On April 2, 1982 the residents of Stanley awoke to an invasion of Argentine troops who landed in the dark at beautiful York Bay. Today, that beach and the water nearby is dangerous with land mines set by the invaders.
I don’t understand why the government didn’t insist that those who set the destructive hardware (and lost the war) weren’t held accountable for cleaning up the mess? Governments really need more mothers for logical discipline!
The penguins in the picture above don’t weight enough to detonate the mines, but the approximately 2,050 residents cannot use this beautiful natural resource–a whopping 35 years later. Storms continue to stir up the mines with occasional explosions.
Paula and I went on a guided coastal walk, seeing flightless ducks, Kelp and Upland geese, Magellanic penguins, and my favorite Megallanic Oystercatchers.
We passed ships like the Elizabeth, rusting in the harbor. this tells the tale of those hunting fur seals and whales from long ago. (Photo courtesy of Paula Hillier because I only had my long zoom lens that day.)
Our expert guide, Geoff Pring, offered us a buffet of edible plants, which we munched on like hungry kids. We tasted lemony scurvy grass which cured the sailor’s disease. We nibbled on diddle-dee berries, and sniffed vanilla daisy. It was a trek requiring fine tuning of all senses.
I loved the balsam bog pictured below, over a hundred years old and a quirky relative of the carrot family. The gum from this plant is used by herbalists.
I’m going to have to go back for another visit because we didn’t have much time to search the town for the gnome or the whale bone garden. But I did capture a perfect shot of the church with the whale bone arch and pictures from the ship as we sailed away.
Stanley, and the Falkland Islands held many pleasant surprises in diversity (and happiness) of her residents, in architecture, as well as the natural world.