Posts Tagged ‘window seat’

Window Seat: San Diego Babymoon, Day One, 05.12.12

This post (along with all of the other San Diego posts that will follow) were actually written while in San Diego. I hope you enjoy this recap of our babymoon! This one isn’t very picture-heavy, but some of the later ones have TONS!

***

We left the house at a little before seven this morning. Traffic wasn’t too bad, and we quickly dropped our car off and took the shuttle to the airport.

I have a story to tell about this vacation first. We earned the miles from Travel Hacking (thanks Steve!) so this trip was already virtually free. There were various fees and taxes and so forth, but by and large, we’re going to San Diego, for a week, with airfare, and a few attractions (San Diego Zoo, Zoo Safari, SeaWorld, a tour of San Diego’s old brothel district, and a sunset cruise) for only using select credit cards for about six months. We could have been more efficient with our miles, for sure, but this works great for us.

After we got our airline tickets, Tina still had 60,000 miles left over. She called American Airlines, told them we were going on our babymoon, and asked if we could use the 60,000 miles to upgrade our flights to first class. Much to our surprise and delight, they agreed and gave us the first class upgrade for free!

I have to say – flying first class was a huge mistake. I can’t go back to coach. I was comfortable. Not comfortable for flying on a plane, but comfortable.

Flying is ruined for me now. First class is the way to fly.

We made it to Dallas on time, and we grabbed a bite to eat at the food court. Moon Pie was kicking up a storm, but I still can’t feel it yet.

Leaving Dallas, we hit a snag.

After boarding the plane, we had to wait for maintenance to come fix a toilet. That took about half an hour. After that, they announced there was an electrical short. Finally, after we had been on the plane, at the gate, for over ninety minutes, they apologized and put us on a different plane.

At long last, two and a half hours later, we were airborne. Yes, the delay sucked, but I’d rather have a delay than die on a plane, y’know?

On the longer flight from Dallas to San Diego, first class was AMAZING. If I was a drinker, I would have racked up. Several people around us were drinking wine; the lady behind me ordered Kahlua. I LOVE Kahlua. However, since Tina can’t drink, I don’t drink. It’s just fair. But I digress. Plenty of free drinks.

Rather than get a little bag of chex mix, we actually got a hot meal. We had the choice of a grilled chicken salad or a grilled chicken sandwich. Tina and I both took the sandwich, which came with a salad, a bag of pita chips, and some hummus. Unbelievably good. And just when we thought it couldn’t get better, they came by with warm cookies and milk in wine glasses. Seriously.

I can never fly coach again. On the return flight, I’ll have my camera ready to snap some photos.

San Diego was a surprisingly tiny airport! A very nice lady saw Tina and me trying to take a photo of ourselves with my cell phone, and she volunteered to take one for us.

And being the dork that I am, I took a photo of a cool seashell collage in the men’s room.

And another pic of an exhibit about airports in the airport…

A shuttle took us to Alamo, and we soon had our car, a Kia Forte, put our GPS in the windshield, and headed off to our hotel.

Here’s where the story gets interesting. We are staying at the Sheraton Marina and Bay Towers. We wanted to be in the Marina Tower; we discovered we were booked in the Bay Tower. Our desk clerk upgraded us for $20 a night to a nicer room in the Marina Bay. When we told him it was our babymoon, he gave us some free tickets to the breakfast buffet, too. Yes, I realize we had to pay for an upgrade, but I’ve checked in at hotels on some many other occasions and gotten nothing but a poor attitude, so getting to speak with someone who was willing to work with us was a great experience.

Oh, and best yet? This room has the best view I have EVER had from a hotel room (other than in a tropical locale). We can see the harbor and the skyline.

Parking does admittedly suck here, and it’s $22 a night. Yuck. But oh well. Can’t have everything.

We went to Wal-Mart tonight to buy some drinking water. We brought our water bottles and plan to stay hydrated. And as it was kind of late at this point, we stopped at a Subway for some sandwiches.

We’re about to hit the hay. It’s been a long day. Exercise was pretty lacking, but we’ll definitely get our activity in. Right now, I need some sleep.

