Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Cruise - St. Vincent #13..

St. Vincent is an island of steep-sided mountains, lush rainforest, gushing waterfalls and the place where parts of 'Pirates Of The Caribbean' movies were filmed.

Named by Columbus after the saint's day on which he sailed past it in 1498, the island of St. Vincent is off the beaten track and retains a lot of it's idyllic charm. With fertile volcanic soil - the 4,000ft La Soufriere volcano last erupted in the 1970's.   St. Vincent is packed with tropical flowers and fruit plantations. There's even a breadfruit tree descended from one first brought to the island by Captain Bligh of 'Mutiny On The Bounty' fame.

We docked in Kingstown and, after breakfast, went ashore to explore on foot, as we hadn't booked a trip for this last stop. As we passed through the terminal there was a local steel band playing so we stopped to take their photograph and leave a tip.

Our first stop was the police station where the policeman on duty at the front of the station happily posed for a photo with me.

Further up the street we found the prison!

I don't know who lived in this house but it was a house and not a government building.

Exploring further we found St. Mary's Catholic Cathedral and St. George's Anglican Cathedral facing each other across a narrow street.

Entering St. George's we were welcomed by the verger who introduced himself as Mr. Ulric Doyle. Mr. Doyle was very informative and urged us to walk round the cathedral and take photographs, so of course we did.

We bade farewell to Mr. Doyle, after putting a donation in the restoration fund box, and thanked him for letting us look round before crossing the street to survey St. Mary's.

As we walked round this architecturally unusual building we were aware of the sound of children as St. Mary's also houses a school.

The courtyards were absoutely lovely and so interesting.

Then we went inside where it was just as beautiful.

MWM and I had been feeling a little melancholy when we set off exploring because it was our last day of the cruise and we had to pack that evening. After visiting both churches we felt so much better and made our way back to the berth intending to go back on board for some lunch and make a start on the packing. As we passed through the terminal the steel band were still playing and we decided to sit at one of the cafes and have a final rum punch. As we had a few dollars left, which we really didn't want to take home with us, the final rum punch turned into four each and the few people who were sitting listening to the band got in the party mood and were were all singing along - we even bought a copy of the band's CD. I have to say it didn't sound as good when we played it at home!

There was a couple sitting nearby and conspiratorally the male whispered to us that is was his wife's 64th birthday today and he was 84! Nonchalontly MWM cruised over to the band and asked if they would sing and play Happy Birthday to Lily (the man's wife). A few minutes later the singer with the band asked "Where's Lily?" Of course Lily was shocked but stammered "Here". Then the band began to play Happy Birthday and everyone joined in. Lily was thrilled. When the song had finished one of the shop owners went to Lily and said "Thankyou for spending your birthday in St. Vincent". How lovely was that?

Dollars spent it was time to go back on board. By this time we were pleasantly pissed happy and ready for some lunch before tackling the packing.  Packing to come home never takes as long as packing to go away does it? Why is that? Anyway after leaving out what we needed for that evening and the following morning for our journey home we fastened the cases and sprawled out on the balcony with our books for a snooze read.

That evening we had our photograph taken in the square whilst having a glass of champagne before dinner.

After dinner we watched the variety show in the Marquee, then waited for the BIG DRAW. We had filled in a questionnaire which went into a draw that evening after the show. Whoever won the draw would have their bar bill for the entire cruise wiped clean - as you might guess we had our fingers crossed, as our drinks bill was substantial. Unfortunately we didn't win the draw - the person that won only had a drinks bill of £150! Not fair is it?

Retiring early (for us) we stood on the balcony for one last look at the starry sky and the inky blackness before setting our alarm clock; we had to be out of our cabin by 8.30 a.m the following morning, though we weren't due to leave the boat until 2 p.m.  The following morning after breakfast we sat on deck taking in the rays reading our books until it was time for lunch, after which we were expertly organised onto coaches to take us to the airport for the journey home.  The flight home was uneventful and we even managed to catch a few zzzzzzzzzzzzz, arriving  at Manchester Airport at 6 a.m., we were happy we'd booked premium seats as the extra room made all the difference.

