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Courtney’s ‘Vicarious Voyage’ Around the World
By Courtney De Schepper

Welcome to Roseau, Dominica. I was in this port from January 23-24 2012. This country was absolutely beautiful! The weather while we were there was low to mid 80’s and we had even 12-hour days and nights. The scenery is undeniably breath taking. Most of the island is dormant volcanoes that have now become these tall majestic mountains. The population of Dominica is about 7,000 people; most of which actually live on the side of the mountains.

While in the port I spent time in down town Roseau, getting to know the locals, and went snorkeling. Down town Roseau is very interesting. There is one part of down town that is very tourist oriented, while the other is the downtown for the locals. The tourist side of down town is the typical shops with souvenirs, the cruise ship dock, and many restaurants for guests to dine in. Then I simply crossed one street to the north and found the down town for the locals with grocery stores, book stores, etc. The tourist side of down town is very well kept and full of color, while the locals is much more run down with no air conditioning, little color, and poor road and sidewalk conditions. Roseau was full of very interesting places and people.

The people in Dominica were so friendly. They were always willing to help me find anything I wanted or needed. On the first day I purchased a few postcards to send home to my family.  In a small group of students we walked to the post office to send them. We met a wonderful man named David who was the local security guard for the Post office. He was so kind. David let us borrow his pens so we didn’t have to get into our bags, told us all about the island, and even gave us a few tips on what to do while we were on the island. On the second day I just happened to walk past the post office and saw him again. He remembered my name and asked me how I was enjoying the island. Everyone here on the island is friendly like that. I really enjoyed talking to the locals including the children about life on the island. Everyone really seems to enjoy it here and enjoys the tourists who come around.

As a tourist I did some shopping, touring, but the most entertaining thing was going snorkeling. On the last day in Dominica I went snorkeling at a place called Champagne Reef. It is called Champagne Reef because part of this section of the Caribbean Sea is under a dormant volcano. This volcano pushes warm gases through the coral which makes Champagne like bubbles come up from the coral. The water is also as warm as bath water in this area. It was remarkable.  All of the fish in the Sea were on a smaller scale mainly because we were closer to the shore. This was my favorite part of my time in Dominica. Finally, something very interesting about Dominica is that it has black beaches. I had never seen one until this trip. Although it is odd at first there is something very peaceful about them.

Now I am back on the ship traveling to Manaus, Brazil. I should get there on Tuesday February 1st.  Overall, I would say that Dominica was an eye opening experience. I got to see and experience the truth in the fact that Americans (who make up only 5% of the world’s population), consumes one third of the world’s goods. I feel so blessed to live in the country that I do and I look forward to experiencing the next country.  

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Bon Voyage!  ☺

From the Editor: This is the third of several reports as Courtney visits 11 countries this spring, from Singapore to Ghana and more. The 2010 Greenville High School graduate began her journey in the Bahamas, where she boarded the cruise ship “Explorer” on her way to Dominica.

To see her first article, A Greenville grad’s ‘Vicarious Voyage’ around the World, click here

To see her second article, Bahamas! click here


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