The “after company” let down

13179325_1264685736893509_4469429168352604729_n06/29/2016 Having company is wonderfully amazing, I really enjoy it, but it’s also a lot of work. I always go out of my way to show my guests a good time, making sure they see the highlights of the island, the must sees and must dos. Sometimes, more often than not, I am successful. I previously had company for almost 3 weeks, then they left, I had a 10 day break and then my youngest son and his friend Maureen came for 10 days. To say I was excited to see him is a bit of an understatement. I stood at the doors to the immigration building on high alert, waiting to catch a glimpse. I told Kevin, an airport employee who was at the door with me, that I was waiting for my son and he kept asking did I see him yet (at least I think that’s what he was saying, my Spanish sucks, as does his English)? I said, when you see tears (pointing to my cheeks) you’ll know it’s him. And yep, I cried when I saw him.

Trace and Maureen had traveled all night to get here, leaving Vancouver, BC, to Calgary, Alberta, spent a good part of the night in the Calgary airport, then Houston to Roatan. It was Trace’s second visit, Maureen’s first. Trace came in Jan 2015 and I think it rained almost every damn day he was here. This visit was the opposite. It was H O T. And H U M I D. Crazy humid.

Our plans were to go to West Bay Beach on Sunday to do some snorkeling and beach it for awhile. We got to the beach around 11 and started snorkeling right away. The first things of interest that I saw were some squid, I think there were 7. They are so cool, they change color if they feel threatened and they do a little “posturing.” Trace and Maureen were not very close to me, the squid were in the sandy shallows, Maureen was putting on her fins and it was just enough of a distraction to ruffle their tail feathers. Just a little bit, they didn’t move so they obviously were not threatened, which is good. I don’t make a habit out of threatening anything, in the sea or on land. Except Scorpions.

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They are Caribbean Reef Squid. They change color and camouflage quite well.

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Seriously, I could float there and watch them forEVAH!

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This was only the beginning of a great discovery day.

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A Christmas Tree Worm farm.

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Blue Tang. This is not Dory.

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Always a great find, this stunningly gorgeous French Angelfish. The yellow flecks almost glow.

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Hanging with the Tangs.

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Mr. Lips, Rainbow Parrot Fish

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Banded Butterfly Fish

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Can you find the Scorpion fish? His tail is black and white and his nose is in the middle left of the photo. Yes, poisonous if you step on him. Another damn good reason to keep your feet up and not stand on or kick the coral.

In all my years of snorkeling and the years that I dove, I never saw a Scorpion fish, they are so well camouflaged. And isn’t it odd that at my age I can find something like that WITHOUT corrective lens. The mysteries never end.

After we snorkeled we went to Bananarama Beach and Dive Resort and hung out, had lunch there too.

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Trace and Maureen

Nights were spent on the roof or the porch. We mostly hung out, ate and talked.

Monday eve there was a Full Moon, Summer Solstice party at Wendy and Andrew’s lovely home situated high on a hillside overlooking the azure North shore in Punta Blanca. There was a large crowd there, nice to visit and chat with everyone. They served Greek chicken and pork souvlaki’s. Excellent. There was a huge variety of other foods there and then Wendy made to TO DIE FOR FLAN CAKE. It was about 24″ in diameter and absolutely perfect. Perfect, not a crumb out of place. I could have laid down on the floor and had someone feed me ALL of that FLAN. You know it must have been good because I rarely speak of food. It doesn’t interest me. We had an excellent meal, hung out until we had to leave to come home and feed the dogs. Yes, I’m the one that leaves the party because my dogs are hungry. It’s their dinnertime. No, they can’t wait.

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Wendy and Andrew’s large porch, it’s beautiful. Trace and Maureen in the lower left.

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Marilyn and I, photo by Maureen, I believe.

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Roger, Jeanie’s husband, and Bill.

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Their view and pool. Pretty nice…

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Francie and Franklin sitting down by the pool. Lovebirds.

The next day we went to the Iguana Farm and checked out the lizards. There were lizards everywhere. Sam said it’s still mating season so they haven’t stopped fighting over the women. Some looked rather battle weary.

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This is a Black Spiny Tailed iguana. They are indigenous to Roatan. This one and all the ones they could find were tagged by National Geo, they are studying them. They have a blue chip in their necks. The Roatan spiny tailed lizards are endangered and protected.

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This is a female Iguana. I’m so excited, I can tell which is which. Every time I go there I learn something new about the Iguanas.

After we left there we went to Little French Key. This is somewhere I stopped going for many reasons but I did want Trace and Maureen to enjoy it. I’ll be going again with Chance and the girls. I was obviously un-enthused since I only took 1 photo while there.

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Maureen jumping off the Bottom’s Up Bar ledge.

