Author Topic: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure  (Read 21889 times)

Offline 12HRS

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #135 on: July 25, 2017, 10:37:57 PM »
+1 any chance of another segment this week? Pretty please...

to much simcha during the 9 days

Offline Something Fishy

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #136 on: July 25, 2017, 10:46:13 PM »
+1 any chance of another segment this week? Pretty please...

If underwater photography is twice as hard as terrestrial, post-processing them is ten times as hard. It's taking far longer than I anticipated, but I will likely have a post up this week (or thereabouts).
« Last Edit: July 25, 2017, 10:49:32 PM by Something Fishy »
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Offline Dawie

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #137 on: August 10, 2017, 11:39:18 AM »
...and this is all before we get into the discussion of the grill and the fish ;D.
http://matzav.com/watch-can-meat-and-fish-be-cooked-on-the-same-bbq/
this should settle that...
oh and BumP

Offline aygart

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #138 on: August 10, 2017, 02:57:37 PM »
http://matzav.com/watch-can-meat-and-fish-be-cooked-on-the-same-bbq/
this should settle that...
oh and BumP
It amazes me that he didn't even mention a very common way of grilling fish which ir on a plank.
You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used to start a religious discussion.

Offline Denverite

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #139 on: August 10, 2017, 03:22:12 PM »
Since we already going OT...lol...in this other TR this guy also says he got sewage on him when unloading his RV tank  :P

http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=81754.0

SF, you just have to flip a switch at this place to use the toilet, right?  No other tasks to use the bathroom plumbing?  ;D

And yes, Bump, waiting patiently for next installment!

Offline Something Fishy

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #140 on: August 10, 2017, 10:08:32 PM »
SF, you just have to flip a switch at this place to use the toilet, right?  No other tasks to use the bathroom plumbing?  ;D

Well some like to lift the lid first too
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Offline Denverite

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #141 on: August 10, 2017, 11:03:18 PM »
Well some like to lift the lid first too

And from the perspective of my half, we just want to make sure that lid just gets put back down (and that there is no interaction with raw sewage)!  ;D

Offline Something Fishy

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #142 on: August 10, 2017, 11:06:12 PM »
And from the perspective of my half, we just want to make sure that lid just gets put back down (and that there is no interaction with raw sewage)!  ;D



Yes, yes it does. No worries.
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Offline Something Fishy

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #143 on: September 18, 2017, 01:36:47 AM »
There are basically two "standard" ways to get to Utila from Roatan, neither of which would work for my trip. The scheduled air service runs only on Saturdays, and the ferry involves around 5 hours and a roundabout routing via the mainland.

This left a charter. There are a number of locals who offer boat charters between the islands, but these are long, bumpy, and very prone to cancellations. Plane charters on the other hand, are reliable, quick, and undeniably more fun. Best of all, these don't cost that much more than a boat charter.

The entire internet agreed that Alice from World Wide Travel is the way to go to book a charter, so I reached out to her via email. True to Honduran standards it took her a few days to get back to me, so it was another two weeks until everything was in place. I also booked our return domestic flights through her, even though she was around $20 more expensive than going through the airline directly. Aerolineas Sosa is known to cancel flights on a whim ("not enough passengers" is the typical excuse), but supposedly Alice will put you on a charter if that happens. That's worth $20 in my book.

So this is how flight charters in Honduras work: you get a cellphone picture of a handwritten receipt and instructions to "meet Banjo at the baggage area"...:



On Monday morning, we finally finished our grocery shopping and headed off Roatan airport to meet our charter. According to an email I had gotten from Alice a few hours earlier, I was to meet "Captain Romero at the coffee shop". This seemed slightly more legit than "Banjo at the baggage area", so things were definitely looking up.

Sure enough, we had no trouble finding Romero and after a quick introduction it was off to the plane.

