Oct 21, 2016 - Birthday in Paradise
Happy Birthday to me! I slept in on my birthday this morning. Was up by 8am though as we had plans to meet some new friends - Steven and Claire from Scotland - this morning at 10am to go see the big KLM 747 land at the Princess Juliana airport. We met this cute couple several days ago and enjoyed spending some time with them, so we asked them to join us to go see the airplanes land. We ate lunch at Sunset Beach Bar and Grill and then decided to spend the rest of the day together touring the island. Since we had a car and they didn't, we...Jump to full entry
Oct 19, 2016 - pool day
After a good night's sleep, we were up and in the pool by 9am. Since we didn't have anything planned for today and the weather was beautiful, we decided to just chill out in the pool. People started gathering around 9:30 and at 9:45, Michael arrive to lead us in water aerobics. Steve got back in the pool and joined me in 30 minutes of exercise. It was actually quite fun. Then we hung out on the lounge chairs and hopped in the pool when we got hot. We chatted with Steven and Claire from Scotland, and found out that she had been sick with a...Jump to full entry
Oct 18, 2016 - Changed Lives....
Today was our "Owner Update", and the shuttle van picked us up at 8:45 to take us to the Flamingo Resort - a sister resort to Royal Palm where we are staying. We checked in and then were greeted by Lynne. Lynne was a long-time resort manager all over the US who now lives on St. Maarten with her husband who also works with Diamond Resorts International. Lynne asked how long it had been since we had an Owner Update - three years - and she said she was going to "Change-Our-Lives". Right, whatever, just get on with it. So, we talked for a while...Jump to full entry
Oct 17, 2016 - Santino cruise
Today was motorboat cruise day - a package offered by our resort. The taxi driver picked us and 5 other couples up at the resort and took us across the bay to the dock at the Simpson Bay Resort. There we met up with 4 other folks that were staying at a sister resort called the Flamingo. We had a resort representative along for the ride, as well as the captain and female first mate. We headed out for a tour around the island, heading south from our resort. We passed the airport and Mullet Bay, and then on to the highest priced part of the...Jump to full entry
Oct 16, 2016 - 747 and Sunset
I slept in, again. I'm liking retirement! Lol - anyway, once I was up and moving, I sat out on the balcony again and enjoyed the start of another beautiful day. Around 10am, we headed over to Sunset Beach as a KLM 747 was scheduled to land at 10:55. We sat out on the deck, and at about 10:45 I walked down to the beach with my cell phone to take a video while Steve stayed on the deck with the camera. 5 minutes before the plane was scheduled to land, the beach got really crowded with people, all wanting to take pictures of the plane. And then...Jump to full entry
Oct 15, 2016 - Slow Saturday
After our day trip to Anguilla yesterday and being in the sun all day, today was a chill day. Nothing special on tap, so I slept in. After all, we are on vacation AND retired - I can get up whenever I want. Steve was up early, as usual, out on the balcony watching the day get started. The boats that have trips planned start their preparations early, and the staff here at the resort starts early getting ready for the day. After I was up and dressed, we decided to do a little necessity shopping - I needed some hair conditioner and we needed...Jump to full entry
Oct 14, 2016 - Lambada
We were up early today and left the room at 7:30 to walk around the bay to the Aqua Mania dock in front of the Simpson Bay Hotel. We checked in, and waited for our day trip to commence aboard the Lambada catamaran. We left the dock at about 9:00 with 58 other folks, heading to Prickly Pear Island to snorkel and to Anquilla for lunch. Once we cleared the bay, the crew asked for several strong men to help pull the sail. Steve hopped up and was joined by several other guys. The sail was up in a jiffy and we were on our way. It was a beautiful...Jump to full entry
Oct 13, 2016 - Sun and airplanes
Today, we didn't haven't anything exciting planned so we decided to head over to Maho Beach to watch the planes land. Normally, watching planes land wouldn't be so exciting, but here on the island, the planes land right over the beach! Pretty cool! But first, I needed a new bathing suit - I guess when we downsized, I went a little too far and got rid of all my bathing suits except one. And that one bathing suit never has time to dry out because we are in the water all the time. So, I went downstairs and asked one of the female staffers...Jump to full entry
Oct 12, 2016 - We said "No"
This morning, we left the resort around 8:30 and headed over to Oyster Pond to the Westin at Dawn Beach. (You may remember from an earlier post that we met a young fella in Grand Case on Sunday who was a promoter for the Westin. We each scratched off a ticket and Steve won a prize that could be claimed after we went through a 90-minute tour/sales pitch at the Westin.) So, knowing that our financial advisor would advise against going into debt or dropping a load of cash, we were steely faced (but friendly) when Liz, our salesperson, showed...Jump to full entry
Oct 11, 2016 - Splash in the Sun
Today was adventure day! After searching for things to do before we left the US, I booked an atv tour with a company called Splash in the Sun. We enjoy riding motorcycles or atvs when we are on vacation, and I figured this would be a great way to see parts of the island that are not accessible by car. We met our guide, Taz, at the cruise terminal and he led us to his shop/garage. He had about 12 new looking Honda Ranchers that looked to be well-maintained. After signing the obligatory waiver form and donning helmets, we got the quick intro...Jump to full entry
Oct 10, 2016 - 10-10-10
Monday, October 10 - today is a holiday in St. Maarten - it is Constitution Day - Wikipedia says: "The Constitution of Sint Maarten (Dutch: Staatsregeling van Sint Maarten) was unanimously adopted by the island council of Sint Maarten on 21 July 2010. The constitution entered into force on 10 October 2010, on the date of the dissolution of the Netherlands Antilles." So, the holiday is known locally as "10-10-10". We learned this from the driver of our tour today. Our tour driver, Wellington Richardson (whose nickname is Chico) picked us up...Jump to full entry
Oct 9, 2016 - It's a zoo...
Today was our first full day on the island! So, we had lots to do - and we started out with a swim in Simpson Bay. When we were here on our honeymoon 7 years ago, we learned that there are lots of sharp rocks about hip deep. So we wore our water shoes to protect our digits this time. After a little swim, we laid out under the palapas and then went for a swim in the pool. It was only 10am and we started to wonder what we were going to do for lunch (never to early to plan on the next meal). So we decided to get re-acquainted with the island...Jump to full entry