Back from the Caribbean

Unlike many British sailors and soldiers, I managed to make it back from a week in the tropics, Grand Cayman to be exact. Although I was primarily on the eastern part of the island, I can report that I only saw two cannon (c. 1781), so the island should be ripe for the picking – maybe I’ll write up some project on how to easily surprise the island with some new invention of mine and submit it to the Secretary of State for the South. Speaking of mercenaries and the Caribbean, my wife and I visited Dominica island (between Martinique and Guadeloupe) about four years ago and learned that back in the 1970s there was a plot by some drug lords to hire mercenaries and literally take over the island to turn it into a drug trafficking hub. Fortunately they were caught; I guess the other drug lords found hubs closer to the US…

Anyway, although Grand Cayman is now best known for all its offshore banks and fund managers (it seems to have the money to rebuild even bigger and better after every hurricane), it was only settled in the late 17C as a dependency of Jamaica. Well off the beaten path, its main value seemed to be its turtle and alligator meat. Now conch is the meat of choice.

So that’s what I was up to. Over the next few days I need to finish up my chapter on England the War of the Spanish Succession, and then I can get back to a regular posting schedule, and catch up on comments as well. Topics will include logistics and hopefully a general discussion of how to explain why country ‘won’ a war while others didn’t.


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