Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Great Stirrup Cay

Some cruise lines own their own little island.  NCL has a little number called Great Stirrup Cay, in the Bahamas, about 30 miles off the coast of Florida.  Although I'm not on an NCL cruise, our cruise ship has use of Great Stirrup Cay for the day.

According to the brochure we picked up on the island, there are lots of activities.  According to our particular cruise, much fewer of those activities are available to us.  According to the weather, nobody is doing anything.

After breakfast, we piled on to a tender over to the island.  By the time we'd arrived, it started raining.  My Dad grabbed some shelter; my mom and I looked at the little shops (which were protected only by sun parasols, so all their goods were quickly becoming soggy), and the snorkelling desk (manned, inexplicably, by entertainers from our ship, who hadn't been on the island before and therefore could reliably answer very few questions).  After an hour had passed, the rain had not stopped.  If anything, it had become more severe; the sandy beach was turning muddy.  We gave up, piled back into the tender, and returned the ship.  I believe it stopped raining just as we were returning.

(I showered and set all my wet -- although unused -- gear to dry, and went up for lunch.  Now, a couple hours later, it looks as though the sun is coming out and I could, in theory, get back into my snorkel kit, queue up for another tender, and give it another go.  Practically speaking, though, this is not a good plan.  I'm already warm and dry and dressed for dinner; I've got plans for one last round with our trivia team in an hour and a half; and -- although the rain has stopped, it's still pretty overcast, so there's no guarantee the rain won't start up again if I tried to set foot on the island.  The only way this plan would have worked was if I had managed to snorkel in the morning, giving my stuff time to dry out before I have to pack it tonight.  If I did a late snorkel, I'd be stuck packing a wet wetsuit, which does not appeal.)

So, this is pretty much an end to our wild little Caribbean adventure.  It -- at least partially -- was the relaxing week we were looking forward to.  Mostly, I managed my goal of having a really solid break from daily life.  Oddly, though, this isn't a vacation I don't want to leave.  In fact, I'm kind of eager to get back to my regular life, which, I guess, is a good thing.

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