Anguilla News: April 1997

News reports from on the island, as they were posted to the Net:

[Click to see larger image] [Click to see larger image]

Moonsplash 3-day Party at Bankie Banx' Dune Preserve

Every year during the March full moon Bankie Banx, Anguilla's reggae star, puts on a three-day concert and beach party at his funky Dune Preserve bar and restaurant on Rendezvous Bay. to learn more about Bankie, visit this web site with recent pictures of Bankie and the Dune Preserve. Then go to the Anguilla Home Page if you want to hear a sample of his sound in Real Audio, WAV or AU format.

We went on Sunday afternoon this year and snapped the pictures above (click on them to see a full-size image). There was a boat race, food, drinks, lots of boats over from St. Martin, action, sun, sand, music, swimming, and fun.

Moonsplash may have a ticket charge, but no one ever asked us for it and they even gave us a free mixed drink on the way in. Moonsplash started on Friday night (Bankie himself did not go on until 2 AM, so the full experience is for the young at heart), continued Saturday night and ran all day Sunday. To reach the Dune Preserve look for the turn off the main road toward St Martin between the roads to Anguilla Great House and Sonesta.

Lloyds Guest House has Email

Contrary to what you might think by reading about Cap Juluca, it doesn't necessarily cost a fortune to visit Anguilla. Our friendly local guest house, Lloyds, is quite reasonable and can now be reached by email at lloyds@web.ai

Villa for Sale by Owner

Eighty-four year old Geoff Sims-Davies has lived in Anguilla for many years, first at Rendezvous Bay and then on the Sea Rocks. Last year his wife died after a long illness and Geoff now must move back to Canada to be with his family.

Geeff has decided to sell his home and guest apartment with them panoramic view Geeff is attemptin this sale on the Internet. Here is the web site: http://web.ai/searocks/

Leeward Islands Debating Competition

Tara Carter reminds us that Anguilla is hosting the 25th anniversary of the Leeward Islands Inter-Secondary School Debates, sponsored by Cable and Wireless. The debates commence Wednesay, April 2nd and come to a climax on Sunday. Everyone is invited to come out and support the Anguillian debating team competing against teams from Antigua, Monteserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis.

The members of the Anguilla team include:

These evenings at Ruthwill Auditorium in the The Valley promise to be exciting and extremely informative, so don't be left out.

Leduc's Restaurant

[Leduc's. Click for larger view] There is another new gourmet restaurant in Anguilla, Leduc's, located on the main West End road between Cap Juluca and Cove Castles. They are open every day for lunch and dinner. We went for lunch and had an incredible meal of Spring Roll, Baked Goat Cheese Salad, a sandwich of Grilled Eggplant, Zucchini, cheese and tomatoes, plus Creme Brulee and Frozen French Nouget for desert. Chef Maurice Leduc and Chef Dominic have designed an excellent menu and, based on our one visit, they know how to execute it.

For the past ten years Veronica and Maurice have been slowly migrating westward, starting at Island Harbour with the Fish Trap, then Pizazz in Sandy Ground and now their new venture west of Cap Juluca. Maurice is assisted by Chef Dominic, previously at Cove Castle and Casablanca. Telephone: 264-497-6393 for reservations.

Leduc's Menu

APPETIZERS HOT

Main Course

Desserts

Menu prices are in US Currency and a 15% service charge is added.

Local News Tidbits

Salt Fish on Good Friday. It is tradition on Anguilla that you do not eat anything with blood on Good Friday. Salt fish is the local dish for the day and large piles of it are for sale in every store.

Television. New on Cable TV in Anguilla is channel 37, the BBC World New Report.

Easter Talent Show Tonight!Tuesday, April 1st, 7:30 PM. The Creative Arts Association and the children of the Island Harbour Primary School present An Easter Hat Parade Talent Show and Traditional and Modern Hairstyles Admission: EC$10. Location: Ruthwill Auditorium in The Valley (next door to the Anglican Church).

School is off for 2 weeks here in Anguilla - Easter break.

Soroptomists are raffling a jeep to raise funds to finish their nice day care center behind the library. US $100 buys you one of 400 chances. Purchase from any member, from Alecia Ballin at Alecie's Place or Olive Hodge at the Anguilla Drug Store.

Hale-Bopp Comet is very visible from Anguilla right now.

Anguilla--Tranquil Isle of the Caribbean, the new book about Anguilla that was just published, is reportedly on sale in UK bookstores now. Haven't heard of any bookstores in the USA carrying it yet, but several people have called the Anguilla Drug Store and ordered a copy to be mailed to them.

