Saturday, 17 December 2011

Last day

We are both rather depressed today. And as if to sympathise with us we look outside and the Caribbean is weeping for us.

Which isn’t a good thing as less people will be sun bathing and the other public areas will be busy while we wait for out coach. We get kicked out of the room at 9am and should be picked up at 1pm, we estimate getting back at 5am UK time. And then we, sorry I have to drive up from Gatwick to Manchester. I can’t wait!

Next time we book early enough to get a Manchester flight!!!

Friday, 16 December 2011


A cool trip but well, it’s all a bit depressing really.

The trip was excellent, a boat ride along the cost before getting in and swimming literally with the turtles. They were weaving in and a around us, they have tough heads as plenty of people kicked them, accidentally of course, we hope. Also saw a stingray and the tour guys managed to lure it near the surface so at least we got a decent look at one, not as good as Grand Turk would have been but better than nothing. All very crowded again which is no good where Shell is concerned! She kicked one in the head as well. And those people who feel its ok to dive under when in a group of 30 people, it really isn’t. Its fecking annoying when you kick us and then surface in our face. Knobs.

Packing now. Depressed. Hmpf.

Thursday, 15 December 2011

St Lucia

Off early, onto another boar for some Dolphin and Whale watching. And boy did we do some watching. Many a picture and video taken, hopefully they will do it justice. Spent most of the time on the front of the boat, it was hard work not to fall over! Once we had our fill we headed to a nice bay of holiday homes and yachts, very nice indeed. Then back to the boat, after a few rum punches of course. So back on land at 12 already half cut, did some shopping and then to the bars dotted around the port.

Incidentally I think I’m beginning to detest people who smoke. On the boat we were looking at the dolphins and two people were smoking, they just threw their fag ends in the sea and then let their empty packet blow in as well. They disgust me.

Two local beers (Piton) for $3 and at 5% it was good stuff. Honestly, I lost count how many I had, it was quite a few, then after abusing the free port side wifi we staggered back on board for food. Then back to room where Michelle fell asleep and I watched as we set sail.

Barbados tomorrow and a snorkel with the turtles and of course more fish.

Ocho Rios pics from AM


More swimming with the fishes today. But not until 2 in the afternoon so lazed around for a while, mooched onshore and did some more tat shopping in the market, but jove these islands have lots of tat!! Then back on board for a bit chilling reading on balcony.

So strange that on the port side of the ship that was actually facing the port it was so noisy, people bustling, cars beeping music playing. And on our side nothing, silence. Mainly because next door were not it!

We set off for the tour and got straight in the water once the boat stopped, a lot faster than the one before. This one was kind of guided, we got split into groups and followed a guide each, he tried to shout and point to the interesting fish. This time the Playsport worked! I made sure by stopping each video after 5 or so minutes and checking they saved, so we have about 9 videos. I look forward to boring people with them. Some of the time it was jerky as there were simply too many people doing it, we all get crashing into each other. Perhaps some careful editing will make it look more professional. We snorkelled near one of the vents from a volcano 1 mile inland (with Dominca being a volcanic island natch) so the sea was cool then hot alternately. And the gases escaping from the vent gave the reef its name, Champagne, because you guessed it, bubbles! Lots of them in one area, I think I captured it quite well on video. Of course we were told it doesn’t taste like champagne so don’t drink it. For me this was better snorkelling than the one before as it was much clearer and calmer. And no jellyfish!

Then it was back on board just before the heavens opened again. It does like to surprise you around here! Photos from top deck:

Tuesday, 13 December 2011


Swimming with the fishes today! Including those creepy fecking jelly fish, but not the dangerous sort.

Early tour so on our way at 8:45, at Paradise Reef at 9 and straight in the water. Which was damn cool. We had 45 minutes in the water which in reality was about 25 after everyone had finally got in, a slow process. Apart from the bloke who brought his own kit and was straight in there with his underwater camera. But, we have one of those! A Kodak Playsport and it failed. Failed BADLY. God damn it.

I shot about 16 minutes of continuous footage thinking it would look great. 1080p resolution, it was going to be brilliant! I pressed the stop button and made out the timer had stopped, all good. Then held down the power button and thought it had switched off. Once back on the boat I pulled it out of my pocket to see it was still on. Held power button again, nothing. Oh dear. Battery out and in and back up and running but video file corrupt. Bugger. Copied it to laptop so will see if it is retrievable back home.

We then sailed to one of Antiguas 365 beaches. During this part the Chavs on Tour group came into their own with the rum punch. Fag dimps over the side that the fish tried to eat, complete scummers in my opinion.

