Cayman Airways actually provides pretty decent food (and complimentary rum punch haha)
We woke up at 4:30am to leave for JFK airport for our 9am flight to the Cayman Islands. It was below 20 degree Farenheight and FREEZING cold outside, which is never fun when you're working on less than three hours of sleep. Anyway, we got to JFK, parked the car, got to our terminal, checked our bags, went through security and got to our gate...and then sat there for two and a half hours until we could board. Ya know, for a flight that early in the morning, going to a place most people aren't going at that time, following the travel rules of getting to the airport at least 2 hours prior to take off just doesn't make sense. Ah well...
Cayman Airways is great! So, first of all, they have this little cartoon pirate turtle, with a peg leg and a bandana who's name is Sir Turtle.
In case of emergency, Cayman Airways has baby bags...
It's on everything...the tale of the plane, the head rests, the flight attendants' bandanas and pins...everywhere. My sister and I, in our overtired state, thought this was hysterical and kept taking pictures of everything that had Sir Turtle on it. (Sadly, we found out later in the week, that Sir Turtle was slowly being replaced and that the crest of the Cayman Islands would be taking his place. Good thing I bought that patch with his picture on it...)
Besides Sir Turtle, the flight attendants are some of the nicest I've seen...and you get complimentary rum punch on the flight. Every other type of alcohol is available, of course, but the rum punch is free...and they'll give you as much of is as you want! Haha. Our flight down to the Cayman Islands was a lunch flight.
Me and my sister in the 19 passenger prop plane from Grand Cayman to Cayman Brac.
..which usually means awful food...but it was actually pretty good. We had the choice of chicken salad (which was actually a chicken breast on pasta salad) or a turkey wrap. I got the wrap and it came with a roll, fruit salad, a cheesecake kind of thing, cheese and crackers and a 3 oz container of water...and of course, there was the rum punch. It was all much better than I would have expected from an airline.
So the flight goes on and we're flying over Cuba, which was pointed out by the pilot...who then continued to note that there seem to be a lot of clouds. The cloud layer below us continues to get thicker and thicker. I hoped it would go away...very quickly. You know when you go somewhere in the caribbean, and you land, walk out of the plane and down the stairs and you start sweating immediately from the humidity and heat? This was not the case for us when we landed on Grand Cayman
The prop plane that goes between the three Cayman Islands.
Turns out, a norwester came in that morning...the weather in the Cayman Islands was in the 50s, extremely windy and very cloudy. I got out of the plane in my very light pants and tank top, and ended up having to put my sweatshirt back on...it didn't look all that great for getting sun and snorkeling.
From Grand Cayman, we were taking a small plane (19 passenger prop plane that we were told really only holds 16 people) to Cayman Brac
, one of the smaller sister islands. Here's something that doesn't really make sense to me...you touch down on Grand Cayman, and you have to pick up your bags, and exit the airport...only to go back in the entrance, check your luggage again, and go through security to get right back to where you just came from, pretty much.
My sister, modeling the red velvet dress she found in her closet at the house we were renting.
It's kinda funny.
Anyway, this prop plane we took...it's so small that each passenger can only take a single 55lb bag and one carry-on. My dad asked the lady why, and she said because they don't want to overload the plane. Makes sense. So then my dad asks, "Well, what if there's someone trying to board the plane who's 300lbs? I could bring two 55lb bags and still be under 300lb." The lady's answer was that they just wouldn't let someone that size on the airplane. Haha. Interesting policy they've got there. I actually don't know that someone that size would fit. The plane is so small, they don't even have a door on the cockpit. You can see everything the pilot and the copilot are doing, which is pretty cool.
After our 35 minute flight from Grand Cayman to Cayman Brac, the weather had actually worsened.
My sister, modeling the red velvet dress found in her closet.
It was twice as windy and even chillier on Cayman Brac. We got our rental car and then the caretaker for the house we rented came and showed us how to get to our house. The house (Island Time) was really nice...it could sleep 11 comfortably. There were three bedrooms, one with a king sized bed, one with a queen sized bed, and one with a full sized bed and a bunk bed (twin on top, full on bottom), and then there was a sleeper couch in the livingroom. Out the back was a patio looking out over the water. The only problem, was that we were on the north side of the island, and the wind was coming from the northeast. There were HUGE surfing curls in the water that was supposedly amazing for snorkeling...except that there's no way to snorkel in 4-5ft waves. There wasn't really any sand, either, but that was expected, since only the southwestern most part of the island has some sand.
..and that's of course where the few resorts of Cayman Brac are located.
We got settled, went to a market and got some food (the prices for just about everything on Cayman Brac are insanely high, by the way) and then got some food from a restaurant near the house. Came back, unpacked a little, and we all fell asleep by around 9pm.