Ridge Road closure

On Sunday, a Beaconite was on his way to surf at Josiahs Bay when he encountered a red plastic barricade that stretched halfway across Ridge Road. There was a stationary tractor just behind this barricade, so he and his friends slowed down to decide whether this indicated a road closure, or whether it was merely an active construction zone and they should continue slowly, as a sign posted to a nearby pole stated. They reasoned that these sorts of signs have been up for some months while cars have been permitted down the road, and so they decided to continue on, only to find out moments later that the road was, in fact, closed. The Beaconite turned around and ended up finding a route from Ridge Road to East End that he didn’t know existed, which made him actually kind of grateful for the unannounced closure. However, in different circumstances, the situation could have been a lot more difficult. With few cars on the road that Sunday afternoon, reversing into a nearby driveway was no hassle, but if there was more traffic there easily could have been problems. The Beaconite appreciates that the construction crew spent their Sunday afternoon working to improve this important artery across Tortola, but he just asks that in the future they will make it more clear when the road is closed.



Covid-19 poll

An unscientific poll on the Beacon’s website suggested that readers are quite receptive to the Covid-19 vaccine. As of Tuesday, 83 out of 116 respondents, or 71 percent, reported that they either had already received the jab or planned to. Maybe as more residents report no ill effects and the crowds dwindle at vaccination sites, the remaining 19 percent who said they didn’t plan to get it and the nine percent undecided might be nudged to go too. Lines were short at vaccination sites this week, so for anyone who hasn’t received the jab yet and wants to get it, now is a good time.



Youthful yet astute

When a Beaconite takes notes by hand, she makes a habit of jotting down the timestamp for quotable moments or starring particularly interesting points. Her notepad from Friday’s Youth Parliament debate is chock-full of these annotations. She was thoroughly impressed by the eloquence and thoughtfulness of the young representatives as they gave their arguments concerning the Virgin Islands’ pursuit of self-determination. Members of both government and the opposition presented well-researched positions based on history and the voices of their peers. Their presentations carried passion and depth. The reporter appreciates that parliamentarians gave specific examples in areas of social development needed to further the territory’s goals of gaining greater autonomy from the United Kingdom. This first debate wasn’t a mere exercise in student government — it was a well-utilised opportunity for the territory’s youth to make its voice heard. She hopes the House of Assembly members applauding from the sidelines that evening take note on topics like including more VI history in school curriculums and providing comprehensive resources for people who are homeless or suffering from addiction. The Beaconite thanks the young representatives for the time they invested in giving community-based feedback that is imperative if leaders are serious about self-determination, and she looks forward to the next debate.



On Sunday, a Beaconite was driving when she noticed a large creature in the middle of the road. She recognised that it was a large green iguana crossing the street ever so slowly. She pulled her phone out and slowed to a crawl, hoping to grab a picture of the lizard. But once it became aware of her presence, it rushed to the side of the road and began climbing the cliffside. This reporter didn’t realise lizards could climb mountains like that, but it makes some sense. The green iguana, also known as the American iguana, is an herbivore with a generally calm disposition and bright colours. It’s believed that the species originated in South America, eventually migrating north and populating the rest of the Americas. They are sometimes called gallina de palo or “chicken of the trees” and people have been hunting and eating them for a very long time. Sometimes, this reporter’s friends even joke around about “catching dinner” here.