Freelancealot has just had it’s annual summer holiday – a week in Grenada (that’s the Caribbean country, not the Spanish city) – and although happy to be back in the UK for our clients, we’d rather be looking at a view of the sublime crystal-clear, turquoise Caribbean Sea.
I’m not going to sell Grenada to those reading this blog, Freelancealot wants to keep it as tourist-free as possible – we’re selfish like that! However, I must praise the Grenadians for their hospitality, friendliness, and general care for their fellow man whilst we were there – it made the holiday a much more relaxing and inspiring one. So much so that Freelancealot is thinking of moving it’s operation to that most beautiful (and HOT) island.
With it’s colourful history – of Arawaks, Carib Indians, French vs British colonisation attempts and successes, slavery, and the ‘rescue mission’ by the US (amongst others) from it’s brief socialist leadership – and it’s varied topography – mountains, waterfalls, volcanic lakes – Grenada is not only an island to visit for sun, sea, and sand.
Rum is the local tipple and is distilled on the island – we at Freelancealot can say from personal experience that it certainly makes for a strong rum punch and some killer cocktails (served in our case by Delroy at the Spice Island on Grand Anse Beach). The Spice Island Beach Resort is the first class sister hotel to The Blue Horizons Garden Resort, which is where we stayed – and we can highly recommend the self-catering studios which were clean and had air conditioning, a must when you come back from a long, hot day at the beach! The staff were friendly, courteous, and helpful – from tips on where to go for lobster (yum) to how much we should expect to pay for buses (which were a marvelous experience in themselves ).
We went scuba diving with Aquanauts – two dives in one day – and saw the underwater sculptures at Moliniere Bay along with countless brightly coloured fish (no sharks!), eels, sea fans, coral… And to prove what a small world we are, our instructor was from Barton-under-Needwood, a village not far from Freelancealot’s office in Staffordshire! On this note, we also met a couple, Elaine and Mark, who were on their honeymoon and it turned out she’d worked with a very good friend of mine – I now believe in the concept of ‘Six Degrees of Separation‘!
We hired a jeep for the day and drove through the mountains and forests to the north end of the island and found Almost Paradise at Sauters Bay, with it’s terrace high on a hill overlooking the sea and the Grenadines in the distance. We also stopped at Annandale Falls and had swim in the cool water and, of course, stood under the fall itself. After a stop off at a beach watching the fishermen bring in their catch and a chat with Livingstone, an artist with his workshop on the beach, we made our way back to the hotel via the west coast road. With the sun setting and the locals getting ready for their Saturday night evening – people gathering at the local bars and huge PA systems blasting out reggae music – it made for a memorable drive around the spice island.
There were other special moments such as playing the guitar, singing along to Bob Marley tunes, and drinking a rather nice wine on the Grand Anse beach with Benjamin, Best, Davido, and others as the sun was setting over the Caribbean Sea, a very late night session in the Owl Bar with Chester – quantities of Carib beer and local rum being involved! – eating lobster and Caribbean Chicken on the beach by lantern at the Coconut Beach Restaurant (and even being offered a lift home by the gracious owner Pat – now that’s what I call service!).
Will we be going back? You bet we will!