03/16/2012, Mt Hartman Bay, Grenada
Wow, uncharacteristically, I haven't done a blog in WEEKS! However, I have been busy getting my dives in to start my Dive Master course at one of the dive shops here (shameless plug, it's Scubatech). This past Monday I actually started the course, and have been putting in full time hours at the shop. I am the "Dive Master Trainee", and I have sort of official place in the staff (hey, I have to wear the shirt!). So far it has been quite interesting, and I still have about 4 more weeks to go for the course.
While I have been off communing with the underwater world, and swimming timed distances, Ken has been holding down the fort. He is now the one to do the shopping for us, and it has been a steep learning curve for him. Things I have taken about 15 months in total to figure, I now have to pass on to him... usually after the fact. I do feel bad for him, as he really does do a pretty good job, but I keep pointing out little things to him. Of course, there is nobody to point out to ME if I make a mistake, as I don't really answer to anyone when I shop!
I still go for a run three mornings a week, and do the Saturday Hashes. Ken finds jobs to do on the boat, or helps others out with trouble shooting their electronics. He enjoys exercising his grey matter that way, and he really is good at it!
Other than that, things are pretty low key, The occasional dinner out with friends, otherwise we are evening homebodies, either with me doing my studies and Ken reading, or we watch a movie together on the computer. I still do the large majority of the cooking for dinners, which I don't mind at all.
|Limin' in the Caribbean||
02/20/2012, Mt Hartman Bay, Grenada
It isn't news that I am doing a lot of diving lately. Sunday I went for two "recreational" dives, dives that had nothing to do with courses, expectations or anything else. These were just another two dives to add to my overall experience.
I left the boat at 8:20 and we were off. The first planned dive was to be an Atlantic wreck, but the current was just too strong. We would have been whisked halfway to Africa if we attempted that dive. Plan B for the morning dive was "Whibble's Reef" (or "Wibble", nobody is quite sure). It was very pleasant with many schools of fish, and another diver's description of "purple rain" was very accurate. There were LOTS of creole wrasse, jack, and other "smaller" fish to see. the reef is quite healthy, too.
The second dive was good old "Shark Reef". Any North Americans over a certain age (or at least Canadians) will remember the "Bits and Bites" snack ad about "Put in your hand, pull it out and ya got a whooole new combination"... this describes Shark Reef as well. This dive I saw a lobster with antenna bases at least the width of my thumb. We also saw a sleeping nurse shark (they tuck under the rocks) and we also saw two young Hawksbill turtles swim by. Trigger fish and the other regular cast of characters also said hello.
When we got back to the dive shop, Ken came over.When he arrived, he commented that someone named "Felix" had called and that Felix was wondering if I could play goal for a soccer team at the National Stadium, playing against the Grenadian National Women's soccer club. Would I like to do that? Are you kidding? What time and how can I get a ride! There wasn't much time after we actually got hold of each other, but a team mate picked me up, took me to the dock and waited while I picked up my gear. The apple and grapefruit for lunch wasn't going to last long!
Not overly surprisingly, the "4:00" game was going to be a 6:30 game, but ended up starting at about 5:30pm. The team I was playing with is from St Georges University. Apparently they don't have someone to play goal on a regular basis. So I was playing soccer with predominately medical and veterinary students who had grown up playing soccer in North America.
The Grenadian women are quite athletic. They are fast, and their individual ball skills aren't too bad. However, they don't have the same background of organized soccer that their opponents (we) had. I also don't think they get the chance to play many games. In a nutshell, we won 1-0, and the only goal in the game was an own goal (yes, they scored on themselves). I made a couple of decent stops, and I think I presented a more aggressive form of goalkeeping than they are used to seeing here. Of course, if they are mostly practicing, no goalie is going to kill herself in practices all of the time. It certainly made me laugh when one unfortunate soul who came into my goal area and ended up seeing me flying at her and throwing myself down at the ball, regardless of where she was. Yes, she hit the ground, too. After that, all of their forwards were a little more cautious about coming into "my" area. Actually, they preferred to try shooting from further out after that. Pity.