Cellular Phones. Cable and Wireless has erected a new tower in the West End to extend cellular coverage beyond The Valley.

Pink Mealy Bugs. Despite an embargo of fruits and vegetables from other islands, the devastating Pink Mealy Bug has been spotted in South Hill, Sandy Ground and West End.

Dance Lessons. Jazz, ballet and tap dance lessons are available on Anguilla for children, teens and adults. Contact Susan Geyer at 8364.

Mariners New Web Site

The Mariners Cliffside Beach Resort has a new home page to go with the refurbished look: http://www.ai/mariners

Romantic Beach Walk for a Couple

On March 16th, I asked a recent visitor to Anguilla what stood out as a special activity or place for a couple? He suggested,
"I would tell another couple planning on going to Anguilla, who were looking for a romantic spot to be alone, to make sure to go for a walk at night along the beach at Rendezvous Bay. The beach is long and dark and the sand is soft, flat and rock-free. You can really get a good look at the stars out on that dark, quiet stretch of beach, and the lights off in the distance on St Maarten add to the atmosphere. It is without a doubt the nicest spot we've yet shared a romantic embrace." --Ray Wilmott   [ His home page ]
You can see a picture of part of Rendezvous Bay in the story above about the Moonsplash concert. Or take a look at this picture.

The Caribtalk Forum and the Anguilla Tete-a-Tete

The Travel Talk web site has a forum where people can post questions, answers, reports and opinions about travel to Anguilla. For example, Dave Beasley reports that "Crocus Bay snorkeling is wonderful." Drive up Coronation Blvd from The Valley toward Koal Keel Restaurant. Continue past Lloyds Guest House and the old Cottage Hospital. Park at the bottom of the steep hill and swim to the right "along the coast. We saw quite a few sea turtles ... it was awesome."

There is another forum on the net for posting Anguilla messages--Julian Niles Anguilla Tete-a-Tete. This is a great place to post your trip report when you get home from Anguilla.

Offshore Finance Web Sites

Vince Cate has put all of the Offshore Finance Laws of Anguilla online at: http://www.ai/laws/

The Anguilla Financial Services Association is online with a Web directory of its members with links and email addresses: http://www.ai/afsa/

KPMG Anguilla now has a web page also: http://www.ai/kpmg/

Computer Club's First PC Fixup Party

[Click to see the party close up] The Anguilla Library Computer Club really appreciates the surplus computers that people have donated to us. But they are old and children are active and the weather in Anguilla is hard on electroncis, so we had accumulated 10 non-operational computers. To deal with the problem, we held a party for the student volunteers and invited everyone who knew anything about computer hardware. The broken PCs were spread out all over a giant table and our goal was to create one working computer out of them. We made the students do all the work.

We lubricated people's enhtusiasm with pizza and Ting. Result: three working PCs (two are 386, one is a 286). Just in time for 2 new monitors that arrived at the airport with a guest the same day. Now we just need another working SVGA monitor... The party was such fun and the students learned a great deal. Therefore, this is now going to be a monthly event. Next hardware fixit party is April 23rd. If you know how to fix PC and would like to help, and eat some homemade pizza, let us know.

Clothing Optional Beaches?

Are there any clothing-optional beaches on Anguilla?

No there aren't. Nude and topless bathing is illegal in Anguilla. Try any French island such as St. Martin, Gaudeloupe, or Martinique. St. Barths is nearby, small and very nice.

baby goats

When you leave your front door open, . . .
Orphan baby goats may wander in, scamper up the stairs,
around the verandah, and tiptoe silently in your bedroom door!

Visit last year's tribute to Anguilla's Goats

New Area Code is 264

As of April 1st, the new area code for Anguilla is 264 (ANG). However, the old area code of 809 will also work through September, after which you must use the new area code. For example, the old telephone number of Cable & Wireless Anguilla changes from 809-497-3100 to the new number of 264-497-3100.

Weather Questions

From a recent email message:
    I'm having trouble locating the hurricane season for Anguilla and 
    the best and worst months to vacation. Can you help?
Hurricane season starts in June and runs until November. In 1996 we had a small hurricane in early July, which is very unusual. Statistically, the vast majority of Caribbean storms occur during the 2-week period centered around September 10th. That is why many hotels close for the month of September. A good source for current hurricane information is the Weather Net.

Anguilla has comfortable temperature and humidity levels year round. For example, on Saturday March 29th at 10:10 am the sky is sunny and the temperature is 81 F (it got down to 74 F during the night). The best weather in Anguilla is probably April-May and October-November. Winter temperature is usually around 80 degrees. Summer temperatures vary from 80-85 degrees with humidity around 60-75%. Very nice summer weather, compared to the east coast of the United States.

