The Woods Hole Public Library is starting their season of “Winter Travel Talks” with a double-header by veteran travelers Maggie and Terry Rioux. Instead of speaking together about recent trips, the couple will speak in turn on two sequential Saturdays in February. Both are avid travelers, great photographers, and very interesting speakers, and have become a main-stay of this program.
Maggie will speak first, on February 1 about a recent trip the couple took circumnavigating Ireland on a small ship. Terry will speak second, on February 8, about the underwater life of the Cayman Islands. Both programs will begin at 3 PM.
The Irish trip was a ship-board program run by Road Scholar and Adventure Canada. Terry, who was the dive-master for the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution for years, describes the ship as “Knorr-size” referring to WHOI’s vessel. Maggie clarifies that “It was about 450 feet long and there were about 200 passengers, and 125 crew”. One of the pleasures of Road Scholar programs is that experts are brought aboard to lead trips and lecture about the places they visit, their history, geology, natural history, archaeology and the students have opportunities to speak with the experts in small casual settings as well as listen to the talks. The instructors are universally enthusiastic.
The group convened in Dublin with a pilgrimage to The Book of Kells, then proceeded to the port of Waterford where they boarded the Ocean Endeavour, and began their trip clockwise around Ireland. They visited many of the most scenic spots along the way: the Dingle Peninsula, the Skellig Islands, the Cliffs of Moher, the Aran Islands, the Devil’s Causeway, and a host more, as Maggie says “all kinds of cool places” adding “We usually went ashore in small zodiacs.” At the end of the trip they continued on across the Irish Sea to Glasgow and overland to Edinburgh, then home.
Terry’s talk on thefollowing Saturday will be what he calls “Cayman Islands, Part 2.” Last winter he gave a talk about these Caribbean Islands only to realize that some of the audience was disappointed that he hadn’t shown any underwater animals. To rectify that, he will devote this whole presentation to the underwater world.
The Cayman Islands, a place the Rioux’s have happily visited 10 times, is a British Protectorate, sitting in the Caribbean several hundred miles south of Cuba. The archipelago contains the islands of Grand Cayman, Little Cayman, and Little Brae. The latter two are known as The Sister Islands, and are 70 miles south-west of Grand Cayman.
Both Maggie and Terry are avid and expert scuba divers, so they see more animals and plants underwater than most people. They usually go scuba diving every morning when they stay on Little Cayman, the less built-up island. As always Terry’s photographs are wonderful and he is full of information.
These programs, which will undoubtedly be entertaining and informative, are free and open to the public. The Library is at 581 Woods Hole Road. There is limited parking at the Library and the Museum next door, as well as on-street metered parking. For more information, call the Library at 508-548-8961 or visit the website www.woodsholepubliclibrary.org.