Wednesday, November 25, 2009

just married

For the past few weeks I have been unable to write consistently for a very good reason. In fact, it's the best excuse i've ever had. On november 11th I flew down to tobago on BA with my fiance. It's a direct flight and a very easy one that runs twice a week from antigua. We had less than a week before we were to be married at a small family ceremony overlooking the water. My family and a few close friends jumped on the BA a few days later and joined us at Mykl's parent's hotel "Kariwak Village". On the afternoon of the 17th in perfect weather we were married in a beautiful ceremony. I'm using my phone at the moment and don't have any photos. All i can say is that it was perfect and we felt blessed.
A few days later we were in antigua to have the big reception party and a simple vow renewal on the beautiful beach at "The Tides" on the north shore where i grew up. This time 250 friends and family joined us 4 the celebration. Again we were blessed with perfect weather, wonderful food and an awesome party.
The good people at JHR Caribbean Real Estate who sold me a piece of land in Jolly Harbour offered to fly us down to Petit St. Vincent in the Grenadines which is where we are now. A friend who works here got us a very special honeymoon rate and we r making the most of it.
Today we will take a very short excursion over to Carriacou to see our almost finished sloop. It will be the second sailing vessel in our small fleet as we try to move to a more eco friendly business. For more info check www.sailing-antigua.com
Back here later for a beach BBQ. Life is beautiful! For all those people who helped mykl and i get here today as a married couple we thank u so much.
Back in antigua on the 30th.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Antigua's Ministries of Finance, Tourism, Agriculture, and Fisheries... This is for you!



Rather that make you read too much from me, I have just pulled two articles from the net that came out this week and another I wrote a few weeks ago. The first article shows how much money you will save and make by getting the chief fisheries officer and Minister responsible for Fisheries to work harder on getting our Marine Management Area set up according to the specific agreement signed by Baldwin Spencer. He agreed to receive the grant money needed to set up NEMMA in a contract made with the World Bank and the other aid agencies involved. It's an OECS project.
This is a vital article for all our government policy makers. They should read it or at the very least be told about it by the relevant government aids.
Click here for BBC Article.
As you will know from reading my blogs (i hope you check them from time to time), the NEMMA is now law and the only reason that there is no manager or board of directors for the North East Marine Management Area is that some servants of the people are dragging their feet. Our funding runs out in April of next year. Read all about it: Click here
When you read the above articles you can almost imagine that the first one was written with Antigua and Barbuda in mind. There is no doubt that we make a very good example of what not to do with your natural areas. One look around Antigua and Barbuda and you will see the lack of government environmental policy. The leglislation may be there but the will to take that legislation to the next step and one of enforcement is missing. The people of Antigua and Barbuda along with the leaders of this nation should be shown how protection or key natural areas is vital to our very survival as a small island nation.
As you will read in this Chinese article (printed in English), we can not escape the effects of inaction and the responsibility isn't just resting with large nations like the USA. We must act as well! Click here for the Chinese article about Antigua's vulnurability. 

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Anyone looking for a good hotel job?

Hi there, I have become involved with a new company that will be working closlely with Verandah Hotel up at Dian Bay next door to Devils Bridge.


Simply put, the company is looking for someone full time to manage the sales of all tours at the hotel. They have a very unique situation and together with their high occupancy the job has very good opportunity for success. The job will have a basic wage of EC $2600 a month and all of the sales that you make will carry good percentage of the commission that you will keep too. If you are chosen and do a good job then you will d overy well financially and other opportunities will open up. Of course the job is a challenging one and you will find out more about it if you are chosen for an interview. This note is open and anyone can see it if they are a member of facebook. Pass this note arround if you like to as many people you think that may be interested. Spread the word to those who are not on FB. I am already in talks with a few applicants, but all applications will be considered if they come in before November 21st.
Applicants should have a working knowledge of computers and the internet.

They should be willing to work from 7 am five days a week (which will include one weekend day). Sometimes the days could be from 6:30 am and on other days work may be scheduled from 8 am.

They should be very outgoing and have a friendly personality. We are speaking about sales to visitors of Antigua and Barbuda.

A very good knowledge of Antigua and Barbuda is important.

A good smile and positive attitude will sell tours so this will be a plus for sure.

They should be prepared to do simple bookkeeping.

Experience in sales will help you but it isn't a prerequisit.

Applicants must be legally permitted to work in Antigua and Barbuda without work permits. The company will not be making any work permit applications, so keep that in mind.

If you think you are interested or know someone who is please contact me with your resume on my eliantigua @ gmail.com address.

Work starts December 1st so I need to hire someone very quickly. Thanks!

A tribute to one of Adventure Antigua's finest:

Later this week Gilly Gobinet, mother of the late Francis Gobinet, will be showing art that pays tribute to Francis. As many of you know Francis passed away earlier this year.

From the Antiguanice Abracadabra Restaurant Page:

GILLY GOBINET ART SHOW


November 12th 2009.



