Tag Archives: bvi

Rainy day

Weather is looking pretty sketchy, so we’re just going to drive around town to see what’s to see today. Ginny wants to go out by the airport to see “Aragorn Studios and I would like to scope out the airport to see where we will return the car.

Had lunch at a local cyber café I had a chicken roti pretty tasty. Kind of like a West Indian burrito.

Aragorn Studios is a art collective place lots of different artists, some working on stuff, and some just selling.

My only big gripe is that all the vendors had a 5% surcharge for credit cards. I ended up paying cash.

Leaving, we tried to find the airport Avis location with no luck. Kind of odd, I know that Hertz, National, and Thrifty had booths in the lobby of the airport building.

On the way home we decided to make our own dinner, so we stopped at the Rite Way again and picked up stuff for pasta & garlic bread.

Before dinner I took my laptop out to check mail & stuff. I managed to catch Riley on the webcam as he sitting on the table. I tried to get his attention by changing the way the lights blinked on the cam. Changing a setting might have caused a slight click, as he turned his head quickly when I did. Not entirely sure though. He looks normal though, so that’s a good thing.

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Patouche Sailing cruise

This is probably the best day of the whole trip.

We signed up to do a snorkel trip with Patouche charters. They were one of the few places that returned our calls AND would take credit cards.

Fay and Shane were a good crew, took us to nice places, and pointed out the best places to go. Fay was from Maryland, out here to get her captains papers. Shane was from the Dominican Republic (I think).

The boat wasn’t big, but neither were the number of guests. There were four other people besides Ginny and I: A married couple from Florida and a couple of guys from New York.

They had plenty of things to drink, and some tasty snacks. They didn’t push the alcohol, which was nice.

We did 2 snorkel stops, had lunch, and did another snorkel stop. Lunch was quiche, unfortunately, so I had to pass. The pasta salad was pretty good though. We have GOT to remember to tell people about my lactose intolerance.

The two guys from New York were also staying at Fort Recovery, so we gave them a lift back. We stopped at the Rite Way grocery store to pick up stuff for dinner just sandwich stuff.

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Smugglers Cove beach

Today we decided to check out one of the local snorkeling beaches. Smugglers Cove was listed as a good spot, so we pull out the map and start driving.

The drive was, shall we say, interesting? It went from lousy local roads, to dirt roads, to rocky roads.

We did finally get there and it was fairly nice. We didn’t snorkel, as the water was a bit rough. But we bobbed around in the water, which was relaxing.

Bought lunch from a beach vendor grilled fish & rice with a tangy sauce. Not bad actually. The guy used his car for electricity.

Had dinner at Fort Recovery’s “Restaurant food wasn’t bad, but the service left something to be desired.

I decided to load the pictures from my camera on to my computer and I discovered that the ‘stain’ that I thought I had on my filter was actually on the cameras sensor.

This basically means that all the pictures I took that have a bright background in the upper right hand corner are going to show a spot.

I’m going to have to take the camera in to Wolf to see if they can get it repaired. I hope it’s still under warranty. I’m pretty sure it has a 1 year warranty.

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Tortola

Woke up at the normal time but the boat was strangely quiet. Half the passengers were gone. They had to get up at 4:30am to get transferred to the airport for a 7am flight.

We decided to wait until most of the people who had deadlines were gone, so we just relaxed on board.

Around 11:30, we loaded our stuff onto the launch, said our farewells to the crew, and headed for shore.

A bit of talk with the guy at the local taxi stand determined that the Avis location we needed wasn’t as close as we thought it would be. We were told that it was walk-able, but a very long walk. A $4 cab ride, however, wasn’t unreasonable.

We got taken to a local car dealership that doubled as the Avis location. Unloaded the cab and checked into pick up the car. Not a very efficient or professional looking operation. The rental form was written out by hand. We were told to return the car with the same amount of gas that we took it out with. After we started I noticed that the tank was only half full. I had expected them to fill the tank at least.

A few items about driving in the British Virgin Islands

  1. Driving on the left had side isn’t that hard to get used to. I did it in Scotland, and then I was on the other side of the card.
  2. There are very few speed limit signs those they do have do not specify if the speed posted is in kph or mph.
  3. The car is left had drive, just like in the US, but the speedometer is scaled in kph not mph. I suspect it’s manufactured for the European market.
  4. The roads are VERY narrow and in very poor repair. The road to Hana on Maui is far better than the roads on Tortola.

