Some different days on Dominica
Nine days lasts our stay on Dominica. Divided into small groups, we helped three days to rebuild a house, which was destroyed by hurricane Maria a few years ago. For three days we were on the Thor doing ship work and had one day completely free and the other three days we hiked through the tropical rainforest.
While small group 2 was at the house and small group 3 was hiking through the rainforest, my small group 1 stayed on the Thor. Directly the first night, we had to organize ourselves, first with the night watch. We thought a lot and noticed, that it is really hard to organize the watch, when there are only eleven people. Finally, we concluded that each of us had to do an one-hour-watch alone. However, some people also watched two hours with another person, otherwise they were afraid of falling asleep.
The first day on the Thor began early. Punctually at eight o’clock we had breakfast. After that we distributed the tasks. The ship had to be sanded and painted from the outside and inside, the ropes had to be rigged, the galley had to be spruce up and the daily clean-up stations had to be carried out. But there was also a task on land: Shopping! Together with Detlef, Marie and Yannik, I went ashore to go shopping at the local weekly market. We were very curious watched as we got out of the dinghy, armed with tons of bags and a pocket calculator. But wait?! A pocket calculator? For what do you need it at a weekly market? Quite clear answer: to change the Caribbean Dollar into the U.S Dollar.
The market was incredible! Like a postcard-motive. Everywhere small stands with melons, tomatoes, papayas and other local fruits. Behind them: women in colorful dresses, selling their wares. We strolled around the market and filled our bags with tomatoes, cucumbers, melons, salat and other delicious things. The people were very surprised that we bought so much, but for fifty hungry people you simply just need a lot of food. Back on the Thor, we quickly put the food into the fridge, jumped into our dungarees (blueys), which were after work no longer quite so blue, and helped the others with the ship-work. With good and loud music, the time went by so fast, so that we could finish work punctually at four o’clock and went swimming.
We threw ourselves into our bathing suits, made still quickly a last grip to the diving googles and then we all jumped together into the cool water. A perfect end for this exhausting but very productive day. After the swim break, we got handed out our cellphones, so that we could talk to friends and family, so that they are also up to date. Each of us looked for a good and quite place. Whether on the jib boom, on the square sails on the deckhouse – we have all talked on the phone until dinner bell rang.
After the meal we came together on the hatchway with our sleeping mats and our sleeping bags, to watch the movie Pirates of the Caribbean 2, because the next morning we had a guide tour by boat over the Indian River (a little river next to our place) on which, among other things, a scene from Pirates of the Caribbean was filmed. And of course, we recognized the places. The river was incredible! Crystal clear water and many different fish. From big to small – from gray to black. The river was framed left and right by trees. Roots, as you usually see them only in films. Huge, gnarled, brown lines stretched through the landscapes. Besides we saw parrots and other birds, which are still unknown to us, flew over our heads. During the tour we wondered why there are so many different holes in the ground. In addition to that, our guide explained to us that all the crabs are living there in these holes. The larger the hole, the bigger the crab. After that many of us panicked a little bit, after we saw a huge hole in the ground, from which you have seen a giant pincer, from which you would rather not like to be pinched into the toe.
Back on the Thor, the bakery crew had conjured up a wonderful breakfast. We had lunch with fruits, crepes and eggs. A great start into the day off. After we were all full of food, we talked on the phone, wrote blogs, sorted photos or wrote in our diary. In the afternoon, we decided to go to the beach. Only the teenagers. We quickly got towel, drinking water, a football and a frisbee and went to the beach by dinghy shuttle. But of course, the fruits weren’t allowed to be missed. We were so long bathing until the sun went down. Then we already drove back to the Thor where the smell of burgers welcomed us.
On the third and last day on the Thor, we slept in, so that breakfast was a little bit later than normally. This time it was at 9:30 o’clock. The morning was packed with cleaning the ship and two hours free for school tasks, so that we could study for our English exams. The time until group 2 came back from the house, we used to relax. We listened to music or simply read. When group 2 came on board in the evening, there was incredible much to tell and that’s why we sat on deck until late into the night and talked.