Tuesday 4th December and we arrived at Road Town in Tortola, in the British Virgin Islands, we knew that thanks to the Captain’s announcement, again!!!!! When we looked out of our cabin window and were faced with the Disney “Micky Mouse” cruise ship so the town and beaches will be busy, especially with children, still, as it’s our last day in the Caribbean, it has to be the beach.
No tendering today so walked off QM2 soon after breakfast and jumped into a communal taxi and headed across the Island to Cane Garden Bay. Road Town is that capital with a cruise ship dock and a very large marina where yacht charter company “Sun-seeker” is based. There were quite a few of their charter yachts moored so maybe business isn’t so good for them, this being their busiest time.
The road out of the town heads straight up the mountain; it is very steep, very narrow, very bumpy, with a numerous sharp bends all with difficult passing places. As we crawled up at less than a snails pace, probably due to the vehicle being rather old and fully loaded, we were all crunched in with no air con and only small windows open. I couldn’t help hoping that on our descent back down, the brakes had better performance than the engine going up. This thought wasn’t helped much when the driver, with his West Indian sense of humour told us, “what goes up must come down”???? Fortunately everything worked and we arrived ok. Again a fairly crowded beach but there wasn’t the hassle we experienced at Carlisle Bay; we walked to the end, found two sun beds and set up camp. Bearing in mind two big cruise ships were in town, the beach was really quite quiet, so enjoyed our part of the Caribbean Sea in peace. Topping up Christine’s tan was the objective so I investigated the beach bars and enjoyed a bottle of “Carib”, for old time sakes of course.
Tortola in common with most, if not all, are still recovering from that terrible hurricane that tore through the West Indies a year or so back, we were told that here 75% of all buildings were affected in one way or another. The one thing all the islands have in common is their resilience to adversities.
When we had had our “fill” we eventually left and headed back to the taxi stand. When we boarded the earlier bus to come here, we bought a return so no issue getting back: I must say everything was well organised, “and” we weren’t charged for our sun beds; what a result!
Our journey back was more comfortable, our vehicle was a modern, open sided bus, not full so we could spread and enjoy the ride back, and certainly not as hairy.
Arriving back at the cruise terminal we naturally had to stop at a bar for that last rum drink, and to our pleasant surprise, they sold “Ting” so rum and Tings were the order of the day.
Back on board we had our first and only formal night whilst being in the Caribbean, still there’s another one whilst heading back to New York; having dragged a case with all the necessary regalia, it would be churlish not to use it as often as possible.
Back onto our usual “exciting” table; we really should have made the effort and moved, though this may have been difficult as the ship is full and the restaurant have allocated all the seats. Anyway after the exhilarating dinner we headed to the theatre. Tonight there is a classical pianist so sat near to the end should we need to do a quick exit.
Katie Clarke from Norwich was extremely good and very entertaining, needless to say we stayed and enjoyed her performance ‘till the end.
Tomorrow, 5th December is the first of three sea days, but more importantly it is a big day, it is Christine’s Birthday.