I am a beach bum. Most weekends you can find me lounging in a two piece on a beach or on a boat headed to a beach on a nearby cay. After Irma passed, I was really concerned about the impact on two of my favorite beaches, Long Bay Beach and of course Grace Bay Beach.
For those of you who know me, I have plans on scattering my ashes between these two beaches when I die. I love them, I know them. They bring me extraordinary joy and clarity. The beach is truly my happy place.
So last Saturday we (Tatiana, McKnia and I) took a ride out to see these beaches. From the time that we pulled up to the parking at Long Bay Beach (aka Shore Club Beach) we could smell distinctly the flesh of rotting fish. Immediately my heart sank, I know it would not look good. I was not prepared for what Irma had done to my beloved beach!
The water was definitely murky. You couldn’t even see the bottom. The normally calm ocean was still enraged and choppy and the beach itself was a mess. A ton of seaweed was dumped on the beach and dozens of fish were just rotting on the beach. We came across many of what Tatiana calls “Cow fish”. It seems as if a school or two of those got caught up in the storm and were washed ashore. There were also larger fish like barracudas, bone fish and even several eels and puffer fish.
There was already a tractor out there clearing the beach of the seaweed, however there was some rock showing beneath the seaweed so I know there has been some serious erosion. It really did break my heart to see my Long Bay beach in this state, but I know that in time the beach will come back.
On a much happier note, Grace Bay Beach was particularly glorious. The beach itself was clean and pristine as if it had gotten a good wash. There was virtually no debris on the beach, no dead fish or seaweed and the water was calm. The ocean itself was murky, you could not see the bottom, but the color and the optics were amazing. The reef that protect Grace Bay Beach really pulled double duty, because it remained virtually unscathed.
For all of you who are wondering how our beloved Grace Bay Beach fared, don’t worry. She is as beautiful as ever.