We arrived at Fort Recovery and find that it’s not at all what it’s cracked up to be.

The room is fairly nice, but not $300/night nice. On Maui, during the high season, this kind of place would go for $150/night. That’s WITH an ocean view and direct access to the beach.

The beach is small and kind of dismal looking.

Wifi only works near their office, not in the room.

Had dinner at The Jolly Roger Inn which is run by a couple of guys from New York. It specialized in “Pan Asian, SOHO, and Tribeca cuisine. I didn’t even know SOHO and Tribeca were cuisines.

Finding the place was a challenge as it was at the end of a very dark and forbidding road (actually, all the roads are dark & forbidding at night). The food was pretty good, but the service was kind of slow. I suspect this is going to be a pattern.

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Virgin Gorda

We weren’t feeling up to going to ‘The Baths’ today, so we decided to just stay on board. That’s disappointing, as I’ve heard ‘The Baths’ is pretty interesting.

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Saint Barths

We realized that the one bottle of Dayquil wasn’t going to last long enough, with both of us not feeling great, so we wandered around town a bit looking for a drug store & grocery store, maybe the beach.

Found the stores, never got to the beach. The drug store was interesting, as they carried absolutely no American or British products. No Nyquil or Dayquil. We spoke to a pharmacist, who only spoke marginal English, and she gave us some cold medicine. Not sure it worked very well. We’ll have to pick up some more familiar stuff tomorrow in Tortola.

Almost went on the island tour, but decided we weren’t feeling up to it. We went back to the boat to relax.

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Saint Martin

Work up around 6am still feeling lousy. We decided to go ashore to find some cold medicine.

Had a very light breakfast of some honeydew melon and toast I’m sure that anything heavier would screw me up something fierce.

Turns out that every morning the captain hosts a ‘Story Time’ where he tells us what’s going on for the day and any other bits of info. I did my best to give a hearty “Good Morning Captain Sir , but my head & throat rebelled so I only croaked a it. Ginny was able to belt it out I suspect she’s going to regret it later.

The captains’ name is “Fernando he introduced the crew including Debra, the ‘Activities Mate’, and Laurie, the Purser. He also covered important stuff, like safety guidelines, etc.

We had lunch at a little French place called Antoine’s. Ginny had some good gazpacho soup, I had a chicken sandwich. I would have liked the soup, but wasn’t feeling very adventurous in a food way.

We wandered back into town to find a drugs store and found one. They didn’t have a lot of stuff, but they carried Nyquil & Dayquil, so we bought one of each. Not sure if that will last us, but it should get us past the next few days.

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Ahoy Mate

We’re on our way … wake up at 4am, cab arrives at 5am, flight is at 7am. OMG am I tired.

Arrive at San Juan, find a place for lunch. Nothing special, but ok.

Fly to St. Martin in a puddle jumper. We sat right next to the prop.

After clearing customs, we went to the main lobby of the airport and found the windjammer rep. We had to wait a bit to get on the bus because they had to wait for some other people. Bus ride was ‘interesting’, as the roads were very narrow. Everyone joked about inhaling a bit to squeeze by.

Bus stopped a few blocks away from the dock, so we had to hike down to where the launch for the boat was.

Check went fairly smoothly, although we had to go through the safety briefing twice. Were taken to our cabin, which was VERY VERY small.

Around this time I noticed a slight cough and dryness in my throat.

We went to bed around 10pm, after having dinner and wandering around on the deck.

I woke up around 3am feeling lousy. Head ache, sinus congestion, scratchy throat. Oh crap, now I have a sinus infection.

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Preparing to leave

We’re off on another vacation … this time to the Caribbean for a Windjammer cruise and some time on the British Virgin Island of Tortola.

Riley has figured it out he’s seen the duffel bags and knows we’re going away. He’s not in a good mood.

Ginny has a cough that hasn’t gotten any better probably caught it from some of her co-workers. She thought it was gone a week or so ago, but it came back. I was quite surprised that I hadn’t caught anything. I’ve been taking Echinacea and 1000mg vitamin C tablets for the past 8 weeks to avoid getting sick.

I aimed the web cam at the chair Riley likes to snooze in, so we might be able to watch him when we get to Fort Recovery.

Ginny realized that we forgot to get more dry food for Riley so she left a note for Pat, our pet sitter, and a ten dollar bill, in case she need to get a small bag.

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