We ate breakfast at the Solarium and then went ashore. Once we had passed through the terminal, we headed for the water taxis. It is just $6 for a full day pass. We get the water taxi to the beach, which is just 10 minutes across the bay. We are at the beach early; it is just 08:30 when we arrive there. We have a wander around the beachfront, it is a nice wee place and the people are very friendly. St Maarten is an island that is half governed by the French and half governed by the Dutch. Sounds like a recipe for disaster! We are in the Dutch half of the island, which is really cheap. Yet again there are rows upon rows of jewellery shops. A lot of passengers from the ship spend a lot of the time scouring these places for bargains, and I think that there are bargains to be had. If there is a specific watch or piece of jewellery that you need and you have done your research back home, then it is worthwhile (Just it is a long way to come back if anything goes wrong!!). As for us, we don’t need any
jewellery; so we hit the beach. We get two sunbeds and umbrella for the day and it includes a bucket of beers (5 beers) for $20 – not bad. We spend the morning sunbathing and paddling – it is really scorchio!!
At lunch we go to The Hard Rock Café, which is on the beachfront, and once again eat too much!!
We return to the beach and spend the rest of the afternoon sweltering, before catching the water taxi back to the terminal. I buy the obligatory tee shirt at one of the shops near the terminal. We pass through security and get back to the air-conditioned comfort of the ship. We get back to our cabin and go out on the balcony – and it is raining!! Which seems amazing, there has not been a cloud in the sky all day, and then this squall comes in from nowhere!!
We get showered and changed and go for pre-dinner cocktails in the Schooner bar, where the waiter yet again remembers my name! There is a trivia quiz going on so I take part, I get 12 out on 20; not bad for a one-man team. We go
for dinner at 17:45, our Brazilian waitress has also been ashore to the beach today, she tells us that she found it so warm; she thought she was back in Rio! The staff is so friendly, as well as our Brazilian waitress we have a waiter from the Philippines that we seem to see each night.
The meal is yet again delicious, although we are both still feeling the effects of the heavy lunch at the beach. The dinner menu on the cruise has been consistently of a very high standard, and the service has been excellent.
After dinner we wander round the ship and find a Margarita promotion that is offering drinks at cut-price, being sociable kinds we partake. We then come upon an ice show that has started, we have not booked, but we can stand at the back of the theatre and watch – the show is excellent.
It is then that I put into action my plan to make additional holiday spending money at the Casino Royale – it fails miserably.
We call it a night although it is still fairly early. We had a great day at the beach and are both feeling really tired (It’s amazing how lying on a beach all day can make you feel so tired!!). Di is determined to read her book that she was borrowed from the ship library, as she has only two days to complete it. I doubt if she gets through more than half a page each night before she is sound asleep – tonight is no exception!
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