Water colours by Gilly Gobinet from 12th November to 14th December. Call us for more details 461 - 0761/464 - 6084



"Aspects of Antigua"- a tribute to the memory of Francis Gobinet

By Gilly Gobinet



Antigua is where Francis grew up, where he went to school, where he hung out & limed, especially at Abras with all his friends & family, and where he developed his love of the sea, which was to be his destiny in all senses of the word. These paintings are images of some aspects of Antigua that he cherished.



You are invited to attend the opening of this exhibition at Abracadabra, English Harbour

on the 12th of November from 5pm to 7pm.



Wine & Canap├ęs- compliments of Abracadabra



The exhibition will run from the 12th of November to the 11th of December 2009.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Very important Environmental Awareness Group meeting and election today.

Yes today is the day when the Environmental Awareness Group meets and tells it's members about what it's been up to for the last year. As there are so many new members this year, they will also try to give people a better idea about the group's purpose as well. Since they finally gave the members the bylaws last week, I think people will have a good idea after reading this section:

bylaws copy

Anyway, some of my friends have offered to be on the list of candidates for the election to the new executive board which means that there is a good chance that there will be some new young blood helping to run the EAG. I wasn't sure they were interested in being on the board at first and was worried that I would be trying to make changes by myself if I was elected. I know there is resistance to any effort to change how the EAG has run. The meeting is tonight (monday) at 7 PM upstairs of the Antigua and Barbuda Museum in St. Johns. If you need directions you can call the EAG today on 268 462 6236. To join the EAG as a member which gives you a vote at this AGM it will cost you EC $50 or US $19.
If you care about the future of Antigua and Barbuda then you should come out early, become a member, listen to what they have been up to and vote in a new board. After that I am sure the new board will be able to get more of section 6.2 above done. The EAG has to!

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Groupers all but gone from Antigua and Barbuda

The only big groupers we have left in Antigua are the ones locally called John Pow which live in waters over 300 feet deep. Lucky for them! Those ones are internationally called Warsaw Groupers, and you can read a bit more on them here. Uncle Nick caught one yesterday while bottom fishing in deep waters. If you see grouper on the menu it will usually be this type of grouper which so far have been able to survive our unregulated fishery. One that you will not find on the menu here anymore is the Goliath grouper aslo known as Jewfish. These were wiped out here in Antigua while I was a child. I have never see one alive. When you speak with fishermen here you realize that there are quite a few fish species which are now extinct here. Anyone remember the "macaw chub" internationally known as Midnight Chub. I used to see those amazing parrot fish all around the island. They are gone now. With so little work being done to save our coral reefs and the species that survive within them, I am sure that there are many species that young people will only hear about in stories. I found out that none of my crew has ever seen a Midnight Chub. JD had never heard of one. He goes around Antigua by boat at least three times a week. Anyway, have a read of an alert about Goliath groupers (Jewfish) sent from the Caribbean Biodiversity people.
Dear AMLC List





Goliath grouper (Epinephelus itajara) is one of the last representatives of the marine megafauna that were once abundant in tropical and subtropical latitudes of the world's oceans. Critically endangered throughout its distribution range, goliath grouper (previously known as jewfish), have been protected in U.S federal and state waters since 1990 through a total fishing ban. After reaching commercial extinction, the species is now in a path towards recovery. Florida is one of the few places in the world, where we can still dive with these giants.





Powerful lobbies are pressuring politicians to relax the protected status of goliath grouper to re-open the fishery at some point. This is against scientists recommendations. In a meeting early December, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission will vote on whether to facilitate the process for a fishery re-opening or continue with the complete fishing ban and full protection.





The SCUBA diving community, conservationists and scientists are now lobbying so politicians will listen to the voice of reason. Please, consult the petition below, and consider adding your signature (you can also add your own comments). We hope to reach at least 1,000 signatures (more will even be better).

- http://www.thepetit ionsite.com/ 1/protect- goliath-groupers





Thank you for your time.

You can find links to goliath grouper publications and a dedicated Endangered Species Research issue in my internet page. Also a short documentary film under "teaching"





Sarah Frias-Torres, Ph.D.

http://independent. academia. edu/SarahFriasTo rres

Friday, November 06, 2009

a little video showing the Tides

I had a scheduled meeting today that i had to rush to after having a nice lunch at the tides, but when i got to it I found it had been cancelled. Anyway, using that time i strung together a few clips of The Tides to give you a better idea on what it looks like. As i mentioned in my earlier blog, today's lunch was for family and freinds to help the management and staff practice their skills. There is no doubt that this is a good idea and there were plenty notes being taken. The first thing we were told when we arrived was that they didn't need any praise at all and wanted only constructive criticism. We were given pens and paper to write things that we noticed could be made better. My table was filled with some very tough critical people so there was list of things for them to fix and work on before the place officially open. This is the best way to start a business i think, and it's a shame when so many places don't have the time or the money to do this kind of development. I'm sure that by the time this phase of training is done, they will be top notch. Here is a video to show you what it looks like:

