So considering that my hubby and I have heard much snickering regarding our "delay" in Bermuda, I think it's time that I do some explaining! In order to take this amazing vacation, we were blessed with the use of buddy passes from dear friends. The buddy passes (flying standby) went pretty smoothly on the way to Bermuda, but not so smoothly on the trip back.
As planned, four days and five nights after our arrival to Bermuda, we made our way to the airport. We were scheduled to fly standby on the 4pm flight from Bermuda to Atlanta that Wednesday and were expected to be back at work Thursday and Friday. Unfortunately, things did not go according to plan. When we arrived at the airport over two hours before the scheduled flight, we were informed that the flight was already overbooked. Overbooked flights mean little room if any for standby folks. We waited the two hours or more and were not put on the flight home. This left us scrambling... what were we going to do? How would we get home? When would we get home? And what about work???
My hubby was intuitive enough to ask about the next flight option and its capacity. Turned out the next flight available was the next day and it was overbooked even more extensively than the Wednesday flight we had just missed. Therefore, our best option was to make an attempt Friday, two days after we expected to leave the island. So there we were standing with the reality that a) we were not going home Wednesday as planned, b) we would not be able to try to leave again until Friday, c) we would have to tell work that we would miss two additional days, d) we needed a ride back to Uncle Geoffrey and Aunt Mary's, and e) we were going to have some extra time in Bermuda!
We later found out that there were quite a few factors leading us to this reality and being delayed.
- There was only one flight a day from Bermuda to Atlanta, and actually only five flights total off the island per day.
- It was Cup Match time in Bermuda, a two-day public holiday involving a game of cricket. To give you an idea as to what Cup Match is, I'll let a website explain it a bit below...
Bermuda celebrates this two-day public holiday to allow its residents to watch a game of cricket between a team from the west end, Somerset, and a team from the east end, St. George's. On Cup Match days, many natives (Bermudians) don't actually go to the game but choose instead to listen to it on the radio or watch it on TV (pay-per-view anyone?). You will find many residents camping and picnicking at the public (Government) parks or beaches or both.
Tourism Information: If you are planning your trip to Bermuda in the first week in August, you will not see Bermuda as it is the rest of the year. It is sometimes hard to find the usual level of service on this weekend (week?) of the year because literally, "THE WHOLE ISLAND SHUTS DOWN!" Bus service is on a very limited schedule, it is absolutely impossible to get a taxi anytime the whole weekend, you may find that many of the workers at your hotel who are normally there and excellent workers, not there at all for a weekend. Hopefully, if you have planned a trip on this weekend, you want to see us locals partying and having a good time. Even the most reserved let their hair down on Cup Match! Come enjoy the gambling at the Crown and Anchor tables, enjoy local food from the many vendors, try a rum drink from one of many mixed drinks or beer tents, oh... and, of course, check out the Cricket match.
- In addition, many Bermuda natives LEAVE the island during this long holiday in order to go shopping in the US or Europe. This is what we ran into at the airport.
We definitely enjoyed our extra time on the gorgeous island with family, but have learned our lesson to know that at the end of July/beginning of August every year, Cup Match is a force to be reckoned with in Bermuda! Oh yeah! The newspaper does not even run during the holiday. ha!