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Window Seat: Antigua Honeymoon, Day Five, 10.13.10

For those of you wondering why I randomly have a detailed post (that is VERY picture-heavy) of our honeymoon over 18 months ago, it is because I am slowly merging all of my blogs together. Some posts are just dying, but my honeymoon posts are too special for me to do that. So, if you are not interested in living vicariously through my visit to Antigua in 2010, feel free to come back later. But if you want to check out what we were doing on the 5th day of our honeymoon, please, read ahead!

***

Oh, we are getting so close to the end of the honeymoon! That is just entirely too sad. But we’re still having fun, and I’m going to enjoy the next three full days as much as I can.

We had our breakfast “in bed” this morning. Technically, we had ours on balcony, but it was still nice, getting to eat a very light (read: skimpy) continental breakfast as we looked at our ocean view. We’re still hungry, though, so we’re going out to Bayside to eat a bit more here very shortly.

Various views from our balcony, albeit some with a telephoto lens…

Today is going to be a big rest day. We’re saving the pool for later tonight, as Tina is pretty burnt, and we don’t want it to be worse before our excursion to Bird Island tomorrow.

***

A few pictures on our trek to our second breakfast…

Breakfast at Bayside was pretty standard for here. They did have some breakfast burritos, and Tina got some type of almond biscuit that she enjoyed.

The birds have been having a lot of fun with the toast that we left on the balcony after our breakfast. It’s no wonder that the birds here are so unafraid of humans. If I was a bird on Antigua, I’d probably hang out near Sandals, too.

The bird on our balcony…

And another bird at Bayside…

***

Tie dying shirts was so much fun! There were more couples doing it than I would have guessed, based on the low turnout at bracelet making. There were only two colors, green and a purplish-reddish-pink color. They gave us pretty minimal directions, with their philosophy being “Every mistake is a new work of art.”

Some of the shirt designs turned out pretty neat. Tina wasn’t that pleased with hers, but I thought it was awesome. The guys doing the dipping said they had never seen a shirt come out like hers, with one color on the front and one color on the back. I think that makes it uniquely cool.

I was hungry, Tina not so much, so we stopped at Bella Pizzeria to grab some pizzas. This time, we ordered a margherita (which here is basically a cheese pizza) and the Calabrese pizza with ground beef.

Waiting for pizza…

While we were waiting, I went to the bar and got us two Miami Vice. I also got a small bag of popcorn, in case the alcohol hit hard, as it often does here. I’m such a light weight.

And the pizza…

The light-headedness waited until I got back to the room, but yeah, it hit. I’m starting to not like alcohol. Why can’t they just serve frozen blended smoothies here? I’d sign up for that. But in between a few slices of pizza, I ate the popcorn, and a few minutes later, the iron-stomach-effect of the alcohol had worn off.

We’re going to rest for a bit before we head to Bayside for the Italian Buffet at lunch. We only had a few slices of pizza, but we’ll definitely eat it later. This will be my late night snack instead of Cricketer’s.

***

Pics from around the resort…

Time spent relaxing in a hammock…

Including a shot of Tina’s wedding rings…

And one of the many beach weddings taking place here…

And the bride’s flowers…

I don’t think the themed buffets at Bayside for lunch are executed exactly the way they are written. Today was supposed to be Italian, and while the food was quite good, I would not call it Italian in any way at all. There was the Panini station again, a salad bar, desserts, and some different meats, including a cajun beef stew that was really good and some type of chicken. Again, all good food, but not Italian.

While we were waiting for our room to be cleaned, we played a gigantic game of chess. Tina had never played before, so I taught her how. She ended up winning; I knocked my king over in a sign of defeat.

We’re heading to the pool in a few hours to watch the sunset, have a drink or two before the swim up bar closes, and swim ’til our 9:15 at Kimono’s.

***

Yeah, we only swam for about an hour, tops. Once the swim up bar closed down, the pool cleared out fast. We went down around 5:15 so we could get some pizza (we ended up eating our late night pizza after I recovered from a quick nap) and a few drinks. I drank a Chocolate Monkey and a Banana Sip Sop; Tina got a Chocolate Monkey, and she asked for something frozen and peachy. The bartender gave her something with blue curacao and lots of peachy frozen goodness in a martini glass. No pictures, because by the time we traversed across the pool to our chairs, it had already melted and was no longer as pretty.