Here is a site at the Washington Post that has the 5 day forecast for Anguilla and a satellite image of the Caribbean: http://www.weatherpost.com/cities/vitv.htm. So far it seems fairly accurate.

News Flash: Incredible Slide Show

Ray Wilmott has put a fantastic slide show of Anguilla on his home page. Pictures of Rendezvous Bay, Captains Bay, Jobsie Bay, Cap Juluca, Scilly Cay, Road Bay, and much more. I suggest you take a look. And it automatically moves on to the next picture after 30 seconds. You don't even have to click. Here is the link: http://mars.superlink.net/rwilmott/slide.html

Anguilla Students Win Debating Contest

The Anguillian team was victorious in the recent Leeward Islands Debating Competition. Congratulations to everyone on the team and everyone who put on this inter-island event. The debates were broadcast live every night on Cable Channel 3 in Anguilla.

Rafe's Overlook Barbecue

[Rafe's. Click for full-size image] Rafe's joint is one of the best bargains on Anguilla and a fun place too. The menu is simple: drinks from the bar, ribs, chicken, and garlic bread from the barbecue pit. You pay your money at the bar and pick up your food from the barbecue. The decor is driftwood, galvanized roof, and cast off chairs, tables and benches. The prices are great: ribs for US$4, garlic bread for $1. The location is wonderful: on the back road cliff overlooking Sandy Ground and Road Bay, you can even hear Johnno's music from a mile away. [ Here is a picture of the view ]

The clientele is varied. You never know who you will see at Rafe's: tourists, construction workers, waiters stopping in for a late-night after-dinner drink, expatriates, artists, business meetings, artists, Goverment officials. The hours are long: food is available at Rafe's from about 7PM on most nights and they stay open until the wee hours -- this is where tired party folk gather after Johnnos and the Pump House and the Disco have closed!

How to find Rafe's? It is located on the one-way road the runs along the cliff above Mariners Cliffside Resort. This road starts in South Hill west of the Light House Chinese Restaurant and joins the main road again at the Bethel Methodist Church. Turn away from St. Martin one block west of the Chinese restaurant (there is a mirror on the corner and a tiny sign for Rafe's). If you have been drinking, don't get too close to the cliff -- there is no railing and one regular has fallen off the cliff late at night.

Planning Ahead

The Anguilla Local News Archives

Did you know that all back issues of the Anguilla Local News are available on-line? And fully indexed. For example, if you are interested in having a unique Anguillian experience, go to the index pages and click on "hidden delights" link. Here is what you will see:

Hidden Anguilla

Many enjoyable places and experiences in Anguilla do not have a sign to them. Remember, there are almost no street names, street signs, or street numbers in Anguilla. Here are links to Anguilla's lesser-known, even hidden, delights.

Chocolat and Captain Rollins

[Chocolat. Click for full-size image] The Internet forums have contained some glowing reviews of the catamaran Chocolat recently. Click on the picture to the right for a full-size image. First, a report from Kenny Schik:
"We spent a very pleasant day with Capt. Rollins on his catamaran, "Chocolat". The cost is $80 dollars per person, but includes lunch and all the beverages you would like to consume! We went snorkeling on Prickly Pear Island, had lunch on Sandy Island, and snorkeled at Little Bay. The sailing was fantastic, and Rollins is a great host. We were on the water for 7 hours. I recommend this for anyone. It was the highlight of our trip to Anguilla!" kenthecook@aol.com

Then from Kathy Smith:"

"The best part of our trip was going out on Chocolat a 35' catamaran with Captain Rollins Ruan. He was delightful and very knowledgeable ... Chocolat takes a maximum of 12 people out at a time... He also does sunset cruises for 2-8 people at $50 per including hors d'oeuvres and drinks. Private charter are available for $360 for 1-4 people and $50 per person additional. Drinks included. If you want him to cater lunch, let him know. They will do that on request..." ksmith98@voicenet.com

Your intrepid correspondent volunteered to go out with Captain Rollins Ruan for research purposes. Spending the day from 9:45 AM to 4:45PM on Chocolat was a great experience. Here are some pictures I took:

Hint: Before starting out I lathered myself with waterproof 45 SPF Sun Screen, but I still got a burn where I didn't have enough on my face. It was a tough assignment, but I can now recommend the Chocolat excursion from personal experience.

To book a trip, phone 264-497-3394.