I hope you have enjoyed hearing about our cruise. If you are considering a cruise then I would say BOOK IT! It's a wonderful experience waking up each morning in a different place - a fabulous way to see lots of different places without the hassle of getting on and off planes, buses or trains.

Did I tell you we've booked our big next holiday? Two weeks in Goa, India, in November for my birthday! Oh and we have three (up to now) small trips in England in the meantime.  Of course I'll report on all our trips so you don't miss out.


Monalisa said...

What a fantastic holiday, I'd love to see all those places. You should write a travel guide with your wonderful descriptions and photos.

Dumdad said...

Pity you didn't win the bar-bill draw! Look forward to reading about your other future trips and especially Goa.

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Elaine said...

So come much was your bar bill? LoL.

It sounded like a fantastic holiday. I'll definitely put 'cruising' on my to do list :)

Anonymous said...

It certainly isn't fair about the bar bill. Wow that is a beautiful cathedral. Great photos. I sure did love going on this cruise with you. Mahalo my friend for sharing such a fantastic experience. :)

Bernadine said...

I love the pictures of the cathedrals. It is beautiful and the house is also nice and big and I like the style. Don't worry about the word verification thingy. I got a lot of spam too I just got rid of the anyonoums item on my comments and whallaa.. no more spam... yet!!

You should enjoy your Wednesday!!

Bernadine said...

Sorry it should me "anonymous". My mistake. Sorry. :)

Akelamalu said...

I'm really pleased you've enjoyed my travelogues Monalisa :)

Yes it was a pity we didn't win that draw Dumdad, we could have had another holiday with the proceeds! LOL

I'll look into it Mike

Our bar bill was about £600 Laney so you see why we we had our fingers crossed! LOL

The cathedrals were indeed beautiful Thom. I'm pleased you've enjoyed the cruise with us. x

I've taken your advice Bernadine and taken WV off as well as the anonymous comments. Thanks. :)

Shrinky said...

What a magnificent cathedral, absolutely stunning! I am soooo jealous.

Hey! Off topic, I know, but I've just seen YOUR GRANDAD on the BBC news - wooohooo (big, wide grin)!! What a lovely, modest and remarkable man he is, and isn't he youthful? I'd be proud as punch to have a grandad like him (give him a hug from me when you next see him).

Empress Bee (of the High Sea) said...

i absolutely LOVED coming along on your cruise with you, fantastic!

have you taken a med cruise? if not, might i suggest that in your future? check carnival magic for that and i'll bet you'd love it! and john heald will be the cruise director, you would love his british humor (humour).

smiles, bee

Akelamalu said...

Ah you saw Eddie on the news Shrinky! Actually they Eddie is my step-Fathe-In-Law not my grandfather, and yes he is a remarkable man.

I'm so glad you enjoyed my cruise Bee, seeing as you have been on so many. We did a Med cruise a few years ago and thoroughly enjoyed it. :)

Catsngrams said...

what beautiful pictures. I am so glad that you are having a wonderful time and thanks for sharing it with us here in blogville.

g-man said...

Out tour guide of the world!!


Sue Kittow said...

Sounds really fab, Ak. And Goa next - even better!

Spiky Zora Jones said...

akelamalu: sweetie that was quite a vacation WE...hehehe...I mean YOU and your man had.

That church is so beautiful. I love to visit churches, especially older ones.

thanks for all your pictues and information sweetie. I hate to see it stop. When is the next vacation? ;)

BTW...that's an awesome pic of you and hubby.

Later sweetie. xxx

secret agent woman said...

What a lovely wrap-up to your cruise.

Nathan and Meagan said...

What wonderful pictures!!!

Ron said...

