Wednesday, 14 January 2015

First St. Kitts Trip

Hey Everyone!

We have had some interesting adventures the last couple of days, so here is my update. Ashley and I have been stuck in the house since she has been here. Yesterday was the first nice day! (Even though there was still some rain). We started our morning with some fresh fruit from Mike the Vegtable Guy! It was delicious, I bought some melon, grapefruit, lemons, and a cucumber all for 25 EC. This stuff was better than what I have seen in the grocery store! So I am excited for more food from him!

Here is some pictures of the fruit! It was a delicious breakfast with farm fresh eggs too! Yum!

Once we were full, we packed up our bags and headed out for the beach. It took awhile before we were able to get a bus and it was getting pretty warm out! However, we managed to find one, but we weren't sure if the guy was actually working because on the way to the beach he made a few stops to do some errands. He dropped some beer off at a bar along with some lettuce and herbs. Then he told us he wanted to stop at the egg farm to get some eggs. We didn't mind, we were able to see more of the island, and I didn't know where the egg farm was, so that was nice! We also found where the nicer houses are on Nevis, the roads were terrible, but the houses were beautiful. We made it to Pinney's Beach, and our driver gave us his number so we could call him when we wanted to leave. Thanks Cleve! So if you are keeping track, I now have 3 different bus driver numbers!

Well here is Pinney's! According to Ozzie (cab driver) this is the best beach!!  

It had the bluest water I have seen so far! 

The day we went, they had the cruise ships over in St. Kitts and people were able to take an excursion to Nevis and hang out at this beach. So of course, all the locals thought we were part of the ships, and on that beach you have to pay for chairs. However, we were able to get a "student discount" of 20 EC... :s 
Anyway, once the locals learned that I'm actually living on this island, they were a lot nicer and Ashley even scored us some free drinks! So all was well, I got to do some reading for school, Ashley finally got some sun, swam in the water and we even saw some little crabs on the beach!

If you look closely, there is a little crab there. He was so cute!

It was shaping up to be a great beach day, until the rain came!! We hurried over to Lime Beach Bar, and decided to eat some lunch. We ordered the catch of the day-mahi-mahi. It was delicious!! So fresh! The bar was pretty cool too, minus the flies! The meal was only 20US. The one waitress invited us to go back there Wednesday night because they have a live band, and they just launched the patio upstairs. However, I know that's where a lot of the locals hang out at night and it can get pretty I'm not sure if we will go back.

So we called our friend Cleve to pick us up and he was there within 5 minutes. Whenever I have called someone thus far, they have been either on time or early, if this is what island time is like, I'm okay with that! Haha, everyone has warned me about it but it hasn't been that bad. We went home and then made some home made chicken wings for dinner. I have never tried it before, but they really looked like they were from a restaurant, Kyle even went back for seconds!

We even made some onion rings! I normally don't like food pictures, but I can't help it! I'm trying to expand my knowledge of cooking with chicken! Haha, maybe I will write a book called 365 Ways to Cook Chicken...haha.
After we made chicken wings, Ashley had a craving for something sweet, so she made some chocolate chip cookies, and I did some homework. The next day we were planning on heading to St. Kitts...

We were up bright and early and out the door by 8:30am, hoping to make the ferry by 9:30. Madison came with us and we managed to get a bus really early, and it only cost us 4.50 EC to get to the ferry. We bought our tickets which were 25 EC (A bit more expensive than I thought) and then went to the gate, however the security guard told us we needed to go back and get the yellow tickets. Which we then found out were for the ferry port tax which was only 1EC. I didn't understand why they didn't just sell that all together, they had 2 separate windows for that. Seemed silly to me. Anyway, we hopped on the boat and settled in for our 40 min ride. Most of us fell asleep on the way. Haha, so I missed out on some photos. 

Yay we made it to St. Kitts! Right away, I could tell the atmosphere is very different compared to Nevis. We talked about it after, and decided that the locals seemed less welcoming than on Nevis. There were 2 cruise ships that had docked for the day, so I know most them assumed we were from that, so they were trying to take advantage of us. However, we continued on and found our way to the main square downtown. Madison and I were shocked! It was very "westernized", the fast food places were insane!! 
Dominoes, Subway, KFC oh my!!!

