Tuesday, March 6, 2012

The Journey Is the Destination

There is a hiking trail that leads up to the summit of Mount Nevis said to be extremely difficult and not to be done without a guide.  For those less adventurous, there is a more moderate trail, the Source Trail, so called because it leads you to the water source for Nevis.  Along the way you pass the pipeline that brings the water down to the Stony Hill Reservoir.  This is our destination.  Starting our hike from Golden Rock Inn, we head up an overgrown path leading to a road with a few houses on each side.  A young woman with a baby tells us we have a long walk ahead of us; “five miles,” she says with a look that conveys she thinks we are crazy. 

The going is fairly easy; the path is 3-4 feet wide and fairly well maintained, although very rocky in some areas.  This is the second hike I’ve made in flip flops—you may remember I did a short rain forest hike in Palawan, Philippines.  Like that trip, I hadn’t intended to hike.  The rocks are very hard on my feet after a while.  Along the way, we keep an eye out for Green Vervet monkeys, which supposedly are in abundance and the reason behind the abandonment of farming in this area.  There are none to be seen—I imagine monkeys in the tops of the trees, shushing each other with one finger to their lips and the other pointing down at us, while others hold their paws in front their mouths to keep from laughing aloud at our obliviousness. 

We meet a few other hikers coming down the trail and ask how far until we reach the viewing plateau, “about twenty minutes” we are told.  We are told this three separate times.  Perhaps we missed it along the way.  Were supposed to go through that red gate? After about an hour-and-a-half of hiking, the trail is quickly deteriorating into rocks and mud, and we decide to give up.  Gary declares “the journey is the destination,” which becomes our mantra, and which I have borrowed for the title of this post (Gary informs me that he likely borrowed it himself ). 

We return to Golden Rock for lunch* and a cold drink while we rest our weary feet.  We will surely feel the hike tomorrow.  At lunch we are kept company by a lizard that sneaks out now and then to see if there is anything he can snatch before heading back into the bushes.  After a while, he is joined by a dove, which races him for bits of bread or French Fries. (Yes, I dropped those bits of bread and the occasional piece of fry, but mainly so that I could take his picture.) 

He might look small, but he is about a foot long, head to tail
Golden Rock Inn

Lunch finished we head for the beach at Nisbet Plantation.  The grounds are lovely with a huge rolling lawn leading from the main house, sprinkled with cottages, down to the bar, pool, and ocean.  The waves are still big and rough; we have heard there is a tropical storm out in the Atlantic which is causing the strong winds.  There is no question of swimming, and we turn our backs on the ocean and the wind in the hopes of enjoying a couple hours of sun.  It isn’t long though before we call it a bust and head back to Almond Garden to freshen up before heading to Pizza Beach for dinner.

Nisbet Beach

Pizza Beach is a great little open-air restaurant right on the ocean.  They introduced the first pizza to Nevis, and while we have heard that it is wonderful, none of us in the mood for pizza.  We order margaritas and enjoy watching the wild cats, some of whom hang out in the restaurant in the hopes of a free meal.  I throw some of my chicken outside for them much to the disapproval of my companions.  What can I say, I’m a sucker for cats.

*If you ever find yourself at the Golden Rock Inn have the Curry Chicken Roti. It is delicious! And take the time to stroll around the grounds; beautifully landscaped, with quaint cottages tucked in here and there, you can easily spend an hour or two enjoying the numerous tropical plants and hummingbirds.

No comments:

Post a Comment