Now up until now I’ve not really been a traveller. I have of course done the usual tourist trips to Spain and the canaries and Europe but my mission now is to see this beautiful planet , warts n all.
3 months ago I had open heart surgery for a blockage inside my heart and I found myself at the age of 44 having to have a triple heart bypass. To say it was life changing was an understatement.It made me stop in my tracks and vow to live my life to the fullest, as best I can.
I have now recovered from the surgery and I must say It has been difficult task but I have done it and in fact I feel better now than I have done for years.
Venturing out after major surgery can be daunting. What if I take unwell? What if I die on the trip, these weird and scary thoughts probably go through everyone who has had heart surgeries head as they set off on their first flight and I was no except. I am a single mum and my first trip consisted of myself , my seventeen year old and my eight year old daughters.I got myself specialist travel insurance and with a smile in my heart set out to explore the world.
This first trip was to the African island of Boa Vista in the Cape Verde islands.
If you don’t know where that is then you are not alone, I had never heard of it. Here is some info about the islands.
Republic of Cape Verde, is an island country, spanning an archipelago of 10 islands located in the central Atlantic Ocean, 570 kilometres off the coast of Western Africa.
The islands, covering a combined area of slightly over 4,000 square kilometres (1,500 sq mi), are of volcanic origin and while three of them (Sal, Boa Vista and Maio) are fairly flat, sandy and dry, the remaining ones are generally rockier and have more vegetation. However, because of the infrequent occurrence of rainfall the overall landscape is not particularly green.
The name of the country stems from the nearby Cap Vert, on the Senegalese coast, which in its turn was originally named “Cabo Verde” when it was sighted by Portuguese explorers in 1444, a few years before the islands were discovered (verde is Portuguese for “green”).
The previously uninhabited islands were discovered and colonized by the Portuguese in the 15th Century, and became important in the Atlantic slave trade for their location. The islands’ prosperity often attracted privateers and pirates, including Sir Francis Drake, a corsair (privateer) under the authority of the British crown, who twice sacked the (then) capital Ribeira Grande, in the 1580s. The islands were also visited by Charles Darwin’s expedition in 1832. The decline in the slave trade in the 19th century resulted in an economic crisis for the islands. With few natural resources, and without strong sustainable investment from the Portuguese, the citizens grew increasingly discontent with the colonial masters, who nevertheless refused to provide the local authorities with more autonomy. This discontent festered and culminated in 1975, when a movement originally led by Amílcar Cabral who was assassinated on 20 January 1973 then passed onto his half-brother Luís Cabral, achieved independence for the archipelago.
The country has an estimated population (most of creole ethnicity) of about 500,000, with its capital city Praia accounting for a quarter of its citizens. Nearly 38% of the population lives in rural areas according to the 2010 Cape Verdean census; about 20% lives below the poverty threshold, and the literacy rate is around 85%. Politically, the country is a very stable democracy, with notable economic growth and improvements of living conditions despite its lack of natural resources, and has garnered international recognition by other countries and international organizations, which often provide development aid. Since 2007, Cape Verde has been classified as a developing nation.
Tough economic times during the last decades of its colonization and the first years of Cape Verde’s independence led many to migrate to Europe, the Americas and other African countries. This migration was so significant that the number of Cape Verdeans and their descendants living abroad currently exceeds the population of Cape Verde itself. Historically, the influx of remittances from these immigrant communities to their families has provided a substantial contribution to help strengthen the country’s economy. Currently, the Cape Verdean economy is mostly service-oriented with a growing focus on tourism and foreign investment, which benefits from the islands’ warm climate throughout the year, diverse landscape, welcoming people and cultural richness, especially in music.
(Info thanks to Wikipedia )
We left Glasgow on 8th April for a week in Cape Verde returning on the 15th April 2012.
Arriving on the island after a 6 and half hour flight from Glasgow one would be forgiven from mistaking the island of Boa Vista for the moon.Here is some poictues of what we saw
Desolate and empty with a 200-year-old cobbled road that stretches from the airport to the resort.
You could hear a pin drop on the coach and see jaws drop as we drove through the town on the way to our hotel.
Arriving at the Rui Touareg Hotel it was like arriving at a giant sand castle built-in the middle of no where.
The beaches however were spectacular. Total unspoilt and empty stretches of white sands with clear seas.
My girls and I sent 7 days at the beach and pool and I must say It was a joy to spend every minute with my little girls relaxing and resting. It was exactly what the doctor ordered.
For us we wanted a holiday with no stress and the moto of the island is exactly that .
No loud noise, no looky looky tacky souvenirs, no stag parties just couples and families all peacefully enjoying the easter break.
The weather was lovely and around 23-25 degrees though it was overcast some of the days and it rained on the last day with a thunder-storm.
The island is indeed very beautiful in places but one can only imagine how quickly it will become built up over the next few years.
My fears were certainly unfounded as I didn’t take unwell and I didn’t die. Instead I came back to Scotland chilled out with a bit of a glow and some wonderful memories of Cabo Verde and my little girls and I lovely holiday.
The first trip is done and I have travelled 5220 miles. http://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/distanceresult.html?p1=90&p2=685
Next trip is a small one to London next week and then New York City on the 28th.
Join me on my around the world trip.
Have a look on my photos page for all pictures of all my trips
Thanks for following