Lunch on Sandy Island

That’s Dion behind the bar on Sandy Island. Notice the mural with the boat with Bliss and Happiness painted on it. Bliss is the name of the other boat to Sandy Island. Photo by David Lansing.

The man in charge of Happiness, as it turns out, was named Darrel. Darrel spent about 10 minutes giving us a safety check aboard Happiness, which was about twice as long as the trip over to Sandy Island itself.

About Sandy Island: It’s actually an atoll, meaning it is made up of coral from the surrounding reef, and is shapped like an arrowhead. It is approximately 150 yards long and 25 yards across at its widest point. To walk around Sandy Island takes about 10 minutes. In short, there’s not much to it. Still, it’s an extremely popular day trip. People go there because they have a little bbq shack that serves up excellent ribs, lobster, and fresh fish. They also go there to drink the rum cocktails with names like High Tide and JoJo’s Rum Punch.

JoJo is the bbq man on Sandy Island. You cannot rush JoJo. He is a master and like most masters he takes his time. Which is why almost as soon as we arrived, Dion, who makes the JoJo’s Rum Punch cocktails behind the bar, warned us that we should order lunch just as soon as we knew what we wanted.

“It’s still early,” he said, “but in another hour, we’ll be packed.”

Once when I was in France for two weeks I ate oysters every single day. Sometimes twice a day. So since I’d ordered lobster (or Anguilla crayfish) my first night on Anguilla and I knew the island was known for having some of the most delectable lobster in the Caribbean, I was thinking perhaps I’d order lobster every day. But then when Dion asked Luscious what she’d like for lunch, she said, “Lobster.”

Now I know that it was only a couple of days ago that I was making fun of people who don’t like to order the same thing their dining companion gets but it just so happens I’m also one of those people. Besides, I still had dinner to look forward to; I could get lobster at dinner. So I ordered JoJo’s ribs. Which I could smell cooking on the bbq.

I was tempted to get JoJo’s Rum Punch but since I knew we’d be on this little spit of an island for several hours, I decided to go slow and start with a glass of French rose. Afterall, it all felt very French—sitting on a beach in our bathing suits, speculating about the people showing up on tenders sent from their private yachts, drinking rose. There may not have been much to do on Sandy Island other than eat and drink and gossip, but I was finding that to be to my liking.

That’s Berecia and JoJo, the barbecue master, with ribs for me and lobster for Luscious. Photo by David Lansing.

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