Alright, Man O War is really not that bad, it’s just that it’s very uptight. There are a lot of rules. There is a small marina here and mooring balls as you really can’t anchor in the harbor. If you take the mooring ball instead of the marina, they charge you $2.00 more per token for the Laundromat. Also, there is a big sign that states that ONLY those in the marina may use the pool, not those of us on mooring balls. Of course this made me mad after paying the extra for the laundry so we used the pool. After hours.

The people who run the main businesses are all part of one or two original families. I know this is going to sound mean, but they all look alike. Everyone says this. You’ll see one woman running one shop and then go down the road and you’ll swear you see the same person at another store. They’re not real receptive to tourists either, though there are a lot of tourist places to shop.

The original families, all related to the Albury’s, live in the center of the village and the expatriated Americans live on the outskirts. There is no liquor on the island, though I just found out from an American who lives here they will discreetly let you bring wine in, as long as the bottle is kept on the floor and covered. There is no dancing, card playing or taking the Lord’s name in vain. (I know you’re thinking of the movie Footloose!). One islander told me a story of how a captain was filling up his boat at the fuel dock. In a moment of indiscretion, something upset him and he said “Jesus!” The Albury who owned the fuel dock, shut off the fuel and refused to serve him any more gas, saying he would not tolerate anyone taking the Lord’s name in vain. The captain apologized profusely and was granted a reprieve.

Another interesting twist is that until recently no blacks were allowed to spend the night on the island. When the sun went down they had to be on the last ferry out. I am betting they have these rules because a night of drinking and card playing may cause these women to go crazy and want to dance with a man who doesn’t look like her brother!!

On the positive side, Man O’ War does have a reputation as a good hurricane hole and Dan and I had considered it if we were caught in a hurricane while we were still here. The harbor is well protected, and they have shelters set up in the church. However, knowing my luck, we would be hunkered down in the church, waiting out the storm; I would look at the window and exclaim “God, it’s really blowing out there!” The next thing I know I would be thrown outside on the church steps, (me and the black man who missed the last ferry) with the words “We do not take the Lord’s name in vain,” ringing in my ears. I really don’t think I can take that chance. If anyone has any suggestions for a good hurricane hole here please let us know.