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Our trip to Guana Island

It was three weeks ago and I only posted a sunset picture.

Guana Island is a fancy resort in the British Virgin Islands. It's a private island near the airport on Tortola. The island is 800 acres and there is just this one hotel with at most 30 guests. The main beach has this fine white sand with coral reefs for good snorkeling. You go up a hill to where the main house and other houses are - there is a 250 ft peak and an 800 one, too as well as about other beaches reachable by trails or boat. It is operated as a nature preserve as well; they reintroduced Caribbean Iguanas and there are a few hundred on the island. Down on the flat land behind the beach is a salt pond with 6 bermuda flamingos (too small for them to breed), a croquet field, two tennis courts, two donkeys (whose predecessors used to be transportation up the hill), and an elaborate garden with lots of edible fruits. In October they host scientists month for researchers to do various studies.

The food is good, the other guests are always congenial. You eat family style, there's a cocktail hour with a do-it-yourself bar, there's lots of socializing, and it feels like a house party. We tend to go there two out of three years in early March and see some of the same people each time. We think this was our 18th trip there. I characterize the place as one where there is nothing to do and not enough time to do it. There are lots of diving pelicans at the beach and I always find it mesmerizing to watch them. We've stayed in the same room the past several times and one of its features is a lovely porch for viewing the sunset - seen here: . Our timing this year was perfect since we left early on March 1 just as it was beginning to snow.

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with 6 bermuda flamingos ... a croquet field

do they also have hedgehogs on the island, for a proper game of croquet?

No hedge hogs. I suppose hermit crabs could be considered but they are a bit small.

oh - so you had to settle for boring old conventional croquet, with mallets and coloured wooden balls?

well, I spoze if you're going on holiday to relax, doing things with mallets that don't require you to hold them firmly under the arm would be a little less demanding.

but I think you should make a point of taking hedgehogs (or at least, stuffed plush ones) next time you visit. When you've got the croquet ground AND the flamingoes, it just cries out for hte hedgehogs.

[oh yes, and if you can manage it, an oversized pack of cards to make the arches]

Well, we have thought about hedgehogs. The croquet ground is near enough to the pond that we used to able to see the flamingos while we were playing (vegetation has since obscured it).Thing is, the croquet field is so uneven and quirky, and our croquet is so far below professional level, that we're reluctant to introduce additional handicaps.

I have a feeling that the iguanas wouldn't make very good croquet balls (way too big, for one thing).

the key part is, would the iguanas stay rolled up?

as to the unevenness, maybe you NEED a ball that can roll and then walk on its own legs (like - oh, I dunno, a hedgehog maybe?) to get any significant distance.

Distance isn't so much the issue as controlled direction. Hedgehogs probably wouldn't help much.

I can't look at that map and not see a funny-looking bird.

Yeah, I've often thought that too. (The resort uses the outline of the island as its logo, so I see it a lot.)

It makes me think of when I looked up "gerrymander" in a dictionary and saw a picture of the salamander-shaped district that Franklin (I think) complained about.

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