Thursday, April 10, 2008

The Official Vacation Report

Ok, time for some of the vacation details. I won't bore you with descriptions of white sand and turquoise water, and the typical things that one would expect to find in the Caribbean, so I'll try to stick with things that stuck out as interesting to me. The thing about Harbour Island that differed from any other vacation spot that I've been to was the size of it. It was so small that there was no option to rent a car. The fastest vehicle that a tourist could rent was a golf cart. We decided not to bother and just walked around on the first day, but we had to cave in and rent one for the rest of the trip. Although any dinner spot was only a maximum of a 1/2 hour walk away, the streets were very dark. The supervisor at the first restaurant that we went to told us that we were crazy, and drove us home herself. It's not that the island is typically dangerous, but one never knows who is visiting there. In addition, the whole pregnancy thing makes walking a lot more tiring than usual. So we rented a golf cart, which isn't really driving, so it made the whole left-hand side of the road issue less of a concern.

Another interesting part of this island is that there is absolutely NOTHING to do there but lie on the beach, eat, and drink. Since I happen to be pregnant, my choices were even fewer. Yes, I was resentful about not drinking. I had a couple of virgin pina coladas, but they didn't quite cut it. Apparently there is a night club on the island, but it isn't open in the week. The restaurants close pretty early, and there is no main drag to walk around after dinner. This left us back in our room no later than 10pm every night. Adding to the island's nothing-to-do-ness, we didn't have a TV in our room. I think this is typical of most hotels on Harbour Island. Some of you probably don't think that this is a big deal, but we are talking about us. We are a TV kind of family, and usually have it on if Pumpkin is in bed. In fact, most of our intimate moments have been accompanied by the "music" of Jay Leno's monologues. Sexy, I know. I'm not sure if this will change when Conan takes over in a year or so. Nevertheless, I never felt bored, not with the trip, nor with the intimacy with or without Jay Leno's soundtrack. In the day, it was enough to be on the beach, floating around in the ocean on a body board, or just vegging out on our roof deck (!!!), listening to music. A setting such as the one described here forces one to read, which I don't do enough of at home, forces us to talk, which we could stand to do more of usually, forces us to get enough sleep, which almost no one ever does, and forces us to relax, which is easy to forget to do on a vacation in a busier spot. As for that roof-deck that I mentioned, it was like having another room. It was a great place to sunbath bra-less, although not topless. I'm not a topless kind of gal, even when I'm not pregnant. I am probably more modest now that I am pregnant, but so might you be if you had a round belly, a short waist, and an over sized rack that has nowhere to go but to rest on the belly.

You get the picture

From both the deck and our actual room, we overlooked the ocean. We typically left the windows open on both sides of the room to get a salty, ocean breeze blowing through. We never turned on the A/C. The hotel had more of a B&B atmosphere to it than a hotel, and is actually owned by Mark Messier. We just missed meeting Mark by a day or two, but we did have several chats with his brother who is managing the place right now. His brother is just as buff and beautiful, so he satisfied my pseudo-puck-bunny needs for the duration. Oddly enough, they didn't sell potato chips at the hotel.

Food was a bit of an issue. I like to eat when I like to eat, but on Harbour Island, one has to eat when food is being served. There is no such thing as breakfast at 11 am, with the exception of maybe one fast-food place that we frequented. Our hotel served breakfast from 8:30 to 9:30, and it wasn't until the second last morning that I even realized that we could get breakfast there. We like to sleep in, but one morning I was awake enough to catch a whiff of bacon, which drew me out of bed. By the time we got downstairs, breakfast was over. We tried to go to a deli for lunch around 2pm one day, but the deli was closed by then. Most days, we had lunch at a spot on the beach that had convenient hours, but if you got there too late in the day, e.g. 2pm, a lot of the food options were sold out. Imagine the disappointment of expecting to eat lobster quesidillas, but having to settle for hot dogs. Hot dogs with a bill of $40 for two, I might add. At least that included two Cokes and two sides of coleslaw. Oh well.

One thing that I didn't expect was the extent to which we missed Pumpkin. We found ourselves wishing that we had her with us, especially whenever we saw other families with their toddlers having a blast on the beach, or even eating with them in restaurants. When we got back to Toronto and hopped on an airport shuttle, we met a couple with their 2-1/2 and 1-1/2 year-old kids. We smiled wistfully, and asked them if they all had a great time. The husband faked a smile that was not really a smile, and shook his head vigorously. The couple tiredly suggested that we not attempt to vacation with children under age four. I'm inclined to believe them.

Other than the fact that there were wild chickens and their baby chicks running around all over the place, that pretty much sums up the holiday. Stay tuned for my next holiday posting, which should be in some time in 2012.


kittenpie said...

Sounds like a nice way to get in some R&R before baby comes! Where is harbour island, anyhow?

Chantal said...

Wow it really does sound relaxing. I had never heard of it.

nomotherearth said...

No TV AND no potato chips? Mr Earth would combust.

Am I in the minority in thinking that going on a vacation with small kids is not a vacation at all? More of a "trip".

Melissa said...

Sounds idyllic.

And welcome back (again!)

MLL said...

It sounds even smaller than Eleuthera. There, we did rent a was an old broken down heap with no A/C, but it got us all around the island. I also remember bringing most of our own food --we flew with a large cooler packed full of frozen foods, and a big suitcase full of non-perishables. I'm glad you got a break, and now hopefully the rest of your pregnancy will just fly right by :-)


petite gourmand said...

sounds nice
good idea to have a little getaway before baby #2 arrives.
40 bucks for hotdogs sounds a bit crazy though.