Unfortunately it was too late for the Indians, as apart from those who had been killed, the rest were dying out rapidly from disease brought by the Spanish such as typhus, smallpox, influenza and measles.
|Statue of Enriquillo|
What is also interesting is that according to a book by Kirkpatrick Sale called "The Conquest of Paradise", Christopher Columbus wrote to the King of Spain about the indigenous Taino Indians saying:
"They traded with us and gave us everything they had with goodwill. They took great delight in pleasing us. They are very generous and without knowledge of what is evil, nor do they murder or steal. Your Highness may believe that in all the world there can be no better people. They love their neighbours as themselves and they have the sweetest talk in the world and are gentle and always laughing".
I have always wondered where the spirit of Dominicans came from, and I find it fascinating that Columbus could have been talking about many Dominicans today.
My second 'E' is for empanadas which I understand are available in many countries.The word comes from the Spanish word 'empanar' which means to wrap in bread. Here they are also known as 'pastelitos' or 'little pies' and are pastry filled with savoury fillings, such as shredded chicken or beef or cheese, and then deep fried. They are standard street food and are found everywhere. They are delicious as a snack, and there is nothing better than sitting in the park - every town has one - munching on a fresh warm empanada and drinking freshly squeezed passion fruit juice, watching the world go by.
If you would like to try making them, here is a great recipe from Aunt Clara.