Another short flight and we were descending toward Gran Canaria. From here the picture was not at all what we were expecting. A green tropical paradise it most definitely was not. It is a brown, dry, harsh, rocky Island, generally peaked at the centre and tapering down in all directions. Our primary reason, however, was not for a tropical holiday, or in fact to explore the island at all. We were staying in Las Palmas with the intention of hitch hiking on a boat across the Atlantic to the Caribbean.