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Dominica

July 13, 1990

Breakfast was much more enjoyable than the dinner last night. We were served around 8 am an hour and a half after I woke up to the irregular sound of the rooster. 

Breakfast began with Milo, a Nestlé chocolate drink that tasted more like coffee. We were also served an omelet that tasted like potato pancakes, fried bananas, cucumbers, delicious rolls, and guava juice. I stocked up on this meal.

We left with the luggage we wanted to store at the Peace Corps office, almost without Bill who has a habit of wandering away on his own. After that we arrived to the hall for our introduction to volunteers and supervisors. 

The volunteers were extremely helpful in filling us in on Dominica and how poor our advice was prior to arrival. Two supervisors discussed the possibility of finding a way for Brad to come to Portsmouth.

I found out there is a medical school for Americans in the area and that they were used to renting to Americans in that area. Mrs. Murdock also said she would help us check out places for rent on Wednesday.

We were served refreshments which included cupcakes, muffins, meat pies, sandwiches, and my favorite juice passion fruit. After clearing them out we went back to End of Eden and began our trip to Grand Bay.

My first picture of Dominica. The view from the “End of Eden” guest house. July 13, 1990.

Grand Bay is the place for us to be immersed in culture and meet our host families. Mrs. Leathum was introduced as my host. Brad and I were staying with her daughter, Mrs. Shillingsford, but being fed by Mrs. Leathum.

Dinner was marvelous. She served fried chicken, rice, salad, potatoes, dasheen. Again, I drank passion fruit. Her house had a TV which was on constantly. When I arrived a CBS station from Colorado was on but it changed to MTV and VH-1. Apparently the cable operation pirates off the satellite feeds. There are other stations that I assume are more constant. 

The new edition of the newspaper contained an article informing the public of our arrival and earlier ceremony. Mr. Leathum bought the paper which we saw it in.

Some friends from St. Thomas visited him and the Petersons walked Brad and me home.  I gave them my torchlight because it gets dark after 7 and there isn’t too much street lighting.

I met Mrs. Shillingford’s daughter Devie and Mary (sic). The former is 5 and the latter 11 months. Devie is very precocious and smart. She counted to 100 by one’s and fives.

We watched TV (the changing station) and Brad started falling asleep in his chair. It was getting late and I decided to turn in when Mr. Shillingford, Arthur, arrived. We talked to him for a while. He smelled of rum and mentioned that they were very wary of having guests in their new house. Felix was able to talk them into it. Finally they turned off the TV and I am now going to try and sleep. July 13, 1990

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