St. Maarten/Martin

Trains, Trains, Trains, Trains, Trains, Trains, Planes, Planes, and an Automobile

We left the day before my birthday after work. To get to the airport, we took :

  1. VTA from San Jose to Mountain view
  2. Express Caltrain to somewhere near the airport
  3. Normal Caltrain about 2 stops to Millbrae
  4. BART to some transfer station
  5. Another BART to the Airport
  6. SFO train to the terminal
  7. Airplane to Charlette, NC
  8. Airplane to Phillipsburg, St Martin
  9. Rent-a-car to our hotel

I ended up sleeping in a great rocking chair at the airport while charging my Nintendo DS.

A red-eye is probably not the best way to spend a birthday, but it did the job and we were in paradise in time to enjoy a lobster dinner for my birthday.

A Topless Beach - Europe definitely got it right

The second day we swam a bit in our “∞ pool”

and then took off to Orient Beach. I was briefed by Michelle that part of it would be a nude beech. She forgot to inform to me that it was 98% old fat men, and the other 2% older fat women. Lest I say that I was disappointed and chose to not disrobe in these circumstances.

In dismay we trekked to the clothed part of the beach to discover that it was “Europe” rules for women going topless, and indeed the eye candy was much more enjoyable. Michelle told me that etiquette dictated for me to not take any pictures, so you guys just get to imagine.

Being extra protected from the UV rays @ Orient Beach

Up Close and Personal with Airplanes

Heading to Maho Beach.

Sunset beach bar

We went to Sunset Bar, to have a nice drink and then

Extra light airplane!Trying to touch the plane

we watched the planes fly a few meters over our heads. Very cool :

We got back just in time for the “welcome party” which was an open bar. I was drinking “Wipe Me Out”s and after 4, I was VERY much wiped out. We stumbled back to our place and crashed hard for the night.

French Onion Soup + Escargot

Switching to the French side of the island, was drove to Margiot. ALL the road signs were in French, all the people spoke French, all the food was French. It was GREAT! The Dutch side had converted to an American style, but the French had really kept their culture. And it was magnifique! Sadly the rain followed us around the island, but it didn’t stop us from having a great time.

Marigot -- French Side

We had some AMAZING authentic French food on the beach and I got to practice quite a bit of my high school French. It was amusing to listen to all the people around us speaking fluent Parisian French and for me to try and join in :).

Restaurant @ Friar's Bay

After our fill we headed to “Happy Bay.” It started to rain a bit as we started to walk up, but we looked at each other and decided to go for it. It was a 10 minute hike up and ended in a beautiful view. Turning around, it IMMEDIATELY started to pour on us forcing us to run down the hill and jump into the car. Praying that it didn’t leak we sat and waited it out enough for the threadbare tires to grip us enough to get home.

Friar's Bay

Surf and Jerk

Mmmmm... the most delicious Guavaberry colada!

Addicted to the great food, we headed to the beach for a french lunch, and guavaberry coladas. Then to Grand Case (the Caribbean’s gourmet capital) to find … what else, crepes! After putting on our extra 5 pounds we went to Pineapple Pete’s for a great meal.

We shared a their famous lobster thermadore and a jerk chicken sandwich (hence the corny title for this day).

I’m on a Boat

We headed to the French side again this day to take a boat out to an island just off the Orient Beach. Before we stopped off at a truck to have lunch. They had a ton of authentic French food, (evan a Croque-monsieur that we had at our cooking class), but we opted to not ruin our french experience from the back of a van and got some hamburgers.

I'm on a boat -- SNL style!

It was gorgeous out there and we took a plethora of pictures.

Walking on the waterFalling ... overLobster fest!

They kept their restaurant lobsters out in the ocean and when someone ordered one they would pull in the cage and lift them out.

In Search of Crepes

More H2O football

For our last day we went back to Orient beach and played a little football in the waves.

mmmmm... impossible à résister

Of course we had to find an authentic French crepe to end our great vacation.

It was a wonderful birthday trip. If you want to see any other pictures, feel free to check out the full set of pictures.

Posted on 10 May 2009 by Paul Tarjan

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