My rather anti-climactic final trip report follows.Sunday, December 2
My time on the island is winding down: only four full days left and so many things on my list that I haven’t been able to do which will have to wait until June.
I spent some time in the morning on my trip reports and then headed to the pool for several hours. Again, I had it to myself for quite a while, which was surprising on a weekend.
I had made arrangements to drop by Ruby Bute’s house on the way to dinner to pick up my painting. She was just returning from a guavaberry festival in Colombier and was thrilled that she was given a guavaberry plant. I promised that I would spend more time with her when I return in June as she was complaining about the short amount of time we had spent together; she is convinced she can teach me to paint. (I think not!) My friend and I then headed to Grand Case to have dinner at La Villa, another first for me.
We were the first patrons of the evening. The service was friendly and attentive, and the place was offering $1 = 1€. For 49€, a patron could have their choice of one appetizer, one entrée, and one dessert. The amuse bouche was a sweet potato drink? Mousse? Tasty.
I chose roasted sea scallops with creamy asparagus emulsion and shaved parmesan for an appetizer. The flavors were good, but I thought the scallops were a little overdone. My entrée was lamb chops with a parsley crust, and it was wonderful.
The trio of ice creams was a nice way to end the meal, although it wasn’t the end. The complimentary rhum was a fruity combination – I can’t remember what fruits. Overall, I thought La Villa was nice with good food but not my top French-side choice.Monday, December 3
Spent the day at the condo doing not much of anything; then it was time for the TTOL Meet and Greet. I had prepared name tags ahead of time on what I thought was adhesive paper stock, only to find it was just regular card stock. Embarrassing! So we punched holes in the name tags and put them on buttons or strung necklace chains through the holes; where there’s a will, there’s a way. Not many of my photos from the event turned out, but I will post the ones that did in the People Talk thread. I was very pleased that all 24 people who said they would attend actually showed up, along with a few others invited by word of mouth. I think we likely had about thirty people in attendance. From what I’ve heard and read, people thought Bar Code’s services and food were good, and Bar Code management was very pleased as well. Success all around!Tuesday, December 4
A friend and I went to Rainbow Café Beach Bar for lunch. I had made reservations and was warmly welcomed upon arrival. (The valet parking sign was not up when I arrived so I had to “make a loop” and parked by the church.) My friend hadn’t arrived yet so I went down to the beach for awhile. There is now a ledge that I don’t recall being there before, and I picked chairs below the ledge. The water came up under our chairs!
Our food server didn’t understand English very well so service wasn’t quite as good as I would have liked. Additionally my friend’s lunch was served well before mine arrived. I noticed our waiter and a waitress talking and pointing to our table; not sure what that was about, but my lunch of scallops and prawns eventually arrived. The presentation was stunning but food was just OK.
The beach was gorgeous.
Dinner was very low key at Dinghy Dock.Wednesday, December 5
Last full day on the island. I worked on packing, which was a bit of a trick. I had purchased some chutneys from Cindi Frye, which added 9 lbs. to my luggage weight. Additionally, the painting I purchased from Ruby Bute was 16 x 16 so I opted to pack it in a suitcase; it added thickness as she had put it between some stiff packing materials. I visited The Horny Toad again and made reservations for next November and also managed a few hours at El Zafiro.
Service wasn’t good: I had to go up to the bar to get a drink after waiting at least 15 minutes for the server to finish chatting with others, which he never did.
My last dinner was at Le Moulin Fou and consisted of a crab/avocado salad (plus an unexpected green salad – huge!) and an absolutely marvelous duck confit shepherd’s pie.Thursday, December 6
Departure day. I met a friend for breakfast at a new place in Maho: Cape Café. I had seen an ad for it on the door of the women’s restroom at Karakter, of all places, and subsequently heard it is getting good reviews. It is across from Hole in the Wall and is sparkling clean. The menu is not extensive, consisting primarily of crepes and sandwiches; I don’t think any actual cooking is done here. The crepes made for a very light breakfast, but they were good.
Back to the condo to make sure I was ready for my noon check-out. My flight wasn’t until 5 p.m. but I was able to store my luggage in my car; the entire complex is gated, and my car was in direct view of security so I was comfortable with that arrangement. I decided to walk to Bar Code to kill some time before leaving to drop off my car and had another good meal there.
At the airport after getting my name checked off on a paper list, I didn’t have to wait more than five or so minutes before I was allowed to enter the tents. Baggage weighed and dropped off; I was pleased that although I was overnighting at DFW, I was able to check my luggage through to PDX since my stay at DFW was so short. Then it was into the departure tent; I was surprised at how full it was on a weekday, but I did find a seat and also found IslandGem and was able to say goodbye.
The flight to MIA was uneventful, as was the flight to DFW. I checked in to the Grand Hyatt about 1 a.m. and was able to sleep for about four hours before another uneventful flight home to PDX, where the 45-degree drop in temperature was a rude awakening to reality.
This was another wonderful trip. The major drawback is the godawful traffic in Simpson Bay for reasons no one can explain: fewer accommodations open so fewer tourists; where is all the traffic coming from? I also missed not having an ocean view from the condo in Cupecoy and won’t make that mistake again. I was on island for 21 nights; the lights in the golf course were on for only three of them, causing me to be a little jittery driving through there later in the evening.
It was very nice to connect with so many folks that I see only online for the rest of the year, and the sails on Enigma/Celine 3 were both memorable. With the exception of a couple of rainy days, the weather was spectacular! The water is noticeably cooler at this time of the year vs. in June. Participating in the toy drive was rewarding. June 2019 can’t come soon enough!
If you missed them, following are LINKS to my prior trip reports.Week 1Week 2Part 3Part 4