An odd aside: Discovering a cemetery

Ray had mentioned to me earlier on our second day in town that he’d just realized that this long white wall on the beachfront, with small windows all along it (which we’d passed by often without giving any real thought to it)…

wall

actually looked from our hotel balcony like it might be a cemetery (kinda hard to tell in the pic below, but graves here are above ground crypts, and this was clearly some of them).

cemetery

I went to explore from the beach, but the windows were high and I’m short, though from what I could see it did look like graves inside. What a strange place to bury your dead – first, in the middle of town, and then between the beach and an apartment building, which must be a little weird for whoever lives there. Hmm.

wall-with-window

Of course I went to Google for more information. Among other things, it seems this was the island’s original cemetery, and when it was established, the area was on the outskirts of San Pedro Town. Since then, the town has developed around it, and they’ve run out of room there for any more burials.

Also, a new cemetery has been recently developed south of town (which, oddly, Ray and I had accidentally run across on our first exploration of the southern stretch of the island; I hadn’t mentioned it then but we both thought it weird that a road to the dump also led to a small burial ground. Apparently so far only six people and a dog have been buried at the new location (and there’s rumors that they may have to be exhumed and moved to another site, due to some politics, which is probably an entirely different story altogether).

So anyway, I decided to see if there was an entryway to the cemetery from the street side – yeah, I know, I really am a stalker, aren’t I? But I was curious, so off I went.

First I found this parrot chained underneath a rooftop – he was squawking as I went by so I stopped to say hello.

parrot

There was a locked gate about where I expected a potential entry to the cemetery to be (which is probably what it was – I later found this post online, so at least one other person had a similarly morbid interest in seeing what was in the San Pedro Cemetery).

I also noticed an open set of stairs that seemed to lead up to apartment units in about the same place, so of course I went up them and voila – here’s the view from the first landing (the red tile roof at top right is our hotel).

cemetery-1

cemetery-2

As they say, persistence pays. Actually a very pretty, serene place. And now I know (and saw) a little something the average visitor to the island probably doesn’t even know is there.

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