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Tobago - London

Last minute swim, hummingbirds and cocktails before a very comfortable flight home

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

Despite having such a late night, (relatively speaking) and a very long day yesterday, we set the alarm for 06:00 for our last early morning swim. The packing seems to have gone too well, for some reason we appear to have more space in the luggage going back than we did coming over. The receptionist kindly agreed for us to keep our room until 12:00 which will be a great help.

Our balcony

After breakfast we paid the bill and were pleased to discover that despite the last minute trip to Trinidad, we still had enough cash to pay for the food and drink at Blue Waters Inn without having to resort to using a credit card.

Newton was picking us up after breakfast for our visit to the Hummingbird Gallery. The gallery is in effect Newton's private balcony, where he has 16 hummingbird feeders to encourage the birds to congregate. David and I were quite happy to sit in the reception lounge area reading while we waited for him, but at around 09:50, the receptionist came out and asked what time we were expecting Newton. When we told her he said about 9-ish, she went back into her little office to ring him. It turns out he'd completely forgotten us. Fortunately, his house is only a few minutes drive from the hotel, so we were soon sitting on his balcony watching and photographing the hummingbirds. Newton was quite excited that a new species to Tobago had been seen on his feeders the last few days, and we were lucky enough to spot it.


Back at the hotel, Erica (our favourite waitress) bought us a farewell rum punch before lunch – it is going to be hard to say goodbye to all the wonderful staff, but Erica in particular.

Transfers were included in our holiday package, and we were surprised at how early they wanted to pick us up to take us to the airport for our return flight. We soon figured out why – the same people who take us, pick up the arriving passengers, so they have to be there to meet the plane. There isn't enough time between arrival and departure for them to do the journey twice, as it is a 2.5 hour round trip. Unfortunately, the incoming flight arrived nearly an hour early, so the plan fell to pieces – Carol (our driver) had a phone call as she was approaching Scarborough to say she had two irate passengers waiting for her. Oh dear. They are getting a rude introduction to 'Tobago time'.

As we enjoyed the extra legroom so much on the journey over, we thought we'd try and purchase some for the way back too. Asking at check-in, we were told it had to be arranged on the plane. At the departure gate I spotted one of the stewards and asked him about it. “You sat in 38J and K on the way over didn't you?” I was incredibly impressed he remembered us, and even more impressed when he told me there are only 130 passengers on board this flight, and 'he didn't say so' but we could sit anywhere we wanted. Result!

Sunrise from the plane

I slept all the way between dinner and breakfast, so it was a very comfortable flight for me, and the arrival at Gatwick was very smooth. In fact, it ll went swimmingly until we came to a standstill on the M4 because of a serious five-vehicle accident. I always try to be patient in such circumstances, counting my blessings that I am not involved in the accident, but sitting in my own car in a jam rather than lying in an ambulance on the way to hospital or worse (we heard on the radio that one of the drivers involved in the crash was airlifted by helicopter, so his injuries were presumably pretty serious). It's better to be delayed for an hour than have your whole life ruined!

I don't know what I will miss the most – the early morning swims in the clear, warm waters of the Caribbean (there is no way I shall be going to down to Weston-Super-Mare tomorrow morning for a swim before breakfast!), the temperatures (it was around 30C during the day and only a few degrees cooler at night – getting out of the airport into 2C at Gatwick was a bit of a shock to the system), the cocktails, the people, the food or the birds. I feel sure that one day we will be back.

Posted by Grete Howard 04:18 Archived in Trinidad and Tobago

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Back to reality?
I envy you your trip. We have relatively warm weather but no humming birds, no pina coladas, and no swimming.
Next trip Iceland, or can you squeeze in somewhere else? Really enjoyed your blogs.

by Shane

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