Friday, November 20, 2009

Grand Cayman - Pedro St. James Castle

I wasn't sure how it was going to be taking the kids to Pedro St. James. We've been taking them to museums, aquariums and art galleries since the age of one, but sometimes they get a bit antsy if too many things aren't hands-on and if they are not allowed to touch things. I also worry if we are in a group that we won't have the time to let the kids linger on things they are interested in.

So, I was pleasently surprised when, again, we were the only ones here. When we first walked into the restored 18th century home, we were greeted by an interpreter whose mother had been born in the home. It is now just a museum, no one lives here, but it was a treat to talk with someone personally connected to the home.

After looking at some original stones used to build the foundation and pictures from the home...

we were ushered into a multi-sensory 3-D theater for an unusual film of the home. The film opened with a storm taking place and real mist fell on us during this time. Later in the film, when they were describing how the freedom from slavery declaration was read from the balcony, a spot light show on a recreated balcony in the theater. Little added touches like this really helped capture the kids attention.

It's funny what kids will remember. In the film there was a brief discussion of how once a fight had taken place between two men and how one of the men had been imprisioned in the home for six months. After the film, when we went on a tour of the home, they showed the jail room with a man sitting on the bench. Jared knew it was the jail room right away, even though I don't think he's seen a jail before, and I don't think we'd ever disussed one before seeing this film.

The home was very interesting, though it was hard to pay attention to the interpreter with the kids. They wanted to run from room to room looking at things, running under ropes, and circling the balcony. The man was really nice to let them sit on one of the recreated 18th century rocking horses.


The outside grounds were beautiful.

The man let the kids see the donkey (one of two on the island) and feed him an apple. They also enjoyed looking at the parrots.

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