I slept until 3 AM and was on and off until 6, didn’t get out of bed until 8. Oh that felt good. We fixed coffee in the room and drank it on our balcony.
We got the breakfast buffet at the Lighthouse Terrace. I had stuffed French toast (stuffed with cream cheese) with a berry compote, a bit of scrambled eggs, and bacon. Richard had yogurt, fresh fruit, and half a corn muffin (I helped him out by eating the other half). We both had coffee.
The restaurant is under a roof, so it’s shaded, but it’s open air. There were birds flying about, quite a few of them. At first this seemed like a charming bit of local color, but they got a little aggressive. One bird landed on our table and started eating my scrambled eggs. That did NOT fill me with unbridled joy.
Our one cultural outing of the trip was to the Barbados Museum and Historical Society, about a fifteen-minute walk down the road. It was a sweet and somewhat rundown museum, with lots of interesting exhibits and factoids about Barbados. Just walking around the grounds was a nice change. It felt good to get off the reservation (as Hilary Clinton would say). Here's a picture of Richard next to a plaque commemorating a visit from QE2 and Prince Philip in 1985 (we are rabid for the royals, as you may know):
We stopped by a gas station on our way back and got three small bags of chips and some Oreo cookies. In case we ever got hard up for food - - we ate two of the bags of chips while lolling about the room that afternoon.
Another good followed by bad moment at the hotel: our concierge was an exceptionally friendly and helpful young woman named Martha. She was the first smiling face we saw when we arrived at the hotel the day before. We saw her every day and she seemed genuinely happy to see us and eager to help in whatever way she could. We asked her to make us a dinner reservation at a restaurant down the road (Richard’s friend Lucille had been there, and raved about it) - - she left us a voice mail message while we were out, saying that the restaurant had called back, after she made the reservation, to say that they were having problems in the kitchen, and they wouldn’t be open.
So instead we went to The Grille, the fanciest restaurant at the hotel. This is the bad service story. First, the hostess greeted us when we arrived, all smiles, but then scolded us when she found out we didn’t have a reservation. We were literally the only guests there, and they didn’t get busy until about an hour later, so I don’t see why this was such a problem. She gave us a table by the window, and it was a lovely room, and I have to say right off that the food was delicious. But the bad service we had sort of soured the experience.
Our server took our orders, brought us our wine, and an <<amuse bouche,>> a fried fish ball with some kind of sweetish sauce, very tasty and light. Then our first course, we shared a lobster ravioli. She warned us (with a giggle) that it was just a single ravioli - - uno raviolo? - - but we guessed that it must be rather large. It was, and we were just fine. Our server came back when we finished that and cleared our plates and brought us new flatware.
La la la.
The hostess came by and said:
HOSTESS: Are you ready for dessert?
RICHARD: Uh no. We’re waiting for our entrees.
HOSTESS: Excuse me?
RICHARD: We’re waiting for our entrees.
She looked at me blankly.
ME: We had our first course and we’re waiting for our entrees.
She looked at us quizzically and walked away very slowly. Fifteen minutes went by. Please note that Richard and I are perfectly able to entertain ourselves, but we were getting a little peckish. Richard said, sometime around the half hour mark, “Why don’t you run up to the room and get that last bag of chips.” We both laughed.
Another fifteen minutes went by. This was now forty-five minutes after we had finished our first course. There were now many more people in the restaurant, but one would imagine that we were among the first tables to have had our order sent to the kitchen, so again, what was the problem? Our server came over and apologized that our order was taking so long, she assured us it would be done soon. Richard said that we had been waiting for quite a long time, and she apologized again. Our food came shortly after and it was delicious. Richard had the shrimp with pasta in a cream sauce, I had the herb-crusted chicken with pasta in a cream sauce. We tore into them like raptors eating a comely young scientist.
Dessert: Richard had tiramisu, I had a scoop of rum raisin ice cream and a scoop of coconut ice cream. Glorious.
We were in the room at 9, lights out at 10.