I was in Tobago this weekend for a very good friend’s wedding. My good friend and part-time muse during my student days in London, Stacey Leigh Hernandez got married to a Brit named Christopher Ross in a simple but really nice ceremony in the beach at Mount Irvine Bay Hotel. The reception followed afterwards at the Hotel itself then onwards to the pool for a cool down as the sun was blistering. Overall, the weekend was good but as always with me, I have a story to tell. So let me begin.
Saturday 12th May 2007.
Tobago Express Flight 1532 arrives in Tobago ten minutes later that expected (12:10pm) due to a stupid woman who insisted that her garbage bag full of bottles could be deemed as “carry-on” luggage. Needless to say she did not make the flight after all.
I collected my bag and went outside to hail a taxi to the Mount Irvine Boy hotel. I spoke out loud to a group of taxi folk and they all signaled to one guy to take me. He then grabbed my wrist and proceeded to pull me towards his car (as if I was his 5 year old son). Not liking to be touched, especially by strangers, I pulled away and told him that I would seek another taxi to take me to my destination as I felt his contact with me was a bit inappropriate.
He apologized profusely and said that I reminded him of his son (blah blah blah) and that he would drop the fare to $50 to my destination instead of the stated authorized price of $60. I had no complaints there. Then he wanted me to sit in his front seat where there was newspapers on the ground (in a Nissan Cifero PCC License Plate – new car). I looked at him and the newspapers and sat in the back seat, much to his chagrin.
Ten minutes later, I was at the Hotel and being told by the Reception Clerk that I did not have a reservation. I was just about to rip one into her when I remembered my promise this week.
PROMISE: No complaining. NO antagonizing of hotel staff. Smile. Be nice
She saw the look of utter frustration on my face and told me that she was “making a joke” (apparently I looked like someone in need of a comedy minute). So I signed up and she started to escort me to my room. While we were walking, a mature woman (I use this term sparingly) passed us and gave me one big smile. Too bad I discovered at that point that her teeth were a nice moss green colour. I returned the smile and prayed that that would be the last time I saw that creature. She wasn’t as wrinkled as she should’ve been for her age but I didn’t car to find out anymore about her.
I get to Room 61 and turn on the TV. I only have 6 working channels out of a list of 97. I ponder for a few minutes and decide that I will have a short nap and then call reception to deal with the problem. I slept form 1:30pm to 5pm and then made the call. I was first asked if I interfered with the TV but I ignored that question. She told me that the guy would be up in awhile to check it out. He arrived at 730pm and had to change the TV. I left for dinner during this point only to return to my room at 10pm to discover that he had not changed the remote. I hesitated again in calling Reception but did it anyway. He came at 10:30 collected to the remote and never returned. I got a new one on Sunday from his replacement at 8:30 that morning.
ROOM SERVICE – A Play in three acts???
Now when I had awoken at 5pm, I felt a tad hungry so I searched the room for a room service menu to “feed the need”. No menu was found. I called Room service and asked if there was a menu that I could look at.
Room Service Responder: Yuh know Room service will cost you $20
Me: To deliver it?
RSR: Yes, so is best yuh come down to the restaurant to get it
Me: But I don’t want to leave my room, can I not order something still?
RSR: is $20 yuh know? What yuh want to eat? I go clal yuh when it ready.
Me: ere r A Cheese Burger and Fries and a grapefruit juice.
RSR: Dinner starting just now yuh. Yuh doh want ta wait?
RSR: OK I go call yuh when it ready.
Me: so yuh now (click) delivering it
She called 15 minutes later and told me that my food was on a table in the restaurant awaiting my presence. Living up to my promise I went down to the restaurant and had my meal. Strangely enough, the burger had no lettuce or tomatoes in it, only three small onion rings. When I asked for condiments, she brought out a tray of mustard ketchup and mayo and told me that I need to take what I want as she was not leaving it for me. (Hmmm, I didn’t realize there was a condiment shortage on the island? We need to call somebody now!!!)
After this meal, I helped Stacey’s mom and her cousins with some of the decorations for the event and in no time again I was hungry. I called the restaurant at 8:30pm for Room Service again. (I just don’t learn).
Me: Hi I’m calling to order Room Service. This is Room 61
RSR: Yuh know is a $20 charge right
Me: (internally :What is it with them and this charge?) Yes.. I want the Chicken Salad with no Mayo
RSR: It comes with mayonnaise. We can’t take it out. Yuh hear meh with the $20 charge right.
Me: Yes, just put it on the bill. If there is mayo then don’t give me anymore dressing with it.
RSR: But de thousand island dressing does taste good wid it.
Me:sigh…..just put it in a container next to it
RSR: Well we not putting all of that in bowl. You will have to come down and take how much yuh want.
Me: What??? So what is the point of paying $20 if u can’t bring it up for me.
RSR: Ok so I will call yuh when the food ready to collect
Me: Yes but (click)…………………
(Don’t complain Stefan…they will spit in yuh food and Lord knows what else).
At 9:00 I get a call telling me that Room Service has finished for the night and that I need to come downstairs and collect my food. I answer with a smile on my face and sarcasm in my heart.
While collecting my food she tries to convince me to leave the food tray and just take the plate. I stare at her in abject horror and finally she understands what rubbish she just asked me to do. My glass of grapefruit juice that night tasted like orange juice but I wasn’t about to complain anymore.
I was at the pool around 11pm that night (since I had no remote and I wasn’t about to keep getting up to change channels) and the waitress that gave me my dinner asked me if I couldn’t have brought back down the empty tray when I was finished.
Me: Lady, I doh wuk here yuh know. Yuh does ask yuh white guests to do the bring back their trays?
She told me goodnight and left promptly.
SUNDAY- WEDDING DAY- MAY 13th
Breakfast passed smoothly but I saw the lady and she was speaking to the other waitresses. Hmmmm Thank goodness I saw the chef make my omelet that morning.
The beach ceremony went well and Stacey and Christopher were married and we all headed back to the Sugar Mill restaurant for the reception. To make a long story short, whatever table I sat at during the reception got no service from the waitresses. As they refused to serve me. Too bad I pointed the fact out to the Manager of the restaurant and it was corrected immediately.
The Food was glorious.
Pholourie in tamarind sauce and some fish thing called “Robinson Crusoe” (I didn’t eat that)
Curried Goat, potato and channa and mango
SALAD – This day there was no salad for me
Coconut ice Cream and Wedding Cake.
I’m sure we all know what I had for the main course and lots of it!!!!!!!
After the speeches and a bit of dancing. I retired to my room where I changed into my…..oh hell I slept after it……..It was too hot outside to even bother to leave my room.
I got up after 4pm and checked out. The weirdo taxi driver was outside of the hotel but I managed to get another guy. Weirdo nodded to me as I got into the other car.
I checked in for my 6pm flight that left a 6:30 due to some rubbish (my Ipod was on and I couldn’t care).
Got back to Trinidad at 7pm and visit my mom for a couple of hours since it was Mother’s Day.
Fell asleep at midnight only to be awakened by dogs barking and howling ten minutes later. After two buckets of cold water being thrown at then, they stopped making noise.
Got back to sleep at 1pm and awoke at 6 for work.
I must be a really bad person for all this stuff to keep happening to me…..hmmmm