Nothing ever goes as planned

When you travel, nothing ever goes as planned.  Typically when I travel I try to be more of a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants sort of girl just because it's easier to have no plans than to have plans that get ruined.  However, on this trip I made such good plans I might as well have been a travel agent.  I mean the flights all lined up, my luggage was perfectly sorted and weighed, hell, I even shipped things ahead.  But, of course, NOTHING EVER GOES AS PLANNED.  And, right when I was supposed to leave, Hurricane Isaac started barreling towards Florida, making everything go pear shaped.  My flight got cancelled the day before I was supposed to leave, the container ship with my extra box of goodies (and by goodies I mean school supplies and food) wasn't able to leave port, and when I called to change my Caribbean flight they said "oh no- it's not even raining here."

I should have known to just go with it, that's my thing- I just go with it.  I flew to India never having eaten Indian food before or speaking a word of Hindi, but it all turned out just fine.  So, deep down I knew this was going to turn out fine, it was just a little stressful.

We had to drive to Orlando at 3AM to catch my flight = strike one.  The plane was late leaving Orlando and late leaving Charlotte = strike two.  I ended up not making my stand-by flight in St. Maarten = strike three.  However, all of this was made up for by the fact that the people of St. Maarten were super helpful and understanding.  Or- at least I think they were because I couldn't really understand anyone's accent.  I asked a girl at the airport where she'd recommend to stay on St. Maarten, since the soonest flight they could get me on to my island was the next morning, and she said something that sounded like "Marley's Bone."  Which seemed a little weird, but when I told the taxi driver, he seemed to understand, so we took off.  We ended up at a quaint beach front inn called "Mary's Boon."  I took Corey's advice, and drank a delicious rum runner at the bar, while watching the sun set over the ocean.  So, technically I guess that means I did however disregard Molly's advice and went on the beach at night in St. Maarten...
First view of St. Maarten.  Yes, it does look like something from a Kenny Chesney song.


Next morning took a slightly sketchy unregistered cab to the airport and got on a puddle jumper with fourteen other people to go to an airport fondly known as "the white knuckle."  This time I was able to get into a registered taxi that took me to my dorm, which is home sweet home for the next three and a half months.

This is the co-pilot of the puddle jumper.  Yes, we were this close.  He got a handle though.  I wish I had gotten a handle.


For tomorrow: stories about mosquitoes, hitchhiking, and mayo on everything....

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