We now have to wait a month until we could move into the house, so our temporary home in the hotel would be ours for a bit longer than we had hoped. ML was of course out all day so I was left pretty much to my own devices but there were grounds to have a walk around, I had an internet connection, my laptop and my kindle app so I was pretty much set.
There is a rhythm to the hotel and the way things happen, from about 9 am the chambermaids work around the L shape of the cabins. But as often as I have watched them there seems to be no rhyme or reason to the order that they clean the 14 cabins. Sometimes they come early to me and sometimes later on in the afternoon. The problem with this is that it is difficult to relax and spread out so ML asked them to come at 9 am, which they did for the first week but then the chambermaid changed and we had to go through the whole process again.
It has got to the point that I make the beds in the morning because I can’t bear them being unmade for so long. The towels, sheets and are only changed if we ask and there appears to be only one set of each for each cabin. The beds are stripped or the towels taken and then later on in the afternoon they come back and are still warm from the tumble drier.
Laundering our clothes is a bit of a hit and miss affair, nothing is ironed. I think it goes into the tumble drier and is then put on hangers, well I say put on hangers ML’s laundry is hung up mine is folded in a plastic bag. After the second time this happened I had to use mime to show that I wanted my clothes on hangers as well. It was a quite elaborate mime but when the laundry returned the next time it was all hung up.
Every now and again some things end up in the plastic bag but I think that is when they run out of hangers. Having been to the supermarket and bought some more I make sure I return all their hangers as soon as possible.
The windows are all covered in brightly coloured curtains, they have a pole slipped through the top but it is such a tight fit that they can’t be opened. Having observed all the other cabins nobody else opens their curtains but they leave their doors open. Which seems silly to me as it’s letting in the hot air and insects. To keep the curtains open takes a bit of ingenuity and the use of a table, microwave and two suitcases but it means I have a room full of light.
I can’t bear being in the gloom, you might just as well stay in a cave – I am a child of the light, not sure if there is a link with not liking small spaces either. Anyway I digress yet again, I have set up my computer etc. on the table by the window so the chambermaids can see I am up and dressed. So why don’t they just clean the room and then leave me in piece for the rest of the day.
The grounds are lovely and there appears to be an army of gardeners who look after it, they have the endless task of collecting the fallen palm leave. There are umpteen trees, palms and shrubs in the grounds and those that flower are beautiful. The car park is edged by a hedge of peach and red Hibiscus and the paths that form the walkways in front of the cabins have a hedge made up of shrubs that form small orange flowers into clumps.
There are at least 3 variegated squirrel that inhabit the grounds, sometimes you can see them up in the trees but often they are draped across the woody stems of the hibiscus hedge. This is all well and good if you see them but if you surprise them or you don’t see them they launch themselves away from you making both parties jump.
Next to the restaurant is a garden with a large trees and shrubs, hanging from the tree closest to the restaurant is four long metal poles with a hook on the end. Bunches of unripe bananas are placed on them and as they ripen the squirrels, birds and butterflies all feed from them. On the weekend if we are at the hotel at lunchtime we always take are cameras with us when we go to eat because you never know what you are going to see in the garden.
The hedges along the path are a butterfly magnet and I can sit on the patio or look out of the window and what their antics throughout the day. They are amazing to watch, they are never still for longer than a couple of seconds which is good as they swoop and fly between the flowers but, extremely frustrating if you’re trying to get a photograph of them. I have taken so many photographs that when I check are either and empty flower, a blur of wings or the bottom of a wing. It took patience, a lens that is longer than I’ve ever used before and makes me feel a little bit like a member of the paparazzi. Bit I have been able to get one or two that I am really proud of.
There are countless lizards that inhabit the gardens and sun themselves on the paths and patios, they are very skittish and run for cover of they see you or you move too quickly. But the fact that they lay still in the sun means I have been able to photograph them.
The first week we stayed at the hotel down the path of the cabin next to us was a constant stream of leaf cutter ants walking through the hedge, along the edge of the path and around the corner. It’s amazing how big a piece of leaf there spindly little legs can carry. Then one day I looked and they were gone, I can only assume they have moved on to another part of the garden.