Wednesday, 16 Dec 2015

We packed most of our stuff in the condo. Around 11:00 I went on the beach to tan, Mom came shortly after. We did that for 30-40 mins. After that we went snorkeling behind the condo. Mom spotted a group of squid on the way in, which was nice to see.

We go back to the condo to shower and finish packing. I ate some leftover food. We go to the airport. Dad buys scotch as a Christmas present to Derek. I pick out Sangsters Banana Rum Cream. We landed in Miami around 8pm. It was after 9 when we got to our hotel, because passport and customs took awhile and getting to the rental car.

The hotel was in South Beach and was very nice. Luwis, the person that carried our luggage for us, offered Dad a chardonnay, but I couldn’t tell because of his accent. Few minutes latter he gave a glass to all of us. He was very hesitant about giving me mine. Me and Dad wanted to have a mojito because it is Miami. Dad asked Lewis for a restaurant recommendation. He recommended Hevanna 1957, a cuban restaurant with good mojitos. It was only a few blocks away, so me and Dad walked to it. We left the hotel a little before 10 and Mom stayed in the hotel.

The walk to Hevanna 1957 was pretty nice. The Art Deco style was around on the buildings, and dad pointed out features of it. We got outdoor seating at the restaurant. Dad got a classic mojito, and I got the South Beach mojito which has a lime rum in it instead of regular. That’s the only difference between the 2. I tasted dads and we both decided we liked mine a little better. Dad got the restaurants specialty dish which was chicken w/ gravy, a salad, plantains, and black bean soup. I got a dish the waiter also recommended Lechon Asado, which was pork leg w/ onions, yucca, and rice and beans. Both dishes were a lot of food and we didn’t finish. Dad ate more of his meal than I did. We get to go boxes and walk down the side street that the restaurant is on, taking pictures. The street was a lot of restaurants and a few small stores. We walk back to the hotel a different way to see a new area.

Tuesday, 15 Dec 2015

It looked a little windy outside the condo, and that side of the island in general. Dad thought the winds were coming from the southeast, so would be better to snorkel on the north side of the island. All of us left the condo, stopped at Eden Rock since Mom wanted to buy a shirt for Derek. Right after we left Eden Rock and headed for Rum Point, a bird was in our lane on the road. Mom had to come to a complete stop, and it took a while for the bird to move out of the way. It was white, blending in with the surroundings, and took a while for it to get out of the road. Someone in oncoming traffic stopped, seeing our situation, and gave us a “what the heck” gesture lol.

Headed toward Rum point. We stopped at a picnic area by Northside Cemetary and there seemed to be strong winds from east. We went down the road and stopped at Cayman Kai Public Beach where winds seemed to come from the northeast. Then we went to the Public Beach at the end of Cayman Kai.

Finally we go to Starfish Point where me and Dad went the other day. We’d never been there by land before, so this was a different drive. We snorkeled for 45 mins. It was grass beds with a few sand only areas. There were a lot of starfish of course. I saw lots of small fish and a few big ones, Dad saw a stingray, and Mom saw a barracuda, lots of anemones (brown ones, white ones with purple tips).

After that, we went to Rum Point and snorkeled on the west side of the dock where it looked calmer. At first just me and Dad went in, Mom joined later. It was more of mostly grass beds with a few sand areas. There was lots of sargasm in the water. Eventually it got stuck in my hair. I saw some kid of ray before Mom got in, singray or not idk. We saw lots of dead conch shells, a few small fish. File fish. Me and Mom saw ray/stingray with a super short tail. Mom saw the circular urchin skeletons. Dad got my hopes up saying he saw a squid, but it was just a school of medium size fish. The current took us west, so we had to swim back east to Rum Point to get out. We changed clothes. Right before we left me and dad got a basket of fries. I also got an Electric Margarita, basically a margarita with blue curacao added.

Back at the condo, we ate pizza for dinner and started packing.

Monday, 14 Dec 2015

Teagan and Dad get picked up around 9:10 and go to the boat. It’s a nice boat with an inside, front and top for seating. Mario was Captain and Duane was First Mate. The first stop is starfish point, a little south of Rum Point. I piked up a few starfish, which I’ve never done before. So did dad. Mario gave some info about them and we walked around. Next, we went to Stingray City. It wasn’t like last time where we snorkeled. This time we were just in waist deep water. Mario and Duane would gave some info about them. Mario had the stingray rub against my back once I took my rashguard off. They were going to have ppl hold the stingray and kiss it for pics. They picked me as the first person in the group. It was a little weird but not as bad as I thought. They proceeded to take pics of everybody with the stingray. Dad got out of it when they called “single men” as he’s not single ha. Dad got pics of the stingrays underwater while they were taking pics, and I looked with my snorkel and mask some too. Then they gave us squid to feed them. After that we went to a snorkeling spot, Coral Gardens. There are 4 spots in Coral Gardens and the one we went to was Secret Garden. Dad says the one we went to the last time to Stingray City was one of the other 3. It was good, but small. We saw a lot of file fish and puffer fish. Dad saw a stingray with the black fish we see them with a lot. There was a lot of soft coral. On the boat they offered us pizza twice, and coke once. We headed back into shore. Duane had me steer the boat a couple times. They droped us off at the condo.

