the</strong>tic as a 1, 2 or 3 bedroom layout. Managed<br />

by Grace Bay Resorts, <strong>the</strong> Boathouses will <strong>of</strong>fer<br />

<strong>the</strong> perfect balance <strong>of</strong> community, service, views<br />

and space.<br />

Prices starting from $795,000<br />

Register interest today at livesouthbank.com<br />

Developed by <strong>the</strong><br />

Windward Development Company<br />

www.windward.tc<br />

Brand partners:<br />

Managed by:<br />

For more information contact<br />

Nina Siegenthaler at 649.231.0707<br />

Joe Zahm at 649.231.6188<br />

or email: nina@tcso<strong>the</strong>bysrealty.com



1. Key West Village 2. Italian Village<br />

<strong>20</strong>18<br />

<strong>20</strong>18<br />




21<br />


Beaches, waterparks, pools—<strong>the</strong>re’s<br />

something for everyone.<br />


3. Caribbean Village 4. French Village 5. Seaside Village<br />



At Beaches ® Turks & Caicos, everyone can create <strong>the</strong>ir own perfect day. For some, it’s <strong>the</strong><br />

white-sand beaches and calm waters featuring land and water sports. For o<strong>the</strong>rs, it’s <strong>the</strong><br />

awesome 45,000 sq. ft. waterpark with surf simulator. There’s 5-Star Global Gourmet TM<br />

dining at 21 incredible restaurants, and non-stop bars and entertainment —and it’s always<br />

included—tips, taxes and Beaches transfers*, too. We’ve even added trend-setting food trucks,<br />

new live entertainment, and re-styled accommodations … making <strong>the</strong> World’s Best even better.<br />

*Visit www.beaches.com/disclaimers/times<strong>of</strong><strong>the</strong>islandsspring<strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong> or call 1-800-SANDALS for important terms and conditions.<br />

Hang out with some real<br />

characters at Beaches.<br />

Discover a whole world <strong>of</strong> cuisine with<br />

5-Star Global Gourmet dining.<br />

TM/© <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong> Sesame Workshop<br />

BEACHES.COM • In <strong>the</strong> U.S. and Canada: 1-800-BEACHES;<br />

In <strong>the</strong> Caribbean: 1-888-BEACHES; In Turks & Caicos: 649-946-8000 or call your Travel Pr<strong>of</strong>essional


BETTER<br />


21<br />


Beaches ® Turks & Caicos has held <strong>the</strong> top spot at <strong>the</strong> World Travel<br />

Awards for two decades by <strong>of</strong>fering families more <strong>of</strong> everything<br />

on <strong>the</strong> world’s best beach. Every land and water sport, an<br />

awe-inspiring waterpark with surf simulator, 5-Star Global<br />

For more information, visit BEACHES.COM<br />

In <strong>the</strong> U.S. and Canada: 1-800-BEACHES;<br />

In <strong>the</strong> Caribbean: 1-888-BEACHES;<br />

Gourmet TM dining at 21 incredible restaurants, and non-stop bars<br />

and entertainment — always included. And now we’ve added<br />

trend-setting food trucks, new live entertainment, and restyled<br />

accommodations … making <strong>the</strong> World’s Best even better.<br />

In Turks & Caicos:649-946-8000<br />

or call your Travel Pr<strong>of</strong>essional<br />



TM/© <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong> Sesame Workshop

Five Distinct Villages<br />

to Choose From<br />

1. Key West Village 2. Italian Village 3. Caribbean Village 4. French Village 5. Seaside Village<br />


Beaches Turks & Caicos<br />

is on <strong>the</strong> world’s<br />

#1 BEST BEACH<br />

by tripadvisor ®<br />

*Visit www.beaches.com/disclaimers/times<strong>of</strong><strong>the</strong>islandsspring<strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>btc or call 1-800-BEACHES for important terms and conditions.

The Leading Private Bank in <strong>the</strong> Turks and Caicos <strong>Islands</strong><br />

Where values are growing<br />

Wealth Management • Bonds/Fixed Income<br />

Investment Strategies • Foreign Exchange<br />

Stocks/Equities • Precious Metals<br />

Fixed deposits/CD’s • International Transfers<br />

Turks & Caicos Banking Company Ltd.<br />

The Regent Village, Unit H102, Grace Bay Road, Providenciales<br />

Tel: +649 941 4994<br />

Email: services@tcbc.tc • www.tcbc.tc<br />

Regulated by <strong>the</strong> Financial Services Commission, Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>

TurksandCaicosRealEstate.com<br />

w/Direct MLS Access<br />

No Nonsense, Just Results!<br />

Beth Atkins<br />

• Au<strong>the</strong>ntic • Heart Centered • Powerful and Precise<br />

Turks & Caicos Real Estate Association (TCREA)<br />

<strong>20</strong>17–<strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong> — President<br />

<strong>20</strong>15–<strong>20</strong>17 — Vice President<br />

<strong>20</strong>13–<strong>20</strong>14 — Ambassador<br />

Beth Atkins, President/Broker<br />



Cell/WhatsApp: 649-232-5277<br />

Turks & Caicos: 649-941-4105<br />

USA/Canada: 602-324-9400<br />

Beth@GraceBayRealty.com<br />




TIMES<br />


Kathy Borsuk<br />


Claire Parrish<br />


Debbie Bartlett, Lucy Beagley, Kathy Borsuk,<br />

William J. Cook, Franziska Elmer, Michelle Fulford-Gardiner,<br />

Brian Heagney, Cherylann S. Jones, Ewa Krzyszczyk,<br />

Kristy Lee, B Naqqi Manco, Dr. Joost Morsink, Sylvia Myers,<br />

David Newlands, Dr. Michael P. Pateman, Jody Rathgeb,<br />

Dr. Eric F. Salamanca, Dr. Ruud Stelten, Megan Tierney,<br />

Captain Eric Wilberg, Paul Wilkerson,<br />

Candianne Williams, Lormeka Williams.<br />


Amy Caicos, Can Stock Photo, Franzsika Elmer,<br />

Brian Heagney, Heidi Hertler, Sabine Frank, iStock.com,<br />

Ewa Krzyszczyk, Kristy Lee, Agile LeVin, Dr. Joost Morsink,<br />

Marta Morton, David Newlands, NOAA,<br />

Dr. Michael P. Pateman, Tom Rathgeb, Dr. Eric F. Salamanca,<br />

Ramona Settle, Dr. Ruud Stelten, Turks & Caicos National<br />

Museum Collection, Candianne Williams.<br />


Wavey Line Publishing<br />


PF Solutions, Miami, FL<br />

OF THE<br />


<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> ISSN 1017-6853 is<br />

published quarterly by <strong>Times</strong> Publications Ltd.<br />

Copyright © <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong> by <strong>Times</strong> Publications Ltd. All rights reserved<br />

under Universal and Pan American Copyright Conventions.<br />

No part <strong>of</strong> this publication may be<br />

reproduced without written permission.<br />

Subscriptions $28/year; $32/year for<br />

non-U.S. mailing addresses<br />

Submissions We welcome submission <strong>of</strong> articles or photography, but<br />

assume no responsibility for care and return <strong>of</strong> unsolicited material.<br />

Return postage must accompany material if it is to be returned. In no<br />

event shall any writer or photographer subject this magazine to any<br />

claim for holding fees or damage charges on unsolicited material.<br />

While every care has been taken in <strong>the</strong> compilation and reproduction <strong>of</strong><br />

information contained herein to ensure correctness, such information is<br />

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E-mail timespub@tciway.tc<br />

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14 www.timespub.tc

around <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong><br />

Parrotice owner Patti DesLauriers has fun with <strong>the</strong> photo-op placards created by<br />

Rita Shaw <strong>of</strong> Middle Caicos.<br />

Ice Cream in Parrotice<br />

North Caicos shop <strong>of</strong>fers big scoops <strong>of</strong> opportunity.<br />

Many know <strong>the</strong> silly childhood chant, “I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream.” In <strong>the</strong> case <strong>of</strong><br />

Parrotice on North Caicos, though, it was <strong>the</strong> land that screamed, calling out, “I want to be an ice cream<br />

shop!” Also silly? Owner Patti DesLauriers explains.<br />

By Jody Rathgeb ~ Photos By Tom Rathgeb<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 15

Patti DesLauriers and Howie Bartels had owned a piece<br />

<strong>of</strong> property along <strong>the</strong> highway just past Major Hill Road in<br />

North Caicos since <strong>20</strong>02. Originally, <strong>the</strong>y thought <strong>the</strong>y’d<br />

build <strong>the</strong>ir home on <strong>the</strong> land, but later decided to place<br />

<strong>the</strong> house away from <strong>the</strong> road, in Major Hill. In <strong>20</strong>18, <strong>the</strong>y<br />

began clearing <strong>the</strong> property, intending to sell it.<br />

“When it was cleared, I looked at it and said, ‘This is<br />

perfect for an ice cream shop,’” Patti relates. “I always<br />

thought this island needed an ice cream shop.”<br />

DesLauriers admits her idea was a bit crazy. A previous<br />

restaurant that sold ice cream had gone dormant,<br />

and Patti had no experience in <strong>the</strong> ice cream business.<br />

But she is creative and curious. She did lots <strong>of</strong> research,<br />

bought an ice cream maker and began experimenting<br />

with recipes. “I’d make everyone I know taste it, <strong>the</strong>n go<br />

back and try more,” she says. She concentrated on fresh<br />

ingredients and local sourcing, finally coming up with a<br />

list <strong>of</strong> flavors she believed would work.<br />

Ice cream alone, however, does not make an ice cream<br />

shop. Along with <strong>the</strong> recipes, Patti worked on o<strong>the</strong>r developments.<br />

• Building <strong>the</strong> shop itself was step one. Major Hill<br />

builder Charlton Gardiner did all <strong>the</strong> basic work, and<br />

Bartels, who is employed by Gardiner, added a porch,<br />

did <strong>the</strong> inside finishing work and made tables and outside<br />

seating. Patti did <strong>the</strong> painting herself, sometimes<br />

enlisting help from friends. She favors bright colors and<br />

combined <strong>the</strong>m to make <strong>the</strong> place eye-catching and fun.<br />

• Getting equipment and supplies took time, money<br />

and <strong>the</strong> usual patience <strong>of</strong> bringing goods to <strong>the</strong> islands.<br />

The small shop has a surprising amount <strong>of</strong> overhead,<br />

including two ice cream makers, freezer and refrigerator,<br />

prep sinks and counters, a popcorn machine and more.<br />

• Following health department regulations and getting<br />

a business license took much time and effort, requiring<br />

lots <strong>of</strong> trips to Provo, visits from inspectors, and just plain<br />

old red tape. Patti says those efforts took a lot out <strong>of</strong> her,<br />

but she was determined not to give up.<br />

• Finding workers among <strong>the</strong> local population was<br />

an important priority. “I didn’t want to employ myself.<br />

I wanted to give back to <strong>the</strong> island,” Patti explains. She<br />

found exceptional people to run <strong>the</strong> shop in Islanders<br />

Sherry Williams, manager and ice cream maker, and<br />

Deshanti Forbes, a recent graduate <strong>of</strong> Raymond Gardiner<br />

High School. Both women quickly became more than<br />

employees; Sherry helped Patti to tweak and perfect <strong>the</strong><br />

ice cream recipes, and Deshanti listened to <strong>the</strong> first customers<br />

and passed on suggestions for new flavors and<br />

o<strong>the</strong>r food items to complement <strong>the</strong> <strong>of</strong>ferings.<br />

The Parrotice menu features cool treats and fun foods.<br />

16 www.timespub.tc

Deshanti Forbes (at left) and Sherry Williams take shifts to run <strong>the</strong> shop. Williams, <strong>the</strong> manager, also makes <strong>the</strong> ice creams.<br />

O<strong>the</strong>r people voluntarily became involved, too, caught up in <strong>the</strong> fun and excitement. Rita Shaw, an artist who<br />

lives on Middle Caicos, made photo-op placards for Parrotice, and David Kennedy <strong>of</strong> Sandy Point donated a bit <strong>of</strong><br />

framed decoration. Jim Frey <strong>of</strong> Middle Caicos carved an ice-cream-eating parrot (a nod to <strong>the</strong> shop’s logo) from a section<br />

<strong>of</strong> casuarina tree and presented it as a gift, naming<br />

it Iceman. You could say that artists just flocked to <strong>the</strong><br />

place.<br />

On <strong>the</strong> menu<br />

Parrotice Ice Cream and Sno had a s<strong>of</strong>t opening in July<br />

<strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong> as Patti’s team worked to develop some local support<br />

before launching into tourist season. Basic menu<br />

items are ice cream cones or bowls, sno-cones, popcorn,<br />

hot dogs and grilled cheese sandwiches. The standard list<br />

<strong>of</strong> ice cream flavors includes coconut, vanilla, chocolate,<br />

strawberry, rum raisin, peppermint, cookies and cream<br />

and butter pecan, but <strong>the</strong>re is also a flavor <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> week<br />

and <strong>the</strong> Parrotice team keeps coming up with new ideas.<br />

On that list are banana (locally sourced), banana-strawberry<br />

and o<strong>the</strong>r flavors that will come from North Caicos<br />

fruits. People who want to purchase pints or quarts <strong>of</strong> ice<br />

cream can call a day ahead to place an order.<br />

There are non-food <strong>of</strong>ferings as well. Customers are<br />

encouraged to hang out, playing cards or dominoes, taking<br />

photos or using <strong>the</strong> free Wi-Fi. Patti is pleased that<br />

Parrotice has become a family-friendly social place, and<br />

hopes to develop in that direction with a swing set and<br />

some o<strong>the</strong>r playground items for children.<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 17

Giving back<br />

Patti is serious about wanting to give back to <strong>the</strong> North<br />

Caicos community. She jokes that <strong>the</strong> place probably<br />

won’t turn a pr<strong>of</strong>it for at least <strong>20</strong> years, but pr<strong>of</strong>it isn’t<br />

her motive. “My vision is, I would like to have this area<br />

be a sort-<strong>of</strong> park with a number <strong>of</strong> little businesses and<br />

pathways connecting <strong>the</strong>m.” To that end, she is <strong>of</strong>fering<br />

Islanders <strong>the</strong> space, rent-free, to build <strong>the</strong>ir own nearby<br />

business spots, envisioning an art gallery, gift shop, tiki<br />

bar . . . “whatever,” she says. She adds, though, that her<br />

<strong>of</strong>fer is only for local entrepreneurs and small businesses,<br />

not foreign chains.<br />

The Parrotice logo, a cartoon parrot eating an ice<br />

cream cone, typifies <strong>the</strong> playful attitude that Patti wants<br />

<strong>the</strong> business to have and keep. She hopes to keep it fun<br />

for Islanders and tourists alike while <strong>of</strong>fering cool treats<br />

and snacks to make people happy to be in her Parrotice<br />

paradise.a<br />

To place an order or find out more, call (649) 242-8604.<br />

Patti DesLauriers asked her sister if opening an ice cream shop was<br />

a crazy idea. Her sister quoted <strong>the</strong> “Field <strong>of</strong> Dreams” movie: “If you<br />

Walkin May<strong>20</strong>17_Layout 1 5/28/17 5:45 PM Page 1<br />

build Ferry it, Fall <strong>the</strong>y 17_Layout will come.” 1 8/22/17 12:52 PM Page 1<br />

* *<br />

Temporary suspension PROVO NORTH 12.30pm & 1.30pm Sept 1st to Oct 31st<br />

*<br />

Resumes Nov 1st<br />




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18 www.timespub.tc


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eye on <strong>the</strong> sky<br />

Opposite page: Water that is turbulently mixed with sand is a possible indication <strong>of</strong> a rip current.<br />

Above: Pelican Cay appears to be “just <strong>of</strong>fshore” Bambarra Beach in Middle Caicos, but <strong>the</strong> distance and potential presence <strong>of</strong> rip currents<br />

can be deceiving and dangerous.<br />


Hidden Dangers<br />

Understanding rip currents and rip tides.<br />

By Paul Wilkerson<br />

Travelers from across <strong>the</strong> globe descend on <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> at a steady pace throughout <strong>the</strong><br />

year. Nearly all are drawn by photos <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> clear turquoise waters that surround <strong>the</strong> country. Our family<br />

fell into that category. Images seemed surreal, and we wanted to see for ourselves if <strong>the</strong>y were accurate.<br />

What we never thought about are <strong>the</strong> hidden dangers that lie beneath <strong>the</strong> waters—dangers present along<br />

nearly every coastline around <strong>the</strong> world, whe<strong>the</strong>r ocean or large lakes, such as <strong>the</strong> Great Lakes <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

United States. What are <strong>the</strong>se dangers? Rip currents and rip tides.<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 21

Rip currents are <strong>of</strong>f-shore flows that occur most <strong>of</strong>ten<br />

where breaking waves push water up <strong>the</strong> beach face. This<br />

water must naturally escape back out to sea. There are<br />

areas where this water will more easily flow back and<br />

this is where we are most likely to see rip currents form.<br />

Breaks in sand bars, deeper channels <strong>of</strong> any sort, any<br />

locations where deeper water is bordered by shallow<br />

waters, have <strong>the</strong> ability to harbor rip currents.<br />

In general, rip currents are not immense, usually<br />

averaging <strong>20</strong> to 50 feet wide, although <strong>the</strong>y can occasionally<br />

be as much as <strong>20</strong>0 feet. Where rip currents set<br />

up, <strong>the</strong> flow <strong>of</strong> water within <strong>the</strong> current usually averages<br />

1 to 2 feet per second, yet can flow at up to 8 feet per<br />

second. At <strong>the</strong> upper end <strong>of</strong> this speed, it would be futile<br />

to try to swim against <strong>the</strong> current.<br />

So how do you spot a rip current, and if caught in<br />

one, survive? Spotting a rip current can be challenging,<br />

and on average 70% <strong>of</strong> people can’t identify <strong>the</strong>m. Here’s<br />

how to up <strong>the</strong> odds. When you head to <strong>the</strong> beach, look<br />

at <strong>the</strong> wave patterns as <strong>the</strong>y come into shallow waters.<br />

Look for breaks in waves where <strong>the</strong> water appears a bit<br />

calmer. Watch <strong>the</strong> way <strong>the</strong> water flows in <strong>the</strong>se areas. It<br />

might be flowing out towards <strong>the</strong> ocean, and this is likely<br />

a rip current.<br />

Look for water <strong>of</strong>fshore that appears to be discolored.<br />

This water usually has turbulently mixed with sand,<br />

possibly an indication <strong>of</strong> a rip current. Look for ripples on<br />

<strong>the</strong> surface <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> water (within an active wave zone). Are<br />

<strong>the</strong>se ripples moving toward <strong>the</strong> open ocean? You may<br />

have found a rip current.<br />

When you venture into <strong>the</strong> water to snorkel or just<br />

relax, take a look under <strong>the</strong> water and make note <strong>of</strong> any<br />

channels or breaks in sandbars. If you locate <strong>the</strong>se, pay<br />

attention to <strong>the</strong> currents in and around <strong>the</strong>m. Always<br />

exercise caution and be aware <strong>of</strong> what is going on around<br />

you before you venture into <strong>the</strong> water.<br />

If you do find yourself caught in a rip current, it is<br />

important to not panic. You need to have all your faculties<br />

available to save your life. If you feel yourself being<br />

carried away, swim parallel to and at a slight angle toward<br />

<strong>the</strong> shore. It may take a bit <strong>of</strong> time to realize you are making<br />

progress, but you will eventually escape <strong>the</strong> current<br />

and be able to make your way back. It is important to not<br />

swim directly against <strong>the</strong> current, as you will make very<br />

little progress and will tire quickly. Sadly, on average 100<br />

people succumb to rip currents in <strong>the</strong> United States every<br />

year. In most <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>se cases, <strong>the</strong> individuals could have<br />

survived by taking appropriate measures to escape <strong>the</strong><br />

current.<br />

Unfortunately, three lives were lost <strong>of</strong>f Middle Caicos<br />

in August <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong> due to ano<strong>the</strong>r phenomenon that remains<br />

a hidden danger—riptides. It is important to note that<br />

NOAA<br />

22 www.timespub.tc

iptides are not <strong>the</strong> same as rip currents. Riptides develop<br />

naturally in harbors and o<strong>the</strong>r protected areas <strong>of</strong> water<br />

that are bordered by landmasses, jetties or inlets. Riptides<br />

occur as part <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> natural tidal cycle daily.<br />

What many people may not know is that <strong>the</strong>re are a<br />

couple <strong>of</strong> days each month when tidal forces are at <strong>the</strong>ir<br />

maximum, and several days when <strong>the</strong>y are at <strong>the</strong>ir minimum.<br />

Right around <strong>the</strong> New Moon and Full Moon, tidal<br />

forces are maximized and <strong>the</strong> highest variation from high<br />

to low tide is likely to occur. These are called <strong>the</strong> Spring<br />

Tides. At <strong>the</strong> 1st and 3rd quarter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> moon, <strong>the</strong> tidal<br />

forces are at <strong>the</strong>ir minimum, called Neap Tides.<br />

What is most important to understand is that once<br />

high tide has occurred, water begins gradually flowing<br />

back out to sea as low tide approaches. This creates a<br />

natural pull/current out to sea. This is where a blocking<br />

land body or an inlet/jetty comes into play.<br />

Let’s take a look at Bambarra Beach and Pelican Cay<br />

where this tragedy occurred. As <strong>the</strong> water is being pulled<br />

away from shore, <strong>the</strong> placement <strong>of</strong> Pelican Cay effectively<br />

creates channels <strong>of</strong> strong current on ei<strong>the</strong>r side <strong>of</strong> it as<br />

water is sucked away from <strong>the</strong> beach. These currents can<br />

become extremely powerful in <strong>the</strong> waters between <strong>the</strong><br />

<strong>of</strong>fshore cay and <strong>the</strong> beach. These forces and currents<br />

can last quite a way beyond <strong>the</strong> landmass around which<br />

<strong>the</strong>y are created. What is generally knee-deep to waistdeep<br />

water can quickly become dangerous as <strong>the</strong> forces<br />

<strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> current overwhelm unsuspecting people, pulling<br />

<strong>the</strong>m into deeper water and away from shore. It happens<br />

quickly and suddenly, occasionally leading to tragedy.<br />

It is important to remember, as in <strong>the</strong> case <strong>of</strong> rip<br />

currents, if you have been pulled into open waters due to<br />

a riptide, swim parallel to shore and at an angle toward<br />

shore. As you swim away from <strong>the</strong> riptide source, <strong>the</strong><br />

effects will weaken and you should be able to safely land.<br />

Charged with this new knowledge, prior to your next<br />

visit take a moment to look up <strong>the</strong> tidal cycle for <strong>the</strong> days<br />

you are vacationing in <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos. Review areas<br />

where riptides or rip currents may be more common. A<br />

few minutes <strong>of</strong> preparation can ensure <strong>the</strong> safety <strong>of</strong> you<br />

and your family! a<br />

Paul Wilkerson is an American meteorologist and tourist<br />

who frequents <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>. Along with<br />

his wife and two daughters, <strong>the</strong> Wilkersons stay actively<br />

engaged with Islanders throughout <strong>the</strong> year with his<br />

Facebook page Turks and Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> Wea<strong>the</strong>r Info.<br />

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<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 23

creature feature<br />

Opposite page: The mo<strong>the</strong>r Humpback whale feeds her calf about 150 gallons <strong>of</strong> fat-rich milk every day. No wonder <strong>the</strong> calves are so playful!<br />

Above: When you make eye contact with a Humpback whale, you feel <strong>the</strong>ir awareness, intelligence and curiosity.<br />

Big Thrills<br />

Meeting Humpback whales in Grand Turk<br />

By Brian Heagney, B.Sc Marine Biology ~ Photo By Sabine Frank & Brian Heagney<br />

The Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> (TCI) are made up <strong>of</strong> a number <strong>of</strong> islands and cays divided into two distinct<br />

groups . . . somewhat obviously, <strong>the</strong> Turks <strong>Islands</strong> and <strong>the</strong> Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>. These are separated by <strong>the</strong><br />

