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Learning to chill, the Tobago way

Buljol, cocktails and lobster

View Bird watching, snorkelling and sunbathing. Sunbathing? Tobago & Trinidad 2012 on Grete Howard's travel map.

I woke up to find a huge Happy Birthday banner draped in the bathroom. Someone has been busy in the night. I had set the alarm for just before the sunrise at 06:00, but I have to say the sunrise was somewhat insipid. The birds were a little disappointing too – although we did see a few pelicans and cormorants flying around. I could just about make out the jerky movements of hummingbirds as they darted speedily around the trees and a few cocrico arriving later.



A pre-breakfast swim in the Atlantic Ocean proved a painful experience for David, with several little fishes nibbling at his nipples! Now he knows what it feels like. I suggested he should be grateful he had his swimming trunks on!

For breakfast we tried the local dish of saltfish and buljol, which was actually much better than I imagined. The saltfish was not as strong as I remember it from Jamaica, nor with such a 'fermented' taste. Buljol is a small deep fried bread dough, a little like puri, only more stodgy. We both really enjoyed it.


Reception told us last night that the birding guide we've hired for a few days, Newton, would see us in the morning. Unfortunately, the message he left with reception this morning – that he wouldn't be around until lunchtime – was never passed on, so we waited around the pool area for quite a while, expecting him to show up. It was such a hardship, sipping a fruit ounch and catching up with birthday messages on Facebook and email while acclimatising to the humid 31C and listening to the waves crash in - not. I am getting good at this chilling lark.


Also did some bird watching around the grounds




Newton finally turned up while we were waiting for our lunch, having been out with other clients in the rainforest this morning. They came back very happy, so I suppose that is a good thing. And what a charming gentleman Newton is, I am very much looking forward to birdwatching with him over the next three days. He even managed to persuade us to book a full day trip to Trinidad on Tuesday. I just hope he is able to secure the flights for us.

Lunch was good – wraps with seafood or chicken – I did ask for mine to be spicy, but I think their idea of what tourists think is spicy is not the same as my idea of spicy. Newton ordered a hot sauce to go with his fish, and that was SPICY, so that's what I shall have to do in future.


Having had three cocktails (mixing them even, with a pina colada, banana daquiri and yellowbird) as well as a local beer with my lunch, a siesta was called for this afternoon followed by another nipple-nibbling swim. We'd seen a couple of men wearing T-shirts when swimming, we now know why. A leisurely while was then spent watching the hummingbirds come in to suck the sweet nectar from the feeders thoughtfully positioned all along the balconies of the hotel. They seemed totally unperturbed by my presence, and I managed to get within an arm's length of them. I adore hummers, and could watch them for hours, which is exactly what I did. They are so tiny and delicate and have such rapid jerky movements, with flashes of iridescent green showing as they hover. I must look up what sort of hummingbird they are.


We have an amazing room, with a balcony literally a stone's throw from the beach – the only thing between us and the golden sands of the Caribbean is the narrow path, a small stone wall and about ten foot of grass. We absolutely love this hotel!

Seeing the large group of Americans arrive at the hotel this afternoon and learning that dinner would be buffet as a result, we were pleased that we'd ordered a special birthday meal of lobster for this evening. And my, what a lobster it was! It was the fattest, juiciest, tastiest lobster I've ever had! Thanks chef!


Posted by Grete Howard 16:15 Archived in Trinidad and Tobago

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We have the exact same birds! Fun seeing them there as well.

by ilona

Looks lovely! we get those types of hummers too .... the lobster looks amazing!!!! what a great start to your holiday.

by Helen

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