Mom is in the room when we get back. Mom goes out to the beach with her boat to float around. Me and Dad have lunch. I went out to lay on the beach and get tan, both back and front. Me and Mom come back around the same time. After I shower, we all go to Georgetown together to shop. I get a t shirt.

We stop for Caybrew beer on the way back to the condo. We eat leftovers for dinner.

Sunday, 13 Dec 2015

We went to Devils Grotto/Eden Rock. Me and Mom looked at shirts in the dive shop briefly before we got in the water. At some point me and Mom separated from dad, and moved north towards Eden Rock it got deeper. Dad saw and joined us. We went back to Devil’s Grotto as the reef was closer to the surface. We saw schools of a few fish including blue angels. We saw a leopard eagle ray. I spotted a sea turtle at the end of the dive. Mom went back to but me and dad stayed out long enough for it to come to the surface to breathe. It was so close to Dad and his camera! On the way out I saw a barracudda I think.

After the snorkel, we went to Paradise Grill since we did it on a trip before when I got the Turtle Burger. This time Dad got Conch Salad, I got some kina snapper fish fillet with sides, and Mom got a fish wrap that was too salty, along with rice and beans.

We stopped at Kirks Market on the way back to the condo to get supplies. We went back to the condo, ate our chicken from Chicken Chicken which we had bought the day before but not eaten. Ate that and other leftovers. Me and Dad played cards.

Saturday, 12 Dec 2015

We went snorkeling at Cemetary Reef, left the apt around 10am. Got in the water around 10:30. Dad took pics of me and Mom getting in the water, then got in after us. The visability was very good, The surface of water was very windy going towards the shore. That’s what made it good to be on this side of the island though. They took a good amount of underwater pictures. Mom saw a flamingo tongue on a fan. There were a lot of reefs close to each other with small sandy batches in between them. Dad got out of the water about noon. Me and Mom got out of the water about an hour after Dad got out. We head back to the condo to shower.

We go for a late lunch to Champion House. It was hard to find. We ordered stuffed plantains as an appetizer, stuffed with turtle. I got turtle steak with some sides. Mom got Cayman style shrimp that had a spicy/sweet tomato sauce. Dad got black bean soup and vegetable somosas. Both me and Mom tried breadfruit, which just tasted potatoey. I also tried green bananas which were just bland tasting. Service was slow, but the food was great.

We stop at Kirk’s Market since it’s close by, and also Chicken Chicken. Headed back to condo for the night.

Friday, 11 Dec 2015

Richard and Teagan decided to drive around the whole island since we havent done that since our first trip here. We stopped at the lighthouse in Breakers (just east of Bodden Town). There was an art shop next to it, which we’d seen on our trips before but don’t think we’d been in. We went in and looked at her art. Her name is Ren, and she had a unique style. After that we drove around the island along the water, and got to Rum Point. We stopped at a park/playground in Cayman Kai, and saw another iguana on the road. Being tourists, we stopped and got out of the car to take pictures. At Rum Point Teagan got conch chowder and conch fritters. The conch fritters looked/tasted like falafels with conch flavor. She got a Rum Runner to drink. Last trip she thinks she got a Blue Iguana. Richard got a jerk chicken wrap with beans and rice. We looked in the gift shop but didn’t buy anything. We left Rum point to go see the house with the concrete sculpture garden. He had an octopus under construction, which was nice to see there. He also had Rabbits which I don’t remember seeing last trip, along with a hook coming out of a fish. After that we went to see the blow holes again on the south side of the island. They were harder to find this time, than the first time we saw it. We eventually found it and took some pictures. We headed back to the condo, stopping at Tortuga for more beer and rum.

Linda stayed at the condo and snorkeled to cementary reef and back. She was in the water for 2 ½ hours. Conditions were pretty good, but not as good as Governor’s Reef.

Thursday, 10 Dec 2015

We went to Governor’s Reef around 9:00 am. The weather looked pretty bad and it started raining. We went ahead and got ready to snorkel, and by the time we got to the water, the weather began to improve.

We kicked out to the reef and snorkeled for 90 minutes. Afterward, we returned to the condo for lunch. After a rest, Teagan and Richard went to Georgetown to shop, but it started raining really hard. So they went shopping at various strip malls on the way back toward the condo. They also stopped at Kirk’s Market to pick up supplies for a spaghetti supper.

