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Re: Move

Hi Brian - great to hear from you!

My husband applied for a job out of the Globe & Mail for a Hotel General
Manager in the Caribbean.  We had been wanting to move from the east for a
while, debating whether we should move back to Alberta, B.C. or go down to
Florida.  Florida was winning out mainly due to warm weather - we just
didn't want to endure winter anymore.

Anyway, to our surprise after a phone interview he got the job!  So here we
are in beautiful Dominica situated between Guadeloupe and Martinique.  The
island is about 46 kms long and 25 kms wide.  It's extremely mountainous
with the highest peak around 4,700 ft.  The island has the last of the Carib
indians with their own reserve and also is home to the endangered Jaco and
Sisserou parrots.  It's of course very tropical with bananas as its main
export.  They are just starting to try and encourage tourism as a nature
island and eco-tourism.  There aren't any great beaches to speak of which is
the main reason why it has been left unexploited to date.  The present day
government wants to promote tourism but wants to try and keep it as natural
as possible.  Ideal for hiking, diving - one of the five best sites in the
world,  ocean kyaking, etc.  The Island is made from volcanic activity so
also has three sites for sulphur springs and after an ardous hike one can
also see the largest lake in the world that is so hot that it boils - hence
the name boiling lake!  There hasn't been an eruption for 100 years and
people say it's because the volcano has enough outlets to vent out steam
allowing it to stay stablized.  I hope their right!  All we have to watch
out for is hurricanes!

Anyway, from what we have seen, it's very beautiful.  It does have 3rd world
conditions however, so one must try and look past the poverty.  They are
trying to build better sewerage and road infrastruction with money coming
from Qwait, Canada and I forget where else.  If they want to promote
tourism, they'll have to do it as soon as possible.

I am still waiting for my papermaking and supplies to arrive so as soon as I
get them I'll start experimenting with some of the plants here.  I'll
probably start with the banana tree leaf and go from there. I had to store
my hollander and press so will have to look for innovative ways make paper -
a lot more manual than what I am used to.  But it should be a fun challenge.
I also hope to teach papermaking here once I get it all figured out.  I am
getting anxious to start doing something.  Thank God I have my computer and
being hooked up to the internet will keep my sanity!  I can see mail order
will become more important than ever!

Until then, I am trying to meet the arts community - there's a fairly strong
one here and meet as many people as possible.  I've started tennis lessons
for the first time in my life and enjoying it.  My husband and I have also
taken up snorkling and will eventually get our diving licence.  Might as
well take advantage of what's available while here.  He has signed a two
year contract so will be here for a minimum of two years and maybe longer
depending on much we like it.

So how are things going with you?  Have you started your book yet?  Were you
able to collect enough information from other papermakers.  Will you be
teaching a summer course at the ACA or is school out for you until the fall?

Keep in touch, cheers,

Colette Johnson-Vosberg

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