Tuesday, 29 July 2008

Death in the sun

The death of Catherine Mullany and serious injury to her new husband Benjamin has affected me quite a lot. Mrs NotaSheep and myself stayed at at the same Cocos Hotel, Antigua a few years back and one of the photos of the honeymoon couple is in a place where we have photos of us. The cottages at Cocos are no less secure than others that we have stayed in in the Caribbean, although compared to a European hotel that is not saying a lot. Caribbean hotel cottages like those at Cocos often have very simple door locks but those at Cocos are also very open on the sea-side of the room, the room we stayed in had wooden shuttered doors that opened onto a balcony with a tiny lock and a bathroom that opened onto the end of the same balcony (where the open air shower was). Security in Caribbean hotels has worried us for some years to the extent that we have chosen hotels with air-conditioning rather than relying on the tradewinds and open doors. This is a real shame as sleeping with the sound of the Caribbean sea crashing against the sand or rocks is so restful. I understand that the storage of keys was not all that secure as a woman being interviewed on 5Live this morning said she saw the keys some years ago sitting on nicely numbered pegs in an unsecured room.

The Caribbean is a place of great contrasts, beautiful beaches and friendly people and Mrs NotaSheep and myself love it. Many of the hotels we have stayed at have had security guards on patrol but this is the Caribbean and the guard is as likely to be an "old retainer" type as a young fit guard.

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