We did enjoy swimming briefly in the pool after dark, which was still quite warm from the hot sun all day, and we also spent some time in the supremely hot whirlpool. We’re retiring to the room now to rest a bit before our reservation at Kimono’s.

***

Kimono’s was so much fun! It was teppanyaki style, and we were seated with four other couples, so in the interest of not being obnoxious with my camera (and the fact that the food presentation wasn’t as important as the show itself), there are basically no pictures.

Okay, a few, including one of beer, but no food…

We all ordered an appetizer. I got ahi tuna, which was crazy spicy, and Tina got tiger prawn shrimp cocktail, which was excellent! Shrimp everything here has been delicious. I must remember, from now on, if shrimp is an option, that’s what I’m getting. I also ordered a salad, which came with some type of fruit vinaigrette. The salad was just okay. Tina got miso soup, which she enjoyed (but I thought was too strong.)

The chef, who was a black Antiguan, told us he was Japanese and joked with us during the entire meal. It was a great evening. We were served salmon first, then shrimp, then steak, and then chicken. All were excellent, and each was a different sauce. My favorite? Can you guess? Shrimp.

Dessert for us was apple fritters, which were just okay.

One of the best parts of the evening was getting to sit with other couples and just talk. We met some very nice people (whose names we did not get) from Philadelphia and Boston. We were seriously there talking about just whatever until 11:30. It was a great night.

Bird’s Island tomorrow! I can’t wait!

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Window Seat: Antigua Honeymoon, Day Four, 10.12.10

I have decided to consolidate all of my blogs, mostly because I can’t keep up with them. On one of my rarely updated Travel Blogs “The Window Seat,” I had some really nice posts about our honeymoon over a year and a half ago. I don’t want to lose those, so I am slowly migrating those posts here. This is the post for Day Four. And be warned – this is VERY, very, ridiculously picture heavy.

This is copied and pasted exactly as it was written in Antigua, back in October of 2010.

* * *

We went to Bayside after a later sleep-in than usual of 7:30. We both woke up tired but agreed to go out and about and perhaps nap by the pool. Bayside is definitely our favorite of the two restaurants that serve breakfast; I’d much prefer to eat breakfast with the ocean beside me than in a building.

The beautiful morning we woke up to…

Sights on the way to Bayside…

And I love passion fruit; that is one thing I will definitely miss when we get back home. I’ll have to see if Whole Foods carries it.

I also got an omelet made at the omelet bar this morning. Very good. Probably one of the best omelets I’ve ever had.

Yummy, yummy food… and fish in a vase…

Me, sweaty at the table…

Boots came back to visit!

The view from our table…

A few sights after breakfast…

We spent the entire morning at the pool, both lounging in a mostly shaded area and occasionally venturing out into the pool to cool off. When the swim-up bar opened at 10:30, we each got a drink called a Miami Vice, which was a nice patriotic conconction consisting of frozen strawberry margarita, pinna colada, and topped off with vodka and blue curacao. Pretty yummy, although once again, it hit me hard, combined with not enough water and too much sun. Not painfully hard this time, but definitely a little wobbly.

Putting suntan lotion on my face, NOT doing a Macaulay Culkin impression…

A melting Miami Vice…

Tina enjoying said drink…

The swimmers are thirsty!

As soon as the pizzeria opened, we ordered a vegetarian pizza and a pepperoni pizza. It was really nice to eat pizza by the pool, even if I did drain my ice cold Diet Coke almost as soon as I opened it.

We have the sunset cruise this afternoon, so there will probably be a nap going on very shortly.

***

The sunset cruise was amazing. Tina called the tourism desk to ask how we should dress for it. We were told to wear something we could wade out into the water in. Once we got there, the catamaran (called Wadadli Cats) came right up to the beach and a staircase extended down from the deck. It was a little steep but not difficult to climb. (Getting off was a bit trickier because it was dark, but I made it okay.)

I realize I’m saying amazing a lot, but so many things here are amazing, and it would just feel like I was trying to use a GRE vocabulary if I just started busting out bigger words, because… well, everything is amazing!

