I sit in my disorganized bedroom, still stunned, still dazed. It has been 4 weeks to the day that the devastating bitch of a hurricane Irma has hit my beloved home island of St. Maarten. My most prized possessions are still wrapped up in black garbage bags and waterproof containers around me. This hurricane season has been a busy one, with one storm after the other and with another month and change to go till the official end of the hurricane season, I am not about to start unpacking and pretend that our lives can go back to normal. Not yet anyway.
Summer is here and Social media is lit (is this how I’m supposed to use this millennial expression?) with all sorts of posts on how to get that perfect bikini body, how to take that perfect beach photo and which beaches to flaunt that new bikini on. Meanwhile, the rising temperatures and my steadily increasing electric bill because of my air conditioning being on constantly, is indication enough for me that the summer months have arrived.
This is the time when most of us humans travel and the most popular destinations are places that are otherwise too cold to travel to. Hey, I might be a simple island girl but I get it.
But have I got news for you. Come closer. Can you keep a secret?
It’s common knowledge that the Caribbean islands make for the best vacations anytime of the year but did you know that these islands are exceptionally awesome in the summer months?
Like I said in my last post, I am not a huge fan of carnival. I guess all that excessive partying is no longer my thing, which is why I usually try to find great travel deals around this time of year to get off the island, and get as far away as possible from all the mayhem. I must admit though that I shockingly found myself enjoying this year’s Dutch St. Maarten Carnival. I was dragged by friends out of my bed at four in the morning to take part in this year’s jouvert, a parade that starts at dawn and ends sometime around midday and leaves a trail of drunks in its wake. I found myself in the village on at least one occasion enjoying the different food and drink booths and I surprised myself by attending the grand parade, an event so colorful I am still smiling days later.
I say Carnival and you think feathers and bikinis, right? WRONG! Welcome to St. Maarten’s carnival, where the feathers and bikinis take backstage to the music, parties and the food. Oh. My. Goodness. The food!
I’m going to Nevis!
My excitement has been almost uncontainable since I received an invitation from our national airline Winair and the Nevis Tourism Authority to attend the Nevis Blues Festival on April 7th and 8th and to spend a few days exploring this gorgeous, unspoiled Caribbean jewel.
You would think that living in the Caribbean gives me the opportunity to visit and explore the other islands in the area frequently. Alas, nothing could be further from the truth. Inter island travel remains quite expensive and besides, my hunger for exploring new destinations, chasing adventures and experiencing other cultures sometimes has me jumping on planes to destinations far from the Caribbean. As an island girl I sometimes get quite desperate for city life, urban noises, the ballet, the opera, things the Caribbean does not offer an abundance of. But no matter how far I travel I always look forward to returning home.
I have always wanted to promote the Caribbean as a destination to those who live on the mainlands as well as inter-island travel for us islanders. It is one of the main reasons why I started this blog. The Caribbean islands are all so diverse. It is this diversity that makes me want to catch a short flight to one of the islands every chance that I get. At the moment I have my eyes set on 7 Caribbean beauties, two of which I am lucky to be visiting this year.