If you ever go to the Cayman Islands you've got to pause and pay your respects to Big Black Dick.
According to legend, Big Black Dick was born of 'Royal' African parentage before being kidnapped by French slavers who gave him the name of "Richard Le Noir". His French captors tossed Richard overboard near Grand Cayman Island.
Miraculously reaching land, Dick became a slave on a sugar cane plantation where he learned the secrets of turning the cane into the Caribbean's finest rum. His kindly Caymanian master, recognizing Dick's hard work and honesty, awarded him his freedom in the early 1700's.
A free man and a skilled seaman, Big Black Dick soon earned the rank of captain of a three-masted-square rigger named "Caymanus". She was a ship carrying 20 cannons with a crew of near 200 men that were known as the best in the Caribbean.
History tells us that Dick was a dashing and handsome figure of a man, wearing a bright purple velvet coat and four pistols in his red silk sash. Those who knew him most intimately, say that Big Black Dick was a man indeed, possessing certain physical attributes unequalled by most all other men.
After a successful career, Big Black Dick retired to a more peaceful venture of making the best original pirate rum in the Caribbean.
The Blue Iguana, aka Blue Dragon, is a symbol of the Cayman Islands. It is one of earth's rarest creatures, found in the wild only on Grand Cayman Island where an estimated 30 to 40 of them survive in their natural habitat. There is a worldwide population of about 150 Blue Iguanas, including those which are kept in zoos and aquariums.
The Blue Iguana can grow to 5 feet long and eats a vegetarian menu of leaves, flowers and fruit. During the mating season, hormones turn the males electric blue while the females brighten to powder blue.
We were not fortunate enough to glimpse this rare creature in the wild, although we did see many other iguanas of different species. But if you don't spot a live Blue Iguana you can surely find one of the fanciful fiberglass models which are placed at strategic public spots around George Town. In this first photo Karen is posing with one of them.
Blue Iguana Recovery Program