The obligatory couple shot…

My beautiful bride…

There were about eight couples on the boat or so. The crew was a lot of fun and very friendly. I also learned a cool bit of history, too. Yesterday, Anne told me that the name of the island that we can see so easily from here is called Sister Island. While driving past it, there were some rocks nearby. I asked Karen, one of our tour guides, about them, and she said that the rocks used to be another island, and the two were called Sisters Islands. In the 1920s or so, an earthquake hit, one sank (the one that was just rocks), and now, the remaining island is called Sister Island.

The lone Sister Island…

We also drove past a gorgeous mansion on a cliff that is owned by Giorgio Armani. Karen said it was worth over 5 million US dollars. It was truly exquisite; I’d love to live there.

There were some rain clouds in front of the sun at points, but after sunset, they had just created some gorgeous pink, purple, and orange clouds. It would have been nice to have no clouds before sunset, but it was still such a wonderful, romantic, beautiful afternoon.

Various pictures from the Amazing Sunset Cruise…

And for those of you who would rather watch the video, you can see that below.

We have reservations at the OK Corral for 8:15; I am now starving! It’s a Tex Mex restaurant. Also, at 11:00, there is a Chocolate Buffet. I don’t even know what that is, exactly, but I can’t wait to find out!

***

OK Corral was a wonderful restaurant. It was located on the second floor above Bayside restaurant, next to the piano bar. We were given chips and guacamole, and we also ordered an appetizer each, popcorn prawn for Tina and chicken wings with ranch dressing for me. Both were absolutely amazing. Once again, I could have made an entire meal out of the chicken wings alone.

The piano bar…

My beautiful bride, while we are looking at our menus…

The front of the menu…

And the start of the food…

And our cool, cool water in sweaty blue goblets (because it is SO freaking hot!)…

Tina ordered BBQ ribs, and I got tequila citrus chicken. I’m not a huge fan of tequila, but I decided to try it. I’m glad I did; the chicken breast was cooked wonderfully. It was served with mashed potatoes, a roasted red pepper, some pineapple jalapeno salsa, and an ear of corn that was slathered in some type of herbed butter. I was trying to figure out what the herb was so I can replicate it at home, but I’m not entirely sure.

For dessert, I got tres leeches cake and Tina ordered chocolate mocha caramel cake. Both were good, but we each agreed that we liked our own better.

We also met the restaurant manager, a pleasant man named Garth. He also took a photo of us before our dinner arrived. He saw me playing with my camera and said, “Are you looking at her naked pictures? Because she’s right here with you!” I replied, “Yes, but she isn’t naked NOW.” The people here all have a great sense of humor.

A photo of us taken by Garth…

And some shots taken from the table…

A cool drinking glass display that I thought was fascinating…

The staircase leading out of the piano bar…

On our way back to the room, I stopped at a bar and ordered another Miami Vice. It has become my new favorite drink here.

Oh, and also, Tina liked this painting and thought about stealing it, but it was too firmly attached to the wall. Probably couldn’t have made it through customs, anyway.

***

The chocolate buffet was nice, but I’m not sure if it was worth staying up ’till 11:00 for. It was basics; small pastries, fruit skewered for a milk chocolate fountain, some rice krispie treats, but it was still nice. And very, very rich. We both wanted milk when we were done, even though there was none to be found that late.

Late Night Fountain Couples Shot…

I was still hungry, though, so we decided to take advantage of the fact that Cricketer’s Pub is open until 2 a.m. for late night snacks.

Yeah, Cricketer’s Pub is definitely our least favorite place here. Service has, both times, been ridiculously slow. Last night, Tina even had to track down a menu for us, because the waitress completely ignored us, even walking right past us at one point with a menu in her hand that she had just taken from another couple after their order. But we eventually ordered, and I got some nachos and a turkey club to take back to the room.

Forty minutes later, after several people who were even there AFTER us got their food, our order finally arrived. The food was quite tasty, but I just can’t understand why it would take longer for our food when the only thing they do to it is wrap it in saran wrap.

