Use the Proper Local Greeting
On the island, the use of "Hi" and "Hello" are considered a little too informal. Most locals greet each other (and like to be greeted with) "Good Morning", "Good Afternoon", or "Good Evening". Use one of these, or just "Good Day" instead of "hi". It feels awkward initially, but will usually result in a more pleasant interaction.
Blackbeard and Beaches
St Thomas has a tropical climate with dry season that covers from January through March the remaining nine months receive greater rainfall totals. The city is generally very warm and humid. Average temperatures in Charlotte Amalie are at a near constant, with average high temperatures about 88°F and low temperatures about 75°F.
National Geographic Magazine once called Magens Bay one of the top 10 most beautiful beaches in the world. Whether it is or not depends on your personal feeling. The water was beautiful, clear and warm with a sandy floor. The beach was clean and patrolled by a life guard who intended to keep it that way. There were picnic tables and a place to change into swimming attire. The men’s changing room did not have individual enclosures and the water supplied to wash the sand off with was salt water. Oh well, you can’t have everything.
Not really a castle and probably not really ever associated with Black Beard, the tower was built by the Danish in 1679 as part of the defensive system for the island. Recently the structure was declared a National Historic Landmark by the US federal government.
""My New Home""
Tell me this isnt what spurred anyones fantasy of Island life while they were growing up and I'd call them a liar.
Ears popping, the plane landing and the smell of the heavy humid sea air encapsulating the plane as I watched the airstrip getting closer and closer.
The Captain was trying hard to entertain with his circle of the islands before landing yet no one seem to be listening. It was easy to spot the travelers that were not. This was simply home to them as they slept even through the planes unsteady landing.
I was about to come out of my seat. All of the research I had done over the internet about relocating,finding work,creating work,places to see, where to swim where to live were about to come into fruition. A dream come true. Photos to Come.
Mistake number one, trying to keep to ones budget. I had done my research, seemed fair to say that a hotel room wouldnt be a problem to find within my range. Im figuring on becoming a local so paying full price is out of the question for me.
The airport vans to the "Name Brand" places to stay filled up quickly after the plane landed. There we stood amongst the hustle and bustle waiting I suppose for some friendly Taxi to ask us where we were headed. This never happened. We (my 16yr. old son & myself) finally caught a ride in the back of a van after I came up with the idea to ask the driver to take us to a hundred dollar a nite hotel.
Thirty minutes later the van dropped us at the edge of the street off the main path and explained to us to follow the stairs up to the faded pink hotel whose name I never saw or even asked about.
By days end, we had checked into Hotel #2 for 150.00US ,climbed enough stairs with our luggage that we had no urge to even leave the room except for a swim in the hotel pool. I did however send my son to the local store we had spotted on the way to Hotel#2 and to my surprise he brought back a pack of namebrand smokes for me at only 2.50 a pack, a litre of rum imported from the neighboring island St.Croix for 6.00 and a stale bag of Doritos for 4.00!
Unfortunantly this never happened. After two months on the island we had done and seen it all, all that wasnt beneficial to our permanance.
I applied at every imaginable source for general building maintainence that I could find and the same happened over and over.
My interviewer in every case, was a native of the island would come out into the lobby and see a short, blonde haired woman waiting to speak to him and would be gone in a New York second.
I later discovered that the islands all get benefits from the gov't for hiring locals. So if you are not.....you are not employed.
I found a room for 1,000.00US a month for the next 7 weeks that was within walking distance of the shoreline and plenty of bars called Captains Quarters. It was clean and quiet and quite small for the price. The room was about 8X8 and we all shared a kitchen as well as bathroom with there being about 8-10 guest on each flooor.
One of my favorites was to watch the huge Iguanas situate themselves amongst the treetops to sun for the day.
Second favorite pastime of course became rum! Its a plenty on the island and for females they have ladies nite someplace every nite and that calls for a party....to which I did.