Saona Island

Tuesday 22 June 2010 Los Melones, La Altagracia Province, Dominican Republic

I woke up and went to the Italian breakfast buffet I was not even hungry, but we had to be prepared for our "Saona Island" excursion at 09:45.
The logistics here seems to be a little crazy we had to take a speedboat to Bayahibe (again) where we got on a large catamaran. Together with a lot of other tourists but only one English speaking guy. All drinks were free (beer and rum) I guess it was heaven for my travelmate, again? Especially since he met a drinking mate that could keep up with him. It was a very nice man but it seemed that he had got stuck in his life, not getting over his divorce with his former wife, maybe that was the main reason for him being drunk every day on his holiday?

After a long trip by motor mostly (I guess the sails were up mostly for show) we had to pass our resorts on our way to Saona Island. Finally at Saona Island we were herded to the beach with more free drinks and another crappy Dominican lunch buffet. This was mass tourism as it worst and we had to pay 60 dollar each for this shit. I thought I should make the most of it so I started to walk to the east to explore the Islands coastline. First we encountered some very aggressive mosquito's then we came to another beach that looked exactly the same as our previous beach. It was the same shit here another load of hundreds of tourists, the staff here reminded us that we were lost and should go back to where we came from. So much for exploration of this so called nature reserve. I wasn't happy at all at with the development of this excursion.

Then it was time to head back with the speed boat, we made a three minute stop to look at the pelicans and then we stopped in shallow water looking for starfish I thought? I couldn't find anyone but I saw hundreds of people in the water. There was also a camera team running around with a starfish recording snippets of video or taking pictures? Maybe to "prove" that it wasn't a big scam? I don't know from we're but suddenly our guide also had a starfish in his hand and then even I got it in my hand. I think this was the best part of the entire excursion.
Then speedboat again, my travel mate even paid 500 DOP to our driver so that we would "win" the race against the other speedboats on our way home. Just when we should leave the boat a boy said "now is a good time to give tip" For what? You have already ripped us of, I thought for myself. I was not so happy and it was raining and it was time to pack my stuff again.

The strange thing is that I have only been here for three nights but it's already started to feel like home. This evening we chose to eat at the Italian restaurant it was so good. I even complimented the Italian chef, he got really happy. The funny thing was that he always thought I was American? Once at the table I thought I would walk away from the table and get a cup of espresso, but before I even could do that, the waitress stopped me and said "where do you think you are going?" It was very surprising, I liked this girls attitude, straight on. Eh "una cafe express gracias". I am so used to taking care of bizniz myself, that I often forget to use the service that is available.

Then I tried to book a taxi to the airport at the reception. It didn't happen in the way I thought, but it solved itself in another way, with excellent service/:)

Before I went back to my room I met a Dominican guy that was interested in my jacket (I wore my shell jacket, because it was raining for hours). I told him that it was monsoon proof and that he could get it for a good price, it was so fun playing the opposite bizniz game/:)

Ragnar Asker
Last active at - from Varberg, Halland County, Sweden

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