BOO-HOO...I feel so sad that this is over. It was an amazing series of posts, Akelamalu!

You're so gifted in explaining everything in such wonderfully interesing way.

Being someone who LOVES to visit churches, I so enjoyed the photos of the cathedral - bellissima!

I look forward to your next trip. India - WOW!

Hope you had a great day, m'dear!


Cloudia said...

Fascinating architecture...and handsome couple!

Aloha from Hawaii my Friend

Comfort Spiral

tony said...

I,ve Never Been On A Cruise But You, And Other Folk, Speak So Well Of The Experience I Might Well Give It A Whirl!
Thanks For Sharing & Have A Fine Easter.

Anndi said...

I would love to go on a cruise with my daughter, she's a most excellent travel companion and so very fond of the sea.

Glad you had such a lovely time.

Smalltown RN said...

Oh what a lovely many adventures...just fantastic ...and now plans for India....well that is what retirement is all about now isn't it....glad you made it home safely and are recouperating....


Casdok said...

Stunning photos looks fasinating. Ive only ever been on a cruise in winter in Germany!! And 2 weeks in India sounds fab!!

Mama Zen said...

India! How fabulous!

buffalodick said...

What a vacation you had! You really got around!

Akelamalu said...

It seems so long ago now Catsngrams, glad you enjoyed reading about it.

Thanks for the accolade G-man ;)

It was fab Sue! Welcome here and thanks for commenting. :)

I'm so pleased you've enjoyed my travels Spiky. We have a day trip in a couple of weeks and then a weekend in Scotland at the end of May which I will be reporting on.

Yes it was SAW, it just finished it off nicely. :)

Why thankyou Nathan & Meagan and welcome to my blog. :)

I'm so happy you've enjoyed travelling with me Ron.

Why thankyou Cloudia x

I'm sure you'd enjoy a cruise Tony!

Oh yes do it Anndi I'm sure you and your daughter would love it.

Travelling the is definitely one of the best things about retirement RN!

Cruising somewhere warm when it's winter at home is wonderful Casdok.

We're so looking forward to India Mama Zen :)

We certainly made the most of it Buff :)

Akelamalu said...

Nathan & Meagan I'm sorry I tried to comment on your blog but it just won't let me put in the word verification. :(

Akelamalu said...

Sue - I just realised it's you Flowerpot! LOL

cheshire wife said...

I am so pleased that you enjoyed your cruise after a damp start.

BTW I saw your FIL on the local BBC news last night, I think.

maryt/theteach said...

Akalamalu, you are so beautiful in your photographs... and hubby is pretty handsome too! St. Vincent is probably the only Caribbean island we have not been too. I love the Caribbean! :)

Donnetta Lee said...

Wonderful vacation and what gorgeous picture. You sure look great-and happy. Glad you enjoyed yourself and made many happy memories! D

Akelamalu said...

Yes FIL was on North West news Cheshire Wife :)

Why thankyou Mary you're very kind. :)

Thankyou Donnetta we made many great memories. :)

happily retired gal said...

Wonderful post! Thanks so much for sharing your delightful vacation photos and memories with us.
Hugs and blessings,

Travis said...

I definitely enjoyed cruising "with" you. And you have inspired me to start considering a cruise for me and my Lady. We don't really care much for tropic locales, so we're thinking more of an Alaskan trip.

Anonymous said...

promising poet award for you.

Julia Smith said...

'We even bought a copy of the band's CD. I have to say it didn't sound as good when we played it at home!' - LOL!

I have enjoyed every moment of your cruise, Akelamalu. Thank you, thank you for taking us along. My husband and I are looking forward to spending Christmas with his family in Toronto this year, and for that we have to save and save and save. So my virtual trip with you was a tonic for my soul.

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CG said...

I have so enjoyed your cruise diaries. While not really wanting to go one myself you have almost won me over. Can't wait for Goa diaries!

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