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Thread: Tucker's 4th Anniversary July 2014

  1. #21
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    Day 7, Friday August 1, 2014

    Our last full day and night in Aruba this year. We were up early again and down for breakfast around 8:00am. The breakfast was right on target again.

    Beach

    Our plan was to beach it until noon and then head downtown with our Scottsdale friends. I got deeper into Bonk's Bar and Balashis before it was time to get cleaned up for town.


    Lunch

    We grabbed a taxi for Gostoso and got there about 2pm. We had some great appetizers there in the crab sushi rolls and the shrimp sushi rolls. I don't eat sushi, but these were actually cooked. I had the Carni Stoba and Paula had the grouper in garlic sauce. I think Paula had fries and I had rice. The food was very good. Jim had Carni Stoba as well and Monika had the beef tongue. The Balashis were cold as well. A good place to eat in the neighborhoods downtown. I would like to try dinner there I think.

    Bar Hopping

    We looked in some of the shops, but we were just not that into shopping. We were into some bar hopping though. We stopped at the Renaissance pool bar for the first round. It is protected from the wind, which makes it way too hot in there. We finished up our drinks and moved on down the street. Mojito's was our next stop and we each had their signature Mojito. This is our second year in a row to Mojito's and the drinks were very good. Our last stop was Local Store across the road and on the second story. This place is a find. The prices are geared for the locals. A bucket of 6 Balashi was $15. That's half the resort price and in line with rum shop prices. After that stop, we went down and checked out the sea port. Not much was going on down there and we were a bit zapped. I probably would have enjoyed a drink at Cuba's Cooking, but the rest of the party was beat. We grabbed a taxi at the hotel and made our way back.

    Bucuti

    We were trying to talk each other into making the 9pm Happy Hour at Sand Bar, but you could tell that no one was really into it. So, we promised to Facebook each other if we made it down. The rest of the evening consisted of us laying on our new day bed on the balcony. By 9pm, my wife was sound asleep. I followed around 10pm.

  2. #22
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    Day 8, Saturday August 2, 2014

    The worst part of the trip is saying goodbye. My wife did nearly all of the packing the night before and we were up around 6:30am this morning. We were down for breakfast not long after 7:00am and ready for or last 4 hours of beach time.


    Beach

    Manuel had the day off, so we said our goodbyes to him on Friday. We soaked up all the sun we could before 11:00am and then went back to the room to get ready.


    Leaving Bucuti

    We called down for help with the luggage just before noon. As we were checking out, the owner Ewald came down to say goodbye to us again this year. I keep telling him that I'm hitting the Powerball and taking Bucuti off his hands. We wished everyone a goodbye and headed for the airport.

    Airport

    The afternoon Saturday flights get worse every year. But, I don't want to miss that last bit of beach time, so I put up with it. We got to the airport at 12:30pm for our 3:40pm direct flight to Philly. It was a mad house down there. We went to the US Air first class line and there were 4 folks at the counter getting their tickets. We were up there in a few minutes and within 10 minutes from arriving, we were headed in. We checked 3 bags and kept a duffle bag with us.

    Next was the 25 minute wait in line to get through Aruban customs. It wasn't bad and we made friends in line. After that, another 25 minutes to get through security. We are up to an hour now. Another line in the food court and duty free area of 30 minutes before we could get our checked bags and head to US customs. They were only letting so many in the baggage room at a time. US Customs took another 24 minutes, which is not bad. Finally, another 9 minutes to go through the last security line. I should have just left my belt off and the laptop out from the first line. It's convenient to get through customs down there, but there is a lot of standing in line. So, that's 2 hours and 3 minutes to gate compared to 1 hour and 15 minutes I think from last year. I like our schedule though and will just put up with the lines for that direct flight and the extra time on the beach.

    The meal up front was great and we had a great ride back to Philly. I made sure on Monday when the reservations office was open to drop in and grab a penthouse for July 25, 2015 through August 1, 2015. We can't wait to get back.

  3. #23
    Senior Member cpjones's Avatar
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    Time just goes by too quickly on Aruba..... thanks for sharing so much of your trip report.... was like being there with you!

