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Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 04, 2014 10:26AM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

As I opined before, Plaza Extra is just like any supermarket on the mainland. There is one thing that makes you stop and think, though. The floors are swept non-stop. It seems like Plaza Extra hires a dozen of people just to do a single thing full time: to sweep the floors. The sweepers use an apparatus which looks similar to the curling broom, and it's not unusual to see two sweepers close to each other. The effect is that the supermarket isle looks like a curling lane. Why are these people so diligent? As it turned out, the answer is: "Cockroaches!". The curling-like sweeping is meant to keep the floor pristine clean, free of any food particles. What looks like a curling match is a never ending battle with the roaches.

Re: Living like a Crucian

sheiba
March 04, 2014 12:08PM

Registered: 6 years ago
Posts: 483

Chickens love to eat cockroaches and centipedes, the reason I like to keep the chickens around. But lately, I could do
without the Roosters.

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 04, 2014 01:10PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Day 11.



This bathroom fixture in my shower looks deceptively "continental". It has the "H" and "C" marks to fool you into thinking that if you follow the instructions, you'd be rewarded.

It doesn't work like that on the island. On the island, you don't take things for granted. The faucet is installed in such a manner that the path to the target, which is the "sweet spot" between "Hot" and "Cold", is nonlinear, and it changes every morning. Your "continental" knowledge with regards to how things work is rendered useless on the island. To operate this faucet, you must think like a Rastafari.

The Rastafarian movement originated in Jamaica. However, you can be as white as snow, and yet live as a Rasta, and be accepted as such. It's a way of life. When the white continentals get exhausted in the "rate race" in Wisconsin, New York, and North Carolina, they burn the skeletons in their closets, sell their possessions, and make a permanent move to STX. They seek liberation from the decadent world of material things and corporate oppression, the world corrupted by Christians who perverted the Word of God. The Rastafarians refer to that world as "Babylon".

In the Rastafarian way of thinking, a bathroom fixture is a manifestation of Babylon. To operate the fixture on the island, you must first have a "reasoning" session with God. A reasoning session is facilitated by the spiritual smoking of ganja, which brings you closer to God.

Here is what the Bible has to say about ganja:

"And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so." [Genesis 1:11].

The Native Americans (i.e. Indians) were Rastafarians, too. They believed that in its "normal" state, the mind is "fu***d up". They ingested peyote to cleanse the mind so that it can return to its true normal state. When operating a faucet with a cleansed mind, the "sweet spot" between "H" and "C" is found naturally.



Edited 6 time(s). Last edit at 03/04/2014 01:27PM by wanderer.

Re: Living like a Crucian
avatar

Exit Zero
March 04, 2014 02:20PM

Registered: 9 years ago
Posts: 2,209

Comparing the rich tradition of American Indian religious ritual to Rastafarian religion is very uninformed historically.

"The Rastafari movement began in Jamaica during the 1930s following a prophecy made by Marcus Garvey, a black political leader. Garvey led an organisation known as the Universal Negro Improvement Association, whose intention was to unify blacks with their land of origin.

Garvey preached "Look to Africa where a black king shall be crowned, he shall be your Redeemer." This statement became the foundation of the Rastafari movement.

The prophecy was rapidly followed by the crowning of Emperor Haile Selassie I in Ethiopia. Rastafarians see this as the fulfilment of Garvey's prophecy. The religion takes its name from Haile Selassie's original name.

Haile Selassie is therefore regarded by Rastafarians as the Black Messiah, Jah Rastafari. He is a figure of salvation and it's believed he will redeem blