Winter Vacation 2011 – Part 1

Last year we had to cancel out ‘Big Trip‘ to Australia for medical reasons.  So we decided that this winter we would go on a simpler vacation to someplace warm as a sort of a test run to see how well I can manage traveling now.

We chose another WindStar cruise as we had enjoyed them in the past and knew they would do things right.  We chose the cruise on the Wind Spirit from St. Martin which visited  Tortola, Virgin Gorda, Jost van Dyke, St. Kitts, and St. Barths.

Of course it was winter in the mid-west and the weather did its best to spoil our plans.  We were scheduled to fly out on February 4 and a huge storm hit on Wednesday, the 2nd!  Our route was through Chicago O’Hare which was shut down by 2 feet of snow and high winds.  We looked for alternatives and kept hoping that things would be back to normal by Friday.  The short version–our plane left Cedar Rapids two hours late on Friday and we just made our connection in Chicago.  In Miami we had another tight connection but managed to get on the plane to St. Martin with some time to spare.  After we were in the air we both sighed with relief and had a couple glasses of wine.

It was late when we arrived on St. Martin so we did not see much of the island that night.  We were not scheduled to board the ship until after noon on the next day so we had time that morning to explore the area around our hotel – The Hotel Beach Plaza.  It was a beautiful area and the hotel appeared very nice.  Unfortunately it was, in our opinion, rather poorly run with poor service and no information about the services available.

Around 1:00 pm we were picked up from the hotel and taken to the ship.  Check in on board went smoothly and we soon settled in by the pool for the buffet while waiting for other passengers to arrive.

More to follow.

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