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Thread: Trip Report Weeks 38 & 39

  1. #1
    Member Laura in NH's Avatar
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    Trip Report Weeks 38 & 39

    Flight - From Boston on Jet Blue direct flight. No complaints. Coming home they advised us to arrive at least 4 hours early due to fewer longer lines at customs because of the government shutdown. I'm always early anyway, but the 4 hours gave me time to not be rushed even with the lines. I waited in line for the boarding pass for about 40 minutes and the whole customs process was about another 45 minutes. Still time to grab a bite and do a little bit of shopping at the airport.

    Accommodations - I stay at Divi Village in a one bedroom. This was my first time staying two weeks. Things haven't changed much there and the room switch went pretty smoothly. The front pool is kind of disappointing with the warmish water and birds/iguanas using the flow-over pat of the pool, so I spent most of my pool time at the infinity pool. i met the new GM and he seems promising. We'll see...

    Dining - 9/22 got pizza from Pizza Bob's and brought back to room for dinner with friends. It was good and reasonable.

    9/23 - Tried a new restaurant, Blue Lobster. We saw it advertised in one of the brochures. There were 5 of us, no reservations and they seated us in the outside area. They had several fans going and i was comfortable. I had lobster ravioli, one had grouper and three had lobster linguini. The ravs and grouper were fine, but the three linguinis were not good. The lobster was stringy and chewy - so chewy that it could not be eaten. They were kind enough to remove those from the bill. I'm not sure I would go back but only because i didn't care for most of the menu choices, not because my meal or service was poor.

    9/24 - Grilled our own since we had been at our member cocktail party.

    9/25 - Que Pasa with 11 of us. The food and service was very good. I had the goat cheese salad and could have eaten that all night long - delicious! They had a corvina fish dish on special and I tried that for the first time. It was prepared well and was tasty, but it turns out I must not like corvina. Most others in the group had escargot apps and the Que Pasta, a pasta seafood dish. They all enjoyed it.

    9/26 - Went to Barney's for all you can eat ribs night. There were at least 20 of us in our extended party. We were not all seated at the same table, but that was just fine. Most people got the ribs and all were very happy with them. I had the yabbdabbadoo - grilled pork medallions with blue cheese sauce. I practically inhaled it, it was so good. I chose gratin potato with that. Two others had grouper and said it was very good. It looked very good. Most had leftovers. I think if you do not finish your first plate of ribs, you can take home what's left. If you do get a second plate, you don't get to take home the leftovers - or something like that.

    9/27 - Ate in. Sloppy Joe's.

    9/28 - Ate in. Leftover ribs with friends

    9/29 - Ate in.

    9/30 - Made mac & cheese and grilled out with friends.

    10/1 - Went back to Barney's. Schnitzel is the special on Tuesday and you can choose between pork or chicken and then choose which sauce you want. I had pork with jager sauce (mushroom, peppers, onion). It came with fries and cole slaw and was just delicious. Large portion and I took home a little more than half of the pork.

    10/2 - Went to Madame Janette's with another couple. She had seafood termidor app and a house salad for her meal, he had grouper and I had the Dutch Tenderloin, grilled. Food and service was fantastic.

    10/3 - ate leftovers

    10/4 - Promenade - 13 of us. 3 ordered from the regular menu, the rest of us did the all you can eat apps. I was full and enjoyed everything I tried. I probably won't do that again, though, as I'm not sure I had $40 worth. I would order off the regular menu if I go back.

    ?? - Don't remember which morning, but 4 of us walked up to Matthew's at Casa Del mar for early breakfast. Between 7:30 and 8:30 you can get a light breakfast for just under or just over $3. I had French toast, two had ham and cheese omelette with toast. I think the other choices were pancakes or two eggs with toast.

    Shopping - Went downtown once and got two little casual dresses. One $25 and one $15. Cute and comfy. Had a light lunch at Iguana upstairs. Went to the shops behind Alhambra a few days later. Got another bracelet from the glass stone place. Love those! Went to the flea market thingy by Certified on Saturday and picked up another of $15 dress in a different color along with a bracelet.