Turks Island Passage, a body <strong>of</strong> water 80 miles wide and over 7,000 feet deep. In <strong>the</strong> winter and spring<br />

month, this passage serves as a natural corridor <strong>of</strong> navigation for Humpback whales as <strong>the</strong>y migrate into<br />

<strong>the</strong>ir TCI nursery grounds.<br />

Visitors typically land on Providenciales and <strong>the</strong>n easily access Grand Turk (and <strong>the</strong> whales) via a short<br />

and scenic flight <strong>of</strong> about 25 minutes. (There’s hardly time for a nap, but you can begin to search for<br />

whales from <strong>the</strong> plane.) If you are staying on Provo, you can take <strong>the</strong> first flight in <strong>the</strong> morning, meet <strong>the</strong><br />

whales and <strong>the</strong>n fly back in <strong>the</strong> afternoon for <strong>the</strong> day trip <strong>of</strong> a lifetime!<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 25

You can meet <strong>the</strong> whales on a day boat trip from Grand Turk, without a lot <strong>of</strong> o<strong>the</strong>r boat traffic around you.<br />

Although <strong>the</strong>re are plenty <strong>of</strong> watersports to keep you<br />

entertained in <strong>the</strong> TCI (including diving, snorkelling, paddle<br />

boarding, kayaking, wind surfing and kite surfing),<br />

one <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> most awe-inspiring, mind-blowing, adrenalinepumping,<br />

truly exhilarating and absolutely breathtaking<br />

experiences here is that natural wonder—<strong>the</strong> Humpback<br />

whale (Megaptera novaeangliae). Every winter from early<br />

January to late April, migrating Humpbacks turn <strong>the</strong><br />

waters <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> TCI into an amphi<strong>the</strong>atre for one <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

greatest spectacles on <strong>the</strong> planet—<strong>the</strong> calving, nursing,<br />

courtship and mating rituals <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>se incredibly powerful,<br />

yet sublimely graceful, marine mammals.<br />

Although whales may be sighted throughout <strong>the</strong> TCI<br />

during <strong>the</strong> season, <strong>the</strong> Turks <strong>Islands</strong>, comprising Grand<br />

Turk, Salt Cay and several smaller cays, may be considered<br />

<strong>the</strong> hot spot for people focused on meeting a whale.<br />

This is due to <strong>the</strong> fact that two very deep passages run<br />

on ei<strong>the</strong>r side <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Turks—<strong>the</strong> Turks Island Passage to<br />

<strong>the</strong> west and <strong>the</strong> Mouchoir Passage to <strong>the</strong> east. These<br />

passages provide natural corridors <strong>of</strong> navigation for<br />

<strong>the</strong> whales as <strong>the</strong>y migrate into TCI nursery grounds.<br />

Fur<strong>the</strong>rmore, <strong>the</strong> vast expanses <strong>of</strong> shallow reef systems<br />

surrounding <strong>the</strong> Turks <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>of</strong>fer <strong>the</strong> perfect habitat<br />

for a mo<strong>the</strong>r whale to stop, rest and begin nursing her<br />

newly born calf in a protected environment, safe from <strong>the</strong><br />

hazards <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> deep sea.<br />

Best <strong>of</strong> all, <strong>the</strong> TCI is one <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> few locations in <strong>the</strong><br />

world where it is actually possible to swim with humpbacks.<br />

O<strong>the</strong>r destinations for this unique experience<br />

include extremely remote islands in Oceania, <strong>the</strong> Silver<br />

Banks (Dominican Republic) and Australia. However, TCI<br />

has several advantages for <strong>the</strong> discerning whale watcher,<br />

including its relative proximity to North America, Canada<br />

and Europe. Grand Turk is only 600 miles south <strong>of</strong> Miami,<br />

meaning travel costs are significantly lower and you leave<br />

a much smaller carbon footprint when compared with a<br />

trip to Oceania!<br />

Day trips to meet <strong>the</strong> whales are shore-based from<br />

Grand Turk. This is very convenient when compared to<br />

<strong>the</strong> necessity, expense and constraints <strong>of</strong> a liveaboard<br />

trip to <strong>the</strong> Silver Bank, <strong>the</strong> only way to swim with <strong>the</strong><br />

whales from <strong>the</strong> Dominican Republic. Finally, <strong>the</strong> whale<br />

watching industry in <strong>the</strong> TCI is in its infancy. This means<br />

that <strong>the</strong>re are only a handful <strong>of</strong> operators <strong>of</strong>fering <strong>the</strong><br />

experience, and <strong>the</strong> feeling <strong>of</strong> “too many boats” that may<br />

be experienced in some o<strong>the</strong>r destinations is still very<br />

far <strong>of</strong>f here. Hopefully, with proper management <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

industry’s growth, this uncongested feeling around <strong>the</strong><br />

whales can be preserved.<br />

The Humpback is well known as a gregarious and<br />

playful creature. On any given day you may observe<br />

numerous aspects <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>ir behaviour. One <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> most<br />

26 www.timespub.tc

impressive is breaching, when <strong>the</strong> whale throws its entire<br />

body out <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> water in a back flip and <strong>the</strong>n crashes<br />

back down in a literal explosion <strong>of</strong> water. The splash from<br />

a 50-ton adult breaching can be seen for more than <strong>20</strong><br />

miles. The calves also breach, sometimes in unison with<br />

<strong>the</strong>ir mo<strong>the</strong>r—a sight to behold.<br />

A variation on <strong>the</strong> breach is <strong>the</strong> head lunge, when <strong>the</strong><br />

males thrust <strong>the</strong> front half <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>ir body up and forward<br />

out <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> sea before smashing <strong>the</strong>ir head back into <strong>the</strong><br />

water with a loud crack, usually several times in succession,<br />

a mating display <strong>of</strong> sheer power and fitness.<br />

Tail slapping is ano<strong>the</strong>r favourite, where <strong>the</strong> whale<br />

stands in a vertical position, head down, with tail raised<br />

clear from <strong>the</strong> sea. It <strong>the</strong>n repeatedly slaps its flukes on<br />

<strong>the</strong> sea surface, making loud bangs. This can continue<br />

for several minutes and is thought to be a method <strong>of</strong><br />

communication.<br />

This Humpback is exhibiting <strong>the</strong> powerful peduncle slap. Pivoting<br />

its head down and using <strong>the</strong> long pectoral fins for leverage, <strong>the</strong><br />

whale pushes its peduncle (muscular area where <strong>the</strong> tail fluke<br />

connects to <strong>the</strong> body) upwards with incredible force, resulting in<br />

<strong>the</strong> peduncle and fluke breaking <strong>the</strong> water’s surface and landing<br />

with an almighty splash!<br />

Pectoral slapping is similar, but in this instance <strong>the</strong><br />

whale slaps <strong>the</strong>ir huge, three-meter-long pectoral fin<br />

on <strong>the</strong> water’s surface (megaptera means “big wing”).<br />

Females in heat will <strong>of</strong>ten use pectoral slapping to attract<br />

males in <strong>the</strong> area. If she attracts enough males, a very<br />

exciting display can ensue called a heat rush. During a<br />

heat rush, several males rush, barge, gouge, jostle and<br />

fight at high speeds to gain <strong>the</strong> favour <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> female.<br />

As <strong>the</strong> males break <strong>the</strong> surface during <strong>the</strong> rush, <strong>the</strong> sea<br />

foams and <strong>the</strong>y can be heard to trumpet in excitement.<br />

Once <strong>the</strong> female has selected her mate, <strong>the</strong> two animals<br />

<strong>the</strong>n enter into a courtship dance, an underwater<br />

ballet that is very rarely seen. During this helical dance,<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 27

What to bring on a whale watching trip:<br />

This Humpback whale calf is typically playful and curious around<br />

humans.<br />

Wide brimmed hat<br />

Polarized sunglasses<br />

High SPF Sun cream and lip balm<br />

A camera with telephoto lens<br />

Spare memory card<br />

Your smartphone<br />

Underwater housing for your phone<br />

Binoculars<br />

Motion sickness medication is mandatory (follow <strong>the</strong><br />

instructions)<br />

Your own prescription snorkel mask if you normally<br />

wear glasses<br />

A dry bag<br />

A wind- and waterpro<strong>of</strong> jacket<br />

A spare t-shirt and a warm sweater<br />

Shrimp for <strong>the</strong> whales (just joking)<br />

An open mind and positive attitude<br />

<strong>the</strong> whales dive and <strong>the</strong>n return to <strong>the</strong> surface on several occasions, sometimes raising <strong>the</strong>ir heads clear from <strong>the</strong><br />

sea in harmony, like synchronised swimmers—it’s a truly magical display.<br />

When a whale raises its head from <strong>the</strong> water, it is called a spyhop. You might go to see <strong>the</strong>m but sometimes <strong>the</strong>y<br />

decide to have a peek at you too, raising <strong>the</strong>ir head up and peering into <strong>the</strong> boat.<br />

Aside from visual displays, <strong>the</strong> Humpback is also famous for its distinct and haunting song. A single whale may<br />

sing for several hours at a time and <strong>the</strong> structure <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> song is just as complex as a language. The singing is one<br />

dimension to this animal that should not be missed on a day out. Choose a tour operator who employs <strong>the</strong> use <strong>of</strong> a<br />

hydrophone, an underwater microphone that can detect <strong>the</strong> whales singing, so you can hear it out loud on <strong>the</strong> boat.<br />

Have your phone handy and you can grab a unique new ring tone, <strong>the</strong> live song <strong>of</strong> a whale.<br />

Of course <strong>the</strong> ultimate thrill is slipping quietly into <strong>the</strong> water beside <strong>the</strong> whales to observe <strong>the</strong>m in <strong>the</strong> water<br />

while snorkelling. This can only be conducted when <strong>the</strong> whales allow it. An experienced operator can interpret<br />

whale behaviour and know when <strong>the</strong> time is right, or not. Humpbacks might be big but <strong>the</strong>y are very gentle,<br />

timid in disposition and easily spooked, so an extremely sensitive approach is necessary for interactive success.<br />

28 www.timespub.tc

Cays <strong>Winter</strong> <strong>Times</strong> <strong>20</strong>18_Layout 1 11/14/18 10:30 AM Page 1<br />

This means a period <strong>of</strong> experienced observation, a very<br />

slow approach if <strong>the</strong> situation permits, and no splashing<br />

or sudden movements when actually in <strong>the</strong> water. If <strong>the</strong><br />

whales should feel at all disturbed <strong>the</strong>y will simply swim<br />

away, as <strong>the</strong>y are not aggressive animals at all. If a whale<br />

keeps moving away from a boat <strong>the</strong>n you know it is time<br />

to leave it alone. The best case scenario is when <strong>the</strong> whale<br />

comes to you on its own terms, called “a s<strong>of</strong>t encounter.”<br />

Talk to your prospective tour operator, ask how <strong>the</strong> tours<br />

are conducted and get a feel if <strong>the</strong> ethics sound right for<br />

you.<br />

Remember, as with any wildlife encounter you get out<br />

what you put in and time is really <strong>the</strong> key here. It is great<br />

to be optimistic, but imperative to be realistic. Go on a<br />

few trips if you can (as every day is different), plan free<br />

days to allow for bad wea<strong>the</strong>r or days with grumpy whales<br />

who might not be open to snorkeling. Accept that nature<br />

is uncontrollable and you might just have <strong>the</strong> experience<br />

<strong>of</strong> a lifetime.<br />

If you will be in <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos between January<br />

and April, you can always pop over to Grand Turk for<br />

<strong>the</strong> day to meet a Humpback whale in <strong>the</strong> wild. It is a<br />

must-do, bucket list experience and in high demand so<br />

book early. a<br />



Once you have purchased your land<br />

...we take you all <strong>the</strong> way.<br />


We take care <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> design,<br />

<strong>the</strong> building approvals,<br />

<strong>the</strong> construction management,<br />

and <strong>the</strong> construction works.<br />

Allow us to design and build your new home.<br />

caysconstruction.com<br />

caysconstruction@aol.com<br />

Brian Heagney moved to <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos with his wife<br />

Sabine in <strong>20</strong>16 where <strong>the</strong>y opened <strong>the</strong> Humpback Dive<br />

Shack on Grand Turk. Brian received his degree in Marine<br />

Biology from <strong>the</strong> Queens University <strong>of</strong> Belfast and has<br />

been traveling <strong>the</strong> globe as a PADI Master Scuba Diver<br />

Trainer and underwater photographer since <strong>20</strong>03. He is<br />

a certified whale and dolphin guide, a qualified boat captain<br />

and a self-taught outboard engine mechanic.<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 29

green pages<br />

newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> department <strong>of</strong> environment & coastal resources<br />

head <strong>of</strong>fice: church folly, grand turk, tel 649 946 2801 • fax 649 946 1895<br />

• astwood street, south caicos, tel 649 946 3306 • fax 946 3710<br />

• national environmental centre, lower bight road, providenciales<br />

parks division, tel 649 941 5122 • fax 649 946 4793<br />

fisheries division, tel 649 946 4017 • fax 649 946 4793<br />

email environment@gov.tc or dema.tci@gmail.com • web https://www.gov.tc/decr/<br />


The mighty mangrove holds great value to both humans and <strong>the</strong> natural world.<br />

The Mighty Mangrove<br />

Are we doing enough to conserve <strong>the</strong>m?<br />

When you think <strong>of</strong> mangroves, do you imagine blue skies, crystal clear water, lush green forest, dragonflies<br />

silently gliding above, <strong>the</strong> songs <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> mangrove cuckoos? No? You might want to honor <strong>the</strong>m<br />

a visit.<br />

By Ewa Krzyszczyk,<br />

School for Field Studies Center for Marine Resource Studies<br />

30 www.timespub.tc

green pages newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> department <strong>of</strong> environment & coastal resources<br />

In her article, “The Magic <strong>of</strong> Mangroves,” (Fall <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong><br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>), Kelly Currington describes an<br />

enchanting trip through a mangrove forest: “We move<br />

through <strong>the</strong> forests, <strong>the</strong> sound <strong>of</strong> birds chirping and<br />

leaves rustling is a calm and peaceful sound . . . <strong>the</strong>re is<br />

something incredibly spiritual and magical about gliding<br />

through <strong>the</strong>m.” Unfortunately, we do not <strong>of</strong>ten view <strong>the</strong>se<br />

coastal forests as “beautiful by nature” or an attraction<br />

for tourists and locals alike. In fact, <strong>the</strong>y are most <strong>of</strong>ten<br />

viewed as wastelands or unhealthy environments. The<br />

poor mighty mangrove is terribly misunderstood.<br />

Mangroves hold great value to both humans and<br />

<strong>the</strong> natural world, as <strong>the</strong>y provide important goods and<br />

services that play a critical role in supporting our well-being.<br />

Mangroves form a natural dense barrier against<br />

extreme wea<strong>the</strong>r events and disasters, which reduces <strong>the</strong><br />

loss <strong>of</strong> property and vulnerability <strong>of</strong> local communities.<br />

Mangroves aid in stabilizing shores by trapping sediments<br />

and building land, thus protecting coastlines from<br />

erosion. Mangroves also help to improve water quality<br />

by filtering out nutrients and sediments and absorbing<br />

massive amounts <strong>of</strong> carbon from <strong>the</strong> atmosphere.<br />

On average, mangroves store around 1,000 tonnes <strong>of</strong><br />

carbon per hectare in <strong>the</strong>ir biomass and underlying soil,<br />

making <strong>the</strong>m some <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> most carbon-rich ecosystems<br />

on <strong>the</strong> planet. And yet mangrove forests also support<br />

a bewildering array <strong>of</strong> organisms, from sponges, tiny<br />

snails, and algae (such as mermaid’s wine glass), to reef<br />

fish such as parrotfish, grouper and sharks, including<br />

endangered and protected species. Not only are mangroves<br />

considered vital nursery grounds for a large range<br />

<strong>of</strong> marine species, but <strong>the</strong>y also enhance <strong>the</strong> biomass <strong>of</strong><br />

several commercially important fish on neighboring reefs,<br />

consequently providing us with an ample supply <strong>of</strong> food.<br />

Mangroves are among <strong>the</strong> most productive, biologically<br />

complex and important ecosystems on Earth, and<br />

yet <strong>the</strong>y are one <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> world’s most threatened tropical<br />

ecosystems. Mangroves are being destroyed at rates<br />

three to five times greater than <strong>the</strong> average rates <strong>of</strong> forest<br />

loss and over a quarter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> original mangrove cover<br />

around <strong>the</strong> world has already disappeared.<br />

The Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> are fortunate to have<br />

extensive mangrove forests along <strong>the</strong>ir 389 kilometers<br />

<strong>of</strong> coastline. The western coastline <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> 8.2 square mile<br />

island <strong>of</strong> South Caicos is particularly abundant with mangroves,<br />

so much that <strong>the</strong> TCI Government proposed to<br />

designate <strong>the</strong>m as a Wetland Critical Habitat Reserve in<br />

<strong>20</strong>16. Yet it cannot go unnoticed that <strong>the</strong> mangrove-rich<br />

coastline is also home to <strong>the</strong> island’s airport, dump and<br />

fish processing plant. These human facilities are well-situated<br />

for <strong>the</strong>ir protection from extreme wea<strong>the</strong>r events,<br />

but how much <strong>of</strong> an impact are <strong>the</strong>y having on <strong>the</strong>ir surrounding<br />

mangrove habitat?<br />

Living at <strong>the</strong> edge <strong>of</strong> land and sea, mangroves are<br />

well adapted to deal with natural stressors, but <strong>the</strong>y<br />

are particularly sensitive to environmental disturbances<br />

created by human activities, such as sewage disposal, airports<br />

and oil spills.<br />

The over-reliance on open dump and landfill systems<br />

for solid waste management has proven to be a significant<br />

environmental problem. Waste contaminants leach<br />

into <strong>the</strong> surrounding soil which <strong>the</strong>n serves as a sink,<br />

persisting for many years and fur<strong>the</strong>r leaching into <strong>the</strong><br />

surrounding waters. Airports pollute our air with noxious<br />

chemicals such as sulphur dioxide and nitrogen<br />

oxide, and jet fuel exhaust causes particulates to settle<br />

and accumulate in <strong>the</strong> soil and sediments surrounding<br />

<strong>the</strong> airport. These various pollutants can be transferred<br />

to humans via <strong>the</strong>ir gradual accumulation in water and<br />

sediment (bioaccumulation) and <strong>the</strong> increasing concentration<br />

from organism to organism moving up a food<br />

chain. This means that <strong>the</strong> higher <strong>the</strong> organism is on <strong>the</strong><br />

food chain, <strong>the</strong> higher <strong>the</strong> load <strong>of</strong> toxic chemicals (biomagnification).<br />

In order to better understand <strong>the</strong> health and function<br />

<strong>of</strong> mangrove ecosystems in relation to human activity,<br />

many avenues <strong>of</strong> research are possible and useful. At<br />

The School for Field Studies’ Center for Marine Resource<br />

Studies (SFS CMRS) on South Caicos, we have been conducting<br />

research to understand how apex predators such<br />

as sharks and rays utilize our local mangrove ecosystems.<br />

Sharks and rays are considered keystone species,<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 31

green pages newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> department <strong>of</strong> environment & coastal resources<br />

This aerial photo shows <strong>the</strong> extensive mangrove forests in South Caicos.<br />


meaning <strong>the</strong>y play a crucial role in maintaining <strong>the</strong> structure<br />

and integrity <strong>of</strong> an ecosystem and are an indicator<br />

for <strong>the</strong> health <strong>of</strong> an ecosystem. Using baby Baited Remote<br />

Underwater Videos (BRUVs), which consist <strong>of</strong> a weighteddown<br />

camera and bait (local fish) attached to PVC piping,<br />

we found that lemon sharks, nurse sharks, barracuda,<br />

and sou<strong>the</strong>rn stingrays were in higher abundance near<br />

<strong>the</strong> mangroves around <strong>the</strong> airport when compared to<br />

near <strong>the</strong> dump or fishing plant.<br />

These results provide important insights into <strong>the</strong> current<br />

health status <strong>of</strong> our local mangroves and are also<br />

useful baseline knowledge for any future disturbances.<br />

The airport, dump and fishing plant are well situated<br />

within <strong>the</strong>se mangroves, which will help protect <strong>the</strong>m<br />

32 www.timespub.tc

green pages newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> department <strong>of</strong> environment & coastal resources<br />

from storms and hurricanes, but without proper care and<br />

management <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>se facilities, <strong>the</strong> mangroves are vulnerable<br />

to pollution and degradation. The consequences<br />

<strong>of</strong> any potential future mangrove decline would be particularly<br />

severe for <strong>the</strong> well-being <strong>of</strong> our coastal community.<br />

The loss <strong>of</strong> mangroves is a loss for humans—storm<br />

protection will be lost and fishery resources will be<br />

destroyed. Once lost, mangrove forests are very difficult<br />

and costly to restore. It is <strong>the</strong>refore imperative that we<br />

protect what we have.<br />

In order to protect <strong>the</strong>se “beautiful by nature” mangroves,<br />

we need to educate each o<strong>the</strong>r, and it all begins<br />

with our youth. Toge<strong>the</strong>r, SFS CMRS and Ms. Felix at <strong>the</strong><br />

Marjorie Basden High School on South Caicos have reig-<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 33

green pages newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> department <strong>of</strong> environment & coastal resources<br />

nited <strong>the</strong> school’s science club. Groups <strong>of</strong> students are<br />

taken kayaking through our local mangroves, where <strong>the</strong>y<br />

learn how to perform scientific research, discover <strong>the</strong><br />

importance <strong>of</strong> ga<strong>the</strong>ring data and asking questions, and<br />

most importantly, learn <strong>the</strong> significance <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>se unique<br />

and vital mangrove ecosystems. Ultimately, it is critical<br />

that our next generation learn to be respectful <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

planet, as well as learn about conserving and protecting<br />

wild places and animals. After all, it’s <strong>the</strong>ir planet too. a<br />


From top: This baited remote underwater video unit is deployed in a<br />

mangrove to understand how apex predators utilize <strong>the</strong> area.<br />

Marjorie Basden High School students kayaked in <strong>the</strong>ir local mangroves<br />

on South Caicos to learn <strong>the</strong> significance <strong>of</strong> this unique and<br />

vital ecosystem.<br />

34 www.timespub.tc

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 35

green pages newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> department <strong>of</strong> environment & coastal resources<br />


An example <strong>of</strong> a beach where no action is taken saw <strong>the</strong> most significant seaweed mass on <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>.<br />

Onus or Bonus?<br />

Researchers assess <strong>the</strong> impact <strong>of</strong> sargassum seaweed in <strong>the</strong> TCI.<br />

By Kristy Lee and Sylvia Myers, MSc students, University <strong>of</strong> Greenwich;<br />

Debbie Bartlett, Ph.D., Faculty <strong>of</strong> Engineering and Science University <strong>of</strong> Greenwich;<br />

Franziska Elmer, Ph.D. Marine Ecology Lecturer, School for Field Studies Center for Marine Resource Studies<br />

From <strong>the</strong> UK, <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> (TCI) are something we imagine only exists in a travel brochure,<br />

idyllic islands where sea and sky meet in one infinite colour <strong>of</strong> blue, with pure white sandy beaches. As<br />

MSc students studying Environmental Conservation at <strong>the</strong> University <strong>of</strong> Greenwich, we were interested<br />

to hear <strong>the</strong> funding bid to <strong>the</strong> Darwin Plus Initiative was successful. This UK Government grant scheme<br />

helps to protect <strong>the</strong> natural environment through locally based projects worldwide, and this specific call<br />

was focused on British Overseas Territories.<br />

36 www.timespub.tc

green pages newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> department <strong>of</strong> environment & coastal resources<br />

The project, in collaboration with <strong>the</strong> Department <strong>of</strong><br />