A new Restaurant on the North side of Antigua is opening



My uncle Nick who is known usually by "Doctor Fuller" is a workaholic and a very productive one indeed. A medical doctor by profession, he has many other passions, hobbies and businesses. His latest project is probably his most challenging, but I think will be the most rewarding. He's no stranger to challenges as he's been facing them since he was a teenager. My grandfather was no easy man! The Tides is his new restaurant and will open Wednesday night for the first time to paying clients. After this coming Wednesday night The Tides Restaurant will open Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Wednesday for lunch and dinner. If you would like to be one of the first to "taste their hand" as they say here in Antigua then please give them a call on 462 TIDE.
The restaurant was designed exactly as Uncle Nick wanted and more importantly exactly where he wanted. Dutchmans Bay is where several generations of Fullers grew up. In fact my Dad was born just next door on what was a US Base once upon a time. There are videos and endless photos of my uncles and aunts playing on this windward facing beach. My earliest memories of life on the island are all from the beach there, and for a long time it felt like our hidden secret. Some people don't like windward beaches with all the flotsam and jetsam that float up and much prefer the totally calm and spotless beaches found on the lee side of these Caribbean Islands. I guess I'm different because i have always loved beaches like Dutchmans, Jabbawock and Half Moon Bay.


That fresh breeze that's just come across the atlantic over the ocean is hard to beat. With all the family history and fond memories associated with Dutchmans Bay I was delighted when i heard that Nick was going to buy the extra land he needed to build a restaurant. Already, my cousin David and his wife Erin had developed the space that was once the famous Bucket of Blood Disco. Of course you have to be over 50 years old to remember the days when the hottest and most happening disco on the island was The Bucket. Hurricane after hurricane in the 90s finally finished it off and my cousin David ended up developing the area into Dutchmans Bay Cottages. If you are coming to Antigua and want a peaceful place to hide out please have a look at the website before you decide on where to stay. They even do rooms for a day which is perfect for those who want to check in to their flight and have a nice relaxing day just five minutes away from boarding time.
Anyway, Uncle Nick spent every last cent he had saved up and poured plenty of it together with a mix of blood sweat and tears into The Tides. It sits very close to the ocean which gives you a panorama of the entrance to the North Sound with all it's little islands in the distance and nice trade winds to cool you down. Designed to make the most of both of those things, The Tides is what i would describe as a modern colonial type building. Because it is so close to the sea, the foundation was supported by dozens of concrete piles which go way down into the sand. Speaking of sand, a huge amount of sand was imported to build up the area around the restaurant and if you look carefully you can see the tiny pink shells which help to make up the sand. Because almost all of Barbuda's exported sand is used for concrete mixing and construction, I think very few people buying Barbuda sand actually put it on a beach. The place is finally finished to the point where it can actually open.


Of course Nick will be up there trying to make his small garden as impressive as the building, but for now it still is a lovely place. "Didier" is the manager of the tides and brings a wealth of experience in Food and Beverage management after working among other places at the prestigious Blue Waters Hotel and The Gallery in English Harbour. Their Chef was the number two chef at the five star Carlisle Bay and has impressed both Didier and Nick with her skills. I hope to be as impressed later today when the majority of the Fuller family and some friends will be invited to lunch. To be honest, I don't even know what kind of food theme it will be, so this will be a big surprise for me. The restaurant is on the water and has quite a nautical decor inside which is not surprising if you know uncle nick's many hobbies. Today we are the guinea pigs and the most willing ones you will find indeed. I know it's going to be hard to give a proper balanced critique, so i will try to take my camera to help me to the job. More to come soon.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

fishing tournament this saturday in jolly harbour

jess-party--wahoos--rain-02The Best In the West Fishing Tournament is coming up this saturday in Jolly Harbour just past the golf club. This year Captain JD will be representing Team Adventure Antigua on Xtreme. Captain Tony and I will be fishing with my Dad on Blue Rapid. The party and weigh in will be on from about 4 pm. Fish will be on sale too. Come and check it out.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Antigua and one of its most talented featured in international promo

Kitesurfing also known as Kiteboarding is a very popular sport all over the world at the moment and one of the most respected stars there is hails from Antigua and Barbuda. Andre Phillip grew up on the North side of the island and has been wowing people ever sinice i gave him his first lesson at Jabbawock Beach years and years ago.
This humble surfer can often be seen kitesurfing there as well as other good spots like Half Moon Bay and Willoughby Bay. Most of the time however he is kitesurfing at exotic destinations around the world. You name it and he's probably been there proudly representing Antigua and his corporate sponsors. His biggest sponsor at the moment is Cabrinha which is a kite and board manufacturer. Here is a little promo done for one of their newest kite models.