HEADING BY TAXI FROM MAHO BEACH TO ORIENT BAY BEACH,,,
I had a local lady about in her mid 50's as my taxi driver. She was very knowledgeable about the area and loved living on the Island. She was very nice. One of the first thing she said to me was that I was lucky that it was not the busy season right now. I asked her why and she said that during the busy season, I would have found it hard to find a taxi willing to take me, ALONE, clear across the Island as they are all so busy with bus loads of people. Where I come from, summer IS the busy season with everyone vacationing and it never occurred to me that summer was the slow season for the Islands. She drove me to some absolutely gorgeous countryside. in between mountains and explained to me that they have had a more than usual rain fall and this was why everything plant and tree on the Island seemed so lush and green. She said by now, things would be more drab and brown. It was beautiful! After crossing over to the French side, she drove me to the main area of Orient Bay Beach. The beach was lined with shops, restaurants and bars. I had to walk through one of the bar area's where I found an outside table. I sat my shoes on top of one of the tables while wiping my feet from the layered sand that was still covering my feet from Maho Beach. A waiter with a french accent stopped by me and politely asked me to take my shoes off of the table. I had heard of the french being rude but this was NOT the case as I was embarrassed by my negligence and I apologized. He smiled and left. I then got my things together and started to walk on the beach looking for my friends and family.
Uh oh! I never realized that Orient Bay Beach was very long. With so many people here I came to realize that I may never find my party! Well, I started walking on the beach and decided that I would just find a chair ($7 for the day) and relax, have a late lunch, jump in the water a couple of times and then head back to the ship early.
I walked about 50 yards and joila! There was my brother, his wife, my nephew and his girlfriend all in line to parasail! Talk about luck! They were happy to see me and pointed out where they had chairs and that my daughter and my niece were jetskiing. I went to the chairs, took my shirt off, put some SPF on and sat back. About 5 minutes of me sitting there, I noticed a very attractive woman nonchalantly walk by me. I looked, looked away and my neck snapped back to her! SHE WAS TOPLESS!!!
Not that I as a healthy American red blooded single male minded! I just didn't realize Orient Bay Beach was semi nude. I put my sunglasses on and watched the show until I came to realize that there was no upper age restriction. I've never been to a semi nude beach before but I must say, after about, ohhhh,,,, 15 minutes, I was over it. No big deal. My daughter and niece came back to the chairs and were having a blast. My, almost 18 year old, daughter said she too was "over it" concerning half nude women walking around. We decided to go to one of the beachside restaurants to eat a late lunch. I was surprised at the affordability. My medium sized pizza was 10 bucks and the girls had burgers for 6 bucks each. I was thinking they would have been more expensive. My daughter explained to me that she and her cousin were walking further down the beach and it became FULLY NUDE!! Ewwww!!!! lol After eating my daughter found a little t-shirt stand selling St. Maarten t-shirts for 4 bucks each. Great deal even if they weren't of the highest quality. She bought all her friends left back at home a t-shirt. We then went back after our party was done parasailing and played in the water and took in the sights and sun! Great day! It just didn't last long enough since we were supposed to be back onboard by 4pm. Everyone agreed, St. Maarten was the nicest of the 3 we visited! We then took a taxi back to the ship. While walking back to the pier from where the taxi dropped us off, there was a lady giving out free samples of a coconut daquiri that was out of this world! If you go there and see this, definitely get one! Awesome!! Best drink from the whole trip!
BACK ONBOARD FOR NIGHT 5,,,
By now we were in a routine. Get back onboard, I go eat my dinner, we all go to whatever show was being put on at 7pm, then go with family to their dinner for family time and then to the later adult show whatever that might be and wherever it may be held at.
The first show this night was the "Now you see it" magic show that starred some guy that was a contestant on the TV show "America's Got Talent". I'm not a magic fan but the show was good and entertaining. He did the usual stuff, levitating a woman and himself, make a woman disappear and reappear, making himself disappear and reappear etc... Like I said, it was entertaining. Now off to meet the family at their dinner. By this time, my waiter Tyrone knew I was just there to socialize but always asked me if I wanted anything. Each night I explained to him that I ate dinner earlier. He always brought me a little something that he thought was a little special on the menu anyway. That was very nice.
After the dinner, we all went to our rooms and freshened up. We then went to meet at the adult show this night which was "The Quest Adult Game Show". I had no idea what it was about but knew it was MC'd by our Cruise Director Graham Seymour and that was enough for me to make sure not to miss it. Basically it was a big scavenger hunt with the audience as teams and team Captains. We had a young female and young male (both in their 20's) as team captains and they were the ones that were supposed to collect an item that Graham would call out from the audience members, and as fast as they could run, get that item to Graham for points. IT WAS HILARIOUS!! At first it was just common items like a hat or a shoe but then Graham started to get creative. He started asking for things such as a womans bra, underwear, our male captain in full lipstick. The highlight of the evening was for the men captains to put on 5 pieces of woman's clothing including bra and in full makeup and to start prancing around the floor for everyone to see. It was really funny! Our team Captain was a very good sport. Our team got 4th place out of 7 or 8. Very good time. Finished the evening off with bar hopping and a little roulette in the casino. Best day yet but now looking at 2 full days at sea.
Notes: Every show and performance (supposedly) lasted 45 minutes each. By now I am completely familiar with the ship and there was no need to even have to look up where things are. I could feel the ship move now and then especially in the rear of the ship like in the Windjammer and the theaters. They always had the main shows twice a night, one at 7pm and one at 9pm. The Royal Caribbean Singers and Dancers were really good. I was mesmerized by a certain thin blond dancer who just absolutely stunning to me. She was so graceful. I was constantly looking for someone with a watch on as I often loss sense of time. The fastest way to the rear of the ship to the front was through the stateroom corridors. You people with the Royal Suites are SPOILED! I was able to sneak a peek a few times when the cleaning ladies would be cleaning. They were beautiful! There was art everywhere! If you had to go 2 flights or less up or down just take the stairs, it's not worth the wait for the elevators. Speaking of the elevators, if I ever would have found the kid/kids who were pushing ALL the elevator buttons at once and then running, I would have rung their necks! Santonio's Pizza on the Royal Promenade could really use more variety (I know, it's free!), I can understand no cellphone use ($$) but no free WiFi? Come on!, The beers cost $4.89 a piece, not that bad really. I found my $3.50 waterproof wallet invaluable! By day 4 my skin was peeling! By day 7 everyone in my party had swollen ankles and feet. The best I could figure so far is lots and lots of salt that northerners are not used to. The most abundant thing on the ship was not booze or water, it was hand sanitizer! I never once met, heard or seen the Captain, not that I really cared, as long as we got around safely. The sheets, blankets and pillows were great! Everything was very clean! I forgot to ask but I was surprised to never see any security personnel with a firearm. There was a comedian that performed for just part of a show but I never saw him again. You can drink the faucet water, it tasted really good. It took me 3 days to find the "Do Not Disturb" card right on the back of my door. Duh! lol You have a phone in your room and all you have to do is dial your parties stateroom number to get them. Those little walkie talkie's don't help much, just my experience.
2 FULL DAYS AT SEA NEXT, NOW WE'RE CRUISIN'!