Ken, on the other hand, ended up staying home most of the day while I was off playing, except for the brief visit to the dive shop. He said that he would cook dinner and have leftovers for me for when I got home. However, I will let him tell his own story now...
...Ken's excursion into Lynn's galley; or, "Crimes and Misdemeanors."
OK check the fridge...frozen chicken thighs, a partial cabbage and beer. Since there's an island beer strike and only 4 cans of beer on the boat, better make a rum and coke before dinner. Get out the large frying pan, add the thighs and heat. After a minute I realize that I had chosen Lynn's newest Teflon pan for a sticky meal. I'd better slide those chicken pieces into an old steel pan, just to be safe. While the chicken thaws/cooks on a low flame I started the coleslaw project. Sharp knife to shred the cabbage into a large steel bowl, shred, shred, oops, better get a larger bowl. Now add some kinda liquid to make the slaw tasty. Rummaging in the pantry I found soy sauce and brown sugar. That's it! Add the soy...wait a minute...that tastes salty. Check pantry again. Balsamic vinegar..that's the brown liquid she uses. OK well after lotsa balsamic vinegar I added brown sugar and stirred. Bowl overflows...Oh yeah I remember now...she uses a tupperware container and shakes the stuff with a lid on it! OK now,since the contents of my large bowl has plainly overwhelmed the first tupperware, find a second t-ware container for the rest. Good. Close lids and shake both containers, then refrigerate. Chicken is thawed and cooking nicely...looks kinda dry, add some oil, that's it. Now for the sweet and sour part...my fav! More brown liquid involved here...ummm...soya sauce for sure. OK, is it soy sauce? No...that's for the slaw. The sweet part...brown sugar? Sweet & Sour? No no....it's HONEY, as in honey garlic...that's it. Pour liquid Grenadian honey on the hot chicken in oil...good, good; now the garlic. Well as we only have garlic powder, here goes. Wow! What a sticky bubbling gooey delicious smelling recipe this is. Yum. No brown liquid added 'tho, oh well.
Instant mashed potatoes are one of my favourites and I know how to do this. In the pantry every zip-loc bag of white powder appears the same to the uninitiated. Finally I select the off white flaky powder that might be potato based and return to the galley...the crime scene if you will. After boiling the water in a kettle now pour water into a Teflon pot, (Mustn't use metallic stirring utensils) I added 1/2 cup of boiling H2O. Now stir in potato flakes until firm. Great....how easy cooking is! Cover mashed spuds and back to the chicken. Uncovering the pan all I see is four little blackish chicken buds in a bubbling sea of honey garlic foam. Pry two of the chicken buds outta the pan and serve. Scoop the mashed spuds onto the plate. Hmmm...they just sit there like Portland cement. OK now dig the matured cole slaw out of the fridge and onto the plate. Yum.
Now I sit myself down for a solitary dinner in front of the PC to watch an episode of Rowan Atkinson's "Black Adder." Sip some rum and coke, say the Grace and let's see what I've wrought in the galley. Yes, the gas is off; thank you. ;-)
- The mashed spuds taste flat. (Lynn's note: Ken forgot to add the powdered milk.)
- The chicken was tough and quite black but very tasty and just the flavour I remember Lynn making for Sweet & Sour...no....that's Honey Garlic chicken. (Lynn's note: Ken forgot the soy sauce.)
- The cole slaw had a curiously unpleasant salty undertone. Not very good, but I was hungry and ate every bit. (Lynn's note: He now knows that soy sauce goes into the chicken recipe, not the slaw. Ken also forgot to add any olive oil, (another mystery brown sauce; and used way too much balsamic vinegar. The slaw was salty and very vinegary.)
|Limin' in the Caribbean||