A few things before I continue where I left off last week. First, I took a much needed break over the weekend to recharge. It bothered me to miss a few days of blog writing, but I honestly didn’t have the energy. I’d like to say that I just didn’t want to write, but that’s not true. In fact, I wrote a whole new chapter yesterday for my second book. So there’s that. It was exciting. Or, I was excited. Whatever.
Second, I’ve received a bunch of new likes on my Facebook fan page. Thank you! If I have missed liking your page in return, please let me know. There are times when I’m oblivious and lackadaisical, but it’s not my intention. My brain churns a million miles per hour and things get missed. I’m human. And can’t shut off my brain. It’s an advantage and a disadvantage, at times.
Also, I’d like to thank all of you who Tweet and share my poop-y posts. Y’all are amazing. I’m not, simply because I suck at social media. It’s on my to-do list to get better. Over the weekend, I’d like to say that I checked myself into the Hokey Pokey Clinic so I could turn myself around, but I’m on my own on this one. I know that if I want to continue to grow this little wimpy blog, I must reciprocate. Starting today.
Finally, if you have anything you’d like to submit for the July newsletter that comes out on the 1st, please contact me at gkadams(at)funnylifestories(dot)com.
There. Now we can get started. Last week, I completed The Bahamas post, and now we’re onto St. Thomas, a truly amazing (and touristy) island. Something funny did happen, so if you came here for a giggle keep reading.
The amazing thing about the Caribbean is that it rains at night and during the day, everything is so clean, clear, and beautiful. I mean, you’ve never seen hues of green and blue until you’ve been to the islands. It’s truly stunning. So, it was no surprise that when my mom and I left our cabin, I walked over to the railing, inhaled deeply, appreciating the beauty and abruptly decided that I needed some coffee. I know that I should not have taken the beauty before me for granted, but you know…coffee. The need for caffeine trumps everything.
This time, we were docked in Charlotte Amalie and were able to disembark without having to obtain a number and leave in groups. No twee little shuttle boats for the rest of the trip, which was great because we could come and go as we pleased between the hours of 7am and 5pm.
Charlotte Amalie is the hub of St. Thomas and a lot of the cruise passengers decided to go duty-free shopping. Not me. Not Mom. We wanted to see the island.
There are various ways to get around: 1) rent a moped; 2) hop on a tour bus, where you are crammed in there like a bunch of sardines. No thanks; or 3) Rent a taxi. Mom and I chose the taxi, because we knew we would get personal service (and island history) and wouldn’t have to punch other travelers in the throat. Win-win.
For $80USD (for both of us), we got the grand tour. The island is only about 31 square miles, so normally it wouldn’t take that long to traverse the landscape, but like I said, we got the grand tour, which included various stops along the way.
First stop: a view from the top of the mountain of one of the most popular beaches in the Caribbean, Magen’s Bay.
I fidgeted with the camera for a bit and took several shots. All the while, I felt something staring at me. It kind of gave me an unsettled feeling, so I looked around, but didn’t see anything or anyone but my mother and our taxi driver, who was leaning up against his car waiting for the picture taking tourists who sounded awfully funny when they talked. Our southern charm made up for our accents.
Finally, I heard something move in the tree next to us and after my heart stopped racing, I looked over and saw its head turn in my direction. When I saw it, I just about pooped my pants. Y’all know how I just love me some lizards. Um, yeah, not so much.
Luckily, the smell from my britches didn’t bother him as he seemed less enthused about me than I was worried about him jumping on me and giving me a heart attack. This guy (or gal) was about 4 feet long and that’s about 4 feet too long for me. Anyway, I was able to snap a photo.
We continued on our journey and came up upon a castle-like fortress. Our driver said it was the former home of the pirate Bluebeard. I’m assuming it’s Blackbeards more eccentric cousin, yes? Oh, maybe not. I figured with the blue beard and all…nevermind.
At first I was excited to think that an actual pirate lived in this castle, but after some research, I found out that Bluebeard is French literary folklore. Shut up. This was before I got my MA in Literature.
Anyway, the castle located on the island was being restored and going to be used as an inn, but since it was in the process of being renovated, we couldn’t get in for a tour. The castle itself is old, dating back to the 1600′s, but who knows who actually lived in it. I never found out. So much for a history lesson.
After taking a picture of the castle, I turned around, and this was my view of Charlotte Amalie:
I took several more photos, but as I did, I kept smelling something delicious, like homemade cinnamon rolls. I asked our driver what is was and he pointed to the tree/shrub growing wild on the side of the road and said, “Cinnamon. It grows wild on the side of the road.”
For poops and giggles, I took a photo of it:
Bananas too! And let me tell you…obviously, they’re much sweeter from the tree. When they’re picked too green and shipped to the States, they are forced to ripen too fast, thus losing most of their sweetness. Such a shame.
And let us not forget about the papaya trees.
Even though they look like they’re growing wild on the side of the road, the people living nearby consider it their property and if you try to pick one up that fell on the ground, you’ll get a bunch more thrown at you. I wouldn’t know that, though.
After our hasty retreat back to the car, we fled the hillside, made our way back to town and back to the safety of the ship, where we set sail to our next destination, Dominica.