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12th February 2019 Episode 2
9pm ITV Martin Clunes Islands Of America
WASHINGTON STATE, CALIFORNIA & LOUISIANA
Well what a week I was so excited tonight to see the next part of this amazing tour, Martin Clunes travels is taking him 1500 miles to the San Juan Islands in Washington State, just off America’s North West Pacific coast, right on the border with Canada. Wow there are more than 100 islands, mostly uninhabited here what a spectacular area and views.
He starts this week on Orcas Island, travelling a very brave but exciting way by taking to the air in a 1920s bi-plane flown by the local dentist pilot Stuart McPherson. It is breathtaking watching as they fly over San Juan, this is one of the most populated of the islands oh bless them they are celebrating the best day of the year, not just for America’s biggest national holiday, the 4th July Independence Day but my own Birthday and what a spectacular show loving it.
When he arrives on San Juan he meets up with a Local historian Robin Jacobson he explain how the island was the scene of America’s last war with Britain. And you can not imagine that the conflict was caused by a pig being shot this war lasted 13 years see we do live in a crazy world.
From here he travels down the America’s West coast to visit the Stunning Channel Ireland and until know people did not know it exists the American Channel Islands National Park, which is known as Americans Galapagos because of the unbelievable unique wildlife. San Miguel Island is home to the biggest colony of more than hundred thousand seals and sea lions. Martin meets up with conservationist Dr Tony Orr to watch and takes a brilliant selfie with the seals from the safety of a sand coloured wooden box on wheels known as mobile blind so you can get up close as they have such bad eye site and can not see you but you can be up close and will not disturb them.
Now from the Channel Islands he takes a 2000 mile journey across the States to Avery Island again I am taken back by the amazing views this island sits inland from the Gulf of Mexico and rising 150 feet above the surrounding Bayou, and home to one of America’s most successful family-run businesses one sorry not for me – Tabasco chilli sauce. The Chilli peppers were first planted on the island more than 150 years ago by Tabasco’s founder Edmund McIlhenny, a former banker with such a love of hot sauce he is invited into the Tabasco factory to watch the world famous sauce being processed which is fascinating. The great great grandson of the company’s founder Managing Director Tony Simmons takes Martin to the barrel store were the sauce/mash has been ageing for three years and gets him to taste a sample of the mash haha tad hot a cure for any cold. I think. Martin’s is a huge chilli sauce fan he even makes his own make home but this out does anything he has ever tried before.
But just along the coast from Avery Island Louisiana island here communities are being washed away as it is being destroyed by climate change with rising sea levels and violent weather it is such a shock that each year Louisiana loses around 75 square feet to erosion and rising sea levels.
Just ten years after Hurricane Katrina hit the area and flooded New Orleans causing wide spread damage a new multi billion dollar flood defences were built which is Dubbed the (Great Wall) of Louisiana it is formed of 200 flood gates which shut in the event of another hurricane, He is curious to discover how people on the other side of the wall have fared so he visits Delacroix Island to meet a local fisherman, Thomas Gonzales, who was born on the island eighty years ago, and whose family have lived on the island for generations he has lived through hurricanes and oil spills but now faces a bigger threat the monstrous 20-pound swamp rats who are eating up coastal wetlands. But still the family refuse to leave so have built their home on stilts.
This is my views and notes of tonight’s episode
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