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Day 12 Martinique

Sunday, June 19th, 2005

I had went to sleep fairly early so my internal clock had me up before my cell phone went off. I am actually thinking the cell phone was not such a bad idea. Cingular has sites in all of these different islands and I meet people who can use theirs, but I am guessing because I chose their most basic plan it does not work internationally. Anyways, I gave myself 45 minutes to get ready and downstairs to meet Rasta guy. I had given myself a 40/60 percent success rate with this guy. I was not expecting for much since he was a deeply endowed islander even to the point of being an actual Rastafarian, he didn’t seem that enthralled when he said he would do it, and this was Sunday in the islands, a day that hardly anyone worked, and especially not at 6:00 am. I was giving him the 40 percent because he did run his own business, a the only fruit market stand in the whole Anse Miton area. Long story short, he did not show. I factored in that I would wait until 6:10 at the hotel and then walk to his stand. Well, I did the wait and did the walk to the stand he was no where to be found. Now, you have to understand, I had a 8:30 flight so it was getting close. I figured since these are little twenty minute island hoppers, I could squeeze in to the airport an hour before takeoff without having big problems like it would be with going international. It was about 6:25 at this point and then I had three options. From Anse Miton I figured it would take probably about 25-30 minutes driving. From Fort-de-France the main city it would take about 20. To get to FTF, I would have to take the Ferry across and that did not have one until 7 am. To get from Anse Miton I would have to either take a taxi, which I was doubting since it was Sunday and the taxi stands were closed and people didn’t start moving around until 9am. The other option would be to hitch hike. Hitch hiking is prevalent but the time, the language factor, and the fact I did not know exactly how to get to the airport would reduce my chances quite considerable figuring that to catch the one car that early in the morning, who was going directly to the airport, would be rather small. I decided that I only had one chance of making it on time and that was to hitch hike. If I waited to take the Ferry, it would not get to FTF until 7:30 and then I would still run the same risk of trying to find a taxi, and then a twenty minute ride, would get me to the airport at 8-8:15. By that time, these guys would be packed up and on the runway before I even made it through security. Well, I went with the hitch hiking giving myself 20 minutes to find a ride and then I would have enough time to run to the Ferry dock 10 minutes away to take the Ferry and I would be at the airport where I could have a small chance of making it or finding an alternative flight out. I honestly had enough of the Euro and the resort living and wanted off the island. Well, I stood on the main road out of town for my twenty minutes and exactly four cars came by without even a glance over. I gave up and started hauling ass to the ferry dock. I got there about five minutes before. Luckily there were people there waiting because I could tell the schedule on the board but it also had some astericks in regards to only during tourist season. Well we waited and waited. At 7:15 the little boat finally showed up. I didn’t have to complain since a little old lady did it for me, and in French. Well we booked ass across the bay and pulled in at 7:30. I figured I was screwed but still hauled ass off the dock towards the main road. As I got closer I saw a bunch of barricades where the taxis and buses usually lined up. As I got closer I saw the streets were blocked off and there were tables set up along the road with cups of drinks lined up. I noticed one of the signs hanging off the table and it said something about a Marathon. Dammmmn itttt! What the hell. I hauled ass to the next possible place where a taxi might hang out and that was at the park. It was a good 10 minute walk/run. By that time my packs were starting to cause me to sweat like a race horse. I noticed a taxi van sitting on the side of the road with a guy looking like he just woke up. I scrambled to where he was at and just said “airport.” He said okay and we took off. As we got to the edge of the street, a guy waved us down. He talked to the driver and pointed to some runners that were coming down the street. No problem I thought, until they guy kept pointing at other runner behind them. Now between these batches of runners were some pretty big gaps and all we needed to do was cross the street. The guy kept his hand up for us to wait as he peered down the street. I was starting to freak out because I didn’t want to have to wait for the out of shape fat guy to pass us before we could go. Just before I jammed the accelerator with my foot the guy waved us through. That sucked another 5 minutes off my time. We hauled ass and hit pretty much every red light on the way. The airport was closer than I thought, but we still pulled in at a little after eight. I grabbed my stuff and hauled ass into the terminal. There was no one there except some rent a car people. I saw the sign for departures so I climbed to the second floor. When I got to the top, there was a maze of zig zagged gates to corral people through. I was the only one there so I zipped through like a mouse on speed. There was only one officer there and he was about to walk away. I yelled at him to let me through. He said they were closed and held his hands up with five fingers. I told him you can’t be closed. He shook his head saying “Parlez-vous France.” I said “Parlez-vouz English.” He shook his head no. He again held up his hands showing five fingers. Shit…. I took off downstairs to see if I could find someone else. There I saw a lady at the information booth. I asked her where the Liat check-in was. She pointed to an area on the same floor but hidden by the escalator. I took off running with my pack dragging the floor. I came up to the counter and nobody was there. There was nobody there at any of the counters. With these small airlines, about three people run the whole show from check-in to ticket taking to pilot/stewardess, so I figured they were on stage 4 by now and I was screwed. As I looked up to their monitor it gave St. Lucia and Barbados as a flight at 9:30am. I knew that I had a layover somewhere so I dug into my pack for my ticket. Bam, my flight was at 9:30 am to St. Lucia. I had just glanced at it before my flight to Martinique and had read the boarding time. I was there before anyone else, I was actually freaking early. I was both pissed and elated. I sat down with a sigh of relief and just laughed.
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Day 11 Martinique

Wednesday, June 15th, 2005

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The day started the same as the prior days, relax in bed until I had enough gumption to go downstairs for breakfast. I am going to miss that coconut jam stuff. When I was a kid I used to hate coconuts. Maybe because their French coconuts. Because of the rain, napping was the only option. This was the first real day that I did not have to either find something (adapter) or try to plan for something (ride to airport.) I had the day to just do nothing. I got back up around 11 and headed down to the beach. By this time the newness of the boobies wore off so I could pretty much just walk by the two French girls playing volleyball without gawking in amazement. I guess for me its like what people feel when they release the stranded dolphins back into the wild. Thats what I had been feeling prior to getting desensitized.
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Day 10 Martinique

Wednesday, June 15th, 2005
Copy of 100_0610.jpg Another 8am snoozer. Breakfast at 8:30. I am really liking this French breakfast routine. The coconut jam and the coffee are slowly becoming habit forming. It ... [Continue reading this entry]

Day 9 Martinique

Wednesday, June 15th, 2005
Copy of 100_0586.jpg Woke up refreshed and re-energized. Headed down to breakfast about 8:30. They already had my setting laid out for me. Slices of bread and one large piece ... [Continue reading this entry]

Day 8 Martinique

Wednesday, June 15th, 2005
Copy of 100_0562.jpg I woke up the next morning about 6am to the sounds of a pail full of disinfectant hitting the floor above me. I figured I had paid my dues ... [Continue reading this entry]

Day 7 Martinique

Wednesday, June 15th, 2005
Copy of Copy of IMG_1394-1.jpg 5 a.m. Fuck I’m going to be glad when I don’t have to wake up based on a flight schedule. I know that with ... [Continue reading this entry]

I’m falling behind

Friday, June 10th, 2005
I can't get a power adapter again and I refuse to pay Euro prices for anything. I am borrowing some nice guys laptop and satellite card for this. I will try to get caught up in Tobago. ... [Continue reading this entry]