I totally bought a pizza and brought it home for Kyle! A nice surprise! 16US for a large pepperoni.

We weren't really sure what to do, so we did some exploring around the town. They had a lot of fruits/veggie stands on the street, something that I was expecting more of on Nevis. They also had an ice cream shop, so we definitely stopped there! 
Here are a few town pics. Most of the shops around are geared towards tourists, I wouldn't have been able to afford any of it. $145 for a shirt, whether that was in EC or US, no thanks.

Once we walked around, and talked to a local to make sure we knew where the movie theatre was for future reference, we decided to try and find a beach. They have the same busing system as on Nevis, so I figured it would be easy to grab a bus, but nope. We quickly learned that the buses don't go to beaches. Hmm...a local guy told us he would take us to the beach for only 15 US, student discount, we just had to go in his pick up thanks. Maybe he was a nice guy, but who could tell, so we found a cab driver and he told us it would cost 12 US. Alright then off we go! I asked him why the buses don't go to the beaches, and he said "Because they have the whole island to drive around". So I guess only the taxi drivers get to go to the beaches, at least the prices aren't that bad. 
We made it to Frigate Bay Beach. The cab driver hooked us up with a guy who he said would take care of us on the beach, Okay? We pull up and the guy comes over to the cab, helps us out, takes the cab driver's number down so he could call him back to get us later. He wrote his number in the sand. Haha! Then he set up some chairs for us, and was very nice about it. Madison was about to tip him and then he said "no no no, I can't accept that". He went on to explain that this is his job, so he would have to report that to his boss, so they don't accept tips. For a split second I thought we got the chairs for free, hahahahaha... "I can't accept this" pause.. "So ladies, for 3 chairs plus an umbrella that's 12 US". Sigh...okay thank you kind local man for setting up the chairs that we didn't even ask for and then charging us for them. I really need to get my own beach chairs, unfortunately they didn't fit in my suit case. 
So friends if you are keeping track-dish rack, broom, oven mitts and beach chairs-necessities for Nevis!
Anyway we settle in on the beach, here are some pics.

I didn't do much exploring of the water, but Ashley did and she said the sand was covered with rocks! That was surprising to hear because according to the cab driver, this was the best beach on St. Kitts. Hmm. We were near a resort, and if it was me, I would be pretty disappointed with the water. We enjoyed the scenery, took a little cat nap and then found a restaurant to have some lunch. 

I had the tropical burger. It was great! I paid for 2 burgers, with fries and one drink and it cost 55EC. As we were paying for our food we got chatting to some tourists who happened to be from Canada, and were shocked that I used my visa. They said, we never to do that when travelling, always cash because of the exchange rate. I started to panic, but then when I talked to Kyle afterward, he told me that it's better to use my visa when possible because our credit card company offers competitive exchange rates and no additional fees, which makes it a safe and reliable method of payment, and we earn points! Kyle was able to confirm this by checking our statement, and the transaction lists the amount paid in EC/US and the converted rate in Canadian. Since I have been here, the few people that have seen me use my visa have advised against it. I have now learned not to listen to any of them! 

And then this happened...

and this... was random, the guy just came up to us and just put the monkey on us, we didn't really have time to say no thanks. Oh and then he expected us to pay him, Ashley offered him Canadian money and he didn't like that, then we offered him 2 EC, which he said he can't use here..haha uhh okay, so then he just walked away. (He was expecting 10 US) Yah right!! You should explain that before you just place a monkey on my head!!

It was almost time to head back to the ferry, so we got our cab guy back and then picked up some Dominoes and KFC for the guys for dinner. When we bought our return ticket, they incorporated the tax in the price. "We do things differently on St. Kitts". Well alright then. 

All in all in was a successful trip. We got some sun, got some food, and spent way to much money!! I don't think I will be going back to St. Kitts anytime soon. Too pricey! I was actually very relieved to get back on Nevis. It was an adventure that's for sure...

I'm exhausted, and have more beaches to visit while Ashley is still here for a couple more days.
Bye for now!

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