The next morning, the women decide there will only be time for one activity on the island. They discuss which event will be the least expensive and the most interesting. Finally, they settle on taking a guided tour. Their guide meets them at the dock. She is holding a sign with their last names printed on it.
Winsome: Good morning, ladies. I am very happy to meet
you. First, I want to give you a bottle of water as
it will get very hot today.
Sandra: Thank you, thatís a very thoughtful idea!
What is your name?
Winsome: Oh, Iím sorry; I should have introduced
myself; my name is Winsome.
Donita: Thatís a beautiful name. I donít think Iíve
heard it before.
Winsome: I have to thank my father for it; he lived in
Jamaica for several years and named me after his
Sandra: What a nice story! Iím a teacherÖ..
Donita: (Interrupts.) Do you think any of your students
will name their daughter after you? (Laughs.)
Sandra: I wonder!
Winsome: What names should I call you ladies?
Both: We are Sandra and Donita.
Winsome: Very good; now ladies if you will be so good
as to get in my taxi, we will start the tour.
Sandra: Iím very interested in the history of the
Donita: (Groans.) Not me; Iím more interested in seeing
the birds and flowers.
Sandra: I guess itís because Iím a teacher who loves
to travel and learn about everyoneís culture.
Winsome: I will be happy to tell you about the history
of Roseau and then we will go to the beautiful
Botanical Garden. Then both of you will be happy,
right? (She begins driving.)
Both: (Laughing.) Good idea!
Winsome: Do you ladies know the island of Dominica is
around 26 million years old?
Winsome: Yes, but my history teacher said it is the
youngest island in the Caribbean. We are very lucky
because the older islands are not as pretty as
Dominica. I will tell you what my teacher taught us
about the first people to live here, but there will
be no test! (Laughs.)
Both: Thank you! (They also laugh.)
Winsome: Do you ladies know the origin of the name
Sandra: I think so. Doesnít it mean Sunday?
Winsome: Exactly! In 1493, Christopher Columbus sighted
the island on a Sunday, so that is what he named it.
Now for some more history:
More than 5,000 years ago, tribes migrated into the
Caribbean, maybe from the Orinoco basin. Then some
3,000 years later, Arawaks followed.
Donita: Are there some kind of records about the first
people living here?
Winsome: Not exactly; the only evidence about the first
people is from relics that were found. But we do know
more about the later people; the Arawaks. We know
that they were not warriors, but a peaceful people
who organized into communities. Sometime around 1000
AD, other Carib tribes sailed north to settle on
other islands. Any questions, so far?
Sandra: Yes, but I remember reading that early
European explorers were shocked to find cannibalistic
Caribs. Is that true?
Winsome: Historians believe that this was a story made
up by the sailors to justify the genocide that was
done in the area.
Donita: How horrible!
Winsome: Another suggestion was that early colonists
told this story to keep other explorers away from
trying to take over the islands. Anyway, fleets
avoided the Eastern Caribbean until the mid- 17th
century, just in case the story was true.
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