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Tales from Grenada, Part I

Fantasy Pool

I started this post on the weekend…it was only going to be Part I so I stupidly typed it straight into the little box online, and lost it when the browser froze. Sigh. Anyway, to continue…or start again, whatever!

Last week I did some 4-island hopping but the most story-telling-worthiness comes from Grenada. First we start with getting there. While my luggage went to Guyana. I was going from Trinidad to Antigua Tuesday morning, when I was told Monday night I’d be heading to Grenada after Antigua. So, smart me, decided to check my one small piece of luggage for the flight from Antigua to Barbados as soon as I arrived in Antigua (so I wouldn’t have to go to another meeting with suitcase in tow, looking like I homeless, begging people like a poh-me-won (sp?) for a corner to leave the luggage). Bad move. Never do things early.

I told the Caribbean Star check-in people, I am NOT going to Guyana as per my original reservation. I am STOPPING off in Barbados and need to pick up my suitcase there. DO NOT TAG MY SUITCASE TO GUYANA. Oh, no, they said, you HAVE to pick up the suitcase and clear it through Customs in Barbados anyway, because your onward flight is on BWee. Doh worry. You can tell where this is going, right?

I arrive in Grantley Adams International (Immigration Officer, who saw me just the day before looks a little hard at me, but I have an onward ticket, so I proceed). Make my way to the baggage belt. No suitcase. On to Baggage Claim, they check inside, no suitcase. Sigh. There’s no way they could have transferred it to BWee since I haven’t checked in on the BWee flight which is leaving in 30 minutes anyway, so I have hope that maybe it’ll be discovered in a corner somewhere. No such luck. I fill out a form. I leave the baggage claim area and any hopes I had of seeing fresh clothes in time for my meeting the next morning in Grenada.

When I explain my story to the Caribbean Star agent (after plowing my way through low-level, spiel-spouting, non-listening, generic counter staff – top of my newly revived hitlist: airport staff who think all passengers are as ignorant of airline procedures as they are) I see a lightbulb go off in her head. And she changes from the overly abrupt stone-faced person dealing with the group of irate cancellees ahead of me, to super helpful and friendly. Because it’s the airlines fault. What was the problem? “They should never have tagged your suitcase to Guyana. True we don’t transfer to BWee, but that flight you were on? that plane continues on to Guyana.” Big sigh. I tell them I am off to Grenada, make sure they bring my suitcase back to Barbados for when I pass through the next day.

Of course the flight to Grenada on Caribbean Star leaves late and I get out of the airport in Point Salines and into my taxi at 10:40 pm. No late night pharmacies or supermarkets that my taxi driver is aware of, so off to the hotel. I asked to be booked at Grenada Grand Beach Resort because I like the friendliness of the staff, even if the food is below par (very in some cases). I get there by 10:50 pm and the night staff tell me the plaza next door closes at 11. I rush over there, only to be told that the plaza closes at 10:55, which is now. Arrgghh! I give my sob story and they let me in telling me the pharmacy is still open. By the time I rush down the corridors and arrive in the pharmacy, my mind goes blank as to what I need. Fortunately, the woman in the store is a professional and walks me over to essential toiletries, which I gather up gratefully.

Flamboyant Breakfast - NUTMEG SYRUP!!But then I need detergent. No clothes remember? No problem…I get sent with the security guard to the supermarket. Which is closed, staff locking out cash register drawers etc. Doesn’t phase the guard though, who tells them the lady is buying something (I see their faces screaming NO, we’re CLOSED, but he ignores their looks) and walks me to the detergent. I pick up a little bag and we go to pay. Now that they have the opportunity to speak they say they can’t make change, but the guard just walks me out, saying I’ll pay in the pharmacy. Back at the pharmacy the nice lady has bagged my items, made out a receipt and is waiting. She adds in the detergent and sends me on my way. I feel really good heading back to the hotel – being frustrated and stressed and met by real gratuitous helpfulness (my purchases didn’t add up to that much) is great. And I now love Grenada more. Not only do they have nutmeg and nutmeg syrup, the people are cool.

I spend the rest of the night washing my clothes, hanging them near the a/c unit, falling asleep to Alton Brown on Cheese (Food Network!!) and dreaming of my clothes not drying in time. Which they did.

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5 Comments so far (Add 1 more)

  1. Alton Brown. Hmph. Vanilla. Hmph.

    1. Lilandra, Empress of Chocolate on December 22nd, 2006 at 6:31 am
  2. Lots of travel horror stories at the moment; have you seen the news about the fog over here? Heathrow: 3 days of all BA domestic flights cancelled, and then some. Shudder.

    G’s mom made it in yesterday – hooray!

    As for Grenada – sounds like they have lovely people! Glad they took care of you. Too bad the airlines were less diligent.

    2. ewe_are_here on December 22nd, 2006 at 10:53 am
  3. Oh, yes, I was watching the tales on BBC – and just thinking of the piles of people stuck in Heathrow unable to move…

    So great your MIL made it in!!

    3. chennette on December 23rd, 2006 at 4:34 pm
  4. Flying on Delta from jfk to georgetown in the wee hours of the morning, I realized that something was not right on our approach into guyana. All I was seeing iwere some mighty cloud formations and nothing else. After about what felt like an eternity going in circles, we were told that the fog at Timheri airport was so severe that we had to turn around and head for port of spain.
    Imagine the panic and frustration that erupted on the plane,after being told that some other airline would be chartered to take us out of trinidad.
    Eventually we landed at Piarco and everyone on the plane was in a state of panic. ( when will they be getting to Guyana ). The good news came when the captain announced that the fog in guyana had lifted and we would be on our way after refuling the aircraft. We got to Guyana a bit tired and sleepy several hours behind schedule, but otherwise ok.

    4. lawrence cully on July 2nd, 2009 at 7:25 am
  5. Yeah, fog is actually a normal thing in Timehri…happens alot. Sometimes they divert to Barbados until the sun comes out and it clears up. Not sure why an airport is in a fog prone area….

    5. Chennette on July 2nd, 2009 at 9:53 pm

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