Environment & Coastal Resources (DECR), <strong>the</strong> School for<br />

Field Studies on South Caicos and <strong>the</strong> British Overseas<br />

Territories Special Interest Group, aims to investigate <strong>the</strong><br />

impact and potential solutions to <strong>the</strong> exceptional quantities<br />

<strong>of</strong> seaweed recently experienced on <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>’<br />

coastlines. It reflects <strong>the</strong> experience <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> University’s<br />

algae biotechnology group in finding commercial uses<br />

for seaweeds. We were even more excited when we won<br />

<strong>the</strong> competition for two students to travel to <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>,<br />

with our tutor, to play an active part in this project!<br />

Our research began in <strong>the</strong> UK, finding out as much as<br />

we could about <strong>the</strong> TCI, from <strong>the</strong> history to <strong>the</strong> wildlife.<br />

We were amazed at <strong>the</strong> diversity it has to <strong>of</strong>fer—coral<br />

reefs, migratory paths for whales, sea turtles and <strong>the</strong><br />

endemic rock iguana, to name but a few. It was <strong>the</strong> field<br />

trip, however, that became central to <strong>the</strong> project, and<br />

ideas <strong>of</strong> a luxurious outing to paradise soon faded when<br />

we realised <strong>the</strong> enormity <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> task. In just over two<br />

weeks we needed to find out who sargassum was affecting<br />

and see first-hand where it was being washed up,<br />

as well as study <strong>the</strong> composition <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> landing, as any<br />

contamination could affect potential use. We needed to<br />

collect samples to take back to <strong>the</strong> UK for <strong>the</strong> chemists<br />

to analyse whilst also making time to absorb <strong>the</strong> culture<br />

and experience some local food!<br />

We began our trip on Providenciales, meeting with<br />

project partners and environmental <strong>of</strong>ficers and visiting<br />

beaches, some completely unaffected and o<strong>the</strong>rs affected<br />

by seaweed washing onto <strong>the</strong> shore. Seeing fish in <strong>the</strong><br />

clear water was a novel experience and we particularly<br />

enjoyed <strong>the</strong> sea turtles, seeing at least one every day.<br />

This led us to think about whe<strong>the</strong>r <strong>the</strong>se and o<strong>the</strong>r species<br />

could be affected by seaweed on <strong>the</strong> beaches and<br />

if <strong>the</strong>re were any o<strong>the</strong>r environmental impacts that may<br />

need to be considered.<br />

The importance <strong>of</strong> tourism to <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>’ economy<br />

was clear and we began to understand <strong>the</strong> justification<br />

for <strong>the</strong> term “Beautiful by Nature.” We were fortunate that<br />

our short visit to Provo coincided with <strong>the</strong> famous Fish<br />

Fry, an evening festival where we experienced <strong>the</strong> warm<br />

welcome and energy <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> locals, with music and dance<br />

as well as locally made products. It was a great opportunity<br />

for souvenir shopping and to learn just how many<br />

ways <strong>the</strong>re are <strong>of</strong> eating conch!<br />

Most <strong>of</strong> our stay was on South Caicos, where we were<br />

Students Sylvia Myers and Kristy Lee work in <strong>the</strong> School for Field<br />

Studies laboratory on South Caicos, sorting Sargassum samples.<br />

welcomed by <strong>the</strong> School for Field Studies, a residential<br />

education centre perched right on <strong>the</strong> coast and providing<br />

study programmes based on marine science. The<br />

staff introduced us to many aspects <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> island, from<br />

<strong>the</strong> coral reefs and seagrass beds to <strong>the</strong> excitement <strong>of</strong> an<br />

evening <strong>of</strong> singing and dancing by local school pupils,<br />

and Saturday evenings at Triple J’s Grill. The School for<br />

Field Studies provided use <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>ir laboratory and transported<br />

us round <strong>the</strong> island to collect samples <strong>of</strong> seaweed.<br />

We found <strong>the</strong> most common components to be<br />

Sargassum fluitans III, Sargassum natans I and Sargassum<br />

natans VIII, to give <strong>the</strong> scientific names. Sargassum has<br />

many forms (over 300!) and <strong>the</strong>se particular forms are<br />

interesting as, unlike many <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> o<strong>the</strong>rs that attach to<br />

rocks and o<strong>the</strong>r substrates, <strong>the</strong>se float on <strong>the</strong> surface<br />

<strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> ocean forming floating mats or rafts. This provides<br />

a rich habitat supporting many o<strong>the</strong>r organisms,<br />

including sea turtles, various fish and <strong>the</strong>re are some species<br />

endemic to <strong>the</strong> sargassum. However, when washed<br />

ashore it can become a problem to land managers and<br />

tourism operators who have to balance respecting natural<br />

processes with keeping <strong>the</strong> beaches clean and beautiful<br />

so as not to impede <strong>the</strong> visitor experience.<br />

Our work in <strong>the</strong> lab was to take samples and to find<br />

out which <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> three forms found across <strong>the</strong> Caribbean<br />

were washing onto <strong>the</strong> beaches. The importance <strong>of</strong> this<br />

is that little is understood about <strong>the</strong> chemical characteristics<br />

<strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>se and, if <strong>the</strong>re is to be a commercial use for<br />

<strong>the</strong> seaweed, this might be affected by <strong>the</strong> mix. We developed<br />

an identification guide that is now freely available to<br />


<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 37

green pages newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> department <strong>of</strong> environment & coastal resources<br />

This image was taken in <strong>20</strong>18 when <strong>the</strong> estuary between McCartney Cay and Hog Cay, one <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> longest mangrove channels in <strong>the</strong> country,<br />

was completely closed <strong>of</strong>f with sargassum.<br />


anyone interested, and a standardised method for collecting,<br />

weighing and sorting <strong>the</strong> seaweed. This also enabled<br />

identification <strong>of</strong> any o<strong>the</strong>r materials, such as plastics and<br />

o<strong>the</strong>r inorganic matter, as well as o<strong>the</strong>r types <strong>of</strong> seaweed<br />

and sea grass that could affect options for more sustainable<br />

methods <strong>of</strong> disposal. Our work was carried out to <strong>the</strong><br />

sounds <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> waves beaching <strong>the</strong>mselves on <strong>the</strong> rocks—<br />

exceeding our expectations <strong>of</strong> a science lab!<br />

A quick trip to Grand Turk completed our tour <strong>of</strong> TCI,<br />

enabling us to begin to understand <strong>the</strong> diversity <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>se<br />

islands. Unfortunately <strong>the</strong>re was simply not enough time<br />

to visit Middle or North Caicos. Grand Turk was a real<br />

contrast, with <strong>the</strong> historical buildings <strong>of</strong> Cockburn Town<br />

dating from <strong>the</strong> period when <strong>the</strong> salt industry was highly<br />

pr<strong>of</strong>itable. The relic salt pans were <strong>of</strong> particular interest,<br />

evidence <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> island’s industrial heritage but now hosting<br />

internationally important populations <strong>of</strong> birds, many<br />

<strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>m migratory waders, attractive to bird watchers.<br />

We enjoyed <strong>the</strong> peace and quiet and <strong>the</strong> opportunity to<br />

watch pelicans and flamingos until <strong>the</strong>re was a burst <strong>of</strong><br />

38 www.timespub.tc

green pages newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> department <strong>of</strong> environment & coastal resources<br />

activity in response to <strong>the</strong> arrival <strong>of</strong> a large cruise ship.<br />

This is a regular occurrence with tourists visiting briefly,<br />

touring on Segways, in buggys and on horseback, with<br />

some choosing to experience <strong>the</strong> mangrove-lined creeks<br />

and nature reserves. This habitat supports both rich and<br />

diverse wildlife, whilst providing storm and flood protection<br />

for humans. Grand Turk is exposed to <strong>the</strong> easterly<br />

prevailing winds and so received more sargassum than<br />

<strong>the</strong> more westerly South Caicos and Providenciales, but<br />

we were interested to see <strong>the</strong>re was no sargassum on<br />

<strong>the</strong> Cockburn Town side <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> island where most <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

tourism takes place.<br />

As well as making observations, taking samples and<br />

doing our lab work, we were keen to meet as many <strong>of</strong><br />

those involved in <strong>the</strong> tourist industry as possible to find<br />

out if <strong>the</strong> increase in seaweed on <strong>the</strong> beaches was affecting<br />

<strong>the</strong>ir businesses. We devised a quick questionnaire<br />

and held a focus group on <strong>the</strong> three islands visited, resulting<br />

in 100 responses from diverse operations including<br />

hoteliers, jet ski hirers, and dive and sport fishing companies.<br />

The results were very interesting, revealing that<br />

while seaweed could be a problem where it needed to<br />

be removed from beaches or could damage equipment<br />

(for example, clogging jet ski intakes), <strong>the</strong>re were also<br />

some benefits—<strong>the</strong> floating rafts attract large predatory<br />

fish, benefitting sports fishing, and can stabilise beaches,<br />

preventing erosion.<br />

As always seems to be <strong>the</strong> case, initial research has<br />

generated as many questions as answers! There is no real<br />

information about how much sargassum is being deposited<br />

on <strong>the</strong> beaches and no regional information on where<br />

or when this is happening, let alone what is causing <strong>the</strong><br />

increased amounts seen recently. To try to build up a<br />

more detailed picture, monitoring sites have been set up<br />

and <strong>the</strong>re is an opportunity for anyone to get involved<br />

by sending photos with <strong>the</strong> date and location through<br />

an app called epicollect5. Simply find and download <strong>the</strong><br />

app, select “sargassum watch” and start collecting scientific<br />

data that will feed into a Caribbean-wide monitoring.<br />

Take a picture with <strong>the</strong> app every time you go to <strong>the</strong><br />

beach even if it is sargassum free. It’s so easy to become<br />

a citizen scientist and your help is greatly appreciated!<br />

We were sad to leave but returned with samples <strong>of</strong><br />

<strong>the</strong> seaweed which is now producing interesting results<br />

in <strong>the</strong> university laboratories. It is early days, but <strong>the</strong><br />

initial results are causing some excitement among <strong>the</strong><br />

chemists and we expect full results to be available in <strong>the</strong><br />

near future. We feel a lot has been achieved in <strong>the</strong> first<br />

six months <strong>of</strong> this two-year project, and we are grateful<br />

to Darwin Plus for enabling us <strong>the</strong> opportunity to take<br />

part in this research and to experience <strong>the</strong> “Beautiful by<br />

Nature” Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>. a<br />

If you would like to contribute any photos to our project<br />

to help build on our sargassum map in <strong>the</strong> TCI, you can<br />

do so by emailing <strong>the</strong>m to franziskaelmer@hotmail.com.<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 39

green pages newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> department <strong>of</strong> environment & coastal resources<br />

Fort George Cay is a National Historic Site, featuring underwater cannons that were once charged with protecting <strong>the</strong> Loyalist cotton plantations<br />

on <strong>the</strong> Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>.<br />

Roadmap to Sustainability<br />

TCI’s environmental strategy in <strong>the</strong> making.<br />

By Megan Tierney*, Lucy Beagley*, Lormeka Williams*, Cherylann S. Jones***,<br />

Michelle Fulford-Gardiner*** and Eric F. Salamanca**<br />

*Joint Nature Conservation Committee, **Department <strong>of</strong> Environment and Coastal Resources,<br />

***Ministry <strong>of</strong> Tourism, Environment, Heritage, Maritime, Disaster Management and Gaming<br />

Photos By Eric F. Salamanca<br />

With its turquoise blue sea, sandy white beaches and luscious mangroves, it’s easy to see why <strong>the</strong> Turks<br />

& Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> are described as “Beautiful by Nature.” It is widely recognized that people’s way <strong>of</strong> life in<br />

<strong>the</strong> TCI is highly dependent on its rich and varied environments—<strong>the</strong> seas are abundant with fish to eat,<br />

<strong>the</strong> corals and mangroves provide protection from hurricane-induced storm surges, and <strong>the</strong> natural landand<br />

sea-scapes help support a thriving tourism industry, as well as <strong>the</strong> health and well-being <strong>of</strong> residents.<br />

However, <strong>the</strong> environment is under increasing pressure from factors such as development, resource use<br />

and climate change, which threatens <strong>the</strong> livelihoods <strong>of</strong> all those who depend upon it.<br />

40 www.timespub.tc

green pages newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> department <strong>of</strong> environment & coastal resources<br />

Split Rock is a highlight <strong>of</strong> West Harbour Bluff, a remote area at <strong>the</strong> southwest point <strong>of</strong> Providenciales. It includes a small peninsula with sea<br />

cliffs, an open faced cave, and a long stretch <strong>of</strong> secluded beach.<br />

To safeguard <strong>the</strong> multiple benefits <strong>the</strong> environment<br />

provides for present and future generations and to support<br />

sustainable development, <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos Government<br />

through <strong>the</strong> Ministry <strong>of</strong> Tourism, Environment, Heritage,<br />

Maritime, Disaster Management, and Gaming (MTE) is<br />

developing <strong>the</strong> first Environment Strategy for <strong>the</strong> Turks<br />

& Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>. The Department <strong>of</strong> Environment and<br />

Coastal Resources (DECR) is coordinating this activity with<br />

technical support from <strong>the</strong> UK’s Joint Nature Conservation<br />

Committee (JNCC).<br />

An Environment Strategy (ES) will help to join existing<br />

and new environmental plans and activities to ensure<br />

effective implementation <strong>of</strong> environmental priorities. The<br />

ES is envisaged to be a “living” strategy—that is, it will be<br />

reviewed and updated regularly, enabling it to be adapted<br />

to meet TCI’s changing needs. Fundamental to its success<br />

will be <strong>the</strong> development <strong>of</strong> an islands-wide information<br />

management system that will ensure all data required<br />

for effective management and monitoring <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> environment<br />

is housed and accessible from a central location.<br />

The ES will be crafted to be congruent with TCI’s<br />

existing legislative and policy framework, notably <strong>the</strong> TCI<br />

Constitution (Sec. 18.1—have due regard to <strong>the</strong> need to<br />

foster and protect an environment that is not harmful to<br />

<strong>the</strong> health or well-being <strong>of</strong> present and future generations,<br />

while promoting justifiable economic and social development),<br />

TCI Vision <strong>20</strong>40, <strong>the</strong> National Tourism Strategy<br />

and Policy, <strong>the</strong> National Disaster Management Plan and<br />

<strong>the</strong> National Physical Development Plan (in preparation).<br />

The proposed strategy will also be guided by national<br />

and global principles and commitments set out in <strong>the</strong> TCI<br />

Environment Charter, <strong>the</strong> UK 25-Year Environment Plan<br />

and <strong>the</strong> UN Sustainable Development Goals.<br />

To ensure <strong>the</strong> ES meets user needs, JNCC visited TCI<br />

in October <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong> to hold <strong>the</strong> first stage <strong>of</strong> stakeholder consultations.<br />

Over 40 stakeholders attended from <strong>the</strong> Office<br />

<strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Governor, various TCI Government departments<br />

and units, NGOs, <strong>the</strong> Sustainable Tourism Committee,<br />

watersports operators and civil society, with consultations<br />

taking place on North, Middle and South Caicos,<br />

Providenciales and Grand Turk. Stakeholders were asked<br />

<strong>the</strong>ir opinions on <strong>the</strong> overarching purpose and objective<br />

<strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> ES, what environmental areas it should contain,<br />

and how to ensure effective implementation.<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 41

green pages newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> department <strong>of</strong> environment & coastal resources<br />

Red mangroves are easily identified by <strong>the</strong>ir above-ground prop roots that transport air to <strong>the</strong>ir<br />

waterlogged below-ground roots.<br />

Fur<strong>the</strong>r opportunity to input is welcomed through<br />

an online questionnaire at https://www.smartsurvey.<br />

co.uk/s/TCI_Environment_Strategy/ or, alternatively, a<br />

hard copy questionnaire can be obtained and returned<br />

from a DECR <strong>of</strong>fice. The survey will close on January 17,<br />

<strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong>.<br />

Responses ga<strong>the</strong>red during <strong>the</strong> October–November<br />

consultations and from <strong>the</strong> online questionnaires will<br />

inform <strong>the</strong> drafting <strong>of</strong> a framework for <strong>the</strong> ES and a road<br />

map detailing <strong>the</strong> steps required to put it into action.<br />

Fur<strong>the</strong>r input will be invited from interested stakeholders<br />

during a second consultation period and visit by JNCC<br />

planned for February <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong> .<br />

A key component <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> first consultation period is<br />

to collect opinions on <strong>the</strong> proposal that a living strategy<br />

may be achieved through a combination <strong>of</strong> overarching<br />

aspiration statements and inter-linked dynamic “modules.”<br />

Wherever possible, <strong>the</strong> Strategy will build on and<br />

incorporate work being undertaken by TCI’s different<br />

government departments, as well as locally based and<br />

external research organisations and foundations.<br />

To support <strong>the</strong> development <strong>of</strong> TCI’s ES, a review has<br />

been conducted <strong>of</strong> o<strong>the</strong>r national environment strategies<br />

to learn lessons about structure, content and approach.<br />

Their strengths and weakness will guide preparation <strong>of</strong><br />

<strong>the</strong> TCI ES. Some <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> key findings to date are that<br />

strong messaging is important to convey <strong>the</strong> overarching<br />

ambition <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> strategy<br />

and that establishing <strong>the</strong> frequency<br />

at which <strong>the</strong> strategy<br />

will be monitored and updated<br />

is necessary to ensure it is<br />

achieving <strong>the</strong> stated objectives<br />

and remains a “living” strategy.<br />

Considering how <strong>the</strong><br />

Strategy will be implemented<br />

will be important to consider<br />

from <strong>the</strong> outset to ensure that it<br />

is properly resourced and acted<br />

upon. Implementation may take<br />

a phased approach to address<br />

priority areas in turn and all<br />

stakeholders are encouraged to<br />

support it, directly or indirectly.<br />

Additionally, JNCC will continue<br />

to provide technical assistance<br />

and <strong>the</strong>re may be scope to jointly bid for funding to<br />

implement identified activities. An important topic for<br />

stakeholder consideration is <strong>the</strong> different mechanisms<br />

or tools that could be used to financially support <strong>the</strong><br />

Strategy in <strong>the</strong> long-term. In <strong>the</strong> past, <strong>the</strong> TCI Government<br />

managed a Conservation Fund which provided resources<br />

to support protected areas management and community<br />

conservation projects. Discussions are currently underway<br />

to explore if <strong>the</strong> Conservation Fund could be revived,<br />

and may be one option to help sustainably finance <strong>the</strong><br />

Strategy into <strong>the</strong> future.<br />

Going forward, <strong>the</strong> aspiration is that by March<br />

<strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong> <strong>the</strong> framework and road map for <strong>the</strong> Environment<br />

Strategy will be finalised and a draft cabinet paper produced<br />

for consideration by Government. Following this,<br />

MTE, DECR and JNCC will continue working toge<strong>the</strong>r and<br />

with stakeholders in <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong>/<strong>20</strong>21 to ensure continued<br />

development <strong>of</strong> a Strategy that effectively safeguards<br />

<strong>the</strong> multiple benefits <strong>the</strong> environment provides, protects<br />

<strong>the</strong> livelihoods <strong>of</strong> those who depend on it and works in<br />

harmony with development <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>, ensuring <strong>the</strong>y<br />

remain “Beautiful by Nature” for many years to come. a<br />

To contribute to <strong>the</strong> development <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> TCI Environment<br />

Strategy visit: https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/<br />

TCI_Environment_Strategy/ The survey will close to submissions<br />

on January 17, <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong>.<br />

42 www.timespub.tc

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 43


feature<br />

Each island in <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos has its own cemeteries to bury <strong>the</strong> dead. Shown here (opposite page) is <strong>the</strong> graveyard in Whitby, North<br />

Caicos and (above) <strong>the</strong> Public Cemetery in Grand Turk.<br />


Final Goodbyes<br />

Funeral traditions in <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>.<br />

By Jody Rathgeb<br />

Death is not a likely topic for a magazine such as <strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>. The sunshine, blue waters and<br />

swaying palms <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos are so full <strong>of</strong> life that <strong>the</strong> alternative seems very far away. Yet people<br />

do die here and have for centuries; that has not changed. The ideas, methods and traditions <strong>of</strong> burial in<br />

<strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>, though, have seen change with <strong>the</strong> development <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> nation.<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 45

In <strong>the</strong> “olden days,” before electric power on <strong>the</strong><br />

Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> was widespread, burials were simple<br />

and quick. The dead were buried within 24 hours in<br />

c<strong>of</strong>fins made <strong>of</strong> wood. Only when morgues were built and<br />

available and bodies could be embalmed, did practices<br />

change to allow funeral planning that could accommodate<br />

families that needed to travel for services.<br />

Enter Elbert Edward Higgs <strong>of</strong> North Caicos, founder<br />

<strong>of</strong> A&S Funeral Services and <strong>the</strong> longest serving mortician<br />

in <strong>the</strong> TCI. In <strong>the</strong> 1970s, Higgs, like his fa<strong>the</strong>r, was<br />

a builder <strong>of</strong> caskets and began performing burials in that<br />

old traditional style. But upon his fa<strong>the</strong>r’s death in 1983,<br />

when Elbert was pressed during bad wea<strong>the</strong>r to get everything<br />

done quickly, he decided that North Caicos needed<br />

a morgue. Soon after, he built that morgue under <strong>the</strong><br />

ownership <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> North Caicos Mutual Burial Association,<br />

and began a funeral service operation in North Caicos,<br />

using expatriate embalmers as was <strong>the</strong> custom in o<strong>the</strong>r<br />

islands.<br />

His next step was to become an embalmer himself.<br />

He trained in <strong>the</strong> Bahamas and became a mortician for all<br />

<strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos. He continues doing that work and<br />

has passed on training and skills to o<strong>the</strong>r funeral service<br />

companies in <strong>the</strong> country. Today, his daughter, Adelphine<br />

Higgs-Pitter, is <strong>the</strong> managing director <strong>of</strong> A&S Funeral<br />

Services (ansfuneralservices.com), but her fa<strong>the</strong>r continues<br />

in his work. Toge<strong>the</strong>r, <strong>the</strong>y have aided and helped<br />

craft what most now view as <strong>the</strong> traditional island funeral:<br />

A viewing and wake, church service and graveyard service<br />

Above: These crosses mark graves in a cemetery on Salt Cay.<br />

Below: This photo shows a funeral procession on Grand Turk in 1964.<br />

Note that <strong>the</strong> electricity power lines are in <strong>the</strong> process <strong>of</strong> being put<br />

up. The pickup truck is a type used by Pan Am at South Base during<br />

that time. The grey building is <strong>the</strong> Outten apartments.<br />



46 www.timespub.tc

followed by burial. These are accompanied by memorial<br />

programs containing <strong>the</strong> obituary and photos, and <strong>of</strong>ten<br />

o<strong>the</strong>r memory items such as buttons or shirts.<br />

These traditional funeral activities are actually a blend<br />

<strong>of</strong> many traditions that have fed into <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>: those <strong>of</strong><br />

<strong>the</strong> English, Irish and Scots who settled here, plus African<br />

beliefs and more modern iterations <strong>of</strong> ancient rites. The<br />

“island wake,” an all-night event with singing, dancing<br />

and refreshments, for example, is a version <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> ancient<br />

tradition <strong>of</strong> safeguarding a corpse until burial. It borrows<br />

from both <strong>the</strong> famed Irish wakes and <strong>the</strong> African frenzy-like<br />

displays <strong>of</strong> sorrow. Families put <strong>the</strong>ir own spin on<br />

<strong>the</strong> wake; for some it’s a more religious compendium <strong>of</strong><br />

gospel music, while o<strong>the</strong>rs turn <strong>the</strong> event into a full-blown<br />

final party for <strong>the</strong> deceased. The next day’s religious services<br />

are also tinged by <strong>the</strong> fragile emotional states from<br />

a full night <strong>of</strong> wakefulness.<br />

Those who have noticed processions <strong>of</strong> a white,<br />

glass-sided carriage during funerals are also seeing an<br />

influence from outside <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>, in this case <strong>the</strong> <strong>the</strong>atrical<br />

funerals <strong>of</strong> New Orleans (which also grew from<br />

Euro-African traditions). Since Elbert Higgs and a friend<br />

built <strong>the</strong> carriage, Adelphine notes, it has been used in<br />

about half <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> A&S funerals, “Mostly in <strong>the</strong> younger<br />

generation,” she says. The idea <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> mobile display <strong>of</strong> a<br />

casket is only somewhat traditional in <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>.<br />

