I'm with Bahamasfan on this one.
We often cruised to Nassau and have yet to experience anything remotely resembling that which you describe.
Yeah, the taxi drivers try to snag you for a fare when you pass the customs point on the Prince George Wharf - that's how they earn their lving.
So what? Are you a big boy? I am too. Here's what we did, first cruise to Nassau, January, '99: We smiled, looked and kept walking. No one followed. No one pelted us with Polonium-210. No one called us 'poopyhead 'doodooface'.
Bay Street's grimy? Is there more to that or are we supposed to guess? Bay Street's gotta be, least a coupla/three hundred years old. You get that age, go look yourself the mirror, see what sorta oatmeal face you got, right?
Then call me up - not collect - tell me it's grimy.
Manhattan is grimy. So's Boston. So's most any harbor district. And Bay Street is called by that name because it's the main thoroughfare in the harbor district. Logical.
We've rented cars and the rental agency ladies were ever courteous and delighted to converse about life in Nassau purely for the pleasure of so doing.
We visit the Perfume Shop whenever we're in town. Proprietor Mike Lightbourn and Ms. Gloria Lang, the lovely manager, recognize and graciously welcome us always even if we've not visited for some time.
Have you met the lovely young lady and her brother who operate the streetside newstand at Rawson Square? As do others mentioned above, they courteously greet us every time we stop by. When you hear of what they've overcome in their lives, you can't help but admire their humble decency and quiet determination.
We walk all over town, drive the island, snorkel on remote beaches near Delaporte Pointe's Tropo station and hike trails near the old Royal Navy Communications Station out east adjacent to Sandilands Mental Hospital. No one's ever bugged us and our instincts said we were perfectly safe.
The docent at the Doyle House art museum opposite the Cathedral which overlooks the harbor was bright, friendly, and noted that Bahamians consider themselves to be Bahamians. He noted that Justice Doyle immigrated to New Providence from Ireland, yet he was as much a Bahamian as someone who was born in Adelaide Village or Rolleville.
Would the situation only be thus in our country, eh?
If we've one regret, it's that we didn't purchase a Bahamian property sooner but better late than never.
We always look forward to visiting Nassau and when home, recall with gratitude the many acts of kindness extended by the citizens of the Bahamas.
Paul Vincent Zecchino
09 November, 2009
[ Edit: Sorry, no personal details please. ]