That evening we went to Isery, the closed nightclub that was owned and financed by a big shot with the Sinaloa drug cartel. We planned on just taking pics but the guard gave us the grand tour. And I mean tour, we saw every inch of that place. A freaking mazing.

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ISERY, the club that never was.

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In the US something like this rigging would never be allowed, especially at a bar. This is an insurance nightmare.

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And it was easy to get to if you wanted to climb it. I could very quickly have accessed it. I didn’t.

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Authentic right down to the portholes

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Mural in one of the several bars

We were given tickets to opening night, which never happened, shot glasses and maybe a turtle.

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a ticket

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I blocked out the guy who gave it to me, don’t want him shot by anyone over a partially rotted turtle. Hence the name is Sinaloa.

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They obviously had a load of fireworks. Good thing they are illegal here.

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Trace

It was really interesting inside of there, I think this place will end up vandalized to the point that it collapses. Maybe that’s wishful thinking. It’s an eyesore.

One morning Trace, Maureen and I walked out on Oak Ridge Bight, the kids walked to the end and I stopped and chatted with Sandy Byrd. After that we went and found Everald for a Mangrove tour.

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Photo by Maureen

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Photo by Maureen

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Photo by Maureen of our guide Everald.

Wednesday eve we all went to Cal’s for dinner. Haven’t been for a few weeks, although, we stopped earlier that day and I cleaned his cats ears. The view was great, a beautiful night, I am such a slacker lately with photos, I apologize. I think I get burned out.

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My only photo at Cal’s

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Thursday we rode out to La Sirena. Trace and Maureen rode in the back like rednecks on their collapsible chairs. We stopped at Roger and Jeanie’s on the way out. I wanted T & M to see their house, named Hell with a View. It’s so cool! We won’t mention the sunburned tops of their feet from riding in the truck. Their idea. .

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Barbon Beach

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La Sirena, the sign is right. Also, the BEST onion rings.

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T & M

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This beach girl needs some TLC. I planned to go out Monday but we ended up laying low and keeping T & M out of the sun. She is starving and has a sore ear and recently had puppies. She needs spayed desperately.

Friday was BJ’s and the day before my friend Marilyn left the island for 2 months. I had to go to see her before she went to the US. Trace, Maureen and I drove out to Pandytown to see if school was in session, it wasn’t, so we just headed to BJ’s. They had quite a good crowd and as usual, it’s always fun to be there.

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Trace and Maureen taking pics.

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Marilyn

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Selfie by Maureen, love this photo of the two of them.

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Marilyn, Me, Trace and Maureen. Thanks Andrew for taking the pic.

That evening Trace and Maureen had Bill drop them at Cal’s for dinner. They ended up getting their food to go because the flies were so bad and they walked home and ate here. There must have been a hatch, they’re not usually very bad.

Sunday was funday at The Reef House resort. We got to BJ’s around 1 and were waiting for a boat to take us over when John and Debbie passed by. They stopped and picked us up and we were off for a day of fun in the water. I was extremely happy because my partner in crime has returned to the island, the Duchess of Camp Bay is back!

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Franklin, Mike and Francie. Nice legs Francie!!

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If ever there were sirens, we would be them. Francie, Jeanie and me.

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All with matching rafts

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Trace, chilling

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Scotty C (who provided the music for the day) and Jeanie doing yoga with Kathy looking on.

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And we planked, of course. Karen, Barbie, Kathy, me and Jeanie

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Yep, the water is that blue.

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If only I knew what the hell Gail and Francie were doing.

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Serious trouble in the tie dyed shirt with more trouble looking over his shoulder. Kelly and Terry.

Monday was Mondays Don’t Suck but the kids had enough sun and wanted to just hang out here instead of going anywhere. Since it was their last day here, that’s just what we did.

The day guests leave is always a drag. You sit around and wait for the time to take them to the airport. Their flight was at 1 so we got to the airport around 11 and the United line was long, as was the immigration line to leave. Once they were checked in we ran into Coxen Hole to the meat market and got dog meat. Well, meat for the dogs, 3# of heart and liver. That should keep the boys and girl well fed for awhile.

We then took the kids back to the airport and through tears I said good bye. More than anything in the world I hate saying goodbye to my kids. I wish they were here or I was there, I never ever get tired of being with them and miss them so damn much.

We were in Madeyso waiting to buy screws and bolts and stuff when I heard their plane fly over on it’s way back to the USA.

In 2 weeks Chance and his family will be here, I am so excited for that. We can’t wait to see the girls. It will be their first island visit, hopefully the first of many!

I’ll leave with a few pics of the water dogs. Oh my gosh, they LOVE the pool.

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Gringo, Barrio and Max

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Barrio and Max, they fight even when they are swimming.

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If you’re not going in the pool, you have to stay out. Highway loves to swim but has a hard time getting up the steps so he stays out. And whines.