Top: Funeral carriages such as this one in <strong>the</strong> Bahamas are also used<br />

in <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos.<br />

Above: This donkey-drawn funeral hearse was used on Grand Turk<br />

during <strong>the</strong> 1960s.<br />

Some small changes<br />

Most, but not all, go this traditional route. With <strong>the</strong> influence<br />

<strong>of</strong> outsiders, more people have become interested<br />

in cremation and o<strong>the</strong>r options such as burial at sea and<br />

“green” funerals. A&S has become flexible enough to deal<br />

with <strong>the</strong>se options, and Adelphine kindly shared explanations<br />

and comments on <strong>the</strong>m, even though cremation is<br />

less than one percent <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>ir business and o<strong>the</strong>r traditions<br />

are far less.<br />

When cremation is requested, she says, it must be<br />

done outside <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> TCI since <strong>the</strong>re is no crematory in<br />


<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 47


From top: This cemetery in Blue Hills, Providenciales lies peacefully<br />

beside <strong>the</strong> sea.<br />

The Salt Cay “barren ground” bears <strong>the</strong> weight <strong>of</strong> years <strong>of</strong> tradition.<br />

<strong>the</strong> country. Her company works with ano<strong>the</strong>r in Fort<br />

Lauderdale, Florida. Remains must be embalmed first,<br />

<strong>the</strong>n shipped <strong>the</strong>re, as per law. Then <strong>the</strong> remains are<br />

ei<strong>the</strong>r returned to TCI via IBC Airways or sent to any o<strong>the</strong>r<br />

address. A&S handles <strong>the</strong> documentation to accompany<br />

<strong>the</strong> process.<br />

While she says <strong>the</strong>re is increasing interest in cremation,<br />

it may be a while before it can be done in <strong>the</strong> Turks<br />

& Caicos. “Cremation will definitely be a growing trend<br />

once a facility is established here,” she says, but adds,<br />

“The cost to develop a cremation facility by a funeral provider<br />

does not make financial sense based on <strong>the</strong> low<br />

death rate and amount <strong>of</strong> funeral business compared to<br />

<strong>the</strong> population.”<br />

Cremation is only somewhat less expensive than<br />

burial in <strong>the</strong> TCI, Adelphine says, because <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> costs <strong>of</strong><br />

containers, shipping and documentation. For A&S, a basic<br />

traditional funeral costs around $7,000. Depending upon<br />

what is included, a cremation can run into <strong>the</strong> $6,000<br />

range.<br />

Scatterings, burial at sea and o<strong>the</strong>r options<br />

What families do with returned cremains is up to <strong>the</strong>m.<br />

They may keep <strong>the</strong> loved one in a sealed urn or scatter<br />

<strong>the</strong> ashes on land or at sea. Those wishing a scattering<br />

at sea can arrange <strong>the</strong>ir own boat, or turn to a Provo tour<br />

operator. Both Sail Provo and Island Vibes Tours <strong>of</strong>fer<br />

packages for <strong>the</strong> scattering <strong>of</strong> ashes, a fact that indicates<br />

<strong>the</strong>re has been interest in that non-traditional type <strong>of</strong> service.<br />

Actual burial at sea, <strong>the</strong> stuff <strong>of</strong> English Naval dramas<br />

and pirate fictions, is even more rare in <strong>the</strong> Turks &<br />

Caicos, but it is legal, with stipulations provided by <strong>the</strong><br />

Department <strong>of</strong> Environmental Health. Sea burial must be<br />

done in a lea<strong>the</strong>r bag that contains weights, and it must<br />

occur at least three miles <strong>of</strong>f shore.<br />

The idea <strong>of</strong> returning to <strong>the</strong> land or sea is also shown<br />

in <strong>the</strong> interest in two very different types <strong>of</strong> memorialization:<br />

reef balls that contain ashes, and old-fashioned<br />

burials without embalming.<br />

One company in <strong>the</strong> United States provides <strong>the</strong> former.<br />

Eternal Reefs (eternalreefs.com) is a company that<br />

combines cremains with environmentally safe cast concrete<br />

to create a memorial “pearl,” which is <strong>the</strong>n dropped<br />

into one <strong>of</strong> several sites <strong>of</strong>f <strong>the</strong> U.S. coast during a ceremony<br />

at sea. The company is permitted through local,<br />

state and federal agencies and approved by <strong>the</strong> U.S.<br />

Environmental Protection Agency and encourages families<br />

to participate in <strong>the</strong> four-day process <strong>of</strong> casting, a<br />

48 www.timespub.tc

Salt Cay traditions<br />

In a <strong>20</strong>13 article in Turks & Caicos Weekly News, Salt<br />

Cay resident Candy Herwin recalls, “There are only<br />

a few old folk left who can recall <strong>the</strong> mid-1900s era<br />

and <strong>the</strong> old traditions <strong>of</strong> wakes and funerals and <strong>the</strong><br />

marching processions in which <strong>the</strong> whole community<br />

would follow <strong>the</strong> pallbearers to <strong>the</strong> tombside in <strong>the</strong><br />

Barren Ground.”<br />

There was no electricity back <strong>the</strong>n so <strong>the</strong><br />

deceased needed to get “dressed down” and buried<br />

as quickly as possible—<strong>the</strong> men dressed in black and<br />

<strong>the</strong> women in white. A donkey and cart would carry<br />

<strong>the</strong> body to <strong>the</strong> Benevolent Hall where it was placed<br />

in a handmade wooden casket and <strong>the</strong> “sisters” would<br />

decorate <strong>the</strong> inside with fresh-cut moringa flowers<br />

which were sweet smelling and white. The casket was<br />

<strong>the</strong>n placed on a heavy white canvas sheet, which<br />

was carried by six male family members who would<br />

lead <strong>the</strong> onward march with <strong>the</strong> community and<br />

Benevolent Lodge following behind.<br />

There was always an air <strong>of</strong> pageantry with<br />

prayers, singing, weeping and wailing while <strong>the</strong> men<br />

beat <strong>the</strong> rhythmic bass and tenor drums and blew<br />

<strong>the</strong> French horns, ‘licking’ <strong>the</strong> long sticks as <strong>the</strong>y<br />

marched to <strong>the</strong> church <strong>of</strong> membership.<br />

The procession would sing Gospel hymns from<br />

<strong>the</strong> Sankey, like one <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> favourite marching tunes,<br />

“There’s a Royal Banner” and yet ano<strong>the</strong>r popular<br />

refrain, “When I can read my title clear to mansions<br />

in <strong>the</strong> skies, I bid farewell to every fear, and wipe my<br />

weeping eyes.”<br />

Sometimes two chairs were carried along with<br />

<strong>the</strong> procession so that <strong>the</strong> pallbearers could rest for<br />

awhile, however, <strong>the</strong> music and singing continued<br />

through <strong>the</strong> church service and onward to <strong>the</strong> Barren<br />

Ground. The body was lowered into <strong>the</strong> earth and<br />

everyone threw in a handful <strong>of</strong> soil.<br />

It was a simple affair and <strong>the</strong>y would say, “When<br />

you die your head got to be facing westward.” It<br />

was an old belief dating back to when freed slaves<br />

believed that <strong>the</strong> dead should be facing <strong>the</strong> right way<br />

when Gabriel blows his trumpet in <strong>the</strong> eastern sunrise.<br />

Salt Cay residents agree that <strong>the</strong> ancestral burial<br />

ground is an historic and important part <strong>of</strong> community<br />

life. a<br />

service and positioning <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> pearl. Costs range from<br />

$3,000 to $7,500. Those in <strong>the</strong> TCI are reminded, however,<br />

that <strong>the</strong> approved sites for reef balls are not within<br />

this country.<br />

Can one still be buried <strong>the</strong> old-old-fashioned way, in<br />

a wooden casket without being embalmed? Yes, provided<br />

that such burial has been approved by <strong>the</strong> coroner. Also,<br />

<strong>the</strong> dirt grave must be topped with cement and marked.<br />

Such quick and green burials bring <strong>the</strong> TCI full circle to<br />

<strong>the</strong> past.<br />

In <strong>the</strong> end, our final goodbyes depend on one’s own<br />

beliefs, traditions and comfort. As <strong>the</strong> TCI continues to<br />

diversify and be influenced by o<strong>the</strong>r traditions, <strong>the</strong> meaning<br />

<strong>of</strong> a “traditional” memorial service is changing and<br />

becoming filled with new options. a<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 49

feature<br />

This is <strong>the</strong> entranceway to <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> Community College Grand Turk campus, which opened in mid-<strong>20</strong>02.<br />

Opposite page: It’s a tern convention on <strong>the</strong> dock! This one is largely attended by Sandwich Terns (distinguished by <strong>the</strong>ir long bills with a<br />

yellow tip) and one lone Royal Tern with <strong>the</strong> orange bill.<br />

Above: This Bananaquit appears to have enjoyed quite a feast <strong>of</strong> pomegranate seeds. They are locally called <strong>the</strong> “Chickadewilly,” a term that<br />

is <strong>of</strong>ten applied to all small birds.<br />

Birds & Binoculars<br />

You can’t enjoy one without <strong>the</strong> o<strong>the</strong>r.<br />

By William J. Cook ~ Photos By Marta Morton<br />

Few places in <strong>the</strong> world <strong>of</strong>fer <strong>the</strong> birding paradise that can be found in <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>, and<br />

<strong>the</strong>re are many vantage points from which to take in <strong>the</strong>se wondrous, diverse and colorful creatures.<br />

Sadly, it’s not uncommon for tourists to travel thousands <strong>of</strong> miles to add to <strong>the</strong>ir life lists only to use<br />

binoculars lacking in <strong>the</strong> clarity that would take a pleasurable adventure to a whole new level. Most <strong>of</strong><br />

<strong>the</strong> anomalies causing that lack <strong>of</strong> clarity are thought to be related to <strong>the</strong> binocular but are actually due<br />

to poor collimation (misalignment) or <strong>the</strong> observer’s physiology.<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 51

Optics is a nebulous subject that many people leave<br />

to <strong>the</strong> ever-changing opinions found in magazines and on<br />

Internet binocular forums. Therein, when <strong>the</strong> topic moves<br />

to <strong>the</strong> more clinical side <strong>of</strong> things, collimation and physiology<br />

for example, opinions <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> ultracrepidarians can<br />

range from inaccurate, through silly, to damaging.<br />

I’ve spent 45 years in precision optics. First as a Chief<br />

Opticalman with <strong>the</strong> US Navy, as a civilian optical consultant,<br />

and finally as creator and manager <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Precision<br />

Instruments & Optics department for Seattle’s 123-year<br />

old Captain’s Nautical Supplies, where I was on <strong>the</strong> front<br />

lines <strong>of</strong> working with binocular shoppers and where I<br />

repaired and collimated more than 12,000 binoculars.<br />

Starting in <strong>the</strong> early 1990s, as a result <strong>of</strong> trying to add<br />

a touch <strong>of</strong> reality to <strong>the</strong> vastly misleading “auto-focus”<br />

craze that so many honest people bought into, I started<br />

writing to take on <strong>the</strong> false notions that were taking<br />

observers down so many <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> costly and non-productive<br />

roads leading to fableland.<br />

Following, I’ll correct some <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> biggest misconceptions<br />

that have befuddled observers for years and end by<br />

addressing one <strong>of</strong> today’s biggest problems in achieving<br />

a crisp focus. It’s a totally avoidable problem that rests<br />

with <strong>the</strong> observer and not <strong>the</strong> binocular.<br />

Auto-focus binoculars?<br />

This sales ploy reached its peak in <strong>the</strong> 1990s but still<br />

haunts <strong>the</strong> observer looking for that something special<br />

and doesn’t mind trying to outsmart logic and physics<br />

to do so.<br />

Regardless <strong>of</strong> what you have heard, read or think,<br />

you have seen for yourself <strong>the</strong>re are no non-electronic<br />

auto-focus binoculars. Minolta once marketed a binocular<br />

that focused on <strong>the</strong> same principle as a modern digital<br />

camera, but having numerous deficiencies it wasn’t on<br />

<strong>the</strong> market long.<br />

Years ago, I made a bent-nail puzzle and gave it to<br />

a friend to tinker with while we talked. Figuring it out in<br />

short order, I grabbed <strong>the</strong> puzzle, turned my back, put<br />

it back toge<strong>the</strong>r, and gave it to him again saying, “Okay,<br />

hotdog, let’s see you get this one apart as fast; I put it<br />

toge<strong>the</strong>r backwards.” Although we continued talking for<br />

quite a while, he couldn’t figure it out.<br />

The puzzle only worked one way. Thus, it couldn’t<br />

have been put toge<strong>the</strong>r “backwards.” Yet, <strong>the</strong> power <strong>of</strong><br />

suggestion caused him to flounder. And that’s just what<br />

<strong>the</strong> auto-focus craze was based on. Good advertising<br />

need not be accurate or even meaningful; it has only to<br />

be believed.<br />

Order in focusing<br />

Center-focus binoculars must be focused as <strong>the</strong>y were<br />

designed to be focused and, in <strong>the</strong> vast majority <strong>of</strong> cases,<br />

<strong>the</strong> left telescope is to be focused first. For good imagery<br />

it’s not optional.<br />

A customer once told me her optometrist said she<br />


White-cheeked pintail ducks can be found in seasonal freshwater ponds and swamps, but in times <strong>of</strong> drought will go into tidal ponds and<br />

old salinas.<br />

52 www.timespub.tc

should always focus her right eye first because she was<br />

right-eye dominant. Consequently, based on his “expert”<br />

advice, she had spent years using her expensive Leica binocular<br />

to produce images <strong>of</strong> lower quality than expected<br />

<strong>of</strong> a $69 drugstore special, all <strong>the</strong> while believing something<br />

was wrong with her eyes.<br />

Why was following this optometrist’s advice wrong?<br />

Let’s start by following his instructions, focusing <strong>the</strong> right<br />

eye as directed, to find out. Bingo, your right eye is seeing<br />

a great image. But now, with <strong>the</strong> right eye sharply<br />

focused, you turn <strong>the</strong> center focus wheel or flip lever to<br />

focus your left eye. Since, however, <strong>the</strong>re’s a 2-diopter<br />

difference (for example) in your eyes, and since <strong>the</strong> center<br />

focus wheel or lever was designed to focus both sides<br />

at <strong>the</strong> same time, sharply focusing your left eye has just<br />

defocused your right eye by 2 diopters. Something isn’t<br />

right. But you did what your optometrist told you to do.<br />

So, it must be you . . . right?<br />

When both eyes are sharply focused on <strong>the</strong> target,<br />

having followed <strong>the</strong> correct procedure, you may return to<br />

<strong>the</strong> center-focus wheel for focusing at various distances<br />

until <strong>the</strong> focus is altered by ano<strong>the</strong>r observer or until one<br />

From top: The Brown Pelican is a common sight in <strong>the</strong> TCI, and although this one seems surprised, it is more likely coming in for a landing.<br />

The female Bahama Woodstar hummingbird builds her tiny nest from bits <strong>of</strong> plants and spider silk, cemented with her saliva. In it she lays<br />

two eggs; <strong>the</strong> resulting chicks shown here are quite grown and nearly ready to leave <strong>the</strong> nest!<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 53

<strong>Times</strong> Kevin_<strong>Times</strong> Kevin 9/18/18 10:51 AM Page 1<br />

<strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> adjustments has been inadvertently reset. In doing<br />

so, you will maintain <strong>the</strong> dioptric difference between your<br />

eyes regardless <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> distance to <strong>the</strong> target—500 feet<br />

or 5,000,000,000 miles. (Only 2 to 3% <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> population<br />

have <strong>the</strong> same setting in each eye.)<br />

Spatial accommodation<br />

Spatial accommodation is a collimation (alignment) issue<br />

that, more <strong>of</strong>ten than not, originates with <strong>the</strong> binocular<br />

but which can be caused by <strong>the</strong> binocular’s IPD (interpupillary<br />

distance) to be misplaced relative to <strong>the</strong> separation<br />

<strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> user’s eyes.<br />

For example, just placing a binocular to <strong>the</strong> eyes<br />

is inadequate unless positioned in such a way that <strong>the</strong><br />

binocular’s exit pupil is placed precisely in front <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

pupils <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> observer’s eyes. If <strong>the</strong> observer has an IPD<br />

<strong>of</strong> 69 millimeters and <strong>the</strong> binocular’s IPD is set to match,<br />

all is well. If not, <strong>the</strong> observer must use some degree <strong>of</strong><br />

eye-straining spatial accommodating, even if <strong>the</strong> binocular<br />

is well collimated.<br />

The Internet is replete with articles telling observers<br />

how <strong>the</strong>y can “easily” correct misalignment by tweaking a<br />

few through-<strong>the</strong>-body/prism-tilt screws, with most such<br />

instructions omitting o<strong>the</strong>r alignment conventions and<br />

<strong>the</strong> repairs <strong>of</strong>ten needed to allow any <strong>of</strong> those conventions<br />

to work.<br />

There are, however, stipulations <strong>of</strong> which <strong>the</strong> exuberant<br />

screw-tweaker needs to be aware. IF only one side<br />

<strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> binocular is misaligned, IF that side is <strong>the</strong> one<br />

adjusted, IF <strong>the</strong> error is small, IF <strong>the</strong> individual’s physiological<br />

accommodation is adequate, and IF <strong>the</strong> distance<br />

to <strong>the</strong> desired target is far enough this—conditional alignment—may<br />

be enough to make <strong>the</strong> instrument perform<br />

well or even excellently. Even so, while that is adequate<br />

for some users, it leaves o<strong>the</strong>rs, who didn’t have all those<br />

IFs in <strong>the</strong>ir favor, frustrated with a less than crisp image.<br />

In addition, without specific knowledge, <strong>the</strong> same<br />

procedure can push <strong>the</strong> binocular ever far<strong>the</strong>r out <strong>of</strong> alignment<br />

and can, in some cases, damage <strong>the</strong> instrument.<br />

And although rarely, if ever, seen in print, understanding<br />

spatial accommodation is critical to getting <strong>the</strong> best view<br />

from <strong>the</strong> binocular.<br />

So, if you find that your binocular gives you a double—or<br />

even an uncomfortable—image you should<br />

consider that <strong>the</strong> binocular may be misaligned or you<br />

don’t have <strong>the</strong> telescopes spaced properly for your eyes.<br />

In order to find out, bring <strong>the</strong> binocular to your eyes and<br />

seek <strong>the</strong> best view <strong>of</strong> a target at least a mile away. A<br />

streetlamp will work fine. Then slowly move <strong>the</strong> instru-<br />

54 www.timespub.tc

The Mourning Dove epitomizes “protection”<br />

as she keeps careful watch over<br />

her chicks. The bird is so-named for its<br />

melancholy call.

The longest established legal practice<br />

in <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong><br />

ment 8 to 10 inches away from your face. Try to just<br />

stare. If <strong>the</strong> error is small, your brain will compensate. If<br />

problematic, alternate <strong>the</strong> opening and closing <strong>of</strong> each<br />

eye. Is <strong>the</strong> image still, or does it dance? If <strong>the</strong> latter, you<br />

have a collimation issue and with <strong>the</strong> lack <strong>of</strong> qualified binocular<br />

techs around, <strong>the</strong> instrument should be replaced<br />

by <strong>the</strong> vendor or repaired at <strong>the</strong> factory.<br />

Real Estate Investments<br />

& Property Development<br />

Immigration, Residency<br />

& Business Licensing<br />

Company & Commercial Law<br />

Trusts & Estate Planning<br />

Banking & Insurance<br />

1 Caribbean Place, P.O. Box 97<br />

Leeward Highway, Providenciales<br />

Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>, BWI<br />

Ph: 649 946 4344 • Fax: 649 946 4564<br />

E-Mail: dempsey@tciway.tc<br />

Cockburn House, P.O. Box 70<br />

Market Street, Grand Turk<br />

Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>, BWI<br />

Ph: 649 946 2245 • Fax: 649 946 2758<br />

E-Mail: ffdlawco@tciway.tc<br />

john redmond associates ltd.<br />

architects & designers<br />

construction consultants<br />

project management<br />

p.o.box 21, providenciales, turks & caicos is.<br />

tel.: 9464440 cell: 2314569 email: redmond@tciway.tc<br />

Dioptric accommodation<br />

This is an anomaly <strong>of</strong> your own physiology, something<br />

that affects almost every observer, and is something you<br />

control.<br />

Frequently, an observer will focus on a target quickly<br />

and expect <strong>the</strong> instrument to remain focused—at least at<br />

<strong>the</strong> given distance. However, let’s say you have a dioptric<br />

accommodation range <strong>of</strong> 4 diopters and stop focusing<br />

<strong>the</strong> instant you have an adequate image. As time goes on,<br />

observing may become problematic because your natural<br />

(relaxed at that distance) focus setting should be –1.5<br />

diopters. That means being in a hurry has placed your<br />

focus at an accommodatable, but strained, setting.<br />

Then, as fatigue sets in, you may fiddle unnecessarily<br />

with <strong>the</strong> focus or suppose <strong>the</strong>re’s something wrong with<br />

your eyes or <strong>the</strong> binocular when nei<strong>the</strong>r is true. In addition,<br />

as this “fiddling” takes place, <strong>the</strong> observer will more<br />

than likely repeat <strong>the</strong> hurried technique that got him into<br />

trouble in <strong>the</strong> first place, leaving him or her once again<br />

with an imprecise focus. Perhaps your mo<strong>the</strong>r taught you<br />

never to stare. Never<strong>the</strong>less, if you want a crisp image,<br />

you had better forget that advice.<br />

Dioptric accommodation (<strong>the</strong> ability to focus at a<br />

range <strong>of</strong> distances) is achieved through <strong>the</strong> eye’s ciliary<br />

muscles, which stretch and compress <strong>the</strong> eyelenses in<br />

order to achieve a sharp focus. A 10-year old may have as<br />

much as 14 diopters <strong>of</strong> accommodation. But as we age,<br />

dioptric flexibility drops <strong>of</strong>f fairly quickly. By age <strong>20</strong>, it<br />

has dropped to 8 to 10 diopters with <strong>the</strong> average binocular<br />

user—40 to 50 years <strong>of</strong> age—having only a 4-diopter<br />

accommodation. Thus, with each year that passes—up<br />

to about 60—<strong>the</strong> focus mechanism becomes ever more<br />

critical.<br />

Learning to stare comes easily for some people but<br />

takes a great deal <strong>of</strong> practice for o<strong>the</strong>rs. But learning to<br />

stare, letting <strong>the</strong> binocular’s focus come to you, is worth<br />

<strong>the</strong> effort and is absolutely essential to attaining <strong>the</strong><br />

sharpest image, most trouble-free focus, and <strong>the</strong> clearest<br />

views <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> nature around you.<br />

Happy and productive birding! a<br />

56 www.timespub.tc

TWATIMES_Layout 1 2/16/17 7:49 AM Page 1<br />

Birding in <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong><br />

Bird-watching (<strong>the</strong>se days known as birding), is a recreational<br />

activity for millions <strong>of</strong> birders worldwide. It<br />

can be done with <strong>the</strong> naked eye, through binoculars<br />

and telescopes, by listening for bird sounds or by<br />

watching public webcams. Many birders maintain a<br />

life list <strong>of</strong> all <strong>the</strong> species <strong>the</strong>y have seen, usually with<br />

details about <strong>the</strong> sighting such as date and location.<br />

Birding ecotourism is popular because birders typically<br />

have a lighter footprint from not wanting to<br />

disturb <strong>the</strong> birds and are <strong>of</strong>ten pioneers for fur<strong>the</strong>ring<br />

conservation projects to protect <strong>the</strong> habitats <strong>of</strong><br />

wild and rare bird species.<br />

Serving international & domestic clients in real estate, property development,<br />

mortgages, corporate & commercial matters, immigration, & more.<br />


Hugh final_Layout 1 5/29/17 1:15 PM Page 1<br />

According to TCI Naturalist and Terrestrial<br />

Ecologist for <strong>the</strong> TCI Department <strong>of</strong> Environment and<br />