The beach was beautiful, sandy, quiet, clear seas, Blackpool it was not. Back on the boat and more rum punch to sail back to port. CoT came into their own again dancing on side of boat, captain had to tell them 3 or 4 times to stop, should have let them fall over board and feck em!

Back on shore we did some shopping in the market, more tat yay, then headed back to boat just in time. 5 minutes after we got back on board the heavens opened. A lot. For quite a while. All in all a cracking day, ignoring the CoT!

Sat typing this on balcony, so so quiet. Some photos from boat below.

You probably can't see it but this was very very heavy rain

Caribbean Princess leaving just before us

And she is off

And so are we :(

St Maartin

Cracking tour. Coach ride in middle of island from the Dutch side to the French side, then onto the French capital Marigot for some shopping then back on the coach for a ride on a boat around the Laguna. This included beer and rum punch. Which was free. Yes, you can guess where this was going.

An hour later, everyone drunk we had sailed around the Laguna looking into all the rich people’s houses with our guide saying they ranged from $6000 to $50,000 each. To rent. For a week.
Got some cracking photos of them, I really like the smaller ones with their own private garden leading to the Laguna with a speed boat at the end. No point getting into the car to go to the shops on the other side, just hop in the speed boat! It is a very nice place.

When we win the lottery (I do hope Leighton has been putting the ticket on...) we have decided to spend a month on each island to see which one we prefer to live on. Although internet speeds may be a you can have 2mb for $50 or 4mb for $85. The 4mb is faster than my current Sky connection but admittedly a tad more expensive.
Antigua today!

Monday, 12 December 2011

Pics from boat of Philipsburg

A day at sea

The third day in a row at sea, which is fine but not when one of those days should have been swimming with the fishes! As we had the sun all day on our big balcony we decided to sunbath there away from the riff raff. So had breakfast, grabbed some stuff from a sale and wondered around the Atrium looking at presentations of how the ship works. Then to the bar for some cans/bottles, back to room, drinks in fridge and out on the balcony. Read another book, Shell has yet to start hers. Pointless bringing it!

Last formal evening which is good, soon my dinner shirt won’t fit. We decided to try the Marco Pierre White restaurant which was fantastic. Then we went to the local to take part in the Offside quiz. Pub split in two, captains for each side, sports questions. Was quite entertaining, some peoples answers make you wonder.

Weather wise so far it has been hot, a sprinkling of showers, some more hot and for good measure a bit more hot. The last two days have also been windy so a bit of rocking on the old boat but nothing compared to crossing the Bay of Biscay.

St Maartin today, just waiting for Shell to get up so we can get breakfast and get ready. So far we haven’t been late for a trip but you never know...

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Some pics of Jamaica from boat

Grand Turk - not

Not bothered with an update for a bit because frankly I can’t be bothered! We were supposed to go to Grand Turk yesterday but as you may have seen from the tweets that did not happen. Apparently the wind speed was outside the safety envelope for Ventura to dock. Bull! This world is far too safe these days, in the old days I bet they would have docked! Captain needs to grow a pair. We made three attempts but each time we got close the ship turned and pulled away.

After the second attempt all early morning tours were cancelled, ours narrowly surviving, but we knew deep down it wasn’t going to be. Whilst we waited for the third attempt we watched the footy (United) in the bar while we waited, amazingly I did not have a beer during the game, mainly because it was 10am. During the second half we made the third attempt and most people started staring out the window to see if we were going to make it, just as everyone got their hopes up we turned and pulled away. Captain then announced that it was cancelled and we would slowly make our way to the next destination. Gutted.

No snorkelling with the fishes and playing with Stingrays for us.

And now we have another sea day as we meander to St Maartin. I would have put the ship to the max so we could get there today perhaps and spend a day and bit on land. Ah well.

One good and bad thing is that all the formal nights will be over tonight, each one has been during a sea day and that means the remainder of the holiday are a shore days so no more wearing a shirt that feels like it is strangling me and making sure I don’t spill food on it.
Still quite a few people who don’t bother to make the effort, throw them overboard I say. When little kids are walking around dressed up you boring adults damn well should make the effort as well.

So far no old ladies sucking pizzas or burgers.

And I won’t be replying to any tweets I make as they are being done by text so I won’t see them.

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Today we did a walking tour of Dunns Falls and Coyaba Gardens. We didn’t do the climb of Dunns Falls, perhaps next time, we will be coming back. Next time we will be in decent condition to walk up! Those that did seemed to have a great time; we had a great time laughing at them falling over.
The gardens were very nice and we had a great view of Ocho Rios so we had some nice snaps from the camera.

