We are up at the normal time and head to breakfast, but it is rally slow this morning. They are having trivia at 10:30AM since we have a port this afternoon. Dick’s team wins!
At 11AM we go to the Town Hall Meeting hosted by Mark Conway, who got on in Barbados. He first talks about what he sees as the future for Regent and how the company is now structured. He then takes some question from the floor. From what we hear from Mark and then the passengers, there is a big disconnect in what the management sees for the future and what the past passengers like and want. Regent, like all companies must make money and grow and they must do what is necessary to do that...they have a lot of beds to fill. Guess we will see how it all plays out in the next few years.
We go for an early lunch in La Veranda and back to the room to get the back pack ready to go ashore. We dock in Antigua at about 12:30AM. It is a pretty entry with a nice little harbor and colorful buildings...lots of tropical color!
They have crammed our bus full. We did not count, but the bus must hold 20 people if not more with some on little fold down seats that fill the aisle. Our guide, a heavy set, black lady with a voice that would peel paint does not need a microphone! As with most tour guides, she feels obligated to tell us all the details about the island; some of which are not too interesting or memorable. She starts off with a question and answer deal giving out three travel books on the island to people who answer the question right. Carolyn answers the one about the the original economic mainstay, sugar cane, and gets one ot the books.
Basically, we get a windshield, drive-by tour of the island. The main highlights of the tour are the stops at the National Park Museum for an audio-visual historic recap of the island and a nice view,
We find the views from the hilltop fortification very nice and the cool trade winds are pleasant and most welcome. The water is that beautiful Caribbean blue.
The island people are highly dependent on tourism and know it. There is no graffiti and we do not run across an "entitled" attitude. Our guide stresses the fact that "you have to work to eat on the island" and we are made to feel most welcome. Antigua may well be included in our next Caribbean vacation; not on a ship!! We head back to the pier and enjoy our peek at life on this island paradise.