It was an early start and a rude awakening this morning. We had planned to be up early and set the alarm accordingly, but before it went off and before we were awake, our breakfast arrived. Not sure if we put the wrong time or they were just early, but we were up and eating breakfast earlier than planned. We got ready and watched as our ship entered the Bridgetown, Barbados harbour. There was an Oceana ship in already and we watched as a Royal Caribbean one docked behind us. A Norwegian one was just coming in when it was announced that we could go ashore. We went out to a surprisingly quiet gangplank and dock and took a photo of the "Barbados" sign before finding the area for our tour.
We lined up with those who were already there and the others who gathered behind us. We had a little while to wait, but the bus came right to where we were and we were all aboard and left on time. We drove through Bridgetown in dense traffic, but once we cleared the city the roads were much quieter.
We reached Sunbury, an old plantation great house once owned by an optician with a hobby of photography. He became the Governor General of Barbados. We toured the house which was quite interesting as it was furnished in period fashion with many artefacts from the time of its early life in the late 1700s. The lowest floor housed old carriages and hostelry items. Someone from eastern Canada remarked that it looked like something you would see in Alberta - not sure if this was a compliment or a snide comment!
We had a brief stop in the gift shop before being taken to another building where two girls and our guide proceeded to put on a show about preparing rum cocktails, though there was more humour than serious instruction. This was followed by a demonstration of preparing fish cakes when they were joined by the chef. Naturally, there was much consumption of the products. I stuck to fruit juice and Christine water and we sampled the fish cakes. While this was all interesting and entertaining, it ate into the time that could have been spent seeing the island. Christine spent a short time seeking out flowers to photograph in the grounds.
We went from there to Gun Hill where there had been a signal station used by the British to watch for approaching - presumably enemy - ships. There was a good view over Bridgetown and the surrounding countryside, including of the cruise ships in the harbour.
From there we went to Orchid World which was a it of a disappointment. Few flowers were in bloom and we mostly looked a dozens of dry roots hanging in the air. This cannot be the season for orchids to bloom. The grounds were well laid out with fountains and sculptures. There was another opportunity to partake of the Caribbean libation.
We returned to the ship a bit earlier than the previous two days and went on board and had lunch in our room with provisions from the Neptune Lounge. Christine dozed on the veranda for a while and I read and started to label the day's photos before having a bath - a rare occurrence as I normally shower. This may not have been a good decision as my ageing joints had difficulty in levering me out of the bath.
We went for dinner and were again joined by the Albertan mother and daughter who had spent the day with a granddaughter who is married to a Bajan. We had decided to skip the string quintet and after a brief trip to the room we went to the show which was a dance performance and was very enjoyable. The illuminated scenery projected onto the stage backdrop was also impressive.
We had a walk round the ship and observed a fingernail of a moon and, I think, Saturn off the side of the ship. We returned to the room and Christine got things ready for tomorrow and I finished labelling the photos and writing up the journal.
Tomorrow is St Lucia, the only Caribbean island named after a woman.