Enter: Hannah Mandelbaum...
They say the best things in life are free. And, aside from the Malliouhana (which is pretty far from free but is worth every penny!), Hannah writes with great passion and vivid imagery about something that will cost you absolutely nothing.
It's such a joy to see the pleasure Hannah gets from what many of us might only "notice." I hope you enjoy Hannah's memoir as much as I did. It's a lesson about "living in the moment."
And Hannah says it so poetically...
One of the best things was having breakfast every morning overlooking the ocean. The dining room at the Malliouhana is open to the air and is on a coral cliff hanging over the beautiful turquoise sea.
Just below the ledge, next to our table, there were aloe plants in bloom. The hummingbirds would fly in, hover, back up and fly off as fast as they had appeared. They are amazing aviators - the only birds that can fly backwards. The sun glistened on their feathers showing up as green, turquoise and blue flashes.
The pelicans look so clumsy but are actually good aviators as well. They manage somehow to fly just above the waves with their wings barely above the water. They never get wet until they want to. And then it's a seemingly death defying dive headfirst into the water. We hold our breath. The pelican bobs up to the surface and swallows his breakfast with a huge gulp that displays his ample neck pouch.
The most endearing birds at breakfast are the bananakeets. They knew which item on our breakfast table was the sugar bowl filled with loose brown sugar. Every day they zeroed in on the sugar bowl. One would fly to the ledge, check us out, and then confidently land on the rim of the sugar bowl. Once there he would eat as much sugar as he liked, dipping in often and whistling to his friends about his good fortune. Then he would fly off and give a friend a chance to enjoy the treasure.
Birds are the embodiment of joy to me. They seem so content and happy as they bustle about taking care of themselves despite our presence. It was wonderful in Anguilla to be able to share their beautiful mornings.
The Malliouhana is magical!
I can just picture Hannah in the restaurant perched on the cliff in the photo, daydreaming as she listens to the waves and studies the birds, doing nothing but living in the moment.)
Thank you so much Hannah for the beautiful images, both in words and photographs.
Truly a magnificent memory...
If you have an "Anguilla rave" that is fun and memorable, or if you have an "Anguilla Top 5" or a "Best of Anguilla" list, please share by clicking here to visit my Anguilla Travel Stories page.
I'd be thrilled to hear from you!