Oh well. Cricketer’s Pub is on our list of places to “not waste our time” here, and the next time someone from management asks about our experience, I may let them know. Food = good. Crappy service = bad.

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Window Seat: Antigua Honeymoon, Day 3, 10.11.10

I have decided to consolidate all of my blogs, mostly because I can’t keep up with them. On one of my rarely updated Travel Blogs “The Window Seat,” I had some really nice posts about our honeymoon over a year and a half ago. I don’t want to lose those, so I am slowly migrating those posts here. This is the post for Day Three.

This is copied and pasted exactly as it was written in Antigua, back in October of 2010.

***

This morning was the prettiest morning we’ve had yet while we’ve been here. The sky was a perfect blue and there wasn’t a cloud in it.

View from the 5th floor…

Sister Island, off in the distance…

More views of the resort…

The elevator ride down…

The various sights on the way to breakfast…

The sign for the outdoor pizzeria…

An Antiguan snail…

This was above the swim-up bar by the pool…

Where many activities, including bracelet making, are held…

We went to Mario’s for breakfast this morning. It was largely the same buffet as they had at Bayside, although there were grilled tomatoes with mozzarella, eggs benedict, quiche, and pancakes available in addition to the rest.

I ended up getting four plates this morning, although in my defense, they weren’t all crammed full and I didn’t completely polish off ANY plate. And yes, I most definitely LOVE passion fruit! I’m not sure I entirely care for the pancake syrup they have here; there is some spice in it, perhaps nutmeg or allspice or something similar, that I’m just not that fond of. It was better on the french toast than the pancakes, so I’ll probably stick to french toast while I’m here.

The tables in Mario’s…

The ceiling in Mario’s…

More inside Mario’s…

And the food at Mario’s…

We have definitely decided we’re going to go to Bayside for breakfast from here on out, just because it’s basically the same food and we’d rather eat by the ocean than in a restaurant.

As part of being on a honeymoon, we also get a “breakfast in bed,” which I thinks amounts to room service. We stopped by this morning and signed up for it; it’s a continental breakfast, so we may end up going out for a hot breakfast that morning, too. We’re doing it on Wednesday.

Views from around the resort…

“Lee-zard!”

Flowers from around the resort…

The restaurant Barefoot by the Sea…

The pool, from a distance…

The back of the swim-up bar…

More pool pictures…

We went down to the beach this morning and tried one of the water bikes. It wasn’t nearly as scary as I expected it to be (and they actually had a life jacket that fit me – shocker!), but it was definitely a workout. My legs and lungs were burning by the time we were done. I was amazed at how difficult it was! That was definitely some cardio for the day. Best yet, we also found three sea shells! There were so many people out, I didn’t really expect to find any, but we did. Tina is planning some type of Christmas ornament with them.

More beach pictures…

After hosing off in the outdoor shower, we reapplied sunscreen (we should have brought more – we’ll definitely run out before we’re done here, and it’s crazy expensive in the resort shops) and hit the pool to cool off. We also killed time lounging in the water until the swim-up bar opened. Several people were doing the same thing. We were like vultures for alcohol. My drinking plans for today were to stay more hydrated with water (which I did) and limit myself to one drink at a time (which I also did). Tina got something called a Banana Sip Sop, which was pink and fruity, while I got another Chocolate Monkey. After that, I was done drinking until after lunch. No “I hate alcohol – I want to barf and why won’t my eyes focus!” sensations this time, so this is the way to go.

Then we relaxed in the shade on some lounge chairs for an hour or so and read our books. We’re about to go hit Bayside again for the Mexican Buffet they have on Mondays, and then we’ll swing by Bella Napoli, get some pizzas, head back to the room, and crash for the hottest part of the day before we head out for the evening! No concrete plans tonight; it’s nice not having to keep checking the time!

***

We made it to Bayside a few minutes before they opened for the buffet, so we stopped at the nearby bar and ordered some drinks. I got a Blue Lagoon and Tina got something called Gentle Kisses. Both were delicious, although with so much sun and not enough water, I did get a little wobbly headed.