Coastal Resources B Naqqi Manco, <strong>the</strong> top three locations<br />

here for birders are as follows:<br />

• On Providenciales: Provo Golf Course, Cheshire<br />

Hall Creek (late afternoon into dusk) and Wheeland<br />

Ponds.<br />

• On North and Middle Caicos: Village Pond,<br />

Middle Caicos; Wade’s Green Plantation, North<br />

Caicos; Flamingo Pond, North Caicos.<br />

• On Grand Turk: Town and Great Salinas, North<br />

Wells and Red Salina.<br />

What should birders look for? Manco expands,<br />

“Reddish egrets are rare globally but common in TCI.<br />

P<br />

E<br />

R<br />

S<br />



AT<br />

L AW<br />

P.O. Box 267<br />

Hibernian House<br />

1136 Leeward Highway<br />

Providenciales<br />

Turks and Caicos <strong>Islands</strong><br />

B.W.I.<br />

Tel 649-946-4514<br />

Fax 649-946-4955<br />

Email hugh.oneill@hgoneillco.tc<br />

&<br />

C<br />

CO. O<br />

N<br />

F<br />

I<br />

D<br />

E<br />

N<br />

T<br />

I<br />

A<br />

L<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 57

Food for Thought provides free daily<br />

breakfast to government school students.<br />

A donation <strong>of</strong> $300 will provide breakfast<br />

to one child for a whole school year.<br />

To donate or learn more please<br />

email info@foodforthoughttci.com<br />

or visit foodforthoughttci.com<br />

Cuban crows can only be seen in <strong>the</strong> Caicos <strong>Islands</strong><br />

outside <strong>of</strong> Cuba. TCI has an endemic subspecies <strong>of</strong><br />

thick-billed vireo, which is common throughout, and<br />

one <strong>of</strong> Greater Antillean bullfinch restricted only to<br />

Middle and East Caicos. White-tailed tropicbirds are<br />

seasonal visitors to seaside cliffs in summer. Blacknecked<br />

stilts are common in ponds and are both<br />

easily identified and photogenic. Caribbean flamingoes<br />

are always a favourite and are easily viewed in<br />

great numbers on North Caicos and at close range on<br />

Grand Turk.”<br />

“In <strong>the</strong> winter months, migratory birds may<br />

be seen on <strong>the</strong> ponds <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Provo Golf Course,<br />

Wheeland Ponds on Providenciales, and at <strong>the</strong> Wade’s<br />

Green Plantation high forest on North Caicos.”<br />

“Seabird cays such as French Cay, Bush Cay and<br />

<strong>the</strong> Sou<strong>the</strong>rn Cays; and Long Cay <strong>of</strong>f Grand Turk are<br />

sanctuaries and landing is prohibited without a permit.<br />

Thus, summer seabird observations must be<br />

done from boats.”<br />

“North and Middle Caicos are worth a visit for<br />

potential life-listers including Key West quail-dove,<br />

pearly-eyed thrasher, white-tailed tropicbird, Greater<br />

Antillean bullfinch, thick-billed vireo, white-crowned<br />

pigeon, smooth-billed ani, mangrove cuckoo, Bahama<br />

mockingbird, and Cuban crow. Large migratory flocks<br />

move through North and Middle Caicos quickly in<br />

September and October and include bobolinks, blue<br />

grosbeaks, and indigo buntings. Summer breeding<br />

residents to <strong>the</strong>se islands absent in winter include<br />

Antillean nighthawks and gray kingbirds.”<br />

“The salinas on Grand Turk are especially good<br />

for photography as Caribbean flamingoes, brown pelicans,<br />

snowy egrets, reddish egrets, tricolor herons,<br />

little blue herons, black-necked stilts, and several<br />

species <strong>of</strong> sandpipers are <strong>the</strong>re unafraid <strong>of</strong> people<br />

and very approachable. Magnificent frigatebirds are<br />

<strong>of</strong>ten seen over <strong>the</strong> Grand Turk salinas.”<br />

There is a series <strong>of</strong> booklets entitled, “Birding in<br />

Paradise” targeted to <strong>the</strong> individual islands, and <strong>the</strong>y<br />

include suggested tour routes, bird lists, and information<br />

on o<strong>the</strong>r flora and fauna and history. They<br />

are available through <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos National<br />

Museum Foundation or on <strong>the</strong> website www.ukotcf.<br />

org.uk. Ano<strong>the</strong>r good source is The Birds <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> by Richard Ground. It is sold<br />

in local bookstores and shops. a<br />

Food for Thought Foundation Inc. (NP #102)<br />

58 www.timespub.tc

astrolabe<br />

newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos National Museum<br />

front street, p.o. box 188, grand turk, turks & caicos islands, bwi<br />

tel 649 946 2160 • fax 649 946 2160 • email info@tcmuseum.org • web www.tcmuseum.org<br />

Exploring Our <strong>Islands</strong><br />

It’s hard to believe that I have been here at <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos National Museum for two years already.<br />

One <strong>of</strong> my goals was to explore <strong>the</strong> rich culture and historic heritage <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>se <strong>Islands</strong>. Most recently, I had<br />

<strong>the</strong> privilege to explore parts <strong>of</strong> East Caicos, which included a hike to <strong>the</strong> top <strong>of</strong> Flamingo Hill. Local lore<br />

states that more people (in modern times) have climbed to <strong>the</strong> top <strong>of</strong> Mount Everest than to <strong>the</strong> summit<br />

<strong>of</strong> Flamingo Hill. This isn’t because <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> height <strong>of</strong> Flamingo Hill, but because <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> remote location<br />

and difficult hike.<br />

Over <strong>the</strong> last year, through <strong>the</strong> Astrolabe, we have explored rich topics such as <strong>the</strong> TCI during <strong>the</strong><br />

World Wars, <strong>the</strong> Loyalists’ impact on <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> and digitizing <strong>the</strong> Colonial heritage, along with explaining<br />

<strong>the</strong> need for a National Museum system. Over <strong>the</strong> next year we have exciting articles planned for<br />

your enjoyment, including <strong>the</strong> Rock Art <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Lucayans on East Caicos, <strong>the</strong> development <strong>of</strong> 3D Models<br />

<strong>of</strong> Historic Grand Turk, more about TCI during World Wars and so much more.<br />

In this edition we join Joost Morsink and Ruud Stelten as <strong>the</strong>y explore this history <strong>of</strong> salt and cotton<br />

exploitation on Salt and Cotton Cay and fur<strong>the</strong>r explore Eric Wilburg’s story <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> survivors <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

Vineland in 1942. a<br />

Michael P. Pateman, Ph.D., Director, Turks & Caicos National Museum<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 59

astrolabe newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos National Museum<br />

This aerial image <strong>of</strong> Salt Cay reveals views <strong>of</strong> its historic buildings and salt ponds.<br />

Going Under<br />

Searching lost wrecks on Salt Cay.<br />

Story and Photos By Dr. Joost Morsink and Dr. Ruud Stelten<br />

South <strong>of</strong> Grand Turk, a small and sleepy island rests in <strong>the</strong> Atlantic Ocean: Salt Cay. With approximately<br />

90 inhabitants on 2.6 square miles, this is <strong>the</strong> least populated <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> main inhabited islands in <strong>the</strong> Turks &<br />

Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>. Tourists <strong>of</strong>ten bypass <strong>the</strong> island in favor <strong>of</strong> Grand Turk, Providenciales or o<strong>the</strong>r Caribbean<br />

islands, but <strong>the</strong> lucky ones who choose to visit Salt Cay discover unmatched tranquility, superb diving and<br />

whale watching, and beautiful and remote beaches.<br />

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From <strong>the</strong> 17th to <strong>the</strong> mid-<strong>20</strong>th centuries, <strong>the</strong> island<br />

was not bypassed. In fact, Bermudians sailed <strong>the</strong>ir ships<br />

over 800 miles every year to visit Salt Cay for its salt.<br />

Historically, salt was considered “white gold” because in<br />

<strong>the</strong> absence <strong>of</strong> refrigeration, salt provided one <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> very<br />

few ways to preserve food. The interior <strong>of</strong> Salt Cay consisted<br />

<strong>of</strong> a large natural salt pan and in combination with<br />

strong tradewinds, hot days and little precipitation, Salt<br />

Cay culminated into an ideal environment for natural production<br />

<strong>of</strong> this precious product. Entrepreneurs as <strong>the</strong>y<br />

were, <strong>the</strong> Bermudians targeted this island for economic<br />

production, building salt storage facilities along <strong>the</strong><br />

shore and creating salt ponds with wind-powered pumps<br />

to increase production. The pr<strong>of</strong>itable salt industry left a<br />

mark on <strong>the</strong> island.<br />

In Spring <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>, we conducted archaeological field<br />

research on Salt Cay. Intrigued by <strong>the</strong> importance <strong>of</strong> this<br />

relatively common product, our intention was to create an<br />

inventory <strong>of</strong> archaeological sites on <strong>the</strong> island. In addition<br />

to <strong>the</strong> island’s visible remains, such as <strong>the</strong> houses and <strong>the</strong><br />

salt pans, many archaeological sites have been obscured<br />

by <strong>the</strong> water. Underwater archaeological remains are testament<br />

to <strong>the</strong> importance <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> maritime world to this<br />

island.<br />

Surrounded by <strong>the</strong> sea, Salt Cay functioned as a hub.<br />

To move people to <strong>the</strong> island, export salt and connect<br />

<strong>the</strong> island to a wider Caribbean context, a maritime focus<br />

was a must. Smaller vessels would come and go along <strong>the</strong><br />

coast, moving goods on and <strong>of</strong>f <strong>the</strong> island. Larger ships<br />

would set sail and deliver <strong>the</strong> salt to o<strong>the</strong>r Caribbean<br />

islands, <strong>the</strong> United States and even Europe. Rough seas,<br />

bad material, human error or just bad luck sometimes<br />

interfered, and vessels would not make it to <strong>the</strong>ir destination.<br />

With <strong>the</strong> loss <strong>of</strong> wealth or even life, <strong>the</strong>se events<br />

were significant in <strong>the</strong> past. Yet over time, not all wrecks<br />

are remembered and stories are forgotten. Our goal is<br />

to find material evidence <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>se events, find out what<br />

happened, and revive <strong>the</strong>se forgotten episodes.<br />

Dr. Ruud Stelten measures <strong>the</strong> North Point Wreck on Salt Cay. The ship is made <strong>of</strong> wood and its visible remains are approximately 33 feet<br />

long. Could it be <strong>the</strong> wreck <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Gustavus?<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 61

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Dr. Joost Morsink examines <strong>the</strong> huge anchor from <strong>the</strong> wreck <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Endymion.<br />

Because <strong>the</strong> ship was 141 feet long, this size anchor was a necessity.<br />

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This 3D model <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Endymion allows researchers to study <strong>the</strong> wreck without going underwater. It also allows Museum visitors to enjoy <strong>the</strong><br />

splendor <strong>of</strong> this “virtual wreck.”<br />

As soon as we land on <strong>the</strong> island after a 45-minute<br />

boat trip from Grand Turk, we hear stories about a potential<br />

wreck on <strong>the</strong> north coast. Equipped with fins, snorkel,<br />

measuring tape, and camera, we set to explore this lead<br />

and quickly find <strong>the</strong> remains <strong>of</strong> a wooden ship. At only<br />

<strong>20</strong> feet deep, we can document <strong>the</strong> ship while freediving.<br />

The ship is made <strong>of</strong> wood and its visible remains are<br />

approximately 33 feet long, situated along a shallow reef<br />

to <strong>the</strong> west. It is very possible that <strong>the</strong>se reefs caused<br />

<strong>the</strong> vessel to sink. O<strong>the</strong>r parts <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> ship are still buried<br />

underneath <strong>the</strong> white sand.<br />

In <strong>the</strong> tropical waters <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Caribbean, it is unusual<br />

to see wood: Naval Shipworm, Teredo navalis, <strong>of</strong>ten gets<br />

a hold before archaeologists get a chance. As <strong>the</strong> shipwreck<br />

is shallow, many <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> associated artifacts were<br />

likely salvaged after <strong>the</strong> ship went down. The lack <strong>of</strong><br />

artifacts hinders our research and make ship identification<br />

difficult. Yet, looking through old naval logbooks<br />

and archives, <strong>the</strong>re is a mention <strong>of</strong> Gustavus. This ship<br />

planned to visit Grand Turk on January, 8, 1855 to collect<br />

salt. During bad wea<strong>the</strong>r, Gustavus hit <strong>the</strong> cliffs, lost<br />

its navigational abilities, and slowly drifted to <strong>the</strong> north<br />

coast <strong>of</strong> Salt Cay and sank. Additional research is necessary<br />

to identify <strong>the</strong> wreck as <strong>the</strong> Gustavus, for example<br />

by dating <strong>the</strong> wood using tree ring analysis, but <strong>the</strong> first<br />

step is made.<br />

Ano<strong>the</strong>r known wreck is approximately 16 miles<br />

south <strong>of</strong> Salt Cay: <strong>the</strong> HMS Endymion. This British man-<strong>of</strong>war<br />

sank on a shallow reef in 1790, about 11 years after<br />

it was built. On a small skiff, <strong>the</strong> ride is about two hours<br />

when conditions are ideal. In rougher seas, it is impossible<br />

to navigate <strong>the</strong>se waters. Anchoring near <strong>the</strong> site<br />

is dangerous and <strong>the</strong>re is a significant chance <strong>of</strong> history<br />

repeating itself by wrecking <strong>the</strong> boat on Endymion Rock,<br />

<strong>the</strong> reef named after <strong>the</strong> wreck. If two hours on a small<br />

boat sounds less than exciting, plan <strong>the</strong> trip during <strong>the</strong><br />

whale season. We crossed paths with numerous whales<br />

with calves, starting to get ready for <strong>the</strong>ir trip north.<br />

Even in calm waters, it is difficult to anchor <strong>the</strong> ship<br />

close to <strong>the</strong> wreck and away from <strong>the</strong> reef. But as soon as<br />

we enter <strong>the</strong> water, <strong>the</strong> wreck shows itself. No wood this<br />

time; <strong>the</strong> Naval Shipworm had over two centuries to eat<br />

its way through. Metal, glass, ceramic and stone objects<br />

remain on <strong>the</strong> sea floor. Large boulders, which were used<br />

as ballast, signify where <strong>the</strong> hull <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> ship went down.<br />

Of <strong>the</strong> 44 cannons on board, <strong>the</strong> crew was only able to<br />

salvage one after <strong>the</strong> Endymion sank. Piled up, scattered<br />

around, and some single outliers, <strong>the</strong> cannons are clearly<br />

visible across <strong>the</strong> site. O<strong>the</strong>r visible objects are large<br />

chain links that cross <strong>the</strong> entire site and multiple anchors.<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 63

astrolabe newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos National Museum<br />

One <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Endymion anchors was over 16.5 feet long,<br />

one <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> largest anchors we have ever seen! At 141<br />

feet, Endymion was <strong>of</strong> significant size for its time, making<br />

<strong>the</strong>se large anchors indispensable.<br />

In <strong>the</strong> National Maritime Museum in Greenwich,<br />

England, <strong>the</strong> original logbook <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> HMS Endymion can be<br />

found. The logbook details all <strong>the</strong> travels, but also <strong>the</strong> last<br />

days <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> ship’s existence before it sank south <strong>of</strong> Salt<br />

Cay. On August 28, 1790, <strong>the</strong> ship hits a <strong>the</strong>n-unknown<br />

reef. Within an hour, five feet <strong>of</strong> water entered <strong>the</strong> ship<br />

and Captain Woodriff quickly understands that <strong>the</strong> ship is<br />

not going to make it. Leaving a couple <strong>of</strong> sailors behind,<br />

<strong>the</strong> crew rows sloops to Grand Turk looking for help. The<br />

next day, all sailors and as much <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> ship’s contents as<br />

possible were saved. On August 30, <strong>the</strong> captain leaves <strong>the</strong><br />

ship right before it is completely submerged. To remedy<br />

this incredible loss, <strong>the</strong> crew buys over 60 gallons <strong>of</strong> rum<br />

as soon as <strong>the</strong>y land in Grand Turk!<br />

By taking hundreds <strong>of</strong> photos with about 70% overlap<br />

in every photo, we document <strong>the</strong> majority <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

wreck. Using photogrammetry, it is possible to translate<br />

<strong>the</strong>se photos into a digital 3D model <strong>of</strong> site. As easy as<br />

it sounds, <strong>the</strong> reality is different. For an optimal product,<br />

<strong>the</strong> photos need to be taken on a constant and even<br />

depth, <strong>the</strong> light needs to be ideal with no shadows showing,<br />

<strong>the</strong> colors need to be close to <strong>the</strong> natural colors<br />

(anyone who has ever taken a photograph under water<br />

knows how difficult this can be), and no moving objects,<br />

such as fish, can obscure <strong>the</strong> artifacts.<br />

The 3D model serves multiple purposes. From <strong>the</strong><br />

model, <strong>the</strong> wreck can be studied without <strong>the</strong> need to<br />

go back and dive it again. Measurements can be taken,<br />

artifacts can be counted, maps can be made without<br />

needing a single scuba tank! Secondly, <strong>the</strong> model provides<br />

a baseline for long term management questions.<br />

Large storms or o<strong>the</strong>r factors could affect <strong>the</strong> quality <strong>of</strong><br />

<strong>the</strong> wreck, moving and breaking artifacts. By comparing<br />

<strong>the</strong> model from <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>, <strong>the</strong> degree <strong>of</strong> impact can be measured.<br />

Finally, <strong>the</strong> model serves an educational purpose.<br />

As said, <strong>the</strong> wreck is difficult to visit. Its remote location<br />

and <strong>the</strong> need <strong>of</strong> very calm conditions before one can dive<br />

<strong>the</strong>re limits how many people can actually see <strong>the</strong> wreck.<br />

The model will allow more people to visit <strong>the</strong> wreck and<br />

enjoy its splendor.<br />

While diving <strong>the</strong> Endymion, we follow one <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> large<br />

chains which leads to <strong>the</strong> General Pershing. This wooden<br />

This adorno was recently found on Cotton Cay.<br />

vessel was powered by engines, which can be found near<br />

<strong>the</strong> reef. In 1921, <strong>the</strong> three-year old and 266 foot-long<br />

vessel wrecked on <strong>the</strong> same reef as <strong>the</strong> Endymion. With<br />

two wrecks here, how many more unidentified wrecks are<br />

<strong>the</strong>re still to be found on <strong>the</strong>se reefs?<br />

Along <strong>the</strong> west coast <strong>of</strong> Salt Cay, multiple smaller<br />

vessels wrecked too. A local inhabitant shows us a location<br />

on <strong>the</strong> south coast where he found a 16th-century<br />

anchor and multiple bronze nails, which all indicate<br />

ano<strong>the</strong>r lost ship. Rough seas and little time prohibited a<br />

detailed assessment <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> location, but future research<br />

will show what o<strong>the</strong>r ships were lost in <strong>the</strong> salt trade.<br />

The Europeans were not <strong>the</strong> first people on <strong>the</strong><br />

island. Prior to Columbus, <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> were first colonized<br />

by people from Hispaniola. Later, Lucayan people moved<br />

into <strong>the</strong> region from <strong>the</strong> central Bahamas. Evidence <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

populations can be found. Two years prior to our <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong><br />

visit, Ruud Stelten identified Lucayan pottery on Salt Cay’s<br />

east coast. Hurricane Maria, however, ei<strong>the</strong>r destroyed or<br />

buried <strong>the</strong> site and no artifacts could be found during our<br />

most recent visit. We cover large sections <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> island in<br />

our week <strong>the</strong>re, but we were unable to find any prehistoric<br />

artifacts. Possibly, <strong>the</strong> prehistoric village was located<br />

where <strong>the</strong> historic occupation occurred and all evidence<br />

is obscured by buildings and roads.<br />

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A quick trip to Cotton Cay, a small uninhabited cay<br />

north <strong>of</strong> Salt Cay, shows that native people were in <strong>the</strong><br />

region. Within two minutes <strong>of</strong> landing on <strong>the</strong> beach, Ruud<br />

and I identify multiple pieces <strong>of</strong> pottery, some with volcanic<br />

sand in <strong>the</strong>m. As <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> are<br />

not volcanic, <strong>the</strong>se pottery sherds were likely imported<br />

from Hispaniola. Typically, <strong>the</strong>se sherds were imported<br />

between AD 700 and 1500. Pottery with burned shell,<br />

ra<strong>the</strong>r than volcanic sand, was also identified along <strong>the</strong><br />

beach. This pottery is typical <strong>of</strong> Lucayan sites in <strong>the</strong><br />

region and first occur after AD 1100. Excavations are<br />

needed to determine if <strong>the</strong> site is <strong>the</strong> product <strong>of</strong> multiple<br />

short term visits or one long term occupation.<br />

Along <strong>the</strong> nor<strong>the</strong>rn coast, ano<strong>the</strong>r scatter <strong>of</strong> Lucayan<br />

pottery and shell was found. The color <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> sand was<br />

also darker than in o<strong>the</strong>r places on <strong>the</strong> island, suggesting<br />

that people might have altered <strong>the</strong> local composition<br />

<strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> soil by living <strong>the</strong>re. The second site was located<br />

on a ridge, next to two natural salt ponds. Elsewhere<br />

in <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>, prehistoric sites were found next to salt<br />

ponds and prehistoric people were likely exploiting this<br />

resource as well. Maybe Lucayan people set <strong>the</strong> stage for<br />

exploiting salt in <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>, introducing<br />

<strong>the</strong> resource and <strong>the</strong> salt pans to <strong>the</strong> Europeans who<br />

arrived later.<br />

Our research has just started. Our goal is to understand<br />

<strong>the</strong> exploitation <strong>of</strong> salt in <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos<br />

<strong>Islands</strong> throughout history. By focusing on prehistoric<br />

and historic salt production and exchange, it might be<br />

possible to provide a new perspective on <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>’<br />

past. Ra<strong>the</strong>r than emphasizing <strong>the</strong> break and differences<br />

between prehistoric and historic times, <strong>the</strong>re might be a<br />

lot <strong>of</strong> similarities and continuity. Stay tuned! a<br />

Dr. Joost Morsink is an expert in precolonial Caribbean<br />

archaeology with an interest in maritime archaeology. He<br />

is a project manager at SEARCH Inc., <strong>the</strong> largest full-service<br />

cultural resource management firm in <strong>the</strong> USA.<br />

Dr. Ruud Stelten is a maritime archaeologist whose<br />

research interests are maritime cultural landscapes, submerged<br />

archaeological sites, and heritage management.<br />

He is <strong>the</strong> founder <strong>of</strong> The Shipwreck Survey, an organization<br />

dedicated to maritime archaeological research. He<br />

organizes several archaeological field schoosl every year<br />

in exotic locations around <strong>the</strong> world.<br />

Join <strong>the</strong> Museum<br />

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The White House on Salt Cay is still owned by descendants <strong>of</strong> Daniel Harriott. The Harriott family, along with o<strong>the</strong>r families who could, took<br />

in Vineland survivors until <strong>the</strong>y could be transported back to <strong>the</strong> United States.<br />

TCI in WWII<br />

Survivors <strong>of</strong> U-Boats: Vineland in 1942, Part II<br />

By Captain Eric Wiberg<br />

In <strong>the</strong> Fall <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong> issue <strong>of</strong> Astrolabe, <strong>the</strong> author detailed <strong>the</strong> sinking <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Canadian dry-bulk ship Vineland,<br />

on April <strong>20</strong>, 1942 by <strong>the</strong> German submarine U-154 while it was roughly 90 miles north <strong>of</strong> North Caicos.<br />

