Monday, February 02, 2015

Back to the Caribbean!

And we'll be getting back on track with some photos from the cruise I took back in December.
Gosh, has it really been about two months?
Well, I know a bunch of my friends have been inundated with snow, so these might warm you up.

On we go!

The last stop we had on the cruise was the island of St. Maarten (if you're Dutch) or St. Martin (if you're French).

When we pulled in at 6:30 in the morning...it looked like we'd have some weather with us.


And we did get rained on, well, if you want to call a spritzing rain, while waiting to leave with our tour group. But then things cleared up a little.

And I fell in love with the houses on the island

We all hopped into a tour bus and away we went to explore the island that is divided between the Dutch and the French to this very day. At least they no longer fight each other.


We started out on the Dutch side. Just in case you were wondering.
I didn't know until we passed this guy.

Seeing Amsterdam cheese, I knew for a fact we were in Dutch territory.

I believe this is an Admiral's house here. 

The major export for the Dutch side was salt. This is a statue set in a roundabout demonstrating the history.

A nice resort

We got off the bus here to take a look at the scenery. So pretty!

The cacti were pretty neat too!


Then we all hopped back on the bus and made our way towards the French side.


Flowers were everywhere bordering the streets.
This one was one of my favorites.


We then crossed the divider (no line, just a monument where peace was established between the two) into the French territory.


The French side had better looking buildings, I must say.



And then we had a stop and got about an hour to stretch our legs and take in the scenery.


Boy, did we ever!

Sun maidens!

Saw a fort on the hill above the bay.
One day I'd love to go up and explore it.
But for now, I can just allow my imagination to go there.


After poking our heads into a few shops, Mom and I saw a really cool market across the street.
Had to check it out.


Everything was so colorful. They even had spices for sale. Reminded me a lot of France and the Antony market.
We couldn't stay long though, and I admit I worried when the bus would be leaving, but we managed to get on with a couple minutes to spare.

The driver then took us through windy roads, telling us about the culture and how iguanas are really a pest.

What he forgot to mention was that the reptiles are about as big as a cocker spaniel dog!


Ick! I get the creeps looking at them. But in some ways, they're really interesting.
And apparently, when in a pinch for chicken, these guys taste just the same.

We kept going, winding our way down the mountains and came across this statue at a round about.

Lady Liberty, St. Martin style.

Then low and behold to our left, an iguana, just hanging out in the tree.


On and on we went.
Over hill and dale. Past a nudist beach, and more resorts, until we came to the farmland of the island.

More of those really pretty flowers.

And got to see more of the plantation style homes. Apparently St. Martin is also known for it's sugar cane.


Now contrast that with this next picture.

Goats!

We made it back to the port and we had about an hour before the ship set sail. So we wandered and took in some of the sights. They even had a crêpe stand, though I'm spoiled, having lived two years in France.

Like this awesome tree!

Then it was time to head back to the ship. We had to leave by 12:30pm. A bit early, but not terrible.
Mom and I thought we had just enough time to get a taste.


Goodbye, St. Maarten!


Au revoir, St. Martin!



Well hello, Sir Monkey!


Oh yeah, forgot to say, it was FORMAL NIGHT! And Mom and I dolled ourselves up.

We wore the corresponding colors for the Christmas Cruise: green and red.
I say that cruises are great (but I don't think I'd like to go more than a week or 10 days tops).
By the last day I was ready to come home. And Mom was too. It's hard not having your own routine.

The only thing that would have made this trip better than the amazingness that it was would have been to have had the whole family there with us.

Hmmm...Do I see a family vacay in two years perhaps?

Until next time,
Bisous!

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