While we were drinking, some dude on the beach was trying to get me to buy an excursion package from him. That’s my biggest complaint about this place; there are too many outside vendors on the beach to bug us. I had to tell him twice I wasn’t interested. I’m interested in excursions, but I’m only going to do them through Sandals. For all I know, he operates a White Slave Trading Ring, and Tina and I would find ourselves sold into captivity.

The buffet was quite nice, although I apparently do not know what Authentic Mexican is. I wasn’t expecting Taco Bell cuisine or even El Mazatlan food, but it definitely wasn’t what we got. Delicious and no complaints, but not what we were expecting.

First plate was a few different types of meat, along with a delicious fish fillet, and some mashed potatoes. There was also a pasta bar, where you pick your pasta and what you want in it and what sauce, and they whip it up right then. Very tasty. I got bow tie pasta, chicken, tomatoes, sun dried tomatoes, onions, and some type of tomato sauce, sprinkled with fresh parmesan. Delicioso!

Third plate was a panini, because they had a make-your-own panini bar! I had to do it, just for the spectacle of it alone. Fourth was shared dessert with Tina, and fifth was a bite of pound cake, marshmallows, and blueberries dipped in a white chocolate fountain. (Milk or dark would have been even better.)

Views from our table…

We ended up stuffed. No extra pizza today. We’re heading back to the room for a power nap in the hottest part of the day. We were both drenched with sweat by the time we got back. (Granted, I was drenched with sweat by the time we got to the lobby on the elevator ride down, but still…) It’s fricking hot today! I just cranked the AC down to 68, and we’re about to relax indoors for a bit. We still have tons of time left here, and we see no need to rush ourselves.

We also ended up playing a game of pool at Cricketer’s while we were waiting for our room to be cleaned. We both pretty well sucked, but technically, I won. Yay me!

***

At five o’clock, there was a manager’s cocktail hour. Not entirely sure what that was, but we decided to go down.

The Entertainment Board, which lists all Sandals activities, such as the cocktail hour…

Basically, several guests gathered, all of the managers were there to mingle, and we were served various cocktails and hors dorves. We spent the hour with a very nice woman named Anne, who was the Manager of Public Relations. She was a fascinating person; she was originally from Canada, although I believe she said her mother was originally from Antigua, and she just saw the advertisement for the manager’s position, applied, got the job, and moved. She’s only been here for four months. She was a lot of fun to spend time with and told us a great deal about life here in Antigua. (She also finally confirmed how to pronounce it – the locals call it Anti-Ga, with a hard G, rather than Anti-gwa, so we’re going with the local pronunciation.)

Near the end, they asked for all of the newlywed husbands to come up front. I assumed they were going to do some sort of newlywed game, and Tina insisted I go. What the hey, right? Why not? Well, they were doing a game, but it wasn’t an “answer questions about your spouse” game.

It was a dance contest.

Yikes. If you know me, you know I have NO rhythm.

But you know what, I decided, when my turn came, I am on vacation with people I will never see again, so I got out there and gave it my best. I’ll point out that my best was AWFUL, but it was fun, people cheered (although people did cheer for everyone), and it was fun. And not nearly as embarrassing as I would have guessed, because really – when will I ever see ANY of these people again?

The lady laughing is Esther, who helped us set up our excursions. Very nice lady. Every time she saw us on the resort, she cried out, “My favorite couple, the Longmans!” Granted, our last name is Logsdon, but it was still extremely nice. I know she isn’t laughing at me dancing in this picture…

…but she might be laughing at me out of sight in this picture… and for once, I am not sorry a picture turned out extremely dark… (see full if you want to get a faint glimpse of me making a fool of myself)

After the contest was over, we found out that the winner won a cabana rental for the day, which costs $99. I really wish I had tried harder when I found that out. The winner (and those who got the loudest applause) were those who were the most risque. Maybe if I had stripped off my shirt and slung it around my head I would have won? But that might have made me a whore, so perhaps it’s best that I didn’t do that. (Note to those who don’t know me: I would NEVER have done that. I’m almost too modest to even take my shirt off at the pool. Although I am doing that here, because I’ve seen guys who were crazy fit with eight-pack abs and guys with bigger guts than me and way paler.)