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Otters

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A lucky shot (no skill involved) of Barrio

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Barrio and Gringo

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Barrio

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Fabulous mangoes, thanks Jaw!

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Some dogs sleep with stuffed toys, mine sleep with coconuts.

I’ll leave you with this post I found on VRBO about a house that is for rent here on the island. Seriously? You post this on VRBO? Obviously this homeowner has a serious issue with prostitutes. My question is: How do they determine if someone is a prostitute? Medical exam before you can rent? Police record? I died laughing a few times over this. What if their grandmother WAS a prostitute but stopped hooking, is she allowed to stay there?

Only guests disclosed to us are eligible to stay on the property. If the property is already at the maximum, the guests will be asked to leave by security no exceptions. If the property is not at its maximum, and “additional” guests arrive, the per guest fee changes from $55 to $100/per night per guest. Prostitutes are not allowed to be at the property at any time. No exceptions.

I’ll be back soon, I’ve got more to say about something very ugly.

Before the wench got drenched.

Pirate

04/05/2015 Happy Easter everyone. Thanks Cheryl for the blog title. I’m going to attempt to finish the adventures of Cicily, Cheryl and I in this post. One thing I forgot to mention was that Friday evening, after a day on the beach we went to Cal’s Cantina for dinner. Not only is it right down the road from us, it is also the BEST food and restaurant view on the island. I had to add that because what kind of hosts would we be if we didn’t take our guests to Cal’s?

OK, back to the adventures. Sunday was an off and on rainy day. We decided to go for it and headed east. So far the girls had only been west of our house, except for the boat trip with Sam and Chelsie. We stopped at the store in Oak Ridge for drinks and munchies then did a road tour of Oak Ridge and stopped by to see Miguel and Winston.

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Narrow road past BJ’s and on the way to the taxi stand.

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Boat in the harbor

From there we headed east to Camp Bay and Roger and Jeanie’s house. It cleared up on the way and turned out to be a nice day. We visited with Roger and Jeanie for awhile, ooohhed and aaahed over their view and the sounds of the waves crashing on the rocks. Bill discussed some cabinets that Jeanie wants for the kitchen and took some measurements of the wall space.

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Roger and Jeanie

After that we went further east to La Sirena, AKA Jimmy’s. Just as we got there we saw our friends Francis and Karen. We stopped to chat with them and I recognized the one guy from the previous day at Pigeon Key. Turns out he is Francis’ brother. Small world, small island. We had rum punches and lunch at La Sirena.

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Good food, cold beer

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Fish lunch. I had Onion Rings!!!

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Cis and Cheryl @ La Sirena

We covered new ground by driving the road over the mountain (sic, this is Roatan, they are big hills compared to where I come from) to Port Royal. It was a really pretty drive, during parts of it you forgot you were on an island, it looked like any other forest. Sort of.

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It is, after all a National Park

Next stop was Punta Gorda, actually, we just drove through there to show them the area.

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Punta Gorda

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These columns were very intricately carved. The road alongside them leads back to one of the schools we did the TOMS show drive.

We made our way home and went down to John’s pool for a late afternoon dip. The pool water felt great, not cold at all.

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On John’s deck

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The sunset was stunning.

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Cheryl

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Cicily

On Monday morning we drove down to Sandy Bay to check out Blue Harbor Tropical Arboretum. This is the place that hydroponically grows the fabulous lettuce that we eat here on Roatan. They also grow a variety of herbs that are also sold in the grocery store. FROM THEIR WEBSITE:  “Welcome to Blue Harbor Tropical Arboretum, Roatan’s working ”Tropical Eden” covering over 160 eco-friendly acres.  Here you will find uniquely spectacular tropical displayed gardens, seasonal fruit and nut orchards, the only tropical botanical “Conservatory” with a 12 ft waterfall in the Caribbean and over 70,000 heads of lettuce and herbs in a working hydroponic produce and herb farm.” We did the self guided tour and it was amazing. You can take your own tour by clicking HERE.

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Heliconia’s

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Noni fruit is known to be used for a variety of illnesses, including cancer and Dengue.

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Close up of Heliconia’s

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Ornamental Pineapple

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Inside the conservatory

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Shell Ginger

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Colors and textures

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Orchid

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Inside the conservatory

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Cheryl, me and Cicily, at the fruit tasting

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First we were served a plate with 7 different types of fruit on it. We all liked the brown fig looking one of the left the best.

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Then we were given this and told to each eat a lime slice first, then put the seed of the Miracle Fruit in our mouth and clean all of the stuff off of the seed until all you had left was the black seed itself. Then we were to each eat a slice of lime again. The first slice of lime was bitter as hell, normal for a lime. However, after eating the Miracle Fruit, the second slice of lime was sweet. It wasn’t tart at all. That sensations stayed in your mouth for about 20 minutes. We each bought some cashews and other stuff and were on our way to West End to do some shopping.

