Coming back to Grenada was a breeze, the plane started on time, the five hour ride to St George’ s was comfortable, and we landed a few minutes ahead of schedule. We had four big duffle-bags on wheels (have to be collapsible) and prayed that they would all arrive in one piece, since they held our precious cargo of the new seat covers (my handy-work) for the round sofa in the salon, the new mosquito net from Ikea, my aqua-fit equipment and our toiletries to last our stay.
Al had made arrangements from Canada for the hotel and ride there for our first night close to the airport, after arriving in St George’s at 8:00 pm. Al had notified Francis about our need for a rental car, and he assured Al that he would be at the airport to take us to the hotel, and come back in the morning to bring the rental car. In Grenada one cannot rent a car at the airport and start driving; first a driving licence has to be obtained from the police. Getting the licence is no problem; just showing a valid licence and paying some money to the police is sufficient, but the rental agent has to drive the renter there first.
While we were waiting for our luggage, Al called Francis to remind him about our arrival, while I was part listening, part collecting the bags. Al repeated his name and what he wanted several times, and hung up with a puzzled look in his face. Apparently another Canadian sailor from Grenada Marine had arrived the day before, with exactly the same demands, so Francis claimed that he had already provided the service required. Al assured him several times that we had just arrived, and insisted that Francis be at Grooms Beach Hotel around 10:30 am to bring the rental car. We ended up taking one of the waiting taxis from the airport to the hotel, had a quick dinner and slept it off.
Next morning, we were up with daylight (6:00 am) and went for a swim in the ocean at the hotel’s private beach minutes down the road. After six months of pool swimming, Grenada’s pristine waters was awesome. Unfortunately we had to get ready to roll before noon, and start a few days of heavy toil before Ruyam II would start splashing. The prospect was disheartening, but had to be done, one thing at a time.
Francis came almost on time and gave us a small SUV, easier to handle than the last van. We opened a bank account at Scotiabank which was adjacent to a shopping centre at Grande Anse, the tourist area of St George’s. I was quite happy that we skipped driving downtown to do our initial shopping before heading to St David’s. Sitting beside Al, while he drives on the wrong side of the narrow road lined with a deep ditch is no picnic. I was quite happy when we parked the car under Ruyam II late in the afternoon, and lugged the multiple bags up.