Building Our Beach House
Life on Middle Caicos
Some of our Middle Caicos Friends
Snorkelling Around Middle Caicos
Swimming with Sharks
Exploring the Caves
Hiking the Crossing Place Trail
Remote Locations Worth the Effort
Tropical Flowers and Greenery
Birds and Wildlife
Other Islands in the Turks and Caicos
Island Inspired Poetry
Our Family on Vacation
Favorite Vacation Moments
What You Need to Know to Go
Places to Stay
Life on Middle Caicos
Sara Kaufman organized the Middle Caicos Coop to produce and sell local crafts. She recently commissioned a fleet of model sailboats as a way of reviving the custom of buildling these miniature copies of the classic Caicos Sloop. They were built by elder men that occasionally build and sail the full size versions. Fortunately, some of the younger men have showed an interest in continuing the custom.
|Model Sailboat Fleet|
Thu 12:14 PM Dec 26, 2002
Carlin Forbes is raising the rigging on his model sailboat. He carved the hull from a single piece of wood. The sails are fashioned from bedsheets and the fittings are improvised from whatever is available, usually nails bent to the necessary shape.
|Carlin's Model Sailboat|
Wed 02:56 PM Jan 1, 2003
Marcus Forbes built one of the biggest models on the beach. His features a gaff rigged sail. The models are sailed in the shallows so the skippers can run along and adjust the sails or rudder. The models have been known to sail away and disappear forever across the ocean.
| Model Under Sail|
Wed 02:54 PM Jan 1, 2003
The boats are carved from a very lightweight wood that grows on Middle Caicos. When they are sailed, a weatherboard is attached to keep the boats upright.
Headley Forbes built this 23 foot Caicos Sloop in the yard of his Bambarra home. The keel was built from hand cut Mahogany and the ribs are Locust limbs selected for their naturally curved shapes. Both Locust and Mahogany grow in abundance on Middle Caicos.
|Building a Caicos Sloop|
Thu 05:33 PM May 31, 2001
The design for these boats is held only in the minds of the elder men of Middle Caicos. Based solely on the desired length of the boat, they instinctively know all other dimensions. The few remaining young men on the island show little interest in boat building.
These sailboats are traditional Caicos Sloops. They were once the primary means of going to sea but are now built mostly to compete in annual races. These sloops are hauled up on Bambarra Beach. In the background is Pelican Cay.
On the beach near Bambarra is a community picnic area. During organized events, vendors set up shop in these tiki huts.
|Tiki Hut Picnic|
Thu 01:19 PM Dec 26, 2002
Dominos is a popular game among the men of Middle Caicos. They play enthusiatically and slam the dominos loudly on the table. This game took place at the picnic grounds on the beach at Bambarra.
|A Game of Dominos|
Wed 04:03 PM Jan 1, 2003
Alton Higgs collects lost nylon lines from the beach and sorts them by color. He then weaves these colorful rugs. He sells them from his home in Lorimers; they can also be found for sale at the Middle Caicos Coop in Conch Bar.
Alton Higgs home in Lorimers is decorated with items he discovers on the beaches of Middle Caicos. Besides crafting articles from the flotsam, he is also the area's Bush Doctor. His presence at home, and presumably his availability for medical care, are advertised by a large bouy hanging in one of the trees. "He is here" on one side; "He is not here" on the other.
|Alton Higgs Home|
Mon 01:27 PM Jul 17, 2000
Bryan Manco is a young man living out an adventure on Middle Caicos that I envy. He is the Darwin Project Officer for the National Trust's ecotourism developement on the island. He's learning and preserving the island's lore and exploring the vast and diverse terrains. He turned the shipping crate that brought his belongings into a chicken coop.
Mike and Mikki Witt and their dog, Smiley, are among our best friends on Middle Caicos. Living on the island for ten years, they built Blue Horizon Resort. A driving principle was to preserve the setting around them. Some of our favorite features are the walkways and seating areas that let us explore the shoreline there.
|Mike and Mikki Wit|
Sun 06:04 PM Jun 3, 2001
The villa and property owners that have discovered Middle Caicos are a friendly bunch. When we're lucky, our visits there overlap and we get to share the island together. On one trip, this large group of us met at Seascape Villa for dinner and conversation.
|Dinner with Friends|
Wed 07:31 PM Jul 19, 2000
Clockwise from the front are Bryan Naqqi Manco, Mike and Mikki Witt, Martha and George Volz, Peter Milne, Cheryl and Leonard Forbes, Marlene and Mike Milne, Jeffrey Hall and Cathy Ramsey. Jeffrey Hall is Middle Caicos's representative in the Turks & Caicos legislature.
Cardinal Arthur is one of the most knowledgable local guides. He's an expert in local wildlife and loves to fish. His wife, Dottis, is the island's District Commisioner.
Thu 07:46 AM Dec 23, 1999
We've spent two Christmas's on Middle Caicos and took the opportunity to experience some of the local celebrations of the season. This was the Christmas tree lighting ceremony in Conch Bar. On stage are District Commissioner Dottis Arthur, Julia Robinson, Representative Jeffrey Hall and Vado Arthur.
|Christmas Tree Lighting|
Wed 08:19 PM Dec 22, 1999
Chris celebrated his 11th birthday on Middle Caicos and invited the kids of Conch Bar to join him for cake and ice cream. There are only about 59 children aged 12 and under living on the island. Those of elementary school age attend the lone school in Conch Bar. After graduating from the sixth grade, they must go to one of the other islands to continue their education. Many live with relatives during the school year.
Wed 05:25 PM Aug 18, 1999
Bambarra Sands Cottage s one of the few new homes under construction on the beach at Bambarra. Besides making every consideration for hurricane survivability, the owner was careful to minimize the impact on the natural setting.
Almost all of the fresh water supply or the island is rainwater catchment stored in cisterns. This construction will be the cistern for Seawings Villa at Blue Horizon. To preserve the location, the foundation was dug into the limestone by hand. There are no cement trucks on the island; concrete is mixed by the shovelful and moved into place by wheelbarrow.
|Pouring the Cistern Floor|
Fri 08:46 AM Jul 21, 2000
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