Another note from the island…
This convoluted island note involves a three-step samba, so please, indulge me here.
Step One. Perhaps it is the predictability of our near perfect weather. What’s the temperature today? I don’t know. I never look. Or maybe it is the old ‘stranded on a sandbar’ syndrome. Shit, I can’t go anywhere. Maybe I should do something?! These sentiments are what drive some islanders to go places where few have gone before, to explore horizons unknown.
Step Two. The word ‘bon’ (sounds like ‘bone’) in our local language means ‘good’. It is used in greetings like Bon Tardi (good afternoon), Bon Simán (have a good week) and Hopi Bon! (very good).
Step Three. And then there is the Italian wine, Prosecco, which has a refreshing effervescence perfect for cutting the edge off a warm, balmy afternoon. More than a few on Bonaire beat the heat with a chilled bottle of this golden elixir. And maybe after imbibing on a couple or four glasses is when the
problem samba begins. Dance away, my amigos, dance away.
I read recently on Facebook, which serves as our local coconut telegraph, that some residents were experimenting with their SodaStream machines, a device that injects CO2 into a liquid.
They were taking cheap chardonnay, screw-top sauvignon blanc and low shelf viño blanco and embellishing them with bubbles. The heat must have gone to their heads for they labeled the new libation, Bon Secco, a disillusioned attempt to recreate a fine Prosecco wine. Misguided efforts such as these often occur during hurricane season. I’ve seen sailors wildly bailing out their boats with nothing in the bucket. I’ve witnessed tourists brazenly lay in the equatorial sun while their bodies glowed in late afternoon to a scarlet crisp. I’ve heard reports of Bonaire road crews actually filling potholes in defiance of time-honored traditions. While most of the big storms blow north of us, the dastardly weather systems take away our wind. We sit in an overheated daze sans breeze. It’s like being in a William Faulkner novel, helpless victims in a steamy, southern summer that leads to madness.
But beyond the Category Fives churning to the north, let’s just face it. These are challenging times for anyone. We are told to celebrate the 2020 Olympics even though it’s 2021. Multimillionaires/billionaires fly their rich, sorry asses into the fringe of outer space for ten minutes of blast off bliss. The assumption is that we are supposed to bow down to these quasi-cosmic hooligans. And then there is the omnipresent threat of multiple cruise ships readying to re-invade our island beginning September. I know, I know. I already complained about this in my last blog. But hey, perhaps the cumulative effect of all this gravitas is unknowingly pressuring some on Bonaire to infuse substandard grape with gastronomic gas.
Can I blame them for drinking cheap, adulterated wine served as cold as your ex’s heart? No, the outside pressures are certainly too great. Should they behave better? Maybe, but who am I to judge when a good day for me is an extreme sail on my boat, a squawking parrot flying three feet overhead and a strong rum or two as the sun sinks once again into the sea. Rather, I must give these pioneer mixologists the benefit of the doubt.
As esteemed philosopher Umberto Eco once said, The only thing we know to be true is that Clark Kent is Superman. So go on, my fellow islanders, and enjoy your bubbly Bon Secco. And deepest apologies to all my Italian friends for we know not what we do.