So you have booked a trip to the Caribbean and the day you have eagerly been awaiting is finally here. You pack your suitcase full of bikinis and cute little outfits, sandals and flip flops to match and add at the last minute you add another bottle of sunscreen just in case. After all the sun in the Caribbean can be brutal. You finally get there and lo and behold it’s raining and the forecast for the rest of the week doesn’t look so great either.
Sometimes you just stumble onto fabulousness and that is exactly what happened to me one February afternoon while strolling the streets of Grand Case, French St. Martin. I had no idea this place existed and if it wasn’t for the cute little boutique selling the cutest Boho Chic apparel, I would probably not have noticed this little gem of a hotel to begin with.
Be True to Yourself!
Name: Germaine Celeste Gibbs
Nick name: “GG”
Occupation: VP Business Development and Marketing at IBIS Management Associates
Current home: Curaçao
She is a gorgeous island girl. There is no denying that and glam shots taken of her for popular brands during her modeling career prove that. What these glam shots fail to show however, is her inner beauty and strength, her passion for animals and her kindness. She is a super woman that achieved her goals with sheer determination. She may look like things were handed to her on a silver platter but you have no idea how hard she worked for it all. She is beautiful, funny, kind and strong. She is Germaine Gibbs and this is her story.
I sit here in my office at the hostel I now run, coffee in hand thinking back on where I’ve been and where I am today. I should be doing some filing or at least prepare next week’s schedule, but it’s Sunday and my body knowingly goes into lazy mode.
I am a month away from my 41st and what a crazy year it has been. It all started around this time last year. (read also: How to Find Yourself on a tiny island). I was nearing 40 and had a sudden revelation that I was not doing any of the things that make me happy. I was too busy living for everyone else, being the person everyone around me wanted me to be. I’ve always been a very adapting person but there is a thin line between being adapting and being someone you’re not. So I rebelled and demanded to be heard. If it wasn’t for my love for food I would have probably gone on a hunger strike too. Anything to make myself be heard. I now realize that behavior was more a scream for help than anything else. Help me find myself.
Growing up on the gorgeous but super superstitious and religious island of Curaçao, I was constantly scared of something or someone. As an adult I often wondered if it was because of my personality but I am not one to shy away from anything. I’m more of a grab-the-bull-by-the-horn kinda girl, a real go-getter. But one day it hit me. It must be all those old wives’ tales I heard growing up, or the “Doom” scenarios described to me when or if I ever behaved badly. I still find myself making the sign of the cross for example whenever I drive past a church. Driving in Curaçao means crossing yourself pretty much at every intersection or street corner.
The World is my Oyster
Name: Tricia Demas
Nick name: T, Trish, D
Occupation: Owner of La Vida Bella Day Spa
From: Palo Seco, Trinidad
Official current home: St. Maarten