Winding Down

Well, our time here in Louisiana is coming to a close and daughter and I will be heading back to San Antonio early tomorrow morning. We have to move her into a different dorm apartment. Wednesday we’ll leave for California.

It has been hectic. The house is mine and the former owner is moving out today. I’ve had contractors in and I’m waiting for the quotes for some electrical work, repair work and painting work. I’ve met with the property management company. The carpet folks come tomorrow to measure for the new living room carpet. If the other work comes in too high, my folks will be finding other folks for the work. I am so thankful that they are willing to do this for me!

Although our time has been busy, it’s been so much fun to be with family again. One of my sisters came in on Friday and left today – a much too short of time to have together, but better than no time!

We’ll be stopping by my middle daughter’s for a couple of nights – and will collect our cats before going home on Saturday. Monday is a holiday for me (Memorial Day) so I’ll have Sunday and Monday to rest up before heading back to the office.

Homeward Bound

Yesterday we were at Grand Turk.  Our last stop before arriving in Florida tomorrow.  I had decided to stay on-board the ship and was so lucky that when we docked my balcony faced the island.  Beach, and not much else, greeted us.  I enjoyed the day on my balcony, knitting, reading and watching the folks play in the ocean.

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Today we are sailing for Florida, no stops, and will arrive early in the morning.  The ocean is a beautiful blue, the sun is shining.  Waves are rough and the boat is rocking and rolling!  And it’s cold – probably not really cold, but after the heat and the humidity of the Caribbean it feels cold.

I will take advantage of today to enjoy the views and relax.  Tomorrow will be tiring – flying across the country (5+ hours) and then driving home (3+hours).  But it will be good to be in my own bed, resting my head on my own pillow and being with my pets.

This has been a wonderfully relaxing trip – and a great opportunity to catch up with old friends.

San Juan

Today I awoke before the sun was up, just as we were pulling into the harbor in San Juan.  I love the way light plays across the water, don’t you?

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And today we visited a rain forest…

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And tonight another gorgeous sunset ended the day…

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May you also enjoy smooth sailing…

St Kitts and St Thomas

Yesterday we were in (at?) St Kitts.  We hired a taxi and had a great tour, seeing the sights and learning some interesting things about the history.  The Atlantic has breath-taking waves…

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But I think the most amazing sight was this spot, where the Atlantic was on the left and the Caribbean Sea on the right…

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Today was St Thomas, a true shopper’s heaven.  Since we were planning on looking for a camera for my friend I knew we wouldn’t be doing a lot of sight-seeing so I left my camera in the room.  It was such fun to look at the camera gear and to have someone else do the spending!

But this morning I awakened to this sight (can you see that the yacht furthest out actually has a helicopter on it too?)…

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And this evening, as we were about to depart amid darkening sky – this water plane made a landing!

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St Thomas was beautiful – as all of the islands have been so far.  But there is a TON of money in St Thomas!

St Vincent (Day??)

I have to tell you, I was beginning to have issues with this cruise.  Did you ever see that old film “If It’s Tuesday It Must Be Belgium”?  It’s about a bus tour in Europe that sees like 10 countries in 7 days (or something silly like that).  Well, that is how I was feeling and I was beginning to feel a bit of resentment.  When I would go ashore there was a ton of shopping – duty free is the flavor of the month.  Diamonds and other gems, not my cup of tea nor do I associate these types of goods with the Caribbean.  So, I was feeling very dissatisfied.

Yesterday I went ashore like the good little cruise-taker.  Walked through a spate of duty free shops and stood in line for the bus to downtown.  And I didn’t want to go.  I really didn’t want to see one more shop with a silk-screen print, another bottle of perfume, another bottle of booze, another designer purse.  And I thought to myself, “so, what do you want to do”?  And I decided what I really wanted was to go back on the boat and spend the day on my balcony watching the ocean, knitting and reading.  So I did – and it was one of the best days ever!

Last night the sun set was amazing…

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Today I’d booked a trip to the botanical garden on St Vincent.  It is the oldest botanical garden in the Caribbean and I love gardens.  So at 9am I was on the bus ready for the tour.  It was a small garden and as a flower lover I was disappointed since the majority of this garden is trees.  And it wasn’t what I was anticipating.  But our guide works full time for the forest ministry, and does tours on the weekends, and was full of information.  Not only about the trees and the plants but of the island history as well.  Then we set off for a second garden.

Traffic wasn’t bad, and it was interesting looking out at the sights…

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And after winding our way over some mountains we arrived at the second garden.  This one had been privately owned by a Welsh man who bought the disused land in 1991 and turned it into the tropical oasis of today – 7 1/2 acres of lush, tropical gardens.

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And tonight I shall sleep wonderfully!