October 07, 2006
Back From Little Cayman
Okay, so I've been home from Little Cayman for a week now. Seems like adequate time to digest everything. So here goes ...
Little Cayman was the destination. Delta and Cayman Air were the means of getting there. Two big jets and a small twin engine plane that holds 14 or so passengers and lands on a grass field that's used for soccer when no planes are landing.
Yes, Little Cayman is a small island. I believe it's 11 miles long and 1 mile wide with one main road around the island and one that cuts across it. Electricity is relatively new to the island. It wasn't until the mid 1990s that they even got power!
Karaoke seems to be one of the big highlights of the island, and Little Cayman Beach Resort on a Friday night seems to be the place! I think the locals just like to be entertained by the tourists. :-)
The daily schedule is quite simple. Up by 7:00 for breakfast, on the boat by 7:45 for two dives, back in for lunch around noon, back on the boat at 1:45 for an afternoon dive, then back in time to swim, clean up and/or a nap before dinner. The bar seemed to be open all day and night, but then again, I don't think I ever stayed awake past 10:00 pm!
Speaking of meals, everything was WONDERFUL! They prepare lots of good food that should suit even the pickiest of eaters. Breakfast choices includes cereal, yogurt, muffins, pastries, juices, coffee, tea, tons of fresh fruit, eggs, bacon, sausage, omelets, and some bread-like carbs for extra energy to keep a diver going. Lunch always provided salads, sandwich fixin's, a pasta dish, vegetables, at least one other meat option and awesome desserts. The dinner buffet always offered a huge salad with lots of toppings, vegetables, meat dishes, pasta, and again, wonderful desserts! If you walked away hungry, it was definitely your own fault!
And now ... What everyone has been waiting for ... THE DIVING!
All I can say is WOW!! It's been ages since I've been diving in the Cayman Islands, but I guarantee you it won't be as long before I go back to Little Cayman! Everyday brought an array of wonderful colors, sounds, and experiences. The days were warm with blue skies and the typical occasional white puffy cloud we all expect when visiting the Caribbean. The water was quite calm and crystal clear. It was easy to see the reefs and critters even from a moving boat! The water temperature registered 88 - 89 degrees on more than one dive computer, so no wetsuits were needed. Some people wore them more as protection than for warmth. On some dive sites there would be a mild current, but nothing that kept us on the boat. We even had great conditions for night diving. Our night dive was on a wreck called the Soto Trader. We saw tons of HUGE groupers and parrotfish, spotted eels, crabs, lobsters, squid, and tons of varieties of fish ... too many to mention! Several of us had high powered lights for shooting stills or videos and that drew in a rather undesirable critter ... bloodworms. After 45 minute or so they were a bit annoying, but that's something almost everyone was willing to deal with.
As Conrad mentioned, I took well over 400 photographs and I am still in the process of weeding through them. Please check back often to see any new additions to my Cayman Gallery. I told everyone on our boat about this website and promised them all their very own page of photos, if they'd like. Many of them said they'd like to contribute, so as soon as they do we will add another article with links to everyones' photos.
All in all, it was an outstanding trip. For those who are tied to the Internet, they do have wireless access, and a lot of people were hanging around the bar with their laptops. It was a bit weird for an out-of-the-way dive location, but a necessity these days. Due to luggage weight restrictions, I was unable to take this large laptop. Had I had a smaller one, I'd have taken it in a heartbeat!
And now for planning the next dive trip ... :-)