Monday, December 08, 2008

A Note on Union Island

Union Island

 November 18th 2008 by Rum Runner

After a fun week in Grenada it was time to set sail for the Grenadines (which in my opinion is the loveliest place in the Caribbean- with gin colored waters, abundant sea life, and many small islands to explore). Our first stop was Union Island in the Southern Grenadines. For the last couple of weeks we have used Union Island as a home base. Not only because Clifton, the main town in Union Island, has a couple of grocery stores and many fruit and vegi markets for all the provisions, but also a couple of great bars and restaurants to visit as well as a protected anchorage to weather out the occasional squall. It is also has the dive center and internet access and a post office. What more does one need? After gallivanting around the Tobago Cays or Myreau or Petite Martinique (other islands in the Southern Grenadines), we always return to this port to reprovision, relax, and have some fun.

But our favorite part of Union Island isn’t actually on land, but is a small island out on the reef called Happy Island. This is a great story. One of the locals, named Janti, decided that he wanted to clean up the town of Cliffton. There were piles and piles of discarded conch shells that were littering the beaches. So he collected them all and took them out to the end of the reef. It was enough conch shells to build an island. So with a little concrete, some sand, and a couple of palm trees donated by nearby Palm Island, he built himself an island.(Photo above) Today Janti lives on Happy Island, he has built a bar and a restaurant, and even a lobster pool. As you dinghy up Janti comes out to grab your line and always says, “Welcome to Happy Island” with a huge smile on his face. And in fact it is impossible to be anything but happy here. It is a great place to go to watch sunset, have a bar-b-que, or just chill with a rum punch. It is a very special island indeed.