Thursday 3rd January 2013
The longest day continued. We touched down at Male airport at about 8.15 local time and it was a fun landing to watch on the airplane (eat it pedants) camera as the airport is on its own island and if you overshoot the runway you're having a paddle in the sea. There was an interminable wait to get through passport control (which I think might have been the case last time we came too) but we were already in such a daze from the lack of sleep that it didn't really matter. If this was the Twilight Zone we would have been killed in a crash on the way here and were now queuing to get into Hell, only to discover that the queue was Hell. At least we didn't have kids with us. A patient mother walked back and forth with her baby which started crying every time she stopped. So she didn't stop. My wife commented that the child would never remember the hard work it had put its mum through, but maybe one day it will see someone else doing the same thing and realise that its mum must have done the same. Thanks mum.
Incredibly after the 45 minutes in the queue (which turned out not to be or to lead to Hell) our suitcases hadn't even got on to the carousel so even if we'd got through the first bit quickly we'd have ended up waiting here. But once we'd got our stuff we were quickly out into the airport and there was only a slight delay before we could get on the speedboat that was bringing us to the hotel. It was an 85 minute trip, but by now my brain had given up believing it would ever be rested again so I just enjoyed looking at the turquoise ocean, which was unpolluted even right by the airport (sorry aerostation).
As we'd be arriving before midday we wondered if our room would be ready. I was desperate for a shower and tempted to get into bed and not worry about my sleep patterns. Even if the bed was a massive human eating Venus flytrap bed (which do exist) I would still want to get into it.
On arrival we were greeted by a line of staff who all wanted to shake our hands and we got some fruit juice as we signed all the necessary forms. We were told our room wasn't quite ready but it would only be 10 minutes. It was being dangled before us, but I wondered if it would ever become a reality. Then we were told that the water bungalow we had booked was not available, though fortunately only for tonight, so the room that wasn't ready wasn't even our room. There were big apologies and some offers of compensation from the manager, but I worried that our Honeymoon plans might be going awry. But I was too tired to fully comprehend what was happening and signed a piece of paper saying I accepted the compensation without really understanding what I'd agreed to. If you want to get someone to do something that they don't want to do wait til they're jet-lagged and haven't slept for a day. Though I imagine others might have angrily kicked off. Or asked for more. This was our honeymoon (sort of), though we'd also failed to try to use that to get an upgrade on the plane. I told the nice lady that it was all fine. Though if it had been more than one night I might have had more to say. I suspected (correctly) that not much of today would register in my brain anyway.
The room that wasn't our room wasn't ready after ten minutes and we'd had two drinks at the bar before it was. But the sun was shining and we'd had a beer and though I felt a bit like a vampire when the sunlight hit me there was nothing much to get upset about. The island we're on was pretty and the staff were friendly and I was still counting my blessings. Be a shame to be in paradise and then to complain that the clouds weren't quite as fluffy as you'd been promised (but would be tomorrow).
There was no point in unpacking so once we'd showered and resisted lying down and sleeping until 2am we went for a walk round the hotel. Even in our zombified state I could see we'd have a good time here, though I was disappointed to see that there were no hammocks. My plan had been to lie in a hammock all day for two weeks. A sun lounger wasn't the same. This was the final straw! Hey God, this halo is slightly less shiny than the one in the brochure. I got over it.
There's an impressive range of sports on offer, including squash. I can't really imagine that anyone would want to play squash in such a hot country. But it's been a while since I've had a game and so might try and get down there one morning and let Me1 and Me2 have a bit of a runaround. It won't be for broadcast though, just for fun. But I'll let you know who wins!
You never quite know what you're going to get in entertainment terms at a hotel and the music playing in the bars and restaurants can become an annoyance after a couple of weeks if the staff only have limited CDs. But we were surprised at lunch to find that song being played was a very long version of "How Can I LIve Without You?" This is not a song I like even in short form, but every five minutes my wife would remark that it was still the same song and my brain would tune into it again. I thought this was funny for now, but was worried that a fortnight of being subjected to this might destroy what little remains of my sanity. Thankfully after another the minutes I noticed the song was stopping and we waited to see what would follow. It was "How Can I Live Without You?" They were playing one song on a loop. Maybe they just knew how tired we were and had decided to fuck with us. I hope they find another song by tomorrow. Though whoever sings that song might be paying the hotel to get it imprinted on everyone's brains so they associate it with their holiday and then buy it. I don't know if that would work.
We snoozed on sun loungers in the afternoon and were feeling pretty sick by 6pm. My wife nearly gave up and went to bed, but we played Scrabble in the bar and had dinner and managed to stay up until 9pm in the end.
It didn't feel like the holiday had begun yet. And in a sense we're in a waiting room and it shall begin tomorrow.
On the plus side the internet access is very limited here and it costs quite a lot so I won't be tweeting too much or podcasting the blog and although I plan to write a blog for every day I might put them up a few at a time. Jesus, fuck off. What's your problem?
This is my honeymoon after all. Sort of.
What can possibly go wrong?
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