We also got a 10% off coupon for the resort shop, so we chose tonight to buy our souvenirs. I got a little frog for my office, a Christmas ornament for our tree, a cap and t-shirt for me, a shirt and bracelet for Tina, and a big metal lizard for the house. Every time we see a lizard here, one of us cries out, “Lee-zard!” It just seemed like it would be a good addition to our house.

Postcards were also bought for our parents, along with stamps. It costs thirty-five cents to mail a letter to America from here. How ridiculous is that? I have to pay forty-four cents at home to mail my water bill three miles down the road! We’re also sending ourselves a postcard, because we’re huge dorks like that.

We are, once again, doing two dinners. We went to Barefoot as they are seafood themed, and where could we get better seafood than on an island? Every single time we have gotten shrimp, it has been amazing! We got a grilled shrimp appetizer, and once again, it was amazing. They also served us bread with some type of herbed butter – also quite yummy.

The main course was, for Tina, a Seafood Sampler, which consisted of mussels, scallops, calamari, and shrimp, all grilled. I tried a bite of the calamari and mussels, and they were pretty good. I can only imagine the scallops and shrimp were equally amazing.

Alas, I wish I had gotten the spiny lobster. I ordered the Blue Marlin, because I’ve never had it. It was okay (and the rice bed it was served on was the best rice I have ever had). The tempura veggies that came with it were also quite good. The fish itself was a pretty healthy serving, but it was too fishy tasting, if that makes sense. Honestly, it was the fishiest fish I’ve ever fished. Er, eaten. Definitely gonna stick with shellfish from here on out, because I think I’m just more of a shellfish fan than fish fan.

There is a fire show at the Beachside BBQ at Bayside, and we are going to that at nine. And yes, we’re probably going to eat again. Don’t judge me!

***

Yeah, the fire show didn’t happen. We were there. We were there from 8:50 to 9:40, but there was no fire show. Not sure why, either. That kinda sucks, because we were really looking forward to it.

Buffet was good food, as always. I got jerk chicken, pork, some mac and cheese (that was crazy spicy), and half of a baked potato with some butter, sour cream, cheese, bacon, and chives. Very good. I went small servings and didn’t clean off my plate, because we weren’t really that hungry. I definitely got dessert, too. There was a chocolate mousse, shaped like a pyramid with a cherry on top, that was delicious.

And a few more pictures taken at night on the way back to our room…

And lastly, a short video recorded on the way back to the room to preserve the very unusual nature sounds you’d hear as you walk about at night…

It’s funny how a long day of doing nothing can tire you out. We are retired for the night. Our wake up call is placed and the Do Not Disturb light is lit.

Great end to a great day.

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Window Seat: Antigua Honeymoon, Day One, 10.9.10

I have come to the slow realization that, for me as a blogger, I do not do well to have several blogs scattered throughout the interwebs. I have had several blogs here at Stellar Path, one at Stellar Eats, and frankly, the one I update, by far, most frequently is here. I’m slowly phasing those out. However, I enjoy some of the content I have on those other blogs, and I am going to bring that content HERE to Stellar Path before I delete the other blogs. Even though this was over a year and a half ago, I’m going to begin posting the recap of our honeymoon that I had posted on my hardly-ever-updated-because-I-hardly-ever-travel travel blog The Window Seat. I hope you enjoy! (I will warn – this is VERY picture-heavy.)

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Please note – this was all written while in Antigua on my iPad on October 9, 2010. Also note – I took HUNDREDS of photos, more than I will probably post here. We were in Antigua from October 9th to October 16th. Some of the photos were just of the various sights around the resort and aren’t specific to any particular day, but I will still post those on that day’s post.

The first day of our honeymoon has already been incredible. Granted, we are dead tired and are going to crash hard very shortly, but we still got to do some awesome things today.

We had to leave our house at 2:45 in the morning to make it to the airport in time to catch our flight. Thankfully, our flight was on time, and we left Nashville at 6 a.m. and made it to Miami at a little after 9 Eastern time.

Me Cheesing in Nashville Airport pre-dawn…

Tina enjoying Burger King before our first flight of the day…

Our first plane of the day…

Miraculously, our next flight was on time, too. I’ve never had two flights in the same day that were both on time. I’m not sure I’ve ever had ANY flight that was exactly on time, but these were. It was two hours and forty-three minutes from Miami to Antigua (I remember that because I thought it was a touch peculiar that such an exact time was given).