After supper, Teagan and Richard played Gin Rummy.

Wednesday, 9 Dec 2015

In the morning, Linda went to the Miami SAP office to leave her laptop while Richard and Teagan ate breakfast and went to the airport. Linda was already at the airport when they arrived. A porter assisted in getting the luggage to the Cayman Air ticket desk. The security line was minimal, so everyone arrived at the gate 30 minutes before checkin.

The flight to Grand Cayman was uneventful, leaving a little late at 10:45 am and arriving at noon. We arrived at the Anchorage at 2:00 pm. After some brief unpacking, Teagan and Linda went snorkeling in front of the condo.

After they returned, everyone went to Foster’s for a grocery run. Back at the condo, we had a rotisserie chicken we picked up from Foster’s along with some side dishes.

Trip to Grand Cayman May 2014

Here is a very brief summary of our trip to Grand Cayman in May 2014.

  • Saturday, May 10
    Derek and Jenni flew out of Lexington while Linda, Teagan, and Richard flew out of Nashville.  We met in Charlotte, NC for our connecting flight.  We flew together to Grand Cayman and arrived around 11:30 am.  We rented a van from Hertz and headed to The Anchorage where we had a 3-bedroom condo.  We unpacked, played on the beach, and made a quick grocery trip.  Derek, Jenni and Teagan snorkeled in front of the condo, the water was a little stirred up.  Later Linda went out and saw a 18 inch turtle.
  • Sunday, May 11
    We walked from the condo to Cemetery Beach in the morning and snorkeled.  That afternoon, Teagan, Jenni, and Linda floated/snorkeled in front of the condo while Derek and Richard played beach frisbee.
  • Monday, May 12
    Since we didn’t all get to snorkel yesterday, we did Cemetery Beach again this morning.  Afterward, we headed to George Town and ate lunch at Paradise Bar and Grill.  Then Teagan and Linda used the ladder at Paradise to snorkel out to Eden Rock.  A little later, Derek and Jenni entered to snorkel along the rocky shore.  Richard didn’t feel like getting in the water, so I just explored the shore.  Everyone exited using the ladder at Eden Rock Dive Shop.  Then we headed back to the condo.
  • Tuesday, May 13
    In the morning, Teagan, Jenni, and Derek worked on building a sand castle.  Afterwards, we played in and out of the water throwing the frisbee.  Then Derek, Jenni and Teagan played monkey-in-the-middle with a beach ball.  Linda snorkeled in front of the condo.  Around mid-afternoon we all headed to Rum Point.  Along the way, we stopped at a few places in Bodden Town, then Davinoff’s Concrete Sculpture garden on the Queen’s Highway.  When we arrived at Rum Point, the food options had shut down, but the gift shop and the bar were still open.  After exploring Rum Point and taking pictures, we stopped at Over the Edge Cafe on the North Side to eat supper at sunset.
  • Wednesday, May 14
    In the morning, we all snorkeled in front of the condo.  Derek found a flounder, Linda found a Lionfish, and we all saw lots of the usual critters in the clear water.  Then we took Derek to the airport so he could return to work the next day.  On the way back from the airport, Linda, Jenni, and Teagan went shopping in George Town while Richard held down a barstool in Paradise Bar.  After we returned to the condo, Linda walked along the beach toward Governor’s Beach and went snorkeling.  She saw lots of cool stuff including a school of squid and a king helmet.
  • Thursday, May 15
    Linda, Teagan, Jenni and Richard headed to Smith’s Cove to snorkel there.  Unfortunately, the surf was not cooperating and had the water churned up.  The visibility was not good.  After unsuccessfully trying to find an interesting area, we gave up and headed to Governor’s Beach to check out the reef there.  The water was very clear, similar to yesterday’s snorkel in front of the condo.  After lunch at the condo, Teagan and Richard were dropped off at the airport.  We went back so Teagan could finish moving out of her Murfreesboro apartment and get moved into her Jackson house for her internship.  Thursday evening Jenni checked out Calico Jack’s while Linda investigated dismal travel options in the likely event of Richard and Teagan missing their Miami connection due to the late arrival of their first flight.  Fortunately they managed the near impossible and made their Nashville connection.
  • Friday, May 16
    Jenni and Linda snorkeled from 8:15 to 10:30 in front of the condo. Jenni spotted a sting ray and a turtle which looked a lot like the one Linda saw on Saturday.  The wind and sea was calm but there was a bit of scum in the water so the visibility was not perfect.  Jenni got dropped off at the airport noonish, then Linda did the final packing, turned the van into Hertz and had “fun” with checked bags in Miami with a short layover.———————————————————–

    This trip no morays or sharks were spotted and the lobster were very scarce but the tropicals were in full force and the squid outdid themselves on Weds evening.