Captain Romero showing his paperwork to security so that we can get onto the tarmac:



By far the tiniest plane I've been on to date, a Cessna 182 Skylane:



As you can imagine, it was a heckuva job fitting everything into the plane. We had two large suitcases, a snorkel bag, a box full of groceries (there are no plastic bags on Roatan), plus a big camera bag and my wife's bag. It took a while and some experimentation until we got everything to fit, during which the cardboard box broke and our bag of fish sprung a leak (because of course). Luckily I had stuffed some shopping bags into the snorkel bag on a whim back in New York, so these saved the day in the end.

Takeoff:



Our shadow on the reef:



Goodbye Roatan:



The only thing that could make flying in your own chartered plane more fun is sitting in the cockpit seat, so I was in nerd heaven. Poor Romero on the other hand was terrified that my long legs would hit some important control or another, so he asked me to pull my knees up and back as far as possible:



Flying over the open ocean:



On approach to the Utila airstrip:





Utila airport is epic. The runway and apron consist of some roughly-graded asphalt, the "terminal" is more like a large shed than a real building, and there was nary a soul nor aircraft around:





Still more sophisticated than LaGuardia:



And best of all, you could own it yourself for the low, low price of $200,000!:



We finally found some signs of life: a couple of soldiers protecting the airport from... something:



After waiting a while a taxi showed up, in the form of a tuk-tuk:



Suffice it to say that it was a royal adventure getting all our stuff to fit, but we managed it in the end. My wife had just enough room in the back with all the suitcases, while I shared the single seat with the driver, half hanging out the side.

The main road into town:



Way too close for comfort, what with me hanging out the side:



Driving through town:







We had made up to meet the owner of our island, Barry Jackson, at the main grocery store's dock. Our tuk-tuk driver has evidently made this trip before, as instead of dropping us off in the street he sped onto the docks at full speed, my wife and I holding on for dear life:



Sure enough, Barry was waiting for us along with his daughter and one of his workers. They got the boat loaded while I ran into the grocery for some last-minute provisions, including a five-gallon jug of water and charcoal for the grill.

Ready to go!



Barry:



The ride over was wonderful; the water was calm and beautiful. The colors were just amazing, and offered a tantalizing hint of what was to come:



A short twenty minutes later our private slice of paradise came into view:



Barry tied the boat to the dock and helped us out. There was another boat already there, with Barry's workers doing the final preparations for us. Apparently a large and rowdy party had left that morning, and it had taken longer than usual for the crew to clean up the mess they had left behind.

The crew carrying our bags into the house:



Barry gave us a tour of the island, explained how the electricity and plumbing worked, showed us the emergency phone, and packed up his crew and left.

After two days of traveling by jet, car, propeller plane, tuk-tuk, and boat, we were finally here.

We were now essentially marooned on a desert island, and couldn't be happier.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2017, 11:25:25 AM by Something Fishy »
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Offline Something Fishy

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #144 on: September 18, 2017, 01:42:29 AM »
Now before y'all murder me for such a short segment, I didn't want to post this until the main segment TR was done. I finished that just now, so I'll post it as soon as I give it a final go-over in the next day or so.
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Offline thaber

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #145 on: September 18, 2017, 01:54:47 AM »
Now before y'all murder me for such a short segment, I didn't want to post this until the main segment TR was done. I finished that just now, so I'll post it as soon as I give it a final go-over in the next day or so.
you don't have to travel so far for airports like that, they have them all over the US (minus the soldier dudes). Amazing so far!

Offline Something Fishy

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #146 on: September 18, 2017, 01:57:17 AM »
you don't have to travel so far for airports like that, they have them all over the US (minus the soldier dudes). Amazing so far!

Private airstrips, sure. But I doubt there are airports like that in the US with scheduled service from three different airlines.
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Offline thaber

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #147 on: September 18, 2017, 02:00:06 AM »
Private airstrips, sure. But I doubt there are airports like that in the US with scheduled service from three different airlines.
Public, but General Aviation, not Commercial, true.

Offline Moshe123

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #148 on: September 18, 2017, 08:21:37 AM »
Wow!

Offline Yehoshua

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Re: Private Island Paradise: Something Fishy's Anniversary Adventure
« Reply #149 on: September 18, 2017, 09:28:55 AM »
Nice segment. I don't think I could ever convince my wife to get on a small plane like that, luggage or not.