Swimming with turtles in the Tobago Keys (and other birthday tales).

Canouan Travel Blog

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Our ride awaits.
Best birthday ever!

Part One: Breakfast as usual. Steve has to remake his plate of food since a bird sat in his first when he left it unattended. That was kind of funny, and gross. After breakfast we got a ride to Moorings Yacht Club just a few minutes away (lots of jokes about keeping an eye on the now-recovered yellow dive bag!)  They brought in "our" yacht, which we had charted for a half day. Since it was essentially a 45-foot fishing boat, we took off across the choppy Atlantic feeling we had been a little ripped off. But the attitudes changed once we got the the stunning Tobago Keys, where we sliced through impossibly blue water, me snapping photos left and right. There were some crazy wind sailers (?) literally flying through the air, and for $2 I would have given it a shot (no one invited me though, which is undoubtedly why I am still here to tell the tale).
Cruising the Tobago Keys.


We were then let off for some snorkeling... the best snorkeling ever, in fact: several turtles (seemingly unaware of or at least unbothered by our presence) were feeding on grass in the shallow areas. They would pop up for air every so often, sometimes quite close to me! I just floated and watched them eat... I could have stayed for hours! I looked like a prune when they finally coaxed me back onto the boat for lunch.   

Lunch was some sort of mushy salad sandwich, tasty grilled vegetables, plus a cake.  My gift from Steve came in a turquoise box - very nice!

We cruised some more around the ridiculously picturesque islands, parked in a bay with other boats, and I shot a million photos. I could have stayed on that boat a week, but our time was up too soon, and we went back to the pier at 12:30.
Eight other people were waiting to get on. The Raffles director was there to drive us to our next stop, which was the dive shop practically next door. We had about 40 minutes to kill so I wandered around in the blazing sun while Steve had a mini-siesta. 

Part Two: We and three other divers were taken to the decrepit-but-hopefully-seaworthy dive boat in a little dingy. Luckily it was a quick ride to the dive site. The two dives were not very good at all, although we were fortunate to see a turtle and a nurse shark -- the only redeeming aspect of the dive, really.  When we got back to shore we ended up canceling the diving we had scheduled for the next day.

Part Three: At this point, Steve was a zombie, sorely needing a nap after a full day's activities.
Picturesque boat in the Tobago Keys near Canouan.
Not in the plan! At the reception desk, the special events coordinator, Nicole, invited us to the 13th hole for a sunset drink --  oh, and we are leaving in 20 minutes!  I thrilled at the prospect, and accepted quickly for both of us. Steve was quite possibly near tears and nearly refused...but luckily he humors me on my birthday. So off we raced for a quick change. We followed Nicole up to the golf course with our cart, and had to give her a little push, and then a lift (dead battery). Along the way, we saw six turtles - today's theme!?

The 13th hole was gorgeous, with a spectacular 360 degree view of the island. A little surprise awaited us: They had a little table set up at the top with ANOTHER birthday cake and a bottle of my favorite champagne -- all courtesy of my wily friend Lisa, who colluded with Nicole to arrange the whole thing from Minneapolis! Incredible.
Makes one want to become a sailor.


The sunset was obscured by clouds, so we munched on cake and enjoyed champage, all the while watching a huge rainstorm coming right to us. As soon as it hit, the five of us (Nicole, plus two servers) squeezed into our golf cart until it passed over. It was 100% perfect!  From there, Steve and I drove on our own through the incredible golf course back to the resort, where we arrived just in time for...

Part Four: more activity! The hotel's general manager invited us to dinner. Much to (the very tired) Steve's chagrin. After quickly changing yet again, we met up at La Piazzi. At first it seemed Mr. Manager was lacking in conversation skills, but the awkwardness soon passed, what with the flurry of beverages and foods to contend with. The meal was absolutely fantastic! I swear we had a little of everything, and that includes beverages, which were flowing quite freely.
Trying to launch himself into the air...
Since we were with the hotel's Biggest Wig, we were served directly by the restaurant's manager, who was the most sparkling host one could imagine, serving up the most delicious food with eclat and perfect timing.

Somehow I got us (and the golf cart) home in one piece -- all luck there, let me tell you.

Yes, indeed, this one will go down in history as the Best Ever Birthday. Hopefully by next year Steve will have recovered from the whole ordeal...

     
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Our ride awaits.
Our ride awaits.
Cruising the Tobago Keys.
Cruising the Tobago Keys.
Picturesque boat in the Tobago Key…
Picturesque boat in the Tobago Ke…
Makes one want to become a sailor.
Makes one want to become a sailor.
Trying to launch himself into the …
Trying to launch himself into the…
Picturesque boats in the Tobago Ke…
Picturesque boats in the Tobago K…
Scene from our boat ride to the To…
Scene from our boat ride to the T…
The intrepid Turtle Hunters.
The intrepid Turtle Hunters.
Birthday cake #1.
Birthday cake #1.
Birthday surprise.
Birthday surprise.
Two cakes in one day!
Two cakes in one day!
Surprise champagne and cake on the…
Surprise champagne and cake on th…
Ingredients for the perfect birthd…
Ingredients for the perfect birth…
Here comes the rain...
Here comes the rain...
Save the champagne!
Save the champagne!
A scenic table for two.
A scenic table for two.
The entry to our bungalow at Raffl…
The entry to our bungalow at Raff…
Sweet ride at Raffles.
Sweet ride at Raffles.
Canouan
photo by: cmgervais