Friday, 29 January 2010

Test shots

I've been playing with my new camera, and I feel like an absolute amateur, the lighting issues are really throwing me, but I'm in a great place to learn. See some of the test shots on my Flickr.

Monday, 25 January 2010

Sketchbook: Esc The City

It's National Heroes Day on the island today, so with every shop closed I had no choice but to sunbathe, sketch and cook - not a bad way to start the week. It's a good feeling to be dedicating time to drawing again, I intend to get back into my painting this week too. Here's a sketch from earlier today, entitled Esc The City, because I got in touch with Rob and Dom from Esc The City today, since I've inadvertently become part of their cause.

They encourage people to pursue a change in direction, make the leap to be more than a city worker statistic, they're really kind of special and I'm a huge fan of their philosophy. Also their Monday morning  emails are very inspiring, so why not sign up for more information? Their website is a few days away from their big launch event so it's not fully operational, but do drop in.

Sunday, 24 January 2010

Same sea, different view

First sketch from the beach behind our condo, I'm sure at some point reality will hit but it's not right now!

Weekend of firsts

As the post title suggests, we've experienced a whole host of firsts this weekend. On Friday morning we moved into our first Cayman Island home, a little beach side condo on a complex called Plantana, which as the name suggests is a green and lush place, with palms, pines and lizards galore. We are so relieved to be out of our temporary accommodation and able to start putting down roots. It's also our first home together full stop.

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Room with a view

Today we moved out of room 313 and I'd love to tell you into our sparkly new condo, but instead we moved into room 323.

Now 323 may seem deceptively close to 313, but oh no, the number-giver-outers decided to place 323 down two flights of stairs (no lifts) 300m behind the grill restaurant/breakfast room up two flights of stairs (lifts ditto) and there, sweating and panting there they placed 323, our room, hopefully for just a short duration.

So we lugged 2 giant overweight suitcases, 2 small but deceptively heavy cabin sized suitcases, 2 rucksacks, 2 computers, 2 17" flatscreen monitors, 1 suit bag, 2 handbags, 1 snorkel and flipper bag, 2 beach towels, one printer and four bags of food from 313 to 323.

Sunday, 17 January 2010

Watch out David Attenborough

Watch out, because there are two new marine biologists on the scene, in the same day that I discovered a giant lobster, Paul discovered a new species entirely! But it turns out we're both a bit rubbish and misidentified our oceanic discoveries.

I had been snorkelling for about 15minutes, the sea gets deep very quickly, I guess that's how so many cruise liners are able to get in, in some parts 5metres out I can't touch the seabed anymore. Anyway I

Sketchbook: punters and enduring love

I was enjoying the silhouettes of the punters on the sea, although I can't fully see the point of this pastime, (are they building up to surfing, or training for Venice?) Either way they made some great shapes (and falling noises) against the calm evening sky.

We see a lot of couples strolling up and down the beach, I was told that 7 Mile Beach (7MB) is like Florida, full of retired couples and kids. I especially like to see the older couples, still making each laugh and still holding hands in the sea (while watching the falling punters). They barely move, so they're great for drawing too.

Friday, 15 January 2010

Sketchbook: Snorkelling on 7 Mile Beach

Here's a sketch from the beach today, we've been test-diving my new snorkelling set, the great leaving present I got from Digit. I'm hardy a natural but it's a lot of fun. The beach was pretty quiet this evening, just a few small boats attached to their buoys.

Thursday, 14 January 2010

Sketchbook: Sunshine Suites Resort

Hanging around in a hammock, sketching the view, while PT was out. Still grey today, but getting warmer and a good excuse to draw the local flora.

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

To calm your fears

As I'm sure you've seen in the news there has been a devastating earthquake in Haiti. We are lucky enough to be some 600 miles East of Haiti, and despite the fury of the earthquake they felt, we've had no aftershocks and there is no risk to Grand Cayman. All local news is reporting that we are NOT as risk of tsunami. Thank you to all those who've been in touch. It's blustery and a record low temperature for the island but that is all that's affected us.

Seeing such devastation is a reminder of the power of nature and is utterly humbling. Let's hope aid gets to Haiti as soon as possible.

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

Observations on a small island #1

You can take the girl out of the ad industry but you can't take the ad industry out of the girl seemingly. I've become a little obsessed with American and Caribbean branding, shopping has never been so much fun!

On my first trip to the supermarket, I felt like I'd entered Springfield. The supermarket, Foster's Food Fair, had the most unbelievable logo I've ever seen. Tescos and Sainsbury's take note, you need a scary-ass clown with a fake black beard imploring your customers to believe that he cares! Awesome.

Monday, 11 January 2010


So you may have noticed the poll in the right hand column, it's there for a week, I'll be updating them so that you can be involved in our decisions, some will be be banal, important or just plain nonsense. But this week, we're talking property. Property in the Caribbean. Wowsers.

Thankfully I was recommended the services of a real estate agent so I've been spending time with my realtor, who for the sake of privacy (on this tiny island everyone will know who I'm referring to if I use real names) let's call her Pam. And let me tell you, realtor Pam is a diamond. She's the perfect mix of reassuringly motherly, sassy and wise-cracking. I realise I'd gotten used to the wily ways of London estate agents, but clearly as the Malibu adverts concur they're seriously easygoing over here. I tried to explain about the fierceness and fear-inducing ways of her London counterparts and she looked bemused; 'the thing is honey, I have to live on this little island too and if I sell you a bad-fit then I'd know, I'd see you all the time and just feel rotten'.

Hello New World

Things have certainly changed since I started my first blog 18 months ago. I'm now living in the Caribbean, seriously, I never saw that one coming. But don't hate me, share in our adventures and discovery as we fumble our way through island life, overcoming obstacles and learning a new way of living. So here are our first tentative steps, following Christopher Columbus and discovering the New World island of Grand Cayman.