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St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands

St. Thomas was the third stop on our vacation, and it was absolutely one of our favorite places.  Unfortunately, the night before we arrived, one of the passengers on the cruise became very ill and had to be air lifted from the ship by helicopter.  Because this took so long, (and the ship had to practically stop) our time on this island was cut short.

Snapping pics of the helicopter rescue while I was in the hot tub.

When we arrived on the island 3 hours later than we were supposed to, we were blown away at how beautiful it was.  Normally the stops we've made on our cruises have been a little run down, but St. Thomas was absolutely gorgeous.

Here, we decided to sign up for an excursion.  I had told BF that during this cruise, I would really like to go snorkeling and para sailing.  So, it was here, we decided to go para-sailing!  We had about an hour before our excursion to quickly walk around the shops near the dock.  Because St. Thomas is a US territory, it felt like shopping at an upscale mall at home.  There was Coach, Cache, White House Black Market, Sunglass Hut, etc.  But best of all, there was a small convenience store that sold Pepsi!!!  {It is impossible to find Pepsi on these islands, and the ship only carried coke products!  Next time, I'm going to be smart, like many of our fellow passengers, and bring my own 12 pack!}

When it was time for our excursion we had to walk back to the ship where we were met by a woman who told us to walk down to the loading docks and wait for a small blue boat to take us para-sailing.  So, we, along with 8 other members of our tour, did just that, in the sweltering heat and unbearable humidity.  After awhile, the little blue boat still hadn't arrived.  I swear the cool ocean water was teasing me just to jump in really fast.  After what seemed like forever, BF was upset and wanted to cancel our tour... 

I didn't realize it had been 2 hours from the time we were supposed to have gone on our tour!  Just then a member of our cruise line came over to us.  BF complained about the wait and our time wasted because the para-sail people had not shown up.  The man took down our cabin number and promised us a full refund ($100.00).  I was glad about the refund, but upset that we weren't getting to para-sail.  Just as the man was heading back to the ship, the little blue boat pulled up.  I convinced BF that we still should go, and so we snuck onto the boat!!!

Getting into our harnesses

We were the first pair to go up, and I was really excited.... until the guys told us that we would be hanging, 400 feet, above shark infested water!  My nerves kicked in, and I all of a sudden, I really didn't want to go.

Remember when mentioned that I have some irrational fears?  One of them is a fear of heights... Now I know this is a common fear, however, mine is a little different.  When I say, "I'm afraid of heights," I mean that I get nervous walking next to the railing on the second story of the mall...

I was shown no mercy...

Once we got going, it was great!  I felt very safe, and our view of the island was incredible!  Our tour guides even messed with us by stopping the boat, and letting us fall into the water.  Then we went up, up, up!

It was a BLAST and I highly recommend it to anyone who has the opportunity to go.  My one complaint is that my stirrups were too big, and instead of cradling my bottom so I was sitting, they rode up (so I was in a standing position) and gave me wedgies in places that no one wants wedgies!  That, and a minor bout of sea-sickness {if I don't take my Dramamine, I'm like a cocker spaniel}.  When our turn was finished, we just relaxed and enjoyed as the rest of the people had their turn.

After our excursion, I really, really, really wanted to go to Sapphire Beach, to play in the sun and water.  It is rumored to be one of the Top 10 best beaches in the world (per National Geographic). 

However, because of our delayed excursion, there was no time.  It was about a 15 minute ride from the dock, and we had only an hour left before the ship was to set sail.  30 minutes was not worth the $30.00 cab ride.  So we walked to some more shops around the dock, and BF spotted a tattoo parlor.  He decided to get a tattoo on his new favorite vacation destination.  I was totally bummed, but there was nothing else to do, and I agreed BF really needed another tattoo.... {Not, this was number 15.}

BF is really picky about his tattoos, and has only had 2 guys tattoo him (one guy has done 13), but he really liked "Jimmy's work" and personality.  So we spent the remainder of our hour in a tattoo parlor {Awesome!}.  When BF was in Hawaii, he got PRIDE tattooed on his arm, so here, he decided to get HONOR tattooed next to it.  {Proud of what?  Honor what/whom? I often ask....}

Now, we told Jimmy that we only had 1 hour for him to do the tattoo before we had to be back on the ship.  After some debate about whether or not he could produce a good quality tattoo, he assured that he would only need 40 minutes.  30 minutes later, we heard our ships horn blasting in the harbor... A surge of adrenaline an worry came over me as I asked BF what time we were supposed to be back to the ship.  "Not til 6:45," he assured me.  Seven minutes after that, we had paid and were running the 2 blocks back to the dock.  When we arrived to the gate we left through, it was closed, and pad locked.... "Hurry up!"  Someone shouted from their balcony cabin, "we're waiting on you!"

"We might have to climb the fence," BF said and started to grab the chain link.  Just then a man in a white uniform shouted, "This way! Run! You're the last two!!!"  We ran as fast as we could, about 50 yards, to an opening in the fence.  They hurriedly checked our passports and boarding cards, and let us through.  The crew members had already pulled in the ramp and so we had to wait for them to push it back out so we could get on.

Apparently, we were supposed to be back on the boat at 6:15 so the boat could leave at 6:45!!!  The captain had announced our names over the loudspeakers to the entire ship to make sure we weren't already on board and security hadn't missed our check-in cards.  They had also sent crew members up to our cabin, twice, to look for us.  They absolutely would have left us, but we made it.

While it wasn't a perfect get-a-way, we did have a great time.  We both agreed that we would love to go back to experience the beaches, and skip the tattoo parlor.

PS.  Yes, we did receive a full refund, even though we still got to go on our excursion.

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1 comment:

  1. I've always wanted to go parasailing!! I'm way super jealous! Your posts have convinced me that more than ever now I need to convince Sean to take me on a cruise. I figure McKinley will be about 9 months by next summer....certainly old enough to stay a week with the grandparents, right? p.s. I'm totally with you on the tattoos for no reason....Sean has a scripture on his right shoulder blade that i always ask him why he got it? He can't read it since it's on his back, and I doubt he even knows the reference. ha ha


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