Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Trubey and Mary Agnes in the Bahamas

As I have mentioned before, Needle Nicely opened a new location in Vero Beach, FL, in October, 1981.  That meant that Trubey and I moved from one intense summer season to an intense winter season.  By April, we needed a break before heading to the mountains of North Carolina for the summer.  Trubey had read an article in Gourmet magazine about hotels in the Caribbean.  Among them was the Peace and Plenty in Georgetown, Great Exuma.  She decided that we needed a break in the Bahamas.  I didn't have a passport.  The travel agent we dealt with in Vero said, no problem, just have an affidavit attesting that you are a US citizen.  NOTE:  Don't believe everything a travel agent tells you!  We flew Bahamas Air from Miami into Nassau.  It was late leaving Miami.  There was only one flight a day from Nassau to Georgetown in those days.  We were going to miss it.  I, obviously not a world traveler, tell Trubey we should ask the stewardess to have the pilot call ahead to Nassau so we don't miss our connection.  This was the spring of 1982.  Trubey laughed, but I insisted; so she called the stewardess over and told her our situation.  To our surprise when the plane landed in Nassau, as we went down the steps to the tarmac a gentleman approached us, asked us to identify our luggage, and walked us through Nassau airport to a door on the other side of the airport (not far) with a gentleman pushing a flat cart with our luggage.  There he opened a door onto the tarmac, pointed at three airplanes, and said "that is your plane", and he walked away.  Which plane?  We started across the tarmac when a young man came running and boarded the closest airplane.  We followed him.  When he exited the bathroom, we inquired and were told it was the plane to Georgetown, he was our pilot, and we could choose any seat.

Of course, everyone thought we were some sort of celebrities because we had been escorted (almost) to the plane and were seated when everyone else boarded.  The wonder of the flight disappeared when the plane took off and my seat back collapsed with me falling back into the lap of a tall, black man.  As it turned out he was the Minister of Agriculture for the Exumas; and he was gentlemanly enough to put his knees against the back of my seat to hold it upright for the entire flight.  Come to think of it, his legs were so long, there was probably no place else for them to go!!

During the flight to Georgetown, a British couple who were sitting across the aisle from us, struck up a conversation with us.  They enquired where we were staying and why we were going there.  Trubey produced the issue of Gourmet that had helped our decision,  and shared it with them.  We enjoyed many hours conversing and dining with Charles and Gillian during our two weeks.  We also later had lunch with them in London after our QEII voyage to England.

Here are Trubey and myself after our arrival at the Great Exuma International Airport.  We had a wonderful time--everyone on the island was so welcoming to the "Carolina Girls".  However, when going back through immigration in Nassau (this time, the US), the agent was not happy with my lack of a passport.  He threatened to refuse to let me get on the plane.  With tears threatening, he finally relented and "let me back into the US" so I could board the plane for home.  The first time I did when I got back to Florida was to start the process for getting a passport.  So, that lesson was learned!


  1. I think the best part is that the Minister of Agriculture held up your seat! LOL