I was awaken by the announcement from our Captain that we arrived into St Maarten around 8am. I peeked through our cabin curtains to see the sun was out and it was bright. I worked on our blog for a bit and then saw the sun disappeared. Much to my surprise the Royal Caribbean Oasis of the Seas was docked right next to us. Yes, the Oasis does a great job as a sun blocker.
We ended up having a late breakfast right before the buffet switched over to lunch.
We left the ship around 11am and it was already quite hot outside. As we were leaving the dock area, a photographer tried to talks us into getting our picture taken. We declined and I noticed he was wearing a name badge with Royal Caribbean written all over it. Did he not see us leave the Princess ship? We made our way through the shopping area of the port and walked out the main cruise port gate. We made a left and followed the road for about a mile and made a left to head into main beach/shopping area. Wow! Was it ever a hot day.
Along the way to the nearby beach, we could see some of the hurricane devastation. We saw several cargo containers crumpled. Others had large holes as though an object pierced it way through the container’s walls. Many of the palm trees had no leaves at all. Several buildings located up along the hillside lost their roofs and a few walls.
As we approached the start of the beach area, we noticed additional hurricane damage. A few hotels stood without their roofs. We continued walking and then noticed brightly painted restaurants and cafes were open and ready for customers as well as the hotels.
We chatted with a few locals. One of beaches I had wanted to go to, Divi Little Bay was closed. along with another nearby resort/beach.
We decided we had enough sun and headed towards the main cobbled stone street. It has been several years since we’ve walked the downtown area and that time they were putting in the cobbled street. Now, it looks like they will have to replace it as some areas lost its foundation resulting in uneven areas. A church was having it’s roof repaired. Several shops were being renovated. Others were closed. The ones that were opened had folks standing outside beckoning folks to come in and shop.
We went back to the beach front to look for lunch. We found a small restaurant that had a grill out front. We ended up having BBQ chicken and Jerk chicken.
After our wonderful meal we walked back to the ship. I believe it was hotter here in St Maarten than it was in St Thomas. I’m not complaining, just stating a fact. We have seen lots of blue skies and white puffy clouds. We are enjoying it immensely.
In the late afternoon we were lounging in our balcony waiting to leave port. I was looking down along the dock area when I saw the crew of the Oasis of the Seas was taking a gurney with a body bag on it off it’s ship and loaded it into an awaiting van. That was a shock for us to see.
We saw the St Maarten Police car driving down pier between the two ships. They stopped at our ship and chatted with a few uniformed ship’s staff. Then they drove down to the end of the pier where the van was still waiting with the body inside. The police visited with the uniformed staff from the Oasis of the Seas for a few minutes and then left. Shortly after that, the Oasis sailed out of port. For a few minutes, the two ships were sounding their dueling horns. We of course won. Psssst! Princess has the best horns. :)
We were scheduled to leave port around 6pm and instead left around 7pm. Which of course delayed our dining time. Hubby and I always do sail-a-way from our balcony. It’s a tradition.
Our movie at MUTS tonight was the latest version Pirates of the Caribbean. Since we had a late start with dinner, we arrived late at MUTS. We found lounge chairs, but no popcorn. We’d have to wait to get popcorn at 10pm. But I will be asleep by then….Zzzzzzzzz.