The survivors voyaged in three lifeboats until <strong>the</strong>y were picked up by fishermen in <strong>the</strong> Caicos sloop Emily<br />

Conway and towed to Chalk Sound, Providenciales. The story continues as follows . . .<br />

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This image shows <strong>the</strong> Vineland at dock loading or discharging newsprint for <strong>the</strong> Liverpool Steamship Company <strong>of</strong> Canada. Note <strong>the</strong> temporary<br />

neutral Panama markings which followed her to <strong>the</strong> bottom.<br />

Vineland survivors were initially taken to tiny Salt Cay<br />

by fishermen, and hosted by <strong>the</strong> leading Harriott family<br />

and in o<strong>the</strong>r homes for several days. After supplies became<br />

taxed <strong>the</strong> men were moved a short distance north, where<br />

<strong>the</strong>y staying in guest houses awaiting a north-bound ship.<br />

Their erstwhile hosts, <strong>the</strong> Harriotts, accompanied <strong>the</strong>m to<br />

Grand Turk to ensure <strong>the</strong>ir onward passage.<br />

The Harriotts originally emigrated from Bermuda in<br />

<strong>the</strong> 1830s and with pr<strong>of</strong>its from salt harvests built <strong>the</strong><br />

largest building on Salt Cay, wedged between <strong>the</strong> salt<br />

pans and <strong>the</strong> ocean. Named <strong>the</strong> White House, it still<br />

stands today. Family lore has been well kept by Georgina<br />

Dunn Belk. She shared family anecdotes about Captain<br />

Ralph Williams and <strong>the</strong> Vineland crew. Her aunt writes<br />

that “as children, we saw evidence <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> torpedoing <strong>of</strong><br />

ships by <strong>the</strong> German submarines when some <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> survivors<br />

<strong>of</strong> a torpedoed merchant ship were brought to East<br />

Harbour by fishermen who discovered <strong>the</strong>m drifting in<br />

lifeboats. Our family, along with o<strong>the</strong>r families who could,<br />

took <strong>the</strong>m in until <strong>the</strong>y could be transported back to <strong>the</strong><br />

United States.” One <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Vineland survivors says that “on<br />

Grand Turk <strong>the</strong> women made clo<strong>the</strong>s for some <strong>of</strong> us.”<br />

Life on shore was bleak, but not as bad as for o<strong>the</strong>rs<br />

surviving wartime winter in Canada: “Ships from <strong>the</strong><br />

[Canadian] Maritimes had even poorer food to feed <strong>the</strong><br />

crew and for <strong>the</strong>m a meal ashore at <strong>the</strong> White House,<br />

where [<strong>the</strong> hostess] would have a chicken killed for <strong>the</strong>m<br />

as honored guests, was memorable.” The Islanders had<br />

become, by necessity, adept at scavenging <strong>the</strong> bounty<br />

<strong>of</strong> wartime submarine attacks. “Essentially, anything that<br />

floated ended up on a beach, and Turks Islanders would<br />

come to <strong>the</strong> door <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> White House selling items <strong>the</strong>y<br />

had found including life boats, life rafts, oil drums, ropes<br />

and tarps, timber and furniture. But <strong>the</strong> most treasured<br />

finds were <strong>the</strong> crates <strong>of</strong> dried tinned food, so when large<br />

tins <strong>of</strong> white powder washed up <strong>the</strong> beach [we] brought it<br />

from <strong>the</strong> salvager. It has <strong>the</strong> appearance and consistency<br />

<strong>of</strong> porridge. Cooked and eaten for breakfast, it had <strong>the</strong><br />

consistency <strong>of</strong> glue but was more or less edible.”<br />

One <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Harriotts continues: “We had five seamen<br />

in our home from <strong>the</strong> sunken British merchant ship with<br />

supplies that left New York for South America to pick up<br />

raw rubber. The rescued men were picked up one afternoon<br />

by our fishermen. (Daddy told us later that <strong>the</strong> men<br />

were covered in oil and some were burned quite badly).<br />

Five <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>m were settled into our home after Cleo and I<br />

had gone to bed. We didn’t know about our guests until<br />

we came down <strong>the</strong> next morning for breakfast and <strong>the</strong>re<br />

<strong>the</strong>y were at <strong>the</strong> dining room table with my fa<strong>the</strong>r and<br />

mo<strong>the</strong>r having <strong>the</strong>ir morning tea.” She continued: “Our<br />

torpedoed British seamen stayed with us and <strong>the</strong> o<strong>the</strong>r<br />

families four or five days until a ship came for <strong>the</strong>m. We<br />

borrowed additional cots from family, and <strong>the</strong>y took over<br />

our bedroom upstairs, and we moved into our parent’s<br />

room and slept on <strong>the</strong> floor.”<br />

Presumably <strong>the</strong> <strong>of</strong>ficers stayed at <strong>the</strong> White House.<br />

Eight <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> men were later accommodated at <strong>the</strong> Louise<br />

Ariza boarding house in Grand Turk. Osvaldo Ariza<br />

remembers that his mo<strong>the</strong>r “put up survivors <strong>the</strong>re” and<br />

that “most were Canadian.” He remembers hearing that<br />

a young boy from <strong>the</strong> ship said he had been torpedoed<br />

three times, and that Captain Williams was fond <strong>of</strong> telling<br />

local school children that <strong>the</strong> “V” in Vineland stood<br />

for Victory. Ano<strong>the</strong>r <strong>of</strong> Mrs. Ariza’s sons remembers one<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 67

astrolabe newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos National Museum<br />


<strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> cooks aboard <strong>the</strong><br />

Vineland, a man named<br />

Hutter. The Arizas and Mr.<br />

Hutter remained in contact<br />

for years after <strong>the</strong> war.<br />

During <strong>the</strong>ir stay<br />

in Grand Turk, Captain<br />

Williams managed to<br />

get word through to <strong>the</strong><br />

Naval Officer in Charge<br />

in Trinidad. Through<br />

that channel, <strong>the</strong> British<br />

Admiralty in Jamaica<br />

learned that Vineland had<br />

been lost. After thirteen<br />

days on Grand Turk, or<br />

about May 10, a Dutch<br />

inter-island passenger ship<br />

took <strong>the</strong>m to Curaçao.<br />

Their farewell was poignant<br />

and a community<br />

event. One <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Harriotts<br />

recounts how “When arrangements were made for <strong>the</strong>m<br />

to return on a ship that came to pick <strong>the</strong>m up, Daddy,<br />

Cleo and I went down to <strong>the</strong> waterfront where all <strong>the</strong> survivors<br />

had congregated, as did most <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> men <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

island. They were loaded into small boats and taken out<br />

to <strong>the</strong> ship . . . and <strong>the</strong>y were returned to <strong>the</strong> United States<br />

where <strong>the</strong>y were to be assigned to ano<strong>the</strong>r ship carrying<br />

supplies to England.”<br />

Despite nearly being torpedoed a second time, <strong>the</strong>y<br />

made it and were given “shaving equipment, suits, socks,<br />

underwear, you name it. And <strong>the</strong>y even gave us money<br />

to spend,” wrote Mess Boy Ralph Kelly. The harrowing<br />

repatriation <strong>of</strong> Vineland’s men was not over. After less<br />

than a week in Curaçao <strong>the</strong>y boarded a German-built,<br />

Dutch-run ship laden with ammunition, bound to Halifax.<br />

Fortunately for all involved, it was an uneventful voyage <strong>of</strong><br />

fourteen days during which “everybody was scared stiff”<br />

wrote Kelly. They didn’t arrive back until early June, over<br />

six weeks after <strong>the</strong>ir torpedoing.<br />

This is <strong>the</strong> Louise Ariza boarding house in Grand Turk where survivors were put up in 1942 before being<br />

repatriated by steamer to Haiti or Jamaica.<br />

That autumn Ralph Kelly joined <strong>the</strong> Royal Canadian<br />

Navy. He and his bro<strong>the</strong>r Captain Charlie remained<br />

admired fixtures in <strong>the</strong> Nova Scotia maritime community.<br />

On <strong>the</strong> same patrol, U-154 sank five ships worth 28,715<br />

tons. Aged 34 at <strong>the</strong> time (he would live to 1992 and <strong>the</strong><br />

age <strong>of</strong> 84), German Commander Wal<strong>the</strong>r Kölle “made his<br />

career” in a single patrol through <strong>the</strong> Bahamas. Having<br />

earlier survived <strong>the</strong> scuttling <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Graf Spee <strong>of</strong>f Uruguay,<br />

he surrendered command <strong>of</strong> U-154 to Heinrich Shuch<br />

after his third patrol, and moved ashore. a<br />

Eric Wiberg has operated over 100 yachts, many <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong>m<br />

as captain. A licensed master since 1995, he is qualified<br />

as a maritime lawyer, with a Master’s in Marine Affairs,<br />

a year at Oxford, and a certificate in screenwriting. He<br />

commercially operated nine tankers from Singapore for<br />

three years, and worked briefly for two salvage firms.<br />

O<strong>the</strong>r jobs have included executive head-hunting, shipping<br />

newspaper salesman,<br />

and marketer <strong>of</strong> a tugboat<br />

fleet. Besides U-Boats<br />

in <strong>the</strong> Bahamas, he has<br />

published over a dozen<br />

o<strong>the</strong>r books <strong>of</strong> nautical<br />

non-fiction. A citizen <strong>of</strong> US<br />

and Sweden who grew up<br />

in <strong>the</strong> Bahamas, he lives<br />

in Boston. Contact: eric@<br />

ericwiberg.com.<br />

68 www.timespub.tc

astrolabe newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos National Museum<br />

Museum Matters<br />

News from Grace Bay<br />

Community Garden<br />

The Community Garden project is <strong>of</strong>f to a great start<br />

thanks to Grace Bay Resorts Foundation and <strong>the</strong>ir<br />

sales and marketing team who came out in full force<br />

to clear <strong>the</strong> designated site within <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos<br />

National Museum campus in <strong>the</strong> Village at Grace Bay,<br />

Providenciales.<br />

The primary objective <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> garden project, spearheaded<br />

by Nutrition in Demand, is to encourage persons<br />

to grow <strong>the</strong>ir own food, eat more fresh fruits and vegetables<br />

and promote a healthier lifestyle. Farming<br />

showcased in <strong>the</strong> Caicos Heritage Exhibit as an integral<br />

part <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> lifestyle <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> 1900s is no longer typical to<br />

<strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>. The Community Garden gives persons who<br />

may need some encouragement to start gardening an<br />

ideal space to do so in a social setting with access to<br />

technical support from <strong>the</strong> Department <strong>of</strong> Agriculture.<br />

Within our museum environment, we <strong>of</strong>ten straddle<br />

between <strong>the</strong> past and <strong>the</strong> present and <strong>the</strong> sense <strong>of</strong><br />

community that existed in <strong>the</strong> past is <strong>of</strong>ten a point <strong>of</strong><br />

reference. As <strong>the</strong> volunteers worked alongside <strong>the</strong> team<br />

from Caribbean Landscaping to start <strong>the</strong> project, I could<br />

not help but note that <strong>the</strong> sense <strong>of</strong> community is alive<br />

and well.<br />

Special thanks to Grace Bay Resorts Foundation,<br />

Ms. Daphne Forbes and all <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> o<strong>the</strong>r volunteers<br />

who participated in <strong>the</strong> clearing project, as well as<br />

those who worked behind <strong>the</strong> scenes to provide sup-<br />

These volunteers cleared <strong>the</strong> Community Garden site.<br />

port. Volunteers are welcome to assist as this project<br />

progresses. For more information, contact Tamika<br />

Handfield at 442-3978. a<br />

History and Cultural Heritage Quiz <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong><br />

We congratulate Holy Family Academy, <strong>the</strong> winner <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

Turks & Caicos National Museum’s fourth annual History<br />

and Cultural Heritage Quiz. Well done! Congratulations<br />

to Raymond Gardiner High School on <strong>the</strong>ir second place<br />

win and third consecutive placement as a quiz finalist!<br />

Thank you to <strong>the</strong> nine secondary schools for participating<br />

in <strong>the</strong> quiz, and to <strong>the</strong> teachers, parents and<br />

students for <strong>the</strong> hard work that went into preparation.<br />

It was a closely contested quiz with an exciting finish.<br />

The Community Garden site is in <strong>the</strong> process <strong>of</strong> being cleared.<br />

Students from Holy Family Academy earned trophies for winning <strong>the</strong><br />

<strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong> History and Cultural Heritage Quiz.<br />

Special thanks to our sponsors: FortisTCI, interCaribbean<br />

Airways, TC Reef Fund, Grace Bay Car Rentals,<br />

United Taxi Alliance and <strong>the</strong> Departments <strong>of</strong> Education<br />

and Culture. We say thank you to <strong>the</strong> Teacher’s<br />

Workshop facilitators, Quiz Committee, Rachel Harvey,<br />

Drexler Smith, Brandon Handfield, Brenda Clare, Enid<br />

Capron Ripsaw Band and our dedicated volunteers. a<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 69

astrolabe newsletter <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos National Museum<br />

Museum Matters<br />

Looking forward to <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong><br />

The year <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong> was a banner year for <strong>the</strong> National<br />

Museum for events in both Grand Turk and Provo. <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong><br />

promised to be ano<strong>the</strong>r exciting year as we expand our<br />

calendar <strong>of</strong> events.<br />

Saturday, March 7, <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong> — Fundraising Event for<br />

Grand Turk Museum, <strong>the</strong>med “Casino Royale”<br />

Saturday, May 16, <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong> — Back in <strong>the</strong> Day,<br />

Providenciales<br />

Saturday, June 6, <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong> — Gala <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong>, Providenciales<br />

July, <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong> — Kid’s Camp, Providenciales<br />

Saturday, July 25, <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong> — Second Annual Grand Turk<br />

Cooking Competition<br />

August, <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong> — Kid’s Camp, Grand Turk<br />

October, <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong> — Annual History and Heritage Quiz<br />

Saturday, November 7, <strong>20</strong><strong>20</strong> — Museum Day, Grand<br />

Turk<br />

These events do not include our movie nights and<br />

“Evening with <strong>the</strong> Experts.” If you are interested in finding<br />

out more about <strong>the</strong>se events, email us at info@<br />

tcmuseum.org. a<br />

Face painting at Museum Day expanded to o<strong>the</strong>r parts <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> body.<br />

Museum Day, Grand Turk<br />

Despite <strong>the</strong> uncooperative wea<strong>the</strong>r, Museum Day on<br />

Grand Turk had a nice turn out. The children had fun<br />

riding horses, making slime, playing games, getting<br />

<strong>the</strong>ir faces painted and painting each o<strong>the</strong>r! The Grand<br />

Turk SPCA sold hot dogs and participants also enjoyed<br />

conch fritters, popcorn and cold drinks. Island Vibes<br />

band managed to play a few songs between <strong>the</strong> rain.<br />

This event focuses on <strong>the</strong> community and getting<br />

<strong>the</strong>m involved with <strong>the</strong> Museum and we succeeded in<br />

that goal! We would like to thank Lisa Wandres, Tonya<br />

Vieira, Rob Lightbourne, Ivy Basden, Joseph, Jack Shack,<br />

Kerri-Ann Smith, Hilary Day, Seamus Day and <strong>the</strong> SPCA<br />

for helping make this a great day. a<br />

“Heritage Matters” Radio Show<br />

In collaboration with <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos National Trust,<br />

<strong>the</strong> Museum launched a new radio series designed to<br />

explore <strong>the</strong> history, heritage and culture <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Turks<br />

& Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>. The goal <strong>of</strong> this show is to present<br />

a weekly commentary on various heritage matters. It<br />

will attempt to bring to <strong>the</strong> forefront issues <strong>of</strong> history,<br />

culture and heritage in <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>,<br />

while placing <strong>the</strong>se aspects in <strong>the</strong> larger picture <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

Bahamas, <strong>the</strong> Caribbean, <strong>the</strong> Americas and <strong>the</strong> world.<br />

The show is aired weekly on Radio Turks and Caicos<br />

(http://rtc89fm.com/). a<br />

Museum Day <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong> also included horseback riding through <strong>the</strong><br />

streets <strong>of</strong> Grand Turk .<br />

70 www.timespub.tc

faces and places<br />

Clockwise from top: MOTTAC family-friendly activities included tug-<strong>of</strong>-war and music by school and community groups. Performances by local<br />

artists started later in <strong>the</strong> day, and continued on into <strong>the</strong> evening. A variety <strong>of</strong> native crafts and foods were on sale.<br />

MOTTAC Music Festival<br />

On October 26, <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>, <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos’ very own music<br />

festival debuted. MOTTAC (Musicians <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos),<br />

<strong>of</strong>fered <strong>the</strong> beautiful sounds <strong>of</strong> local artists including Tess<br />

Charles, Raj <strong>the</strong> Entertainer, Keno and Kaz, Noel Brown,<br />

and Qband lynkz, along with several school and community<br />

groups.<br />

Taking place at <strong>the</strong> Downtown Ball Park in Providenciales,<br />

<strong>the</strong> free festival began with family-friendly activities such as<br />

a tug-<strong>of</strong>-war and relay race. Guests enjoyed native food from<br />

various vendors and <strong>the</strong> opportunity to buy local craft goods.<br />

The music began later in <strong>the</strong> day, starting with several<br />

performances from local school groups. When <strong>the</strong> sun set, <strong>the</strong><br />

festival shifted into full swing with performances from several<br />

local artists. With a successful turnout, <strong>the</strong> event was well<br />

received and has <strong>the</strong> potential to become an annual festival.<br />

Story & Photos By David Newlands<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 71

about <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong><br />

Map provided courtesy Wavey Line Publishing. Their navigation charts and decorative and historic maps <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>, <strong>the</strong><br />

Bahamas, and Hispaniola are available in shops throughout <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>. Visit www.amnautical.com.<br />

Where we are<br />

The Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> lie some 575 miles sou<strong>the</strong>ast<br />

<strong>of</strong> Miami — approximately 1 1/2 hours flying time —<br />

with <strong>the</strong> Bahamas about 30 miles to <strong>the</strong> northwest and<br />

<strong>the</strong> Dominican Republic some 100 miles to <strong>the</strong> sou<strong>the</strong>ast.<br />

The country consists <strong>of</strong> two island groups separated<br />

by <strong>the</strong> 22-mile wide Columbus Passage. To <strong>the</strong> west are<br />

<strong>the</strong> Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>: West Caicos, Providenciales, North<br />

Caicos, Middle Caicos, East Caicos, and South Caicos. To<br />

<strong>the</strong> east are <strong>the</strong> Turks <strong>Islands</strong>: Grand Turk and Salt Cay.<br />

The Turks & Caicos total 166 square miles <strong>of</strong> land<br />

area on eight islands and 40 small cays. The country’s<br />

population is approximately 36,500.<br />

Getting here<br />

There are international airports on Grand Turk,<br />

Providenciales, and South Caicos, with domestic airports<br />

on all <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> islands except East Caicos.<br />

At this time, all <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> major international carriers<br />

arrive and depart from Providenciales International<br />

Airport. American Airlines flies from Miami, Charlotte,<br />

Chicago, Dallas, New York/JFK and Philadelphia. JetBlue<br />

Airways <strong>of</strong>fers service from Fort Lauderdale, Boston<br />

and New York/JFK. Southwest Airlines travels to Fort<br />

Lauderdale. Delta Airlines flies from Atlanta, Boston and<br />

New York/JFK. United Airlines travels from Chicago and<br />

Newark. WestJet travels from Toronto and Montreal. Air<br />

Canada <strong>of</strong>fers flights from Toronto and Montreal. British<br />

Airways travels from London/Gatwick via Antigua.<br />

72 www.timespub.tc

Bahamasair and InterCaribbean Airways fly to Nassau,<br />

Bahamas. Flights to: Antigua; Dominica; Cap Haitien<br />

and Port Au Prince, Haiti; Kingston and Montego Bay,<br />

Jamaica; Miami, Florida; Puerto Plata and Santo Domingo,<br />

Dominican Republic; San Juan, Puerto Rico; St. Lucia; St.<br />

Maarten; Santiago, Cuba; and Tortola are available on<br />

InterCaribbean Airways, while Caicos Express travels to<br />

Cap Haitien daily. (Schedules are current as <strong>of</strong> November<br />

<strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong> and subject to change.)<br />

Inter-island service is provided by InterCaribbean<br />

Airways, Caicos Express Airways and Global Airways. Sea<br />

and air freight services operate from Florida.<br />

Language<br />

English.<br />

Time zone<br />

Eastern Standard Time (EST)/Daylight Savings Time<br />

observed.<br />

Currency<br />

The United States dollar. The Treasury also issues a Turks<br />

& Caicos crown and quarter. Travellers cheques in U.S.<br />

dollars are widely accepted and o<strong>the</strong>r currency can be<br />

changed at local banks. American Express, VISA, and<br />

MasterCard are welcomed at many locations.<br />

Climate<br />

The average year-round temperature is 83ºF (28ºC). The<br />

hottest months are September and October, when <strong>the</strong><br />

temperature can reach 90 to 95ºF (33 to 35ºC). However,<br />

<strong>the</strong> consistent easterly trade winds temper <strong>the</strong> heat and<br />

keep life comfortable.<br />

Casual resort and leisure wear is accepted attire for<br />

daytime; light sweaters or jackets may be necessary on<br />

some breezy evenings. It’s wise to wear protective clothing<br />

and a sunhat and use waterpro<strong>of</strong> sunscreen when out<br />

in <strong>the</strong> tropical sun.<br />

Entry requirements<br />

Passport. A valid onward or return ticket is also required.<br />

Customs formalities<br />

Visitors may bring in duty free for <strong>the</strong>ir own use one carton<br />

<strong>of</strong> cigarettes or cigars, one bottle <strong>of</strong> liquor or wine,<br />

and some perfume. The importation <strong>of</strong> all firearms including<br />

those charged with compressed air without prior<br />

approval in writing from <strong>the</strong> Commissioner <strong>of</strong> Police is<br />

strictly forbidden. Spear guns, Hawaiian slings, controlled<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 73

drugs, and pornography are also illegal.<br />

Returning residents may bring in $400 worth <strong>of</strong><br />

merchandise per person duty free. A duty <strong>of</strong> 10% to<br />

60% is charged on most imported goods along with a<br />

7% customs processing fee and forms a major source <strong>of</strong><br />

government revenue.<br />

Transportation<br />

A valid driver’s license from home is suitable when renting<br />

vehicles. A government tax <strong>of</strong> 12% is levied on all<br />

rental contracts. (Insurance is extra.) Driving is on <strong>the</strong><br />

left-hand side <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> road, with traffic flow controlled by<br />

round-abouts at major junctions. Please don’t drink and<br />

drive! Taxis and community cabs are abundant throughout<br />

<strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> and many resorts <strong>of</strong>fer shuttle service<br />

between popular visitor areas. Scooter, motorcycle, and<br />

bicycle rentals are also available.<br />

Telecommunications<br />

FLOW Ltd. provides land lines and superfast broadband<br />

Internet service. Mobile service is on a LTE 4G network,<br />

including pre- and post-paid cellular phones. Most resorts<br />

and some stores and restaurants <strong>of</strong>fer wireless Internet<br />

connection. Digicel operates mobile networks, with<br />

a full suite <strong>of</strong> LTE 4G service. FLOW is <strong>the</strong> local carrier<br />

for CDMA roaming on US networks such as Verizon and<br />

Sprint. North American visitors with GSM cellular handsets<br />

and wireless accounts with AT&T or Cingular can<br />

arrange international roaming.<br />

Electricity<br />

FortisTCI supplies electricity at a frequency <strong>of</strong> 60HZ,<br />

and ei<strong>the</strong>r single phase or three phase at one <strong>of</strong> three<br />

standard voltages for residential or commercial service.<br />

FortisTCI continues to invest in a robust and resilient grid<br />

to ensure <strong>the</strong> highest level <strong>of</strong> reliability to customers. The<br />

company is integrating renewable energy into its grid and<br />

provides options for customers to participate in two solar<br />

energy programs.<br />

Departure tax<br />

US $60. It is typically included in <strong>the</strong> price <strong>of</strong> your airline<br />

ticket.<br />

Courier service<br />

Delivery service is provided by FedEx, with <strong>of</strong>fices on<br />

Providenciales and Grand Turk, and DHL. UPS service is<br />

limited to incoming delivery.<br />

Postal service<br />

The Post Office and Philatelic Bureau in Providenciales is<br />

located downtown on Airport Road. In Grand Turk, <strong>the</strong><br />

Post Office and Philatelic Bureau are on Church Folly. The<br />

<strong>Islands</strong> are known for <strong>the</strong>ir varied and colorful stamp<br />

issues.<br />

Media<br />

Multi-channel satellite television is received from <strong>the</strong> U.S.<br />

and Canada and transmitted via cable or over <strong>the</strong> air.<br />

Local station WIV-TV broadcasts on Channel 4 and Island<br />

EyeTV on Channel 5. People’s Television <strong>of</strong>fers 75 digitally<br />

transmitted television stations, along with local news<br />

and talk shows on Channel 8. There are also a number <strong>of</strong><br />

local radio stations, magazines, and newspapers.<br />

74 www.timespub.tc

Brew ad May <strong>20</strong>17_Layout 1 5/11/17 10:51 AM Page 1<br />

Medical services<br />

There are no endemic tropical diseases in TCI. There are<br />

large, modern hospitals on Grand Turk and Providenciales.<br />

Both hospitals <strong>of</strong>fer a full range <strong>of</strong> services including:<br />

