Altamont, Dec. 19, 2013

Last week I said that I would talk about some treasure hidden seven fathoms deep in the ocean. There are many documented shipwrecks around the Cayman Islands and stories about lost treasures are told to anyone who is willing to listen. 

Some are printed with maps that can help you find the treasures.

But first we need to talk about a skill that you might need to help you find a treasure, especially a treasure that is seven fathoms deep in the ocean.

Buses loaded with people of all ages were headed to the beach to enjoy many different shore activities. We often hear people talk about their bucket list and scuba diving is one item many would like to cross off of their list. This exciting adventure sport allows you to breath underwater, discover an unspoiled part of the world, and see the fascinating sea life. 

Not only is scuba diving a great form of exercise as well as a fun and relaxing activity, it is also a wonderful way to bond with family and friends. Just think about discussing the day’s underwater adventures with a refreshing drink in hand while watching the sun go down. It is easy to see why thousands of people become certified divers every year.

Yes, that is the one catch to diving; you have to be certified to go on any of the diving tours around the Cayman Islands. Certification is not as difficult as many think. You can complete certification in two parts. First you must pass the e-learning which can be done at home. You will then take to the water to learn how to use the equipment in shallow water. Once you have passed a series of underwater skill tests, you will undertake four open water dives before obtaining your certification. The whole process can be done in three or four days.

Once you are certified, you will be free to take boat dives or navigate the waters on your own. 

There are a number of great dive sites accessible from shore and a short swim can take you to wrecks, caves, reefs and wall drop offs. 

If your bucket list does not include diving you can still enjoy underwater life by snorkeling. The tube in your mouth allows you to keep your head down to enjoy the underwater life and still breathe. It is not difficult to learn to use the snorkel and many people feel safer than using the air tanks and diving deeper into unknown waters.

One popular site is known as Cheeseburger Reef. It is in front of the Burger King in George Town. If you swim straight to sea for 150 yards you will find an abundance of reef fish and impressive coral formations. 

Last week we talked about rum tasting at the world famous Rum Cake Factory. Upon leaving there we traveled further down the island to the Seven Fathoms Rum Distillery in George Town, Grand Cayman to learn more about their truly unique rum.

As you have probably already guessed their name comes from the process they use in distilling their rum. They age their rum underwater. Why?  It certainly is not convenient, easy to do, or cost effective. Quite the opposite is true. There were many challenges involved in coming up with a system that is safe, effective and produces the desired effect on the rum.

When aging rum, two of the most important characteristics is creating relative temperatures and humidifies. Several fathoms underwater you can find a habitat for rum with an intriguing profile of humidity and temperature unparalleled on land. 

In addition, the constant push and pull of the waves and the tides mimics the caring touch of a distiller rotating their barrels in a cellar to ensure good diffusion of the molecules through the barrel. Despite the diligence of even the most committed distiller, the waves are able to massage the rum with a far more consistent and steady precision. 

This concept is now being applied to rum, for the first time ever by the production team at Seven Fathoms. Their product, Cayman Islands Premium Rum, is not only revolutionary, carefully distilled and well packed, it is also quite tasty. 

Oh, bye the way, they age their rum in wooden barrels carefully secured in a secret location that is traveled to for testing and checking at night, I’ve heard about people working a night shift, but seven fathoms deep? That is true dedication to make a superior product.

Next week we will tell you more about a different local beverage that we sampled.


Looking for a special Christmas gift?  The Guilderland High School Chamber Choir has put together, with the help from the Guilderland Historical Society, a DVD of holiday music. This collection of 15 minutes of acapella music was filmed at the Mynderse Frederick House.  The DVD costs only $5. All proceeds will support the Chamber’s spring trip to New York City.  

To order or to receive more information call the high school at 861-8591.

Meeting canceled

The VFW Ladies Auxiliary canceled their auxiliary meeting scheduled for last Sunday due to the inclement weather. They will have their regular meeting in January.


Happy-anniversary wishes are extended to Gayle and John Addyman of Newark, NY, former Altamont residents, who will celebrate their special day on Dec. 20.


Happy-birthday wishes are extended to:

— Sandra Ginsburg on Dec. 21;

— Kathy Johnson on December 23;

— Valerie Brittell and Scott Grant on Dec. 24;

— Diane Adams, Holly Gilhooly, and Holly Moore on Dec. 25; and

— Terry Martin on Dec. 26.

Merry Christmas wishes are extended to the staff and readers of the Altamont Enterprise.


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