The logistics: 4 couples in our late 20s/early 30s, staying in a house in Leeward (rented through VRBO) and renting 2 cars from Grace Bay Car Rentals.
We were all flying in from different locations around the US, and after some delays we all made it safely. Just as we were approaching the islands, there was a rainbow covering the sky. What a perfect welcome to this wonderful place! The band was playing as we entered the airport. It was a nice touch but the music was so loud I could not hear the immigration official and kept asking her to repeat herself. But the immigration/customs lines were a breeze (at least around noon when we got in), literally took us no more than a few minutes total.
Four of us got in a couple of hours before the rest of the group, so the first thing we did was go to Turks Head Brewery to stock up as we read that they close at 2pm on Saturdays (which was confirmed by the brewery when we got there). We followed the directions already posted here, basically go down South Dock Road from Leeward Hwy, take your second left and turn into the parking area on the left. We managed to fit six cases of beer into the car along with four people and all of our luggage. Let me tell you, that poor car was riding way low. And having to navigate speed bumps was definitely a challenge. But, hey, we had beer!
Next stop was Da Conch Shack to wait for the rest of the party to get in. We split a pitcher of rum punch (was pretty good for our first one, but we were to have much better in the near future) and had a few conch dishes and jerk chicken. All the food was really good. Even my husband, who was not a fan of conch after we tried it in St.Thomas, was stealing bites from my plate. The plantain "chips" were awesome. I've had actual plantain chips many times, but these were shaped (and I assume cooked) as french fries. I was fooled by them until I actually bit into them. Very delicious take on plantains.
As we waited for the rest of our group, I did use my cell phone to call/text them a number of times. It was way past their landing time and we were getting worried that maybe their flights were delayed even more, so I kept checking to see if their phones were turned on yet. The moral of the story is that my Verizon non-smart phone worked fine for me, so you can always have that as a backup. I have not seen my bill, but at that moment the money didn't really matter. We did have a cell phone that came with our rental car and also another one with the house, to which we would add minutes later, that we would use for the rest of our trip.
Finally reunited, we headed out to Leeward. After a brief tour of the house with the owners, we were unpacked and ready to go to dinner. I had already planned to go to Flamingo's, so we could at the same time take our first peek at the beach. It was an easy five minute walk from our house to the beach and then maybe another 20 to the restaurant. Although it was already dark out, it was nice to see the calm water and feel the soft sand. I was really surprised as we reached Flamingo's. From a lot of reviews, I had the impression that the place was really busy at dinner time. But even though it was peak dinner time on a Saturday, we were the only ones there. Fine with me; we got a beach front table and never had an issue with service. As I scanned the menu, I didn't see the curried grouper I had read so much about. When it came time to order, I asked for it anyway. No problem. The friends who had ordered before me were all shocked and half of them switched their orders to the grouper. It did not disappoint. As we all enjoyed a few more rum punches (which were probably the worst, ok, let's say the least good because even these were still damn good, we had), we spotted a peer just up the beach. The guys in the group decided to take a plunge in the water and we all had a great time relaxing as we literally had the place to ourselves.
Back to the house we went, for a late night of Turks Head, card games on the patio and catching up with old friends. It was a great first day and there was so much more to come...kayaking, sharks, Prince, Fish Fry, Island Vibes. More days to come as I relive our amazing trip with you.