A pink cart and the interesting airport floor in Miami…

Extreme close up of us in Miami on our fairly brief layover…

Our second (and last) plane of the day…

Somewhere en route to Antigua…

Me Cheesing on the Plane, en route to Antigua…

It was a sunny, warm, humid, tropical day when we landed on this tiny little island out in the middle of the ocean. The surprising thing was that we didn’t drive up to the airport; a truck with stairs on it drove up to the plane, and that was how we disembarked. Pretty neat and definitely something I had never done before.

As we entered the airport in Antigua, there was a lady with complementary drinks out front. I’m not sure exactly what it was, but it was pink and tasted guava mango-y. Not sure, but it was nice and definitely refreshing.

Customs went pretty quickly. We were on a Sandals van with three other couples on our way to Sandals within an hour.

I learned two things about Antigua during the trip. One, they drive on the “wrong” side of the road. Not a big deal, and it was a new experience. But two, all vans here are equipped with a magic horn, that I am convinced keeps them from having horrible wrecks. Even though it was only a fifteen minute drive from the airport (thank God – I don’t know if I could have endured longer), there were at least three distinct occasions when I was sure we were about to have some type of fender bender (at best) or head-on collision (at worst). However, the driver kept honking his horn and just kept going, so the only logical conclusion I can draw is that the horn is a magical apparatus that keeps vans from wrecking.

When we got to the resort, we were absolutely pampered. We were given a chilled wet cloth to freshen up with, and then we were provided our own Sandals rep to give us the run-down of what we could expect. We were given a glass of champagne and a small plate of hors d’oeuvres while she discussed our options. We had a $250 spa credit, and we decided to use a little bit of our wedding money to get a bit extra and get a 1.5 hour couples massage, complete with some kind of fancy bath and champagne. Not sure exactly what it entails, but we thought it sounded like fun, and we signed up for it on Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m.

Tina and I were both still running on fumes, as we had been up for over thirty hours at this point (barring what tiny cat naps we were able to get on the plane), but we were starved, so we went to one of the restaurants called Barefoot by the Sea. It was an open-wall, open-air restaurant on the beach. Tina got burger and fries; I got chicken quesadillas, and we both had lemonade. Sorry, no photos of this. It didn’t even occur to me at the time, but I will do my best for the rest of the trip to get photos of our food. After the meal, we were still hungry, so Tina got a pina colada tart with ice cream, and I got flan with fresh cantaloupe. Both were delicious, but hers was better.

No photos of the food, but here is Tina and you can see her lemonade…

The birds that are EVERYWHERE (this is IN the beach-side restaurant)…

The ceiling of Barefoot…

The view from Barefoot…

A nearby Steel Drum band playing during our meal…

Just a few shots of paradise from our first day…

At this time, we were still hungry, so we stopped at a pizzeria and got a single-serving pepperoni pizza to share.

Some hours later, we decided to go out for dinner. We went to Cricketers Pub, a British pub. Tina ordered fish and chips; I ordered a steak, served with garlic mashed potatoes, steamed veggies, and blue cheese butter. We also got fried calamari for an appetizer. Sorry, no picture of that. It was so good, we had eaten it before I remembered I planned to photo-document all of our food. Tina was starting to crash, so we got our food to go. This time, I did take a photo of my food at least, albeit after I unwrapped my meal in my room. Still, is that not the most delicious looking steak?

I’ll be honest – there is going to be a LOT of food eaten here. I’m not even going to lie and claim otherwise. My plan is just to exercise so much that it doesn’t even matter that my calories will be a bit higher here than they are back home.

The weather has been beautiful. The resort is gorgeous and truly as nice as the photos.

Oh, and our room is amazing. Shower stall, king-size bed, and a jacuzzi tub in the bathroom.

The king size bed…

Coolest ceiling fan ever…

In-room Bar…

Shower Stall…

Jacuzzi Tub…

Bathroom Twin Sinks…

We’re already in love with this place.

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Note from 2012 – More recaps to come! Hope you enjoyed this one!

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