Sunday, May 6, 2018

Friday, December 29, 2017 – Bridgetown, Barbados – Partly Cloudy – 84F

Port Information. Barbados is the furthest east of the West Indies Leeward and Windward Islands. The island is only 21 miles long by 14 miles wide. Barbados was founded in 1627 and gained independence from Britain in 1966. The people on the Island are called Bajans. Bridgetown in the capital of Barbados boasting a population of around 100,000 or about a third of the total population of the island.

This is our second stop in Barbados in as many cruises.

We are both on tour today and early so we ordered room service again. I asked for three scrambled eggs today and I got at least that – along with Special K and bananas, no one is going to go hungry this morning. The tour runs through lunch so a bigger breakfast was in order.

The problem today is the number of ships here – NCL Gem, Windstar Pride, P&O Adonia, P&O Azura, Oceania Riviera.

IMG_20171229_NCL Gem


IMG_20171229_Oceania Riviera 1

Oceania Riviera

The shuttles, which take you from the ship to the terminal are overloaded and slow (because all the equipment the ships are using are blocking the road). We were advised to make the 10 minute walk to the terminal building so hundreds of passengers marched in single file to the terminal building (using the sea wall path, which has a railing). An easy walk for the able and a tough walk for the mobility challenged).

As we started our hike to the terminal, I got a nice (albeit photobombed) shot of QM2.

IMG_20171229_QM2 Bridgetown

We are both on “Best of Barbados” and today we are using full sized busses. My bus was completely full (36) and I was squished in the far right corner of the back seat. Our guide in Antheia and she is very easy to understand and also likes to sing an occasional song. The first stop on our tour is the Gun Hill Signaling Station – we have been by here several times on past excursions but never actually stop at the Station itself. Today, we are able to get the view from the station – looks over the flat Barbadian countryside.

IMG_20171229_Gun Hill Signaling Station

IMG_20171229_Gun Hill cannon

IMG_20171229_view from Gun Hill

Gun Hill Signaling Station

Next up is “Orchid World”, a nature preserve featuring all sorts of air plants. I started off down the hill with our group but the angle of the road was a problem for my back and the warning twinge sent me back up to the patio area near the entrance. While Ellen went through the flowers, I took in my complimentary rum punch (which was good).  I did get a few nice pictures of the vegetation before heading to the patio.

IMG_20171229_ET Orchid World

The Ramp that Told me NO

IMG_20171229_Banyan trees Orchid World

Banyan Trees

IMG_20171229_Orchid World 1IMG_20171229_Orchid World coral


IMG_20171229_Orchid World

Luckily, there was a lot of stuff to see on my sort walk to the patio.

Our final stop was Sunbury Plantation – a cane sugar plantation and now a museum of sorts.

IMG_20171229_Sunbury Plantation House

Sunbury Plantation House

IMG_20171229_Sunbury Plantation cannon

Cannon in the Front Yard

The house last belonged to the Melvillles and there are creepy mannequin versions of the Melvillles sitting in the living room (Mr. Melville looks a lot like Dick Cheney).

IMG_20171229_not Dick Cheney

Super Creepy Melville Statues

I took a cursory look around the house and then went to the back yard and got another complementary rum punch (this one even stronger than the first).

From the plantation, we headed back to Bridgetown – the tour did give everyone a feel for the island’s vegetation and terrain. On our return, we saw some of the main town’s sites including the statue of “Buster”, a key figure in the emancipation of the slaves on the island.

Back on the ship, we ordered room service snacks – a mushroom quesadilla and a tuna melt – they were hot and tasty and just enough to get us to dinner.

I heard from Dave, the Production Manager, that there had been another change in the schedule and that I was not on tomorrow’s program and that I would be delivering the final two talks on the last two sea days.

We are now permanently at Table 103 – we pre-ordered some veggie items off the special menu – I had the roasted pepper soup (very good), another yummy flatbread, and portabella mushroom with ricotta cheese main dish. There was lemon meringue pie for dessert and the coffee was good this evening.

We passed on the headliner tonight – Stephani Parker – a Whitney Houston tribute singer. We had seen a number of these acts so instead we went up the Commodore Lounge on Deck 9. When the show started, the place emptied out so it was the quiet evening we were looking for. I have been sneezing a lot on the ship and the drip has turned into a sore throat so I am glad I do not have to work tomorrow.

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