24/7 emergency room, operating <strong>the</strong>aters, diagnostic<br />

imaging, maternity suites, dialysis suites, blood bank,<br />

physio<strong>the</strong>rapy, and dentistry.<br />

In addition, several general practitioners operate in<br />

<strong>the</strong> country, and <strong>the</strong>re is a recompression chamber, along<br />

with a number <strong>of</strong> private pharmacies.<br />

Immigration<br />

A resident’s permit is required to live in <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>. A<br />

work permit and business license are also required to<br />

work and/or establish a business. These are generally<br />

granted to those <strong>of</strong>fering skills, experience, and qualifications<br />

not widely available on <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong>. Priority is given<br />

to enterprises that will provide employment and training<br />

for T&C Islanders.<br />

Government/Legal system<br />

TCI is a British Crown colony. There is a Queen-appointed<br />

Governor, HE Nigel John Dakin. He presides over an executive<br />

council formed by <strong>the</strong> elected local government.<br />

Lady Sharlene Cartwright-Robinson is <strong>the</strong> country’s first<br />

woman premier, leading a majority People’s Democratic<br />

Movement (PDM) House <strong>of</strong> Assembly.<br />

The legal system is based upon English Common<br />

Law and administered by a resident Chief Justice, Chief<br />

Magistrate, and Deputy Magistrates. Judges <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Court<br />

<strong>of</strong> Appeal visit <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> twice a year and <strong>the</strong>re is a final<br />

Right <strong>of</strong> Appeal to Her Majesty’s Privy Council in London.<br />

Taxes<br />

There are currently no direct taxes on ei<strong>the</strong>r income<br />

or capital for individuals or companies. There are no<br />

exchange controls. Indirect taxation comprises customs<br />

duties and fees, stamp duty, taxes on accommodations,<br />

restaurants, vehicle rentals, o<strong>the</strong>r services and gasoline,<br />

as well as business license fees and departure taxes.<br />

Economy<br />

Historically, TCI’s economy relied on <strong>the</strong> export <strong>of</strong> salt.<br />

Currently, tourism, <strong>the</strong> <strong>of</strong>fshore finance industry, and<br />

fishing generate <strong>the</strong> most private sector income. The<br />

<strong>Islands</strong>’ main exports are lobster and conch. Practically<br />

all consumer goods and foodstuffs are imported.<br />

The Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> are recognised as an<br />

important <strong>of</strong>fshore financial centre, <strong>of</strong>fering services<br />

Turk’s Head Brewery<br />

Brewery Tours Monday-Friday<br />

11AM, 1PM, 3PM<br />

$15/pp<br />

Enjoy a complimentary selection <strong>of</strong> local craft beer<br />

after your tour!<br />

Email tours@turksheadbeer.com<br />

Call 649.941.3637 x 1005 to book<br />

www.turksheadbrewery.tc<br />

52 Universal Dr.<br />

Providenciales, TCI<br />


Island Auto_Layout 1 12/12/17 12:49 PM Page 1<br />


For Quality & Reliable Service<br />

& Competitive Prices<br />

The Cruise Center, Grand Turk<br />

Neville Adams<br />

Tel: (649) 946-<strong>20</strong>42<br />

Cell: (649) 232-0933 or (649) 231-4214<br />

Email: nevilleadams@hotmail.com<br />

Providenciales<br />

Levoi Marshall<br />

Cell: (649) 441-6737<br />

Email: levoimarshall86@gmail.com<br />

Web: islandautorentalstci.com<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 75

such as company formation, <strong>of</strong>fshore insurance, banking,<br />

trusts, limited partnerships, and limited life companies.<br />

The Financial Services Commission regulates <strong>the</strong> industry<br />

and spearheads <strong>the</strong> development <strong>of</strong> <strong>of</strong>fshore legislation.<br />

People<br />

Citizens <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong> are termed<br />

“Belongers” and are primarily descendants <strong>of</strong> African<br />

slaves who were brought to <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> to work in <strong>the</strong><br />

salt ponds and cotton plantations. The country’s large<br />

expatriate population includes Canadians, Americans,<br />

Brits and Europeans, along with Haitians, Jamaicans,<br />

Dominicans, Bahamians, Indians, and Filipinos.<br />

Churches<br />

Churches are <strong>the</strong> center <strong>of</strong> community life and <strong>the</strong>re<br />

are many faiths represented in <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> including:<br />

Adventist, Anglican, Assembly <strong>of</strong> God, Baha’i, Baptist,<br />

Catholic, Church <strong>of</strong> God, Episcopal, Jehovah’s Witnesses,<br />

Methodist and Pentecostal. Visitors are always welcome.<br />

Pets<br />

Incoming pets must have an import permit, veterinary<br />

health certificate, vaccination certificate, and lab test<br />

results to be submitted at <strong>the</strong> port <strong>of</strong> entry to obtain<br />

clearance from <strong>the</strong> TCI Department <strong>of</strong> Agriculture, Animal<br />

Health Services.<br />

National symbols<br />

sports and beachwear, and locally made handicrafts,<br />

Harbour Club:Layout 1 8/17/16 10:16 AM Page 1<br />

The National Bird is <strong>the</strong> Brown pelican (Pelecanus occi-<br />

including straw work and conch crafts. Duty free outlets<br />

dentalis). The National Plant is Island hea<strong>the</strong>r (Limonium<br />

bahamense) found nowhere else in <strong>the</strong> world. The<br />

National Tree is <strong>the</strong> Caribbean pine (Pinus caribaea var.<br />

bahamensis). The National Costume consists <strong>of</strong> white cotton<br />

dresses tied at <strong>the</strong> waist for women and simple shirts<br />

and loose pants for men, with straw hats. Colors representing<br />

<strong>the</strong> various islands are displayed on <strong>the</strong> sleeves<br />

and bases. The National Song is “This Land <strong>of</strong> Ours” by<br />

<strong>the</strong> late Rev. E.C. Howell, PhD. Peas and Hominy (Grits)<br />

with Dry Conch is revered as symbolic island fare.<br />

Going green<br />

TCI Waste Disposal Services currently <strong>of</strong>fers recycling<br />

services through weekly collection <strong>of</strong> recyclable aluminum,<br />

glass, and plastic. Single-use plastic bags have been<br />

banned country-wide as <strong>of</strong> May 1, <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>.<br />

Recreation<br />

76 www.timespub.tc<br />

Sporting activities are centered around <strong>the</strong> water. Visitors<br />

can choose from deep-sea, reef, or bonefishing, sailing,<br />

glass-bottom boat and semi-sub excursions, windsurfing,<br />

waterskiing, parasailing, sea kayaking, snorkelling, scuba<br />

diving, kiteboarding, stand up paddleboarding, and<br />

beachcombing. Pristine reefs, abundant marine life, and<br />

excellent visibility make TCI a world-class diving destination.<br />

Tennis and golf—<strong>the</strong>re is an 18 hole championship<br />

course on Providenciales—are also popular.<br />

The <strong>Islands</strong> are an ecotourist’s paradise. Visitors can<br />

enjoy unspoilt wilderness and native flora and fauna in 33<br />

national parks, nature reserves, sanctuaries, and areas <strong>of</strong><br />

historical interest. The National Trust provides trail guides<br />

to several hiking trails, as well as guided tours <strong>of</strong> major<br />

historical sites. There is an excellent national museum on<br />

Grand Turk, with an auxillary branch on Providenciales. A<br />

scheduled ferry and a selection <strong>of</strong> tour operators make it<br />

easy to take day trips to <strong>the</strong> outer islands.<br />

O<strong>the</strong>r land-based activities include bicycling, horseback<br />

riding and football (soccer). Personal trainers are<br />

available to motivate you, working out <strong>of</strong> several fitness<br />

centres. You will also find a variety <strong>of</strong> spa and body treatment<br />

services.<br />

Nightlife includes local bands playing island music<br />

at bars and restaurants and some nightclubs. There is<br />

a casino on Providenciales, along with many electronic<br />

gaming parlours. Stargazing is extraordinary!<br />

Shoppers will find Caribbean paintings, T-shirts,<br />

sell liquor, jewellery, watches, perfume, lea<strong>the</strong>r goods,<br />

crystal, china, cameras, electronics, brand-name clothing<br />

and accessories, along with Cuban cigars. a<br />

Harbour Club Villas<br />

Turtle Tail Drive, Providenciales<br />

Six one-bedroom villas.<br />

Dive operators at our dock.<br />

Bonefishing in <strong>the</strong> lake.<br />

Fabulous beaches nearby.<br />

Ideal for couples or groups.<br />

Trip Advisor<br />

Travellers’ Choice<br />

Awards Winner<br />

E: harbourclub@tciway.tc<br />

T: 1 649 941 5748<br />

See our website<br />

for details.<br />


where to stay<br />

Grand Turk<br />

range <strong>of</strong> daily rates<br />

US$ (subject to change)<br />

number <strong>of</strong> units<br />

major credit cards<br />

restaurant<br />

bar<br />

air conditioning<br />

phone in unit<br />

television in unit<br />

kitchen in unit<br />

laundry service<br />

pool<br />

on <strong>the</strong> beach<br />

H<br />

The Arches <strong>of</strong> Grand Turk – Tel 649 946 2941 190–210 4 • • • • • • •<br />

Bohio Dive Resort – Tel 649 231 3572/800 494 4301 • Web www.bohioresort.com 170–230 16 • • • • • • • •<br />

Crabtree Apartments – Tel 978 270 1698 • Web www.GrandTurkVacationRental.com 210–250 3 • • • • • •<br />

Manta House – Tel 649 946 1111 • Web www.grandturk-mantahouse.com 110–130 5 • • • • • • •<br />

Osprey Beach Hotel – Tel 649 946 2666 • Web www.ospreybeachhotel.com 90–225 37 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

Pelican House – Tel 649 246 6797 • Web www.pelicanhousegrandturk.com 110-130 3 • • • • •<br />

Salt Raker Inn – Tel 649 946 2260 • Web www.saltrakerinn.com 55–140 13 • • • • • • •<br />

Solomon Porches Guesthouse – Tel 649 946 2776/241 2937 • Fax 649 946 1984 75–100 3 • •<br />

Middle Caicos<br />

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Dragon Cay Resort at Mudjin Harbour – Tel 649 344 4997 • Web www.dragoncayresort.com 325 8 • • • • • • • • •<br />

North Caicos<br />

H<br />

Bottle Creek Lodge – Tel 649 946 7080 • Web www.bottlecreeklodge.com 155–240 3 • •<br />

Caicos Beach Condominiums – Tel 649 241 4778/786 338 9264 • Web www.caicosbeachcondos.com 159–299 8 • • • • • • • •<br />

Cedar Palms Suites – Tel 649 946 7113/649 244 4186 • Web www.oceanbeach.tc 250–300 3 • • • • • • • • •<br />

Flamingo’s Nest – Tel 649 946 7113/649 244 4186 • Web www.oceanbeach.tc 175–340 2 • • • • • • • •<br />

Hollywood Beach Suites - Tel 800 551 2256/649 231 10<strong>20</strong> • Web www.hollywoodbeachsuites.com <strong>20</strong>0–235 4 • • • • • •<br />

JoAnne’s Bed & Breakfast - Tel 649 946 7301 • Web www.turksandcaicos.tc/joannesbnb 80–1<strong>20</strong> 4 • • • •<br />

Palmetto Villa – Tel 649 946 7113/649 244 4186 • Web www.oceanbeach.tc 225–250 1 • • • • • • • •<br />

Pelican Beach Hotel - Tel 649 946 7112 • Web www.pelicanbeach.tc 125–165 14 • • • • • • • •<br />

Pine Cay<br />

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The Meridian Club - Tel 649 946 7758/888 286 7993 • Web www.meridianclub.com 800–1300 13 • • • • • • •<br />

Parrot Cay<br />

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COMO Parrot Cay Resort - Tel 649 946 7788/855 PARROTCAY • www.comohotels.com/parrotcay 550–2850 65 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

Providenciales<br />

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Airport Inn – Tel 649 941 3514 • Web www.airportinntci.com. 140 18 • • • • • • •<br />

Alexandra Resort – Tel 800 284 0699/649 946 5807 • Web www.alexandraresort.com 280–4<strong>20</strong> 99 • • • • • • • • •<br />

The Atrium Resort – Tel 888 592 7885/649 333 0101 • Web www.<strong>the</strong>atriumresorttci.com 159–410 30 • • • • • • • •<br />

Amanyara – Tel 866 941 8133/649 941 8133 • Web www.aman.com 1000–2100 73 • • • • • • • •<br />

Aquamarine Beach Houses – Tel 649 231 4535/905 556 0278 • www.aquamarinebeachhouses.com <strong>20</strong>0–850 24 • • • • • • • •<br />

Beaches Resort Villages & Spa – Tel 888-BEACHES/649 946 8000 • Web www.beaches.com 325–390AI 758 • • • • • • • • •<br />

Beach House Turks & Caicos – Tel 649 946 5800/855 946 5800 • Web www.beachchousetci.com 532–638 21 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

BE Beach Enclave – Tel 649 946 5619 • Web www.beachenclave.com see web 24 • • • • • • • •<br />

Blue Haven Resort & Marina – Tel 855 832 7667/649 946 9900 • Web www.bluehaventci.com 250–650 51 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

Caribbean Paradise Inn – Tel 649 946 50<strong>20</strong> • Web www.caribbeanparadiseinn.com 162–225 17 • • • • • • • •<br />

Club Med Turkoise – Tel 800 258 2633/649 946 5500 • Web www.clubmed.com 1<strong>20</strong>–225 290 • • • • • • • • •<br />

Coral Gardens on Grace Bay – Tel 649 941 5497/800 787 9115 • Web www.coralgardensongracebay.com 199-449 32 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

Grace Bay Club - Tel 800 946 5757/649 946 5050 • Web www.gracebayclub.com 650–1750 75 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

Grace Bay Suites – Tel 649 941 7447 • Web www.GraceBaySuites.com 99–195 24 • • • • • • • •<br />

Harbour Club Villas – Tel 649 941 5748/305 434 8568 • Web www.harbourclubvillas.com 210–240 6 • • • • •<br />

The Inn at Grace Bay – Tel 649 432 8633 • Web www.innatgracebay.com 179–379 48 • • • • • • •<br />

Kokomo Botanical Gardens - Tel 649 941 3121• Web www.aliveandwellresorts.com 169–299 16 • • • • •<br />

Le Vele - Tel 649 941 8800/888 272 4406 • Web www.leveleresort.com 303–630 22 • • • • • • • •<br />

La Vista Azul – Tel 649 946 8522/866 519 9618 • Web www.lvaresort.com 215–375 78 • • • • • • •<br />

The Lodgings – Tel 649 941 8107/245 9993 • Web www.hotelturksandcaicos.com 175–255 15 • • • • • •<br />

Neptune Villas – Tel 649 331 4328 • Web www.neptunevillastci.com 150–400 10 • • • • • • • • •<br />

Northwest Point Resort • Tel 649 941 5133 • Web www.northwestpointresort.com 196–550 49 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

Ocean Club Resorts - Tel 800 457 8787/649 946 5880 • Web www.oceanclubresorts.com 180–690 191 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

The Palms Turks & Caicos – Tel 649 946 8666/866 877 7256 • Web <strong>the</strong>palmstc.com 595–1700 72 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 77

where to stay<br />

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Providenciales (continued)<br />

Pelican Nest Villa – Tel 649 342 5731 • Web www.pelicannest.tc 429–857 2 • • • • • •<br />

Point Grace – Tel 649 946 5096/888 <strong>20</strong>9 5582 • Web www.pointgrace.com 424–1515 27 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

Ports <strong>of</strong> Call Resort – Tel 888 678 3483/649 946 8888 • Web www.ports<strong>of</strong>callresort.com 135–210 99 • • • • • • •<br />

Queen Angel Resort – Tel 649 941 8771 • Web www.queenangelresort.com 150–575 56 • • • • • • • • •<br />

Reef Residences at Grace Bay – Tel 800 532 8536 • Web www.reefresidence.com 275-385 24 • • • • • • •<br />

The Regent Grand – Tel 877 288 3<strong>20</strong>6/649 941 7770 • Web www.<strong>the</strong>regentgrand.com 495–1100 50 • • • • • • • • •<br />

Royal West Indies Resort – Tel 800 332 4<strong>20</strong>3/649 946 5004 • Web www.royalwestindies.com 180–695 92 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

The Sands at Grace Bay – Tel 877 777 2637/649 946 5199 • Web www.<strong>the</strong>sandsresort.com 175–675 116 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

Seven Stars Resort – Tel 866 570 7777/649 333 7777 – Web www.sevenstarsgracebay.com 365–2400 165 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

The Shore Club – Tel 649 339 8000 – Web www.<strong>the</strong>shoreclubtc.com 465–4650 148 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

Sibonné Beach Hotel – Tel 888 570 2861/649 946 5547 • Web www.sibonne.com 110–375 29 • • • • • • • •<br />

The Somerset on Grace Bay – Tel 649 339 5900/888 386 8770 • Web www.<strong>the</strong>somerset.com 350–1300 53 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

The Tuscany – Tel 866 359 6466/649 941 4667 • Web www.<strong>the</strong>tuscanyresort.com 975–1300 30 • • • • • • • •<br />

The Venetian – Tel 877 277 4793/649 941 3512 • Web www.<strong>the</strong>venetiangracebay.com 695–1175 27 • • • • • • • •<br />

Villa del Mar – Tel 877 345 4890/649 941 5160 • Web www.yourvilladelmar.com 190–440 42 • • • • • • •<br />

Villa Mani – Tel 649 431 4444 • Web www.villamanitci.com 6500–9500 8 • • • • • • •<br />

Villa Renaissance – Tel 649 941 5160/877 345 4890 • www.villarenaissanceturksandcaicos.com 295–650 36 • • • • • • • • •<br />

The Villas at Blue Mountain – Tel 649 941 4255/866 883 5931 • www.villasatbluemountain.com 1<strong>20</strong>0–2500 3 • • • • • • • •<br />

West Bay Club – Tel 855 749 5750/649 946 8550 • Web www.<strong>the</strong>westbayclub.com 235–1163 46 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

Windsong Resort – Tel 649 333 7700/800 WINDSONG • Web www.windsongresort.com 275–925 50 • • • • • • • • •<br />

Wymara Resort & Villas – Tel 888 844 5986 • Web www.wymararesortandvillas.com 315–7<strong>20</strong> 91 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

range <strong>of</strong> daily rates<br />

US$ (subject to change)<br />

number <strong>of</strong> units<br />

major credit cards<br />

restaurant<br />

bar<br />

air conditioning<br />

phone in unit<br />

television in unit<br />

kitchen in unit<br />

laundry service<br />

pool<br />

on <strong>the</strong> beach<br />

Salt Cay<br />

Castaway – Salt Cay – Tel 772 713 9502 • Web www.castawayonsaltcay.com 175–265 4 • • • • •<br />

Genesis Beach House – Tel 561 502 0901 • Web www.Genesisbeachhouse.com 1000–1<strong>20</strong>0W 4 • • • • •<br />

Pirate’s Hideaway B & B – Tel 800 289 5056/649 946 6909 • Web www.saltcay.tc 165–175 4 • • • • • • •<br />

Salt Cay Beach House – Tel 772 713 9502 • Web www.saltcaybeachhouse.blogspot.com 799W 1 • • • • • •<br />

Trade Winds Guest Suites – Tel 649 232 1009 • Web www.tradewinds.tc 925–1325W 5 • • • • •<br />

Twilight Zone Cottage – Tel 772 713 9502 • Web www.twilightzonecottage.blogspot.com 499W 1 • • • •<br />

The Villas <strong>of</strong> Salt Cay – Tel 772 713 9502 • Web www.villas<strong>of</strong>saltcay.com 150–475 5 • • • • • • • •<br />

H<br />

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South Caicos<br />

East Bay Resort – Tel 844 260 8328/649 232 6444 • Web eastbayresort.com 198–1775 86 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

Sailrock South Caicos – Tel 800 929 7197/649 946 3777 • Web sailrockresort.com 800–4400 6 • • • • • • • • • •<br />

South Caicos Ocean & Beach Resort – Tel 877 774 5486/649 946 3219<br />

Web southcaicos.oceanandbeachresort.com 1<strong>20</strong>–275 24 • • • • •<br />

Hotel & Tourism Association Member<br />

Green Globe Certified<br />

Rates (listed for doubles) do not include Government Accommodation Tax and Service Charge<br />

classified ads<br />

SCOOTER BOBS_Layout 1 8/8/18 10:57 AM Page GBC<strong>20</strong>17_Layout 1 2/16/17 9:10 AM Page 1<br />

