Island Living

Cinco de Mayo, Mon

cinco-de-mayo

Cinco de Maya, Mon Any excuse for a celebration, and islanders are on it. Despite being confused with Mexican’s Independence Day celebration (which is actually September 16th), Cinco de Mayo commemorates the morale boosting victory of the underdog Mexican Army in 1862 at the Battle of Puebla against the French. Bars across St. John will … Read more

Moon Seasons

full moon

Moon Seasons Every month on St. John the full moon brings great joy and celebration. Why? The moon serves a great purpose, beyond the tides and beyond the night light it provides. There is little to mark the passing of time here. The days are always beautiful, the nights are always peaceful, and sometimes you … Read more

Working Wheels

working wheels

Working Wheels Someone asked me the other day, “What’s the best island car?” Honestly, one you can fix. Which is a shrinking niche these days. Find me a car without a computer or electronic controls, and you’ve got yourself a deal. The best island cars are the ones whose cousins, now a hunk of spare … Read more

Water Woes

Water Woes Dry sea on has arrived and the color of the mountains of St. John are turning brown, after months of gleaming green, the arid weather this time of year is expected. While drought tolerant plants maybe surviving, many call this season their last. Most of the homes and rental villas here have their … Read more

Stop: Hammertime!

road sign

Stop: Hammertime! I drove the 8 hilly miles back to Cruz Bay yesterday with the 1990 MC Hammer song “U Can’t Touch This” stuck in my head. And I’m quite sure I’m not the only one afflicted. A generous somebody took the liberty, and the time, to stick individual sticky letters to spell “HAMMERTIME” under … Read more

I’ll Have the Salad

Tomato

I’ll Have the Salad Many new visitors to St. John experience a bit of sticker shock when they hit the grocery stores. For a small island, St. John is graced with nine food stores. Even with nine, rarely do they compete on price. Favor vine ripe tomatoes? You’ll pay at least $3 each. Broccoli at … Read more

Forget Something?

Forget Something?

Forget Something? In-season I’m told St. John can balloon in population from 5,000 year-round residents to nearly 40,000 visitors. That’s quite a load of left-behinds for a little island. And what do visitors leave? You name it: flip flops, beach chairs, floppy hats, unfinished rum bottles, coolers big and small, snorkels, flippers, beach toys, and … Read more

Happy Days

Happy Hour

Happy Days Happy hour on St. John is as reliable as death or taxes. A small number of select religious holidays will preclude bars and stores from selling alcohol before a certain time of day here, but other than that, you’ll find liquor licenses prevalent and “free rum” with every smoothie, no matter what time … Read more

Island Time

Island Time

Island Time Just 18 latitudinal degrees north of the equator, St. John’s days and nights are relatively equal. Depending on the time of year, the sun rises between 5:30am and 6:30am and sets approximately 12 hours later, sometime between 6pm and 7pm. For anyone who likes consistent, warm weather and a steady routine, St. John … Read more