THE CARIBBEAN SERIES, DAY 11
DOMINICA – BARBADOS – GRENADA
The most stressful travel day ever! Well today is the day…will it won’t it. I was still pretty sure it would arrive, given the assurance from the hotel owner and manager but it was all going to get very very worrying.
CAN I HAVE YOUR PCR TEST PLEASE?
Through the morning I was given a few assurances of that the test was going to arrive but with delay after delay I could wait no longer at the hotel as I needed to get to the airport. Nerves has now started to kick in.
THE WAIT CONTINUES
I was in constant dialogue with the hotel who had said she had 2 contacts, one in Dominica and one in the UK. What they do I don’t know but once the message was passed onto them the hotel owner thought the best action was to sit back and hope.
I have done what I can, I pray for you. 🤣
Apparently if you push people too much in Dominica they push back, and if I’m honest I expected it anyway so there was nothing to lose.
- HOTEL – La Helicona 6.5/10, $65
Even the rental car girl was quite helpful in calling the check in desk and asking what is the latest time I can checkin and if I can even check in without it. The answer was no and I had 15mins!
Getting to the check in desk I was half the man I was the previous night, absolutely gutted at the way things were turning out but I didn’t want to give up. Now I had to think of a strategy within the next 2 minutes which would make or break the rest of my trip; do I plead from the off and hope they let me on or just saying nothing? But we just called them about not having a PCR test, surely they’ll ask if I received it.
Yellow stars on the red border – country’s six administrative divisions
Yellow star on the red disc at the centre – the capital, St. George
Nutmeg symbol at the hoist – primary agricultural exports of the islands
Altogether, these three colours represent the Pan-Africanist movement
Green – islands’ vegetation and agriculture
yellow – sun, the warmth and wisdom of Grenadians
Red – harmony, unity, courage, and vitality
The most stressful travel day ever!
DAILY TRAVEL STATS….
- Steps – 5,500
- Number of flights – 2
- Flight itinerary – Dominica – Barbados – Grenada
- Airlines – Intercaribbean Airways
- Miles covered – 358 mi
I choose to go ahead and just talk my way through the situation. I had all the paperwork apart from the PCR test and I was hoping that if I talked enough it would distract him from asking. I was even looking around his desk for anything to keep the conversation going! But straight off the bat he came out with it,
“Can I get your PCR test please.”
Shit, I thought.
“Also have you got your entry form to Grenada.”
Ok let’s go in reverse, anything to confuse him.
“Yes I have the Grenada form but do you need my Barbados form too as I’m transiting through. I also have my flight details here from Barbados if you can check me in for that flight too. Do you need to see my flight from Grenada? Ah my COVID vaccination too.” I went on as much as I could.
At this point I was showing him anything. The idea was to lengthen the time from when he asked for the PCR test to as long as possible, in the hope he would forget.
“Ah you are very organised.” If only he knew!
So I proceeded to show him (as slowly as humanly possible) what he required with a heap of things he didn’t ask for. I would have shown him my STD results if I had them!
The most stressful travel day ever!
I couldn’t believe it and as I write this I still can’t believe that it all worked. He didn’t ask for my PCR test again and handed me my ticket. I was still sure I’d get a tap on the shoulder at some stage before boarding!
However this presented me with another problem. How long did I have? Would I get through Barbados without it as I was transiting and have at least 4 hours until I arrived in Grenada? Or would the Transit hosts at Barbados demand it?
THE MOST STRESSFUL FLIGHT
I’m fairly chilled with flights regardless of turbulence but there was only one flight I thought I was going to die and this was on the same stress level. And for whatever reason, both flights were Intercaribbean Airways!
The stress was getting worse, I couldn’t relax on the flight and on one hand I wanted it to last forever but on the other I wanted to land so I could check my messages! That soon changed when we landed in Barbados and there was still no PCR test.
- Grenada has the world’s first underwater sculpture park.
- There is a lake in Grenada, Grand Etang, which is said to be a bottomless lake because nobody has been able to locate its bed with SONAR.
- There are no venomous snakes in the country even though almost half of it is covered with forests.
PLEASE HAVE YOUR PCR TEST READY
After taking my absolute time in getting off the flight I was greeted by the transit hosts who told me nothing but,
“Please have your PCR test ready.”
“I’m f¥€ked.” The last thing I wanted to happen was to get flown back to Dominica and have to revisit that bitch of a nurse and wait another 2 days for a PCR test. With the loss of 2 days I would then have no option but to fly directly home! Which going from Dominica would take me through Barbados anyway!
ABOUT THE COUNTRY – GRENADA:
- LANGUAGE – English
- HELLO – hello
- HOW TO CHEERS – cheers
- POPULAR BEVERAGE – Rum Punch
- POPULAR SPORT – Cricket
- STAPLE DIET – Plantains, maize, rice, breadfruit, and peas.
ONE LAST CHECK
At this stage there is no doubt I would be in for some serious data roaming charges at the end of the month but I couldn’t stop myself constantly checking WhatsApp. After the brief chat with the transit liaison officer, I had received the worst response imaginable from my hotel manager,
“Ok I called, she said they got some results and your name wasn’t among the list.”
What the absolute f¥€k. After the confidence given by the hotel manager last night and this morning I was sure I was going to get it. I have little doubt that my nurse friend had gone out of her way to ensure I received my results the same time or later than anyone else. Power trips are real.
The most stressful travel day ever!
Even though I no longer had any hope, I was now thinking how can I bluff this; tell them I’ve lost it, come clean, ask for one here? But in the midst of all this madness I received an image from the hotel worker. The first thing I thought was it’s clearly some confirmation that my name isn’t on the list until I looked a little closer and there it was.
PCR test result – Negative
“You absolute beauty.” I must’ve appeared like a different person getting off that bus, sauntering up to the nurse no doubt looking like I was on my first ever holiday!
ONTO GRENADA FOR MORE BAD NEWS
The rest was a doddle, and after a few hours pitstop in Barbados I arrived into Grenada. Now my time in Grenada is short, too short if you ask me but with how flights worked out and where I was flying to and from it was my only option. However, I can do a lot with little time. However I was now being told I had to quarantine as I soon as I arrived at the hotel.
“I have to quarantine? Not ideal but I’ll just chill at the bar.”
“No sir you have to sit in your room.”
So here I was, country 150, a landmark number (a landmark story too) and I had to spend it in the room of my hotel. The security guard wouldn’t even allow me to keep hold of my room key. Welcome to visiting every country in the world!
WHERE IS GRENADA?
- HIGHLIGHT – A great first beach
- LOWLIGHT – Accom isn’t cheap
- MVP – Virgin Atlantic check in lady
Never been so thankful to arrive into country number 150!
More quarantine nightmares! Click to read.
SAFE TRAVELS, DS x
- What is the most stressful travel day?
- Ever had issues with COVID and a trip?
Let me know in the comments below . . .