Day 1 (22nd February 2023) – Getting there

The alarm on my phone went off at 6.45 a.m. Dragged myself out of a really quite comfortable bed and made us both our legally required lemon and ginger tea (from our own stocks).

Shaving was a trial, as the hot water took ages to come through, the light was inadequate and the sink plug didn’t work properly. Apart from that, it was great….

Managed to check out of the hotel in plenty of time, and attempted to go through Security, completely forgetting that we hadn’t checked our bags in! 🤦Chastened, we retreated, went downstairs and – joined the wrong queue. All going well so far, don’t you think?

Once in the right queue, we checked our bags in in no time, then back up to Security. I always hate this bit, and we both got caught, I because I’d forgotten to remove my specially prepared bag with liquids in and Jean had forgotten a tube of some unguent or other. We also learned that the incoming plane was delayed by an hour….. Oh, well, gives us an extra hour in the lounge, I suppose.

All was finally well and we managed to find our way to the BA lounge. Very extensive and nicely appointed. My hopes rose at this point, particularly given the bad rap that BA has had in recent times.

At last, the boarding gate was displayed on the information screen, so off we set to Gate 38. A bloody long walk away.

Long queue, so Jean decided to visit the loo. And, once again, that single action precipitated an announcement for those of us lucky enough for priority boarding to come forward. It’s amazing how often this happens!

Usual chaos when getting seated, getting the right leads, phone, tablet, book, etc., aided (?) by a glass of fizz. Got there in the end.

The plane moved off the stand at 11.01 a.m., 1 hour later than scheduled, but thereafter a trouble-free flight, albeit with some fairly shuddering clear air turbulence at times. Excellent service and remarkably good food – given the strictures of space and time on an aircraft, how the hell do they do it? BA have redeemed themselves somewhat, helped by investment in the relatively new Boeing 777 plane.

Landed initially at St. Lucia, whereupon the plane virtually emptied. Mystifyingly, the plane took on a completely new crew, including the flight deck, for the 30-minute hop to Grenada. Something to do with staff scheduling, I imagine…. All this took a good 50 minutes.

Finally, the plane took off for Grenada. Remarkably, we were offered a drink for the flight (a G&T gratefully accepted).

Landed half an hour later in warm and breezy conditions, an old-fashioned immigration form having been completed – very quaint. On presenting same, plus passport, we were allowed to emerge into the warmth of a Caribbean island climate, having collected our hold luggage with extraordinary speed. Lovely.

We were accosted almost immediately by a representative of St. James Travel, and ushered to a people carrier to take us to the Calabash Hotel. 15 minutes later, we got there.

Quite a reception committee. We were greeted by at least four people, who had obviously been hovering waiting for something to do. Some basic formalities completed, we were shown to our suite.

By this stage, we were pretty curly at the edges, having endured an 11 hour flight, so I didn’t bother to take any pictures of this humongous room. To follow…..

Listlessly unpacked, showered and went for a quick bite to eat at the Gary Rhodes restaurant. Excellent red snapper and an OK Sauvignon Blanc. That was all we had capacity for, having been served so well on board the plane.

Both completely knackered. Much more exciting stuff to report tomorrow after a good night’s kip. Hopefully.

2 responses to “Day 1 (22nd February 2023) – Getting there”

  1. We’ve just caught up with your blog Chris. Always so interesting to read – the Gatwick hotel sounds very unusual but probably a taste of things to come elsewhere. Enjoy Grenada- the weather sounds lovely – looking forward to reading more.

    1. Thanks, Jay. Yes, it was a somewhat surreal experience. I gather that the roads are being gritted in Bedfordshire, so it being a very nice 26 degrees at the moment feels smug!

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