Bankie Banks Web Page

Jason Butterworth has set up a web page (link dead) for Bankie Bank, Anguilla's well-known reggae musician and host of the Moonsplash concert.

Caribbean Week is Online

The Caribbean Week news magazine has joined the web. Their home page is at cweek.sunbeach.net. This is like Time magazine for the Caribbean region. They even have a couple of news items on Anguilla.

The Straw Hat Restaurant

[Click to see full-size image] We went to the new Straw Hat restaurant and it was packed. Located completely over the water on the old fishing wharf in The Forest, Straw Hat is reached by taking the road around the east end of the airport. For dinner, we split the mixed sausage appetizer and gave it two enthusiastic thumbs up, followed by the Cuban Pork (incredible black beans!) and the Seared Shrimp with Crispy Corn Cake (like a potato pancake). Even though we were full, we were glad we ordered two desserts-- Creme Brulee and Mango Pie.

This restaurant is the brainchild of four young people from New York, ably assisted by experienced Anguillian staff. Chef Dan Rubino and his wife Rita also run Cafe Mirage in Port Chester NY on the Connecticut border (which reportedly was favorably reviewed in the March 16th Sunday NY Times). The other two key players are: Peter Parles, formerly a CD-ROM games producer and Producer of Blue's Clues, a preschool television show on Nickelodeon and his fiancee, Anne McKenna. The local staff is headed up by Claudius Richardson, formerly of Cap Juluca and Koal Keel and Lester Edwards formerly of Cocoloba.

Reservations are suggested. 264-497-8300. You can even email your reservation request before you leave home: strawhat@anguillanet.com

The Straw Hat's Menu

COLD Appetizers HOT Appetizers

Entrees

SEA LAND All prices are in US Dollars. A 15% service charge will be added to all checks. Master Card, Visa and American Express accepted at Straw Hat.

Why Didn't You Answer Our Email?

Some people have not received any response when they used the Send email link on our page or subscribed to our email notification service. Either they mispelled their email address (it only takes one wrong keystroke to invalidate it) or it was incomplete. When we tried to send a response, it bounced! Our email address is bgreen@news.ai and that is what most email addresses look like. Here are some rejected email addresses that we have received:
      Robert Lippiello         no @, no domain name
      sltrisin1                no @, no domain name
      logrhead@dmv.com         looks ok, but bounced. Frederic Cook 
      old.bird.53@aol.com      bounced by AOL
      R_ARNOLD@IBM.VNET.COM    bounced by VNET.COM
      106344@compuserve.com    Mr Bengt Carlesved
      &email&@reuna.cl         forgot to fill in user name
      BLJephson@               forgot the domain name
The email address must be exact. Sometimes the problem is in how you have configured your browser. Here is how you set your email address in Netscape:
    Click the Options menu item.
    Click "Mail and News Preferences"
    Click "Identity" tab
    Put your full email address in "Your email" and "Reply-to address"

"What Is It?" Challenge Still Open

We have learned that this mystery building is next door to Skiffles Villas in South Hill and was part of a 19th century sugar mill, but how exactly did it function in the sugar mill and who actually built it? We need an amateur archeologist or historian to add more details to our challenge page. [What is it?]

Add Your Ideas! Fill in the blanks below to add insights on this mystery structure on Anguilla. Then click the SUBMIT button. All fields are optional except the the "ideas" and "name" fields. Your information will be added to the Challenge page immediately. Good luck!


Your Name: (required)
Note: make a typo here and we won't be able to communicate with you!
Your Email:
Home Page:
City: , State: Country:

Ideas:

*

US to Caribbean Phone Rates

According to a recent article from the St. Vincent newspaper The Vincentian, the FCC has proposed to reduce the accounting rates for calls made from the US to the foreign telephone carriers, including those in the Caribbean. The accounting rate is the amount that is collected by US carriers and remitted to the phone company at the other end. Here is an article in Computerworld that describes the FCC proposal. The change is being resisted by the Caribbean phone companies. Lester Bird, Prime Minister of Antigua is quoted as saying: "Right now the accounting rates for Antigua are 53 cents [per minute] for every call coming in from the U.S. They wish to reduce that to 19 cents. You can see the tremendous loss in revenue."

If the FCC goes ahead, calls from the US to the Caribbean can come down by 34 cents per minute (cheapest now is about $1 per minute). This would not make the rates from the Caribbean back to the US any cheaper. The article quotes Christine Halgate, Regional Marketing Director of C&W, as saying that we may see a "tripling of domestic telephone rates and doubling of charges on overseas calls."

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