    Did my food shopping at Ling and Son because I know my way around. I heard mixed reviews about the huge new super center out back (near the rotary where Texaco is). some say it had everything, some say it didn't have the American brands that Ling has. You should probably go and form your own opinion. Maybe I'll try it next year.

    Other - Wednesday after MJ's we went to Matthew's at Casa Del Mar for happy hour from 9-10. Great crowd, DJ, dancing loads of fun!!

    Thursday we did happy hour at Jimmy's ocean view bar from 5-7 then karoake with Giovanni at Mulligan's from 9-11. Both lots of fun and great crowds.

    Weather was great. Breezes were nice and strong for the most part until the day I left. A storm Friday night sucked all the breeze away but I left Sat morning so no big deal for me. :P

    The trolley was running a little. Some people park on the tracks so the trolley has to stop and wait for them to come back and move. I'm sure the kinks will be worked out soon enough. Still a fair amount of construction and changes going on downtown, but i think it's going to be very nice when they finish.

    Election was exciting as usual. I could tell when i landed that there were a lot of green supporters this time around. No alcohol served from 6 pm Thursday until 6 am Saturday (except at resorts to tourists), but that didn't bother me at all. Some people were annoyed at dinner on Thursday night, but we told them to get over it or go back to your resort.

    Oddly enough, I did not make it down near the high rise area at all.

    I guess that's about it. I've been home for a little more than 12 hours and i'm freezing and I can feel my tan fading already. 50 weeks and counting until I get to go back!!

    anybody wanting more detail on anything, just ask and I will offer what i can.

    Edited to add my massage! I got a 50 minute relaxing massage at Spa Del Sol at Manchebo on Monday morning. A great way to relax after carrying luggage and sitting on the plane, and start my vacation off right.
    Last edited by Laura in NH; 10-06-2013 at 04:32 PM.
    ​Laura from NH/Divi Village

  2. #2
    Aruba since 1979
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    awesome laura thanks for posting! i have never heard of the fish corvina. i will have to use google

    so all in all it was wonderful for you and your large group! terrific.

  3. #3
    Member Laura in NH's Avatar
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    I Googled it as well, and I'm not sure I had corvina. Online it looks like a flaky whitefish. What I had was chewy and had a thick rubbery skin or something. It was also - not sure how to describe it - very 'sectional'. Like lots of little sections of fish, not one or two nice chunks or fillets. Like I said above, the flavor was ok, but I would not order that kind of fish again.
    ​Laura from NH/Divi Village

  4. #4
    Senior Member Arubalisa's Avatar
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    Glad you had a great trip and thanks for taking the time to write the review.

    So just to get this straight, you were told to be at the airport 4 hours early for departure and you were at the gate area in 1 hr. 25 minutes?

  5. #5
    Member Laura in NH's Avatar
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    Yes. The newspapers and at orientation they told us to arrive 4 hrs before departure. When I got my boarding pass they told me I had to be through customs by 11:30. My flight was scheduled to leave 1:15.

    I got to the airport about 8:35, got my BP about 9:15ish. Went through immigration and first security, then waited in customs line. It went all the way back to first security as they weren't leaving the doors to baggage claim open. It looks like they would let a large group of people through and then close the doors again. They opened at 10 and i got through in that group. Only 4 agents were working booths and some of them had to go and check bags. I'm sure once the shutdown is over it will be back to normal for customs.

    I was in the gate area by 10:45 or so. I am ok with being early although at that point i had 2 hrs to kill before boarding. I got to the airport sooner than I expected. I'm used to leaving on sundays when there is more traffic, but I zipped right there in no time. I'd rather be early than have to rush and be stressed, but 2 hrs was little much.
    ​Laura from NH/Divi Village

  6. #6
    Senior Member cpjones's Avatar
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    Nice report.... sounds like you had a lot of fun with your group and extended group. Thanks for sharing!

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