When I last left you I had completed the Memorial Melt with disappointing results. But we were getting ready for our long awaited vacation so I said to heck with it and resolved to have a great vacation regardless. And we did, despite how terrible it has become to travel via air nowadays. Both going and coming home we had to literally run across airports to make our connections due to delays. And I swear, the seats and aisles and legroom have gotten even smaller than I'd remembered. Not pleasant at all.
We vacation in St. Martin, French West Indies and stayed at the Grand Case Beach Club in a studio with loft. This is our favorite place to stay on the island and it's a treat to stay there. As this was our 25th wedding anniversary celebration/trip we decided to stay for 10 nights and waited until June because the Beach Club runs a special where you pay for 4 nights and get the 5th free, which means we had two free nights. Everything was as fabulous as we remembered. We love sitting on the balcony of our room staring out at the blue, blue water and watching the little village of Grand Case wake up. We also love watching it go back to sleep with the spectacular sunsets we are able to see. It was so much fun to reconnect with the staff we have come to know over the years, not just there, but also out and about in town. Mr. Helen's best friend was there (we stayed at their house 3 years ago) and saved us literally hundreds of dollars by very generously taking us out on his boat several times - and the guys even had a fishing expedition one day while I went out shopping.
The weather was darn near perfect and some of the best we've had in several trips. We spent those 11 days sleeping, eating, drinking, resting, beaching, and generally spending time doing things that restored our minds and bodies. I didn't do any planned exercise the entire time, not even taking walks on the beach. But I did spend about 2 hours a day snorkeling. I'm a terrible swimmer but a great floater/snorkeler. Mr. Helen had to make me get out of the water many times because he was tired but didn't want me out by myself.
It was everything a vacation should be - and more! When I got back to work last week several people said they'd never seen me looking so relaxed, so I guess it served its purpose.
Some of the food - we ate in and out and enjoyed it all
An appetizer plate I made us one evening after we came off the beach. I brought the napkins from home.
A typical "Lolo" plate. Lolos are the locally owned, locally operated grill joints. You pick your meat and sides. This one has ribs with garlic butter, rice and peas, corn on the cob, and a johnny cake. Costs about $8 for all this food.
Mr. Helen's gorgeous Conch Cocktail appetizer, served in a Conch shell. He looks forward to this each time we go.
Fabulous desserts. First up is "The Rock" a flourless chocolate and pistachio cake served with house made ice cream. This is our resort's specialty named for Grand Case Rock aka Creole Rock which is visible from the resort.
A raspberry souffle crepe. I was full and still ate it all. My last dessert on this trip.
Short Rib appetizer served with salad, coleslaw and creole sauce. One of my favorites on this trip.
I could have eaten just this and been thrilled!
Another favorite dish I had, believe it or not. This was grilled vegetables that were marinated and served cold. Delicious!
A toast to all the great food and a great vacation!
Finally, a shot of Mr. Helen and me - one of the only photos of us together.
... and a shot of me in the dress I wore to Le Cottage which is where we officially celebrated our anniversary on our last night there. I bought this dress a little small and it fit perfectly so maybe the work I did in May paid off a little anyway!
Another memorable trip in the books!