Chef Mateo, stranded in paradise.

Mateo, our chef, likes to refer to our experience on Little Corn Island as “Gilligan’s Island meets Lord of the Flies.” Our experience, since arriving a month ago supports his description. Due to unusually high winds and torrential rains, transport to and from the island has been a bit spotty.

All people wishing to get from Big Corn to Little Corn and vice versa depend on one panga captain named Fermin. Fermin lives on Little Corn and generally boats over to Big Corn at 6:30am, returning a couple of hours later, and makes the round trip again at 2:00 in the afternoon.

When Fermin declines to venture forth, no one leaves or arrives on Little Corn. We become frozen in time just long enough to really get to know our current guests without having to learn any new names or faces. This is good for us but bad for guests trying to make connecting flights back home.

This morning, Mateo (or Matt, as he was known in the States) packed up his gear and headed to the Dive Shop to meet Fermin for his ride back into civilization. The panga would return from Big Corn bearing his replacement at 10:30.

Meanwhile, the rest of the kitchen staff busied themselves in preparing vegetables for tonight’s dinner of Penang Curry. A few hours later, I was not surprised to see Matt return to Casa Iguana for some breakfast and another day on Gilligan’s island.

By Camille Armantrout

Camille lives with her soul mate Bob in the back woods of central North Carolina where she hikes, gardens, cooks, and writes.

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