It’s a random Thursday in the middle of February. In my previous life, that would have meant Tar Heel basketball season, cold weather, shopping to cure the winter blues, and typical weekdays spent working at my corporate America job. February was a time to plan a getaway to somewhere warm and tropical (if we didn’t already have something on the books) and to pray that warmer weather was on its way. The stark contrast between February 2014 and February 2015 has me wondering… am I officially an island girl? Everything looks and feels different, but am I? I started a list of ways to tell.
You might be an island girl if….
1) You have no idea who won the Carolina/ Duke game even though it’s your alma mater and the biggest rivalry in college sports. And why don’t you have any idea? Because you don’t own a television!
2) You just gave hitchhikers a ride and didn’t think twice about it. No problem mon, hop in!
3) You bought lunch at a place that takes cash only- a legitimate establishment that you love. You NEVER carried cash before, but now you’d go hungry with only plastic forms of payment.
4) You had multiple beach options but tourists have occupied all the parking spots, and even after only four short months, you’re upset because it’s YOUR island!
5) You sat your stuff down on the beach right beside a gecko, and instead of jumping, you photographed him.
6) You are drinking a rum drink out of a sippy cup. Enough said.
7) You have bug bites all over your tan legs and wonder with a grateful heart how Chickungunya escaped you.
8) You haven’t had a mani or a pedi in months, although ironically your feet are on display every day for all to see. Your cold toes were certainly well taken care of even though no one got to appreciate the effort you spent agonizing over the perfect color. Now it’s au naturele.
9) You traded your beloved Chanel bag for a backpack. And you now know how incredibly functional and how much more sense the backpack makes. Who knew there were cute backpacks? And who knew you wouldn’t really miss Coco?
10) You are alone on a beach and you love it. Maybe you weren’t a loner before, but now the solitude of you, the sand, the sun, the sea and your sippy cup is enough.
12) You still intend to workout despite the aforementioned rum drink. It’ll wear off and you’ll find the motivation to sweat, right?
13) You are perfectly fine- happy, in fact- in the shade, while tourists compete for a spot where they can soak up every ray. The shade feels glorious when it’s 84 degrees and the Christmas winds seem to have subsided completely.
14) You decide you must go out to dinner because you can’t bear the thought of hand washing dishes AGAIN. Even though the rain has been plentiful and the full cistern makes water usage less of a concern, the mere thought of scrubbing dishes is daunting, even after a relaxing afternoon on the beach.
15) You take a nap. A full fledged nap in the middle of the afternoon ALONE on a WEEKDAY. Can I get a “hallelujah!!!”? Who does that? Probably not you before you were a resident in the tropics.
16) You find your nap shortened as you’re awakened by drunk tourists who’ve moved scarily close to you to catch more rays as they fall over their chairs in search of their last Coors Light. Apparently during your nap the position of the sun has changed and now you’re literally in the “hot spot”.
17) You blow off the workout and instead have happy hour.
And you most definitely are an island girl if all of this happens in a four hour period in the middle of winter and it all seems perfectly normal.
Ashley Cates, St. John USVI blogger.