Tan your Toes in the Abacos

Abaco Strong

The Abaco Islands are steadily making a comeback.  It was heartwarming to see the Far Side Castle, standing strong.

Actively rebuilding

Marsh Harbour – Welcome Back to Wally’s

Wally’s, Marsh Harbour

We returned to Wally’s (which reopened only two months ago), for a memorable meal.  The menu is limited – a clear sign that the food is fresh – and the service is impeccable.  When we shared photos with the owner – from our 2019 visit to Wally’s – she was amused by the table side picture of sterno, which they still use to keep away those annoying flies!

Wally’s, June 8, 2019, sterno
Wally’s Mural

Marsh Harbour – Notable Events.

If you conduct a search, or ask Siri, “What is Marsh Harbour known for” you are likely to find an article about the tragic airplane crash in 2001. If you are not familiar with Aaliyah, (pronounced Ah lee ah) allow me to introduce one of the most soulful voices, ever.

If you already know of her, yes, I am aware of the R. Kelly scandal and her teenage marriage. Although scandalous in the US now, teenage marriage remains fairly common, especially in less developed countries.

Staying focused on her exceptional talent, did you know she was a stellar student? In 1997 Aaliyah graduated with a 4.0 GPA from the Detroit High School for the Fine and Performing Arts

Aaliyah Dana Haughton (January 16, 1979 – August 25, 2001), was an American singer, actress, dancer, and model. She helped to redefine contemporary R&Bpop and hip hop,[2] earning her the nicknames the “Princess of R&B” and “Queen of Urban Pop”.

At age 10, Aaliyah performed with Gladys Knight.  Her first album was recorded when she was only 14, “Age Ain’t Nothin But a A Number”; and it sold over six million copies worldwide in the first release.    

for Mija

Her exquisite voice was one of Mija’s favorites. If you are not familiar with her voice, here’s one of my favorites, released in 1994:  At Your Best (You are love).  LISTEN HERE

Aaliyah was only 22 when she died in an airplane accident in Marsh Harbour. Tragically, the overloaded Cessna 402B crashed shortly after takeoff, killing all nine on board. The negligent airway should never have allowed such a heavy load (LOTS of music equipment), and the pilot should not have been cleared to fly, based on traces of cocaine and alcohol found in the pilot’s body. Even more ridiculous, it was later discovered that the pilot did not have an active license AND he was not technically qualified to fly that class of plane. A tragic loss that should have been avoided.

Music Memories

When you hear familiar songs from your past, do you step back in time? Maybe it’s that moment in 1973, triggered by the magic of Stevie Wonder, “Don’t You Worry Bout a Thing”. I found the video, David B, without the long intro:

For me it’s the California summer of 1976, memories of sewing with Aunt Dianne Gill while listening to Starbuck, “Moonlight Feels Right” – the song climbed to number 3 that year, so it was on the airwaves A LOT. Take a Listen

Man-O-War Cay

Man-O-War Cay is a boat building island. Home of the Albury’s.

And now, the story of a successful teenage marriage …

In 1820, Man-O-War Cay founder Benjamin Albury was only 16 when he and his stranded crew were found, wrecked, on the reef off Man-O-War’s eastern coast.  Among the rescue party was 13-year-old Eleanor Archer, daughter of a wealthy British Loyalist hiding out in the Bahamas after the American Revolutionary War ended. Just one year later, the teens were married. Reinforcing, age is just a number.

It’s no wonder the cay remains dominated by the Albury family since Ben and Eleanor had 13 children. 

Quoted from a new book by Jeremy Sweeting, “Man-O-War was meticulously planned out by Eleanor. She allocated land for roads, a cemetery, a church and a school. Her vision, combined with her husband’s seafaring knowledge and history, would create a vibrant community and successful boat-building center.”   

Over time, one church grew to 4, one Non-denominational, one Pentecostal, one Methodist, and one Plymouth Brethren.

Built Back Better

Post Dorian – The island promptly re-built the churches after the hurricane and is now actively rebuilding the surrounding community.

Post Office

What you won’t find in Man-O-War is alcohol.  That’s right – it’s a dry island, in the Bahamas. Don’t worry, there is plenty of alcohol on board to enjoy. Thanks to Tumbleweed for the Prisoner!

Prisoner for Kelly!

Life is Good when you anchor out.

Scout, tender to Tonto’s Reward and Inhale, tender to Exhale

Red Sky at Night – Spectacular

We close this post with another jaw-dropping sunset over Tonto’s Reward.

Sailor’s Delight!

Celebrations and Milestones:

June 19, Happy Father’s Day

Birthdays:  June 22, Scott Sherman and Ann Hughes; June 23, Michael (Gonzo) Gilliespie; June 26, Joe Occhino

Anniversary: June 27, Jamie and David Hendry

Next Post:  Orchid Bay – the tale of a forgettable visit in 2019.