We’re here to<br />

make your holiday<br />

<strong>the</strong> island way...<br />



Provo & North-Middle Caicos<br />

Office: 946-4684<br />

Amos: 441-2667 (after hours)<br />

Yan: 247-6755 (after hours)<br />

Bob: 231-0262 (after hours)<br />

scooterbobs@gmail.com<br />

www.scooterbobstci.com<br />

Grace Bay Road across from Regent Street<br />

Fun Friendly People<br />

Appreciating Your Business!<br />

941-8500<br />

www.gracebaycarrentals.com<br />

78 www.timespub.tc

Calls Spa Services<br />

Out<br />

Hair Reduction<br />

Permanent<br />

& Body Waxing<br />

Face<br />

Facials<br />

Anti-aging<br />

classified ads<br />

Forbes Classified changes due_Layout 1 8/9/18 11:51 A<br />


Caicu Naniki_Caicu Naniki classified 8/9/18 12:05 PM Page 1<br />

“Go Beyond Provo”<br />

Find your dream property on North Caicos,<br />

Middle Caicos, Salt Cay or Pine Cay.<br />

Call or email us today!<br />

R E J O U V E N A N C E<br />

SPA<br />

649-432-7546<br />

Touch <strong>of</strong> Bliss_Layout 1 8/9/18 11:59 AM Page 1<br />

www.rejouvenancespa.com<br />

www.ForbesRealtyTCI.com<br />

Sara Kaufman cell: 1-649-231-4884<br />

Ernest Forbes cell: 1-649-247-7599<br />

info@ForbesRealtyTCI.com<br />

Community Fellowship Centre<br />

A Life-Changing Experience<br />

Sunday Divine Worship 9 AM<br />

Visitors Welcome!<br />

Tel: 649.941.3484 • Web: cfctci.com<br />

Phone: 649-242-3439 or 649-346-7344<br />

Email: touch<strong>of</strong>bliss@rocketmail.com<br />

Newly located at Caribbean Place<br />








Stop by Swim & Surf Store at<br />

Caicos Cafe Plaza, Grace Bay.<br />

(649) 432-5000<br />

www.caicunaniki.com<br />

Project1_Layout 1 11/27/18 10:34 PM Page 1<br />

R & K<br />

AUTO<br />

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Project Management<br />

Estate Management<br />

Homeowner Representation<br />

Concierge<br />

______<br />

compasstci@gmail.com<br />

1 (649) 232 7083<br />

COMPASS Ltd<br />

Home Owner Services & Project Management<br />

Diagnostic Services • Wheel Alignment<br />

Balancing • Tune Ups<br />

Exhaust Repairs • A/C Repairs<br />

Radiator Pressure Testing<br />

Ralph Carmichael, Partner<br />

649 242 0063 • 432 2374<br />

Ocean Breeze_Layout 1 4/8/19 10:34 AM Page 1<br />





Our cleaning solutions are made<br />

from biodegradable materials that<br />

aren't harmful to <strong>the</strong> environment.<br />

Find our products throughout <strong>the</strong><br />

Turks & Caicos <strong>Islands</strong>.<br />

Call 244-2526<br />

or 241-5584<br />

649-941-8438 and 649-241-4968<br />

autorental@dnbautoparts.com<br />


www.oceanbreezetci.com<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 79

dining out – providenciales<br />

Amanyara — Amanyara Resort. Tel: 941-8133. Light gourmet<br />

cuisine with menu changing daily. Open 6 to 10 PM.<br />

Angela’s Top O’ The Cove Deli — Suzie Turn, by NAPA.<br />

Tel: 946-4694. New York-style delicatessen. Eat-in, carry-out,<br />

catering. Open daily 7 AM to 5 PM; Sunday 7 AM to 2 PM.<br />

Asú on <strong>the</strong> Beach — Alexandra Resort. Tel: 941-8888. Casual<br />

Caribbean and popular international fare. Open daily for 7:30<br />

AM to 10:30 PM. Service indoors, poolside, and at beach.<br />

Baci Ristorante — Harbour Towne, Turtle Cove. Tel: 941-3044.<br />

Waterfront Italian dining. Brick oven pizza. Popular bar. Open<br />

for lunch Monday to Friday 12 to 2 PM and dinner nightly from<br />

6 to 10 PM. Closed Sunday.<br />

Barbetta — The Somerset. Tel: 332-3250. Mediterranean classics,<br />

Caribbean specials, small plates and Spanish tapas. Dining<br />

in lounge, terrace or pool bar. Open daily 6 to 10 PM for dinner;<br />

pool bar open 8 AM to 8 PM. Kid’s menu. Take-out available.<br />

Bay Bistro — Sibonné Beach Hotel. Tel: 946-5396. Oceanfront<br />

dining featuring creative international cuisine. Open daily<br />

7 AM to 10 PM. Weekend brunch. Catering and special events.<br />

Beaches Resort & Spa — The Bight. Tel: 946-8000.<br />

All-inclusive resort. A variety <strong>of</strong> restaurants and bars on premises.<br />

Non-guests can purchase a pass.<br />

Bella Luna Ristorante — Glass House, Grace Bay Road. Tel:<br />

946-5214. Fine Italian dining. Indoor or terrace seating above<br />

tropical garden. Open daily from 5:30 PM. Closed Sunday. Lunch<br />

and pizza in <strong>the</strong> garden. Private catering available.<br />

Big Al’s Island Grill — Salt Mills Plaza. Tel: 941-3797. Wide<br />

selection <strong>of</strong> burgers, steaks, salads, and wraps in a diner-like<br />

setting. Open daily from 11 AM to 10 PM.<br />

Bugaloo’s Conch Crawl — Five Cays. Tel: 941-3863. Fresh<br />

local conch and seafood by <strong>the</strong> beach. Rum, buckets <strong>of</strong> beer,<br />

live local bands. Open daily from 11 AM to late.<br />

Cabana Beach Bar & Grill — Ocean Club. Tel: 946-5880.<br />

Casual island fare, burgers, salads, snacks. Open daily from<br />

8 AM to 10 PM. Tropical cocktails with a view <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> sea.<br />

Caicos Bakery — Caicos Café Plaza. Au<strong>the</strong>ntic French boulangerie.<br />

Fresh-baked breads, rolls, croissants, muffins, quiche,<br />

pastries, cakes. Open 7 AM to 4:30 PM daily except Sunday.<br />

Caicos Café — Caicos Café Plaza. Tel: 946-5278.<br />

Mediterranean specialties, grilled local seafood. Fine wines, dining<br />

on <strong>the</strong> deck. Open 6 PM to 10 PM Monday to Saturday.<br />

Chicken Chicken — <strong>Times</strong> Square, downtown Provo. Fast food,<br />

fried chicken, native fare.<br />

Chinson’s Grill Shack — Leeward Highway. Tel: 941-3533.<br />

The <strong>Islands</strong>’ best jerk and barbecue, Jamaican pastries. Open<br />

daily 8 AM to 10 PM; Friday to Midnight.<br />

Club Med — Grace Bay Road. Tel: 946-5500. All-inclusive<br />

resort. Buffet-style dining; live show and disco in <strong>the</strong> evenings.<br />

Non-guests can purchase a daily pass.<br />

Coco Bistro — Grace Bay Road. Tel: 946-5369. Continental<br />

Caribbean cuisine by Chef Stuart Gray under a canopy <strong>of</strong> palms.<br />

Serving dinner from 5:30 PM daily. Look for <strong>the</strong> Cocovan airstream<br />

lounge with garden seating or take-away.<br />

Coconut Grove Restaurant & Lounge — Olympic Plaza,<br />

Downtown. Tel: 247-5610. Casual native fare. Cracked conch,<br />

conch fritters, fried fish. Open daily 11 AM to 10 PM.<br />

Coyaba Restaurant — Bonaventure Crescent. Tel: 946-5186.<br />

Contemporary Caribbean gourmet cuisine in a private tropical<br />

garden setting. Extensive wine list. Dinner nightly from 6 to 10<br />

PM. Closed Tuesday. Reservations recommended.<br />

Crackpot Kitchen — Ports <strong>of</strong> Call. Tel: 2313336. Experience<br />

<strong>the</strong> best <strong>of</strong> au<strong>the</strong>ntic Turks & Caicos and Caribbean cuisines<br />

with local celebrity Chef Nik. Open daily 5 to 10 PM except<br />

Thursday; Happy Hour 5 to 7 PM.<br />

Da Conch Shack — Blue Hills. Tel: 946-8877. Island-fresh seafood<br />

from <strong>the</strong> ocean to your plate. Covered beachfront dining<br />

for lunch and dinner daily from 11 AM.<br />

Danny Buoy’s — Grace Bay Road. Tel: 946-5921. Traditional<br />

American pub fare; imported draught beers. Open for lunch and<br />

dinner daily from 11 AM. Happy Hour specials. Large screen TVs<br />

for sporting events. Karaoke.<br />

The Deck — Seven Stars Resort. Tel: 333-7777. All day dining<br />

and cocktails by <strong>the</strong> water’s edge. Open daily 11 AM to 11 PM.<br />

Live music Friday nights.<br />

Drift — West Bay Club. Tel: 946-8550. Open-air beachfront dining.<br />

Creatively used local ingredients. Full bar. Open daily 7:30<br />

AM to 9:30 PM.<br />

Dune — Windsong Resort. Tel: 333-7700. Private beachfront<br />

dining with limited availability. Fresh fare prepared to perfection.<br />

Open daily.<br />

El Catador Tapas & Bar — Regent Village. Tel: 244-1134.<br />

Au<strong>the</strong>ntic Spanish tapas with a wide mix <strong>of</strong> cold and hot plates<br />

meant for sharing. Fun and lively atmosphere. Open daily from<br />

5 PM.<br />

Element — LeVele Plaza. Tel: 348-6424. Contemporary, creative<br />

cuisine in an elegant setting. Open for dinner Friday to<br />

Wednesday 6:30 to 10:30 PM.<br />

Fairways Bar & Grill — Provo Golf Club. Tel: 946-5833. Dine<br />

overlooking <strong>the</strong> “greens.” Open for breakfast and lunch from 7<br />

AM to 4 PM daily; Friday, Saturday and Sunday open until 8 PM.<br />

Great Sunday brunch 9 AM to 3 PM.<br />

Fire & Ice — Blue Haven Resort & Marina. Tel: 946-9900.<br />

Drinks at <strong>the</strong> Ice Bar, dessert by <strong>the</strong> fire pits. South Americanmeets-Caribbean<br />

flavors and spices. Open daily 5:30 to 9:30<br />

PM. Closed Wednesday.<br />

Fresh Bakery & Bistro — Atrium Resort. Tel: 345-4745.<br />

Healthy European salads, soups, sandwiches, bakery, pies and<br />

cakes. Gelato. Open daily 7 AM to 6 PM, closed Sunday.<br />

Fresh Catch — Salt Mills Plaza. Tel: 243-3167. Au<strong>the</strong>ntic native<br />

cuisine, from seafood to souse. All-you-can-eat seafood buffet<br />

on Wednesday. Open daily 8 AM to 10 PM. Closed Sunday.<br />

Carry-out available.<br />

Giggles Ice Cream & Candy Parlour — Ports <strong>of</strong> Call &<br />

Williams Storage. Tel: 941-7370. Cones, sundaes, shakes,<br />

smoothies, “Gigglers,” ice cream pies and cakes. Pick ‘n’ mix<br />

candies. Open daily 11 AM to 10 PM.<br />

Gilley’s Sky Lounge & Bar — At <strong>the</strong> airport. Tel: 946-4472.<br />

Burgers, sandwiches, local food. Open daily 6 AM to 9 PM.<br />

Grace’s Cottage — Point Grace Resort. Tel: 946-5096. Refined<br />

new menu in <strong>the</strong> style <strong>of</strong> a tastefully sophisticated French bistro.<br />

Serving dinner from 6 to 10 PM nightly.<br />

The Grill — Grace Bay Club. Tel: 946-5050. Al fresco bistro.<br />

Italian-inspired menu and gourmet pizza. Fun cocktails. Open<br />

daily for 7 AM to 9:30 PM.<br />

Hemingways on <strong>the</strong> Beach — The Sands at Grace Bay. Tel:<br />

941-8408. Casual beachfront bar and restaurant. Fresh fish,<br />

80 www.timespub.tc

pasta, sandwiches, salads and tropical drinks by <strong>the</strong> pool.<br />

Oceanfront deck for great sunsets! Open 8 AM to 10 PM daily.<br />

Hole in <strong>the</strong> Wall Restaurant & Bar — Williams Plaza, Old<br />

Airport Road. Tel: 941-4136. Au<strong>the</strong>ntic Jamaican/Island cuisine<br />

where <strong>the</strong> locals go. Full bar. A/C dining or outdoors on <strong>the</strong><br />

deck. Open daily 7 AM to 9 PM. Pick-up/delivery available.<br />

Infiniti Restaurant & Raw Bar — Grace Bay Club. Tel: 946-<br />

5050. Elegant beachfront dining featuring sea-to-table fare.<br />

Dinner served nightly 6:30 to 9:30 PM. Reservations required.<br />

Island Raw — Le Petite Plaza. Tel: 346-5371. Vegan lifestyle<br />

kitchen, <strong>of</strong>fering fresh, organic, raw, vegan, gourmet. Open<br />

Friday, Noon to 2 PM.<br />

Island Conch Bar & Grill — Bight Cultural Market. Tel: 946-<br />

8389. Caribbean and local cuisine. Open daily 11 AM to 9 PM.<br />

Island Scoop — Grace Bay Plaza. Tel: 242-8511/243-5051.<br />

21 flavors <strong>of</strong> ice cream made locally. Cones, smoothies, blizzards<br />

and shakes. Open daily, 11 AM to 10 PM.<br />

The Java Bar — Graceway Gourmet. Tel: 941-5000. Gourmet<br />

café serving fresh baked desserts, sandwiches and c<strong>of</strong>fee<br />

delights. Open 7 AM to 8 PM daily.<br />

Jack’s Fountain — Across from Casablanca Casino. Tel: 946-<br />

5225. Fresh crab, seafood, unique specialty items in a lively,<br />

relaxed “beach bar” atmosphere. Open daily except Monday<br />

11:30 AM to 10 PM.<br />

Jimmy’s Dive Bar & Grill — Central Square, Leeward Highway.<br />

Tel: 941-8925. Take-out lunch specials; daily drink and dinner<br />

specials. Wings, sliders, salads, pasta, burgers, seafood. Open<br />

daily Noon to 2 AM.<br />

Kalooki’s Grace Bay — Le Vele Plaza. Tel: 941-8388. The perfect<br />

mix <strong>of</strong> sweet and spicy Caribbean flavors. New location in<br />

Grace Bay. Open daily 11 AM to 10 PM. Closed Thursday.<br />

Kitchen 218 — Beach House, Lower Bight Road. Tel: 946-5800.<br />

Caribbean cuisine with hints <strong>of</strong> French and Asian fusion and <strong>the</strong><br />

chef’s passion for fresh ingredients. Open 8 AM to 10 PM daily.<br />

The Landing Bar & Kitchen — Grace Bay Road across from<br />

Regent Village. Tel: 341-5856. Unique nautical setting for dinner<br />

under <strong>the</strong> stars. Cocktails, fire pit. Open daily except Tuesday<br />

5:30 to 10 PM.<br />

Las Brisas — Neptune Villas, Chalk Sound. Tel: 946-5306.<br />

Mediterranean/Caribbean cuisine with tapas, wine and full bar.<br />

Terrace and gazebo dining overlooking Chalk Sound. Open daily<br />

8 AM to 10 PM. Take-out available; private parties.<br />

Le Bouchon du Village — Regent Village. Tel: 946-5234. A<br />

taste <strong>of</strong> Paris. Sidewalk café with sandwiches, salads, tartines,<br />

tapas, dinner specials, wine, cheese, dessert, c<strong>of</strong>fees. Open<br />

daily 11 AM to 10 PM. Closed Sunday.<br />

Le Comptoir Francais — Regent Village. Tel: 946-5234.<br />

French deli, bakery, wine shop. Open daily.<br />

Lemon 2 Go C<strong>of</strong>fee — Ventura House. Tel: 941-4069.<br />

Gourmet c<strong>of</strong>feehouse. Sandwiches, muffins, cookies, croissants,<br />

yogurt, salads. Open Monday to Saturday 7:30 AM to 7 PM,<br />

Sunday 9 AM to 1 PM.<br />

Lupo — Regent Village. Tel: 431-5876. Au<strong>the</strong>ntic Italian “comfort<br />

food.” Regional wine list. Dine in or take out ready-made<br />

gourmet meals. Open daily for dinner 5 to 10 PM.<br />

Magnolia Restaurant & Wine Bar — Miramar Resort. Tel:<br />

941-5108. International cuisine with island flavors, north shore<br />

views. Open for dinner from 6 to 9:30 PM except Monday.<br />

Mango Reef — Turtle Cove. Tel: 946-8<strong>20</strong>0. Fresh local flavors<br />

and seafood, homemade desserts. Open daily 11 AM to 10 PM.<br />

Set price dinner on weekdays. Waterside deck, indoor or patio<br />

dining. Tie-up to dock at Turtle Cove Marina.<br />

Market Café — Blue Haven Resort. Tel: 946-9900. Gourmet<br />

c<strong>of</strong>fees, teas, frozen drinks; fresh breads and pastries; grab ‘n’<br />

go salads, sandwiches, smoothies. Open daily 7 AM to 8 PM.<br />

Mo<strong>the</strong>r’s Pizza — Downtown <strong>Times</strong> Square. Tel: 941-4142.<br />

Best pizza in <strong>the</strong> Turks & Caicos, available by <strong>the</strong> slice or <strong>the</strong><br />

island’s biggest “large.” Open daily 11 AM to 9 PM; to 10 PM on<br />

Friday and Saturday; Noon to 8 PM on Sunday.<br />

Mr. Groupers — Lower Bight and Sunset Ridge Hotel (near airport).<br />

Tel: 242-6780. Serving fresh local seafood straight from<br />

<strong>the</strong> sea. Open daily 10 AM to 10:30 PM, Sunday 3 to 11 PM.<br />

Opus Wine • Bar • Grill — Ocean Club Plaza. Tel: 946-5885.<br />

International menu with Caribbean flair. Fresh seafood. Serving<br />

dinner nightly 6 to 10 PM. Closed Monday. Indoor/outdoor dining.<br />

Conference facility, events, catering.<br />

Outback Steakhouse TCI — Regent Village. Unbeatable<br />

steak cuts complemented by chicken, ribs, seafood, and pasta.<br />

Generous portions, moderately priced, casual atmosphere. Open<br />

daily 11 AM to 10 PM.<br />

Paparazzi Brazilian Steak House and Sushi Bar — Queen<br />

Angel Resort. Tel: 332-2810. Eat, drink and dance. Open<br />

Monday to Saturday for dinner.<br />

Parallel23 — The Palms Turks & Caicos. Tel: 946-8666. Pantropical<br />

cuisine in a setting <strong>of</strong> casual elegance. Boutique wine<br />

list. Al fresco or private dining room available. Open daily 6 to<br />

Midnight.<br />

The Patty Place — Behind Shining Stars; Le Petit Place, Blue<br />

Hills. Tel: 246-9000. Au<strong>the</strong>ntic Jamaican patties and loaves. 18<br />

flavors <strong>of</strong> Devon House ice cream. Open daily 9:30 AM to 10 PM.<br />

Pelican Bay Restaurant & Bar — Royal West Indies Resort.<br />

Tel: 941-2365. Poolside restaurant and bar with Caribbean,<br />

French and Asian fare. Breakfast, lunch, dinner daily from 7:30<br />

AM to 10 PM. Special events each week.<br />

Pepper Town Café — Digicel Cinema, #4. Tel: 246-9237.<br />

Native and Caribbean Dishes. Open daily except Sunday 11:30<br />

AM to 7 PM. Island breakfast on Saturday at 7 AM.<br />

Pizza Pizza — Grace Bay Plaza/Cinema Plaza. Tel: 941-<br />

8010/941-3577. New York style specialty pizzas. Open daily<br />

11:30 AM to 9:30 PM, weekends until 10 PM. Free delivery.<br />

Provence — Le Vele Plaza. Tel: 946-4124. Traditional French<br />

artisan-style cuisine. Fresh pasta, gelato, cheeses, charcuterie,<br />

pastries, desserts. Open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner.<br />

Retreat Kitchen Vegetarian Café & Juice Bar — Ports <strong>of</strong><br />

Call. Tel: 432-2485. Fresh, organic, vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free<br />

fare. Fresh juices, daily lunch specials. Open for lunch<br />

Monday to Saturday, 9 AM to 3 PM. Delivery available.<br />

Rickie’s Flamingo Café — Between Ocean Club and Club Med.<br />

Tel: 244-3231. Local fare and atmosphere right on <strong>the</strong> beach.<br />

Best grouper sandwich and rum punch! Don’t miss Curry Fridays<br />

and Beach BBQ Saturdays.<br />

Salt Bar & Grill — Blue Haven Resort & Marina. Tel: 946-9900.<br />

Outdoor seating overlooking <strong>the</strong> marina. Sandwiches, burgers,<br />

salads, classic bar favorites. Open daily 11:30 AM to 9:30 PM.<br />

Seven — Seven Stars Resort. Tel: 339-7777. Elevated contemporary<br />

cuisine fused with TCI tradition. Open Monday to Saturday,<br />

5:30 to 9:30 PM.<br />

72ºWest — The Palms Turks & Caicos. Tel: 946-8666.<br />

Beachside dining with a family-friendly, Caribbean-inspired<br />

menu. Serving lunch daily; dinner seasonally.<br />

Sharkbite Bar & Grill — Admiral’s Club at Turtle Cove. Tel:<br />

941-5090. Varied menu; casual dining. Sports bar/slots. Open<br />

<strong>Times</strong> <strong>of</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Islands</strong> <strong>Winter</strong> <strong><strong>20</strong>19</strong>/<strong>20</strong> 81

daily from 11 AM to 2 AM.<br />

Shay Café — Le Vele Plaza. Tel: 331-6349. Offering organic<br />

c<strong>of</strong>fees, teas, sandwiches, salads, soup, pastries, gelato, sorbetto,<br />

smoothies, beer and wine. Open daily 7 AM to 7 PM.<br />

Simone’s Bar & Grill — La Vista Azul. Tel: 331-3031. Serving<br />

fresh seafood and local cuisine. Open daily 11 AM to 11 PM;<br />

weekends 7 AM to 11 PM. Popular bar!<br />

Skull Rock Cantina — Ports <strong>of</strong> Call. Tel: 941-4173. The place<br />

for Tex-Mex; daily drink specials. Open daily, 8 AM to Midnight.<br />

Solana! Restaurant — Ocean Club West. Tel: 946-5254.<br />

Oceanfront dining from sushi to burgers. Teppanyaki and Sushi<br />

Bar, engage with <strong>the</strong> chefs. Open daily 7:30 AM to 10 PM.<br />

Somewhere Café & Lounge — Coral Gardens Resort. Tel:<br />

941-8260. Casual dining with Tex-Mex flair right on <strong>the</strong> beach.<br />

Cocktails, beers, specialty drinks. Open early to late daily.<br />

Stelle — Wymara Resort. Tel: 232-4444. Asian and international<br />

fusion featuring fresh fish and seafood. Open 6 to 10 PM<br />

daily, until 2 AM on Friday with DJ.<br />

Sui-Ren — The Shore Club. Tel: 339-8000. Inspired flavors <strong>of</strong><br />

Peruvian-Japanese fusion cuisine with fresh seafood and organic<br />

produce in a unique setting. Open daily. Reservations required.<br />

Thai Orchid — The Regent Village. Tel: 946-4491. Au<strong>the</strong>ntic<br />

Thai cuisine; over 60 choices! Dine in or carry out. Open for<br />

lunch and dinner daily.<br />

Three Bro<strong>the</strong>rs Restaurant — Town Center Mall, Downtown.<br />

Tel: 232-4736. Seafood and native cuisine. Tuesday night buffet<br />

dinner. Catering services. Open daily, 7 AM to 10 PM.<br />

Turkberry Frozen Yogurt — The Saltmills. Tel: 431-2233.<br />

Frozen yogurt in a variety <strong>of</strong> flavors, with a large selection <strong>of</strong><br />

toppings. Custom donut bar. Open 11 AM to 11 PM daily.<br />

Turks Kebab — At Craft Market on Sand Castle Drive. Tel: 431-<br />

9964. Turkish and Mediterranean fare. Salads, falafel, gyros,<br />

kebabs, hummus. Open for lunch and dinner.<br />

Via Veneto — Ports <strong>of</strong> Call. Tel: 941-2372. Au<strong>the</strong>ntic Italian<br />

dining in a stylish indoor/outdoor venue. Open from 5:30 PM to<br />

late. Closed Thursday. Saturday is Pizza Night!<br />

The Vix Asian Bistro & Grill — Regent Village. Tel: 941-4144.<br />

Contemporary Asian menu with a wok station, dim sum, vegan<br />

specialties and keto dishes. Open daily Noon to 3 PM; 5:30 to<br />

10 PM. Delivery to select locations. Catering menus.<br />

Yoshi’s Sushi & Grill — The Saltmills. Tel: 941-3374/431-<br />

0012. Sushi bar menu plus Japanese cuisine. Open daily Noon<br />

to 3 PM; 6 to 10 PM. Closed Sunday. Dine indoors or out. Carry<br />

out available.<br />

Zest! — Wymara Resort. Tel: 232-4444. Lunch and dinner<br />

beachfront. Seasonal grilled fare, ceviches and homemade<br />

pizza. Open daily Noon to 5 PM; 6 to 9 PM. Fisherman’s night<br />

Wednesday. a<br />

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