Harrison’s Cave

So.. since the girls did well on their school reports, I decided to treat them with a trip – to a cave. You, dear reader, can just imagine their looks of pure happiness. Joyous excitement.

‘A cave,’ they took turns saying, ‘you are joking, right?’

Not just any old cave. A cave I had to spend a significant amount of money to visit. Still, I’d read in the cruiser’s guide that if you had time to visit only one thing in Barbados, go to Harrison’s Cave.

Urghh, I’d thought. Really? Firstly, this was our second time to Barbados and we still hadn’t visited it. Secondly, I’m not a big cave person. Heebie-jeebies. Then again, those were good school reports. With geography at the top of their subject list, it made sense.

With Shareef’s new rental car, we went off into the middle of the island. This time we didn’t find Shareef’s house keys in his car, but we did quickly learn not to put excess pressure on the back bumper. Never mind – managed to clip it back on. Mental note to write a good review for Shareef’s car company. I just have to avoid stepping on half the car’s dashboard which for some reason is in the front passenger’s footwell.

Harrison’s Cave is located in the central uplands. Although you descend almost 200 feet into the cave system, you’re still above sea level overall. And the visit consists of a tram ride through the cave system, which was surprisingly cool. A tunnel had been carved out for this purpose.

The tram way follows two underground streams that meet up and form a waterfall lake at the deepest point of the tour. The tunnels are pretty wet all around and water drips onto you from the ceilings as you go.

Meanwhile, the tram stops at different points so you can appreciate the columns of stalagmites and stalactites. ‘C’ meaning ceiling, ‘g’ meaning ground. Learn something new every time we visit a cave! Which is not very often. Sorry if everyone else already knew this…

At one stage the tour guide stopped and turned all the lights off. Whoa. Like your eyes got inverted. I think it would have been brighter in your brain.

As the seconds ticked away in absolute darkness, with everyone giggling uncomfortably, I couldn’t help but think of the explorers who first came down this limestone system. Before the tunnels were created and lighting added. All of this made from coral – from a living organism meeting the sea bed. With calcium-rich dripping water acting as the go-between. We have caverns, the great hall, bat shelters and the absence of light to be thankful for.

‘What did you think?’ I asked the girls as we moseyed back up in the light.

Both of them were quiet. Well, Lulu had already re-connected with the planet in the form of a phone signal.

‘It was better than I thought,’ Delph piped up.

‘Me too,’ Lulu added, unexpectedly looking up from SnapChat world.

Ok, I thought. Expensive but worth it. Fair play.

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