Day 5. In the US, the election results were in (yay) and a snowstorm was blanketing the Northeast (boo). In SXM, we were doing this:
Oh yeah we were. Our plans for day 5 were to take the “ferry” to Pinel Island, a short, two-minute ride from SXM. From one slice of Paradise to the other. I say “ferry” because it was really an overlarge rowboat with a motor, but it was a whopping $7 so who really cares? Plus, it brought us here:
There’s no electricity on Pinel, no roads or cars, but there’s plenty of crystal clear, shallow water, soft sand, and snorkeling in the marine reserve on the other side of the island. There are even two beach bars and an outdoor “boutique” area selling clothing and souvenirs.
For a little change of scenery, Luke and I took a little hike over the hill to see the marine reserve on the other side of the island. Check out this view:
So crowded. Can’t stand it.
Many of the reviews I read about Pinel complained that it was overcrowded. Not while we were there. We did have an interesting “sighting” though. There was a lady sunbathing near our umbrella with short cropped, bleach blond hair and tattoos all over. I nudged Luke and said, “Look, it’s Pink.” I’m sorry to admit that I know what Pink’s tattoos look like, so although this lady looked A LOT like her, it wasn’t. Luke’s still convinced it was.
We all boarded the 3pm ferry and headed back to our place to change and take off again for Philipsburg to pick up the ring we bought for Luke. I didn’t mention that in the last post about Philipsburg. We’re on a never-ending quest to find a wedding band that Luke will wear and while we were in the jewelry store talking about the Molly ring that I had ordered from Etsy, the lure of the sparkly things won us over. He found a simple white gold “comfort fit” band that he really liked and I said go for it! He wanted to have a memento of Molly like I was going to have, so he asked to have “Molly” engraved inside the band. The day we picked it up, I asked the jeweler to clean my rings (which have our names written around the outside). He read, “Luke…and…LISA?” He looked up and said, “Then who is Molly?” We answered at the same time. I said “Our dog.” Luke said “My other wife.” That’ll teach him to ask silly questions.
Next, a sunset dinner at Chesterfield’s overlooking the bay, then a walk on Dawn Beach, and we were ready to call it a night.
Day 6, our last full day in SXM. Luke and I opted to stay close to “home” and hang out on Dawn Beach while the rest of the group went to finish their souvenir shopping with a trip back to Philipsburg.
It was nice to have a quiet morning to ourselves. We bobbed in the water, read our books under the umbrella, and even saved a baby sea turtle. We were looking around in the water for jellyfish (Luke kept thinking he felt them bumping his legs) when one of our fellow bobbers said “Look, a turtle!”
He was itty bitty and seemed to be caught where the waves were breaking. Luke scooped him up and brought him out of the water for a quick photo, then waded back out past where the waves broke to set him free. Good deed done.
The gang returned and met us at the beach for a quick dip before Luke’s suspicion came true and the jellyfish really did appear. We packed it up and headed to the resort pool to try and absorb as much of the beauty as we could before it was time to leave.
That night, one last visit to The Red Piano, and our trip was officially over. The next morning we had to pack up and head for colder climates. I woke up feeling like I was having nicotine withdrawal. There aren’t any no-smoking laws in bars in SXM and I inhaled a couple of lungfuls that night. Despite the secondhand smoke, we had a blast and it was a fun way to end our trip. (This is what it look like inside. This was the piano player probably teaching us another dirty toast.)
Day 7: pack it all up. Another great thing about staying in our palace was that it was a private residence, not a hotel, so there really was no set checkout time. We were able to pack, clean up the place, hang out and enjoy the view a few hours longer, and then head right to the airport to check in for our 4 p.m. flight.
Goodbye awesome condo:
Goodbye many roundabouts with your random statues and monuments:
Goodbye vague, understated signs:
Goodbye palm trees:
Goodbye Saint Martin/Sint Maarten, thanks for another great week!