West End wasn’t very crowded, people were just starting to make their way to the island for the Semana Santa festivities/craziness. We shopped for a few hours and on the way home stopped at the Bulk Gourmet for lunch, which was delicious as always! Once we got home I gave Nancy a call to see if they would be home. They had just gotten there and she said to come on over. I really wanted them to see their house.

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View from the great room deck. The pool isn’t fiinshed but once it is it will be gorgeous.

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From the bedroom looking out over the property to the entertainment building.

We had a nice visit with them, toured their gardens and looked at the awesome flowers and plants they have. I’m going over once Sebastian returns and get some cuttings!!

The next day was the Pirate Party out in Calabash Bight. We were making rum balls in the morning to take, seemed fitting for a Pirate Party. This is the link for the Rum Balls, they were a huge hit. I made a sign and amazingly even had little pirate swords to stick in them. The sign got wet along with everything else on the ride to the party. Nothing like being at a party with a soaking wet ass. Oh well, once I got some Bandit in me (and yes Nathan and Scott,) I was drinking out of the BOX, I forgot I was wet.

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They were so good

We got to BJ’s around 11;45 for a ride to the party. The first boat came and went, we said we would wait for the next one, big mistake. BIG BIG mistake. Pudens son came soon after the first boat left and we climbed aboard. Part way to Big Rock the sky opened up and it freaking POURED BUCKETS!!

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I am the wench who got drenched!!

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The party in full swing. Photo by Cindy Darby Macy

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Brenda and I chatting, Marilyn and Alex next to me. Photo by Cindy Darby Macy (I think)

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The fabulous hosts Francie and Franklin Chrstopher. Note the Pirate Flag flying in the background!

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Cheryl and Llyn and ?? Photo by Cindy Darby Macy

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The outdoor kitchen

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Awesome wooden fish

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Franklin’s Pirate Pizza menu

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The pizza oven

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Their luxurious guest casitas

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The food pavilion

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Looking up to the Casita from the food pavilion

They made so many different kinds of pizzas and they were all fabulous. There were other foods too that people brought, it was all delicious! I took a box of Bandit wine with me. Jeanie noticed that it perfectly matched my ZORIES. (AKA sandals)

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Yes, Jeanie calls them ZORIES. It’s a fine name but to me they are flip flops..

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Did I mention the girls brought me BANDIT???

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Jeanie took this photo of Cheryl, me and Cicily as we were waiting for the boat to take us home.

The boat ride home was mesmerizing. At least it mesmerized the 3 of us into a trance like state, which was fine except I had to still drive from Oak Ridge home. It was interesting for sure and a whole lot calmer and drier going home. I think we all went home and passed out.

Their next to last day here we were going to Little French Key. Before we went there I gave them a tour of Parrot Tree Plantation, such a beautiful spot on the island.

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Cheryl posing on one of the beds around the pool

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Gorgeous flower

I had told Cicily and Cheryl (and everyone else) so much about Little French Key that I held good on my promise to take them there. Personally, I will not go there anymore, too many things bother me and I won’t get in to them on my blog but it’s not someplace I will visit again. It was overly crowded on Tuesday, crazy busy and the prices were jacked up, even for local admittance. Enough said, I won’t go on and on but I could easily.

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The Jaguar enclosure, this is a new structure.

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Such a gorgeous animal, too bad it is in captivity.

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It rained a little early in the day but cleared up and the sun was out the rest of the time there.

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From the 2nd floor of the new building

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Assessing the situation

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A swing in the water by the one bar

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Cis chilling

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Nice swing but it was all slimey, grossed me out.

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floating

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looking pretty comfy

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Cheryl, drink in hand

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Watching some young girls jump off of the Bottom’s Up bar.

We wrapped up out day at LFK and headed for home and a last dinner at Cal’s Cantina. Once again, we were not disappointed in our meals, it was superb!

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Notice Cheryl has on her Umbul Umbul dress.

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WE are so lucky Cal’s is less than 5 minutes from our house!

The next morning the girls were packing up their stuff to get ready to head to the airport for their trip back to the land of the cold.

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The dogs were hanging out, even Frito bean. Lola and Frito on the bench, Lucky and Highway on the ground. Frito is a little FAT.

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Bad but pretty, Lola, TUQ

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We could see the mainland.

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nose to nose

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I sure hope Cicily and Cheryl come back, I still have places to show them!!!

They made it home but it was not uneventful. Cheryl decided to wander around in Houston and ended up missing her flight to Newark. Cicily was on the plane, Cheryl was not in sight. They were arriving in Newark late so they planned to stay overnight at a hotel and drive back to PA in the morning. Cheryl was lucky enough to get on the next flight and made it to the hotel at 2:30 AM. Crazy girls!! They are now back in Pa, freezing their butts off and both wishing they were still here.