Turks and Caicos 2016 – Day 1

Paradise. That’s the only word that comes to mind to describe Turks and Caicos. Warm weather, sun, and sand. Exactly what this trip is all about. This is my third visit to TCI, and a week of relaxation, sun, and reading is just what I need. I have thought about visiting other islands (Grand Cayman was a top contender for this trip), but in the end, I love Grace Bay Beach (the main “resort” beach in Providenciales) and the familiarity of visiting a place I love.

Early morning flight out of Boston
Early morning flight out of Boston

But let’s rewind about 16 hours. My day started at 3AM. Yes, you read that right. After booking my flight back in September, American Airlines (in their infinite wisdom) decided to change my flights, leaving me with just a 45 minute connection between two terminals in Philadelphia. Thankfully, when I called them last week, I was able to switch to an earlier flight out of Boston, leaving at 5:30AM. So, all is well, right? As it turns out, we taxied out to the runway, only to return to the gate 15 minutes later due to a computer glitch. Fast forward an hour, and we finally took off at 7AM. The EXACT TIME my original flight was scheduled to leave.

So, now all is well, right? Not so fast. Board the flight in Philly, taxi to the runway, and… return to the gate. Again. This time for some mechanical paperwork that wasn’t done. Fast forward another hour and 15 minutes, and I was finally on my way to Providenciales. Where I picked the slowest immigration line. I started with about 100 people in line behind me and by the time I got through there were maybe 10 people left. Off to pick up the rental car (I had a surprisingly easy time adjusting to driving on the left this time), and by 4:15 I was happily in my room at The Sands drinking rum punch and Skyping with my family in Florida.

Grace Bay Beach
Grace Bay Beach

I quickly dipped my toes in Grace Bay before heading out to the Flamingo Cafe for dinner. I was really looking forward to a frozen drink, but alas, they had very limited flavors, and I was “forced” to make do with a rum and coke to accompany my jerk chicken wrap. I hadn’t been to Flamingo Cafe on my previous trips, but I always read good things about it. The setting was perfect – right on the water with views up and down Grace Bay Beach. Were it not for a line of clouds on the horizon tonight, it would have been a perfect sunset. After dinner, I stopped at the Graceway Gourmet IGA to pick up a few snacks to have on hand in my room. Prices here are at least double what you pay at home. I plan to eat out for most meals, but I do like a few snacks on hand for the mid-day and late-night munchies!

Dinner with a view at the Flamingo Cafe
Dinner with a view at the Flamingo Cafe

I’m pretty sure I’ll be calling it a night very soon. Turks and Caicos recently decided to observe Daylight Savings Time permanently, meaning they are on Atlantic Standard Time year-round. My body only thinks it is 7PM, but after a full day of traveling, I’m ready for some much-needed sleep!

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