Our Caribbean Getaway - St. Thomas (USVI) 2020

in #travellast year (edited)

My wife and I happen to live in one of the coldest states in the US, Minnesota. Winters can be soul crushingly extreme and long here. You can usually count on six months (Nov-April) of winter. Some people here are into winter sports like snowmobiling, hockey, etc. and actually love the cold weather but my wife and I don’t count ourselves among them.

To help maintain some shred of sanity we’ve been visiting the Caribbean island of St. Thomas for the past five years (see last year’s posts here) and the island has become like a second home to us. We’ve had some amazing experiences there that will be a part of us for the rest of our lives. We've also made a lifelong friend, Lecia, who we met during our first trip in 2016 when we booked her amazing Airbnb. If you're planning a trip to St. Thomas we highly recommend checking her bed and breakfast out (click Airbnb link above.) By sharing her decades of experience living on the island she's allowed us to get to know it almost as well as a local.

Life is different on the island. After being acclimated to the fast-paced, materialistic lifestyle in the U.S. it always takes us a day or so to get recalibrated. You may have heard the term “island time”, let me tell you it’s not a fallacy. Everything happens at a slower pace and sometimes not as you might expect. What this does is forces you to relax and let go of your unhealthy need to be able to anticipate every aspect of your day.

“Island time is one of those delightful double entendres: On the one hand it refers to pace, a certain slack attitude towards the clock. But it also refers to time well spent, away, in a place that refreshes the spirit and cleanses the soul.”

This year we embraced island time whole-heartedly. Instead of hopping on ferries to explore the surrounding islands of St. John, St. Croix, and Water Island we concentrated on enjoying the beautiful beaches of St. Thomas for the entire week.

Lindquist Beach, my favorite beach on St. Thomas.

We spent most of our time on Lindquist and Sapphire Beaches this year. Sapphire is the most touristy of the two. The beach is nice and you can get food and drinks delivered right to your beach chair. Many of the cruise ships shuttle passengers to Sapphire and it can get a little too “peoplely” sometimes. Lindquist is like Sapphire’s shy (but more attractive) sibling. It’s not as well known but it’s even more beautiful than Sapphire and there’s rarely more than a handful of people there.

Us exploring Lindquist.

This year we drove our trusty little Kia Rio rental car to one of the highest points on the island, Drake’s Seat. We parasailed last year and standing here looking at the expansive view of Magen’s Bay down below gave us flashbacks of that parasailing experience. I must say that Kia has come a long way. We had a Kia rental a few years ago and it really struggled to climb the intense hills of the island, this 2019 Rio did so with almost no effort.

Drake's Seat

Here’s a slideshow of more memories from our island adventure:

What thrilled us the most this year was seeing that the island is finally recovering from the two devastating hurricanes that hit them in 2017. The flora and fauna both have made an incredible comeback. In 2018 there was barely a bird left on the island, now there are as many as there were before the storms hit. The homes and businesses are taking a bit longer to recover. Many of the small businesses we knew and loved have closed down due to the financial impact of the hurricanes.

I always get a little sad when I empty my suitcase and put it away but am very grateful for the opportunity to relax, recharge, and plot my course for the year to come. What will 2020 bring? If we're lucky, it will give us more good than bad. As island time teaches us, not knowing what is to come can sometimes be the most rewarding aspect of life.

Life is truly an adventure, don't let it pass you by. Thanks for joining me on this journey. I hope for a peaceful, healthy, and prosperous 2020 for us all!

With Gratitude,
~Eric Vance Walton~

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Ahhh just what the doctor ordered I'm sure, wonderful that you're able to get away every year and at least escape the extreme cold for a bit!

It's kind of a double-edged sword but the shock to the system when you come back here is worth what you gain. This trip is always like a reset for me and allows me to set goals for the coming year. I hope you're having a great weekend!

Wow, I could sit in Drake’s seat and enjoy some island time. Beautiful pictures, Eric. A peaceful, happy, and healthy 2020 to you as well!

Thanks, Lydon! I'm glad we were finally able to make it to Drake's Seat. I had wanted to see it for the past five years but we never managed to make it. I hope 2020 is treating you well so far!

Glad you guys could make it there this time! 2020 is going well for us. Welcoming our first child any day now.

That is amazing! Congratulations!

Thank you, Eric!

Hi Eric, I enjoyed reading your vacation in the Caribbean. Also a great slideshow. You look really enjoy your vacation. And you and your wife are a very romantic couple. Vacation together and enjoy time together with joy. Truly extraordinary holiday. Have a nice day, sir.

Thank you Eliana! It was such a great break. Now we're back to cold and dreary Minnesota.

Here it is a miracle of aviation: from winter to summer in a matter of hours. Especially for longing for the sun, sea and heat.
When the street is gray and frosty, we must remember that at any time you can fly to the beach. The main thing is that you understand that this is your second home.

Have you ever visited India? You will fall in love with its people, culture and traditions.

I’ve never been to India but it is definitely on my list of places to see!

What a pleasant getaway. Sure beats below-zero temperatures!

Thanks to @freedomring, this post has been resteemed and featured in today's edition of The Daily Sneak.

Thank you for your efforts to create quality content!

what a lovely time together this is beautiful enjoyed it :)

I Followed u back big guy

Thanks Both of you loved your pair and thank you very much for your tourist swan.

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