  4. #24
    Aruba since 1979
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    and now wait til next year
    you will have to read other's Aruba Stories and live vicariously

    i hope you do win the powerball!!!
    Quote Originally Posted by drtucker1 View Post
    Day 8, Saturday August 2, 2014

    The worst part of the trip is saying goodbye. My wife did nearly all of the packing the night before and we were up around 6:30am this morning. We were down for breakfast not long after 7:00am and ready for or last 4 hours of beach time.


    Beach

    Manuel had the day off, so we said our goodbyes to him on Friday. We soaked up all the sun we could before 11:00am and then went back to the room to get ready.


    Leaving Bucuti

    We called down for help with the luggage just before noon. As we were checking out, the owner Ewald came down to say goodbye to us again this year. I keep telling him that I'm hitting the Powerball and taking Bucuti off his hands. We wished everyone a goodbye and headed for the airport.

    Airport

    The afternoon Saturday flights get worse every year. But, I don't want to miss that last bit of beach time, so I put up with it. We got to the airport at 12:30pm for our 3:40pm direct flight to Philly. It was a mad house down there. We went to the US Air first class line and there were 4 folks at the counter getting their tickets. We were up there in a few minutes and within 10 minutes from arriving, we were headed in. We checked 3 bags and kept a duffle bag with us.

    Next was the 25 minute wait in line to get through Aruban customs. It wasn't bad and we made friends in line. After that, another 25 minutes to get through security. We are up to an hour now. Another line in the food court and duty free area of 30 minutes before we could get our checked bags and head to US customs. They were only letting so many in the baggage room at a time. US Customs took another 24 minutes, which is not bad. Finally, another 9 minutes to go through the last security line. I should have just left my belt off and the laptop out from the first line. It's convenient to get through customs down there, but there is a lot of standing in line. So, that's 2 hours and 3 minutes to gate compared to 1 hour and 15 minutes I think from last year. I like our schedule though and will just put up with the lines for that direct flight and the extra time on the beach.

    The meal up front was great and we had a great ride back to Philly. I made sure on Monday when the reservations office was open to drop in and grab a penthouse for July 25, 2015 through August 1, 2015. We can't wait to get back.

  5. #25
    Senior Member WaltVB's Avatar
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    Thanks for the report. It sounds as if you had a great time with a lot of our favorite activities included (eating, drinking, shopping, laying on beach). Even Saturday afternoon at the airport sounded not too bad, but those crowds are why we travel midweek.

  6. #26
    Super Moderator Jacki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drtucker1 View Post
    We came home with mostly liquor and chocolate for some reason.
    Love it!

    Great pictures! Thanks for sharing!
    Jacki ~ loving Aruba from NJ

  7. #27
    Senior Member
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    Saturday is the only day that US Air flies directly from/to Philly. We don't want to get stuck in Charlotte on either end and I won't give up Saturday morning time on the beach the last day to leave early Saturday. It's the price we have to pay I guess.

  8. #28
    Senior Member
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    I saw a photo from Caribbean Soul-Trekkers and it reminded me of the sports bar near Playa Linda that we visited on Tuesday of our trip. It was Carlito's Sports Beach Bar.

  9. #29
    Senior Member act1966's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drtucker1 View Post
    Day 6, Thursday July 31, 2014


    2 Fools and a Bull

    The Fools greeted us for our 3rd visit in as many years. I told Paul when he sent a confirmation Email that we would be there if they had to drag our corpses there. He was glad we showed with no coffins. We met a lot of very fun and interesting people and had another awesome dining experience. The Cornish hen, halibut, ravoli, beef tenderloin, all of it was just fabulous. The conversation was great and we had just the best time. The wine pairing ran us $280 before tip, but it was worth it. We grabbed a taxi back to our hotel with another couple staying


    Sand Bar

    It turns out that we were closing Sand Bar, along with 3 other couples. They close up shop about midnight, and we were ready for bed by then.
    We love, love, LOVE Two Fools. Three times for us and a fourth one coming up in November. We also love the 'Temple of Food-ishness' of Carte Blanche but the Fools is always an evening of fun and insanity. Good times!

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