Honeymoon Adventures, Day 1 Con’t. The Car ride.

4 11 2008

First, if you haven’t read the previous stories then please do so here.  You’ve gotta be caught up on everything.


Alright.  Lets continue.  This car ride was one of the craziest rides I have ever been on.  Think about your scariest time in a taxi cab.  Where it seems like the cab driver is attempting to set a personal record for taking you 40 miles in rush hour traffic…in 15 minutes.  That kind of ride.  That is what we experienced.  Only, here was the difference.  There was no rush hour traffic.  It isn’t quite as bad when you’re weaving around cars when you’re only going 12 mph…and so is everyone else.  Imagine doing this at 45 mph.

So lets start from the beginning.  We depart the airport and the first thing he says is…”Everyone buckled up?”  I take this as a safety measure and am appreciative of it.  As we get closer to the actual road, he tells us that they drive on the other side of the road here, so not to be too nervous about that.  Sure enough, we start down on the left side of the road.  Not a big deal, but it is a little odd when you see cars coming at you and you realize you are on the ‘wrong’ side of the road.

I see I street sign with the number 30 on it.  I assume that it is a speed limit.  I do a quick calculation and determine that it is probably mph.  However, I quickly began to doubt myself because it didn’t seem like the driver thought is was a speed limit sign.  Now, from where I was sitting I was unable to see the speedometer.  However, I have been in enough cars to know that we were going faster that 30mph.  If I were to guess, I would put us at 40 or 45.   So here we are cruising along this VERY bumpy road.  More about the roads in a minute.

We are rapidly coming up on a car and I am quickly beginning to ask myself if he is just going to make a run for it and pass this guy in one fale swoop.  Instead, he puts on the brakes.  I had guessed that it was because there was an oncoming vehicle.  I think I was wrong.  A car suddenly passes us and I’m not kidding…this was the closest I have ever seen to an accident without a crash actually happening.  And the other driver didn’t even seem to care.  They just went along on their way like it was no big deal.  Scared the hell out of all of us.  I swear…it’s all a tourist thing.  haha.  They are all working together to scare everyone off.

Alright, that kind of gives you an idea of the driving.  This is all the time, btw.  In a barely two lane road, drivers are somehow making it 3 cars wide.  Around corners.  It’s insane.  Anyway, the roads.  I would say about half of the road(s) that we travelled on had a divider line.  And most of those were in the actual city part.  In the back roads, it’s just a paved area.  And not a very well paved area.  Huge pot holes.  Like…blow a tire pot holes.  And where there isn’t pot holes, it is just uneven pavement.  So the road is VERY bumpy.  And to top it off, this van rode like it didn’t even have struts or shocks.  Or any sort of dampening device.

So as we are riding along in the taxi roller coaster, I am trying to take in some of the sights of the island.  Banana plantations…EVERYWHERE.  I’ve never seen so many banana trees.  Then again…I’ve never actually seen 1 banana tree.  Anyway, bananas.  Lots of ’em.  The majority of the cars there are RHD (right hand drive), and seeing this brings out the car tuner in me and starts to wonder if there is an untapped market down here.  I quickly throw that idea away.  While the cars ar RHD, that doesn’t make them nice.  This is like the junkyard for old cars.

You know that recycling plant that you have to go to when you want to get rid of your old monitor?  Well…St. Lucia is like that…but for cars.  Don’t get me wrong, there are some nice ones.  But there are a lot of not nice ones.  There was one in particular that stood out, and I don’t know why.  It was a white truck and there was one guy (a mechanic) looking into the engine.  He had a beer in one hand and a reserve in his back pocket.  Next to him was either the customer or a helper mechanic.  He too was sporting the beer +1 reserve.

We finally arrive at our resort, Sandals Grande St. Lucian.  We get up to the front.  After an hour of sitting in a nice AC cooled van, you forget how hot it is outside.  We quickly remembered.  They unload out luggage and set it aside.  We follow a hotel greeter and sit on a couch in the lobby.  The lobby is outdoors, btw.  As she brings us a towel and a glass of champagne, I start to finally relax.

Until next time.

New cell phone

4 11 2008

To those of you who have made fun of my cell phone, you will be happy to hear that I have a new cell phone now.  It took a while to figure out what I wanted to do.  I was initially leaning towards the Blackberry Bold.  But due to it’s not being available from T-Mobile…and…well…it sucking…I decided against it.  Then there was the Blackberry Pearl Flip.  It was escentially a Blackberry Pearl, but they turned it into a flip phone.  I was initially against it because it looked really bulky.  But as I looked it over more, it kind of grew on me.  It wasn’t as big as I had expected.  Finally, there was the G1 from T-mobile and Google.  It’s an HTC phone.  I wasn’t quite sure about this one.  I really didn’t want to go with a tuoch screen, and I didn’t know how I would like the screen flipping out.

Alright, first the BB Flip.  All in all, a decent phone.  Has a nice little clock on the front of the flip, which is nice because since for whatever reason I don’t have a watch, I am constently checking my phone.  However, after about 10 seconds it turns off, so that doesn’t really help me.  But otherwise, it is a typical BB phone.  The one thing that I did not like at all was the keyboard.  It was in a QWERTY layout (like a computer keyboard), but they put two letters on one button.  QW on one, ER, TY, etc.  They also incorporated other symbols and numbers onto the keys.  For texting, it is rather smart in figuring out what you are trying to type.  That’s not the issue.  It was just weird trying to figure it out.

As for the G1, the biggest downside for me really was the touch screen.  I didn’t really want to get one like that.  I’m not sure why though.  Probably because I hate finger prints on my stuff.  But it did have a regular QWERTY keyboard.  Otherwise, it’s a nice phone.  The built in gmail feature is nice.  I get all my emails right away.  And the google maps feature is fantastic.  I have heard it has GPS, but I have yet to try that out.  The web browser is nice as well.

So after standing in the show room for a while, I decided to go with the G1.  Aside from the keyboard thing on the BB and the touchscreen on the G1 (which kind of cancelled each other out), the real deal breaker for me was the email.  I don’t need to connect to an exchange server.  Which essentially make the BB useless to me.  My primary email is my gmail account.  So it made sense to go with one that had that email service already build in.

This phone is really nice.  The touch screen is growing on me, but I’m not gonna start comparing it to other touch screen phones.  Primarily because I don’t really care that they can do stuff different that this one.  If I cared, I would have got them.  I liked this one.  Anyway, built in google maps.  Awesome.  I love that part.  Build in web.  Makes it easy to find stuff.  The camera in it is pretty nice too.  Has an auto focus thing in it.  Kinda cool.  It’s pretty much like all your other media phones.  Music, movies, pictures can all be shown.  Games can be downloaded.  IM through AIM, Yahoo, MSN and gmail.

The Andriod platform…I haven’t really read up on this.  I know that it is an open-source thing.  So there are a lot of people out there developing stuff for it.  There is one program that allows you to use your camera to scan a barcode of an item at a store, then it will tell you where it is cheapest to find it.  I think with a little tuning, that program will be very nice.

Anyway, thats all for now.  I’m still messing with the phone right, so I’m sure there will be a lot more things coming down the way.