Everyone was very friendly, but of course that is so they can sell you stuff from their market stand, we nearly missed the coach because of them. The weather was stupidly hot, we had a couple of drinks on the back of the boat while chatting to the barman but had to make our excuses and leave. So we went inside to a nice air conditioned bar and chatted to another barman from India. Wonder if he knows anyone I work with....

As I said we will be coming back here for a holiday, a day is not long enough to adjust to the irie no problem culture. From one days experience I think I could live here. Yes, over Bonnaire.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Some pics from Bonaire

Curacao day

Did a semi sub tour which consisted of a boat with a glass hull, you all filed downstairs to sit 5 foot under water two astride and then sailed over the coral which was pretty good. Then one of the tour guys dived in to feed the fish so we had hundreds swimming past the glass. Got some video and pictures, pictures are quite blurred but the video seemed to turn out ok.

Then we went onto the Curacao liqueur factory and bought a small sample which will no doubt be consumed over the next week or so. While at the factory a woman I can best describe as Tubbs from League of Gentleman slipped and fell, yelled for a bit, hobbled back to coach, cried for a bit then manned up and went shopping after we were dropped off.

Too damn hot and very humid, got back on boat had some lunch and sat at back in the sun, then moved to shade, then moved indoors!! We did a Name that Tune quiz and then Fulham v Liverpool came on unexpected which was nice. I reckon there were about 150 people sat inside watching the match rather than being outside in 30c temperatures, good lads. And some women too!!

Half cut it was shower time then out for another great meal and some wine followed by bed. To sleep. You disgust me.

Monday, 5 December 2011


Up at 7 but not out and about yet. Easy to get up, we have a natural alarm clock next door, a kid that doesn't stop talking and likes to let their room door shut on its own, so it slams and shakes everything. I'm sure the parents will get as grip....not...too busy chain smoking on the balcony it seems.

Today we are doing semi sub thing to check out under the sea and then a trip to a liquor factory. I must remind Michelle to put lotion on, she is burnt already and it wasn’t even sunny. Bloody woman J


What of it? Formal night tonight, cracking food in restaurant as expected, now smashing some cocktails in. It's hell.

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Where did the sun go?

Woke up this morning, no sun, but plenty of rain!

However it's really warm and humid. Breakfast was great as usual, bought some nice watches as they are on offer, also picked up a garish shirt, not sure it will outdo Andy though.

Just watched footy in a bar that has about 20 screens in it! As soon as it finished in came the amateur dancers.

A looooong day (03/12)

Up at 5am, airport for 6:30, flight for 9 hours. At least the plane was really comfy so you didn't get aching back or legs...oh wait...
The pilot also seemed to get his timings wrong so we worked it out (and the guy next to us) that we had about 40mins left, no, 1 hour 40 mins!

Once we landed we had a 45 minute drive from airport to port and in one quite random scene the traffic stopped as a truck with massive speakers drove past blasting out Caribbean tunes with about 50 people walking behind it dancing, you don’t see that in Manchester. Once we arrived we had to check in using ‘Shed 3’. This is basically just a big concrete building which made you feel like a turkey being roasted in the oven on Christmas Day. It must have been bad as the women in front was crying and having cross words  with what we think is her husband to be. We think perhaps the trip has not gone smoothly so far for them.

After the roasting we got on board, straight to the room as we know where we are going (well Shell does), dumped bags, to the bar and caught about 50 seconds of the match. Still we won, which was nice. We then proceeded to get drunk very quickly, do muster, have another drink then have some grub, back to the room to finish unpacking and then crashed at 10pm.

10pm Caribbean time, 2am UK time. Like I said a long day.

Saturday, 3 December 2011

Why do we worry

Check in desk very nice and didn't care about cases being overweight. And they didn't weigh the hand luggage, thank god!

Now we sit and wait, surely there is a better way of doing this.

Friday, 2 December 2011

Hope one on boat is better....


Finally arrived at Gatwick Travelodge. A dump if I'm honest. Still just one night, our half really as we have to be at airport for 6.

Packing joys

So, cases are half packed and weigh in at 17kgs each give or take. Everything going to go in? Not. A. Chance.

Mobile view

This blog should also switch to mobile view should you feel the need to check it on your phone.

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Another blog

People wanted this, might keep it up to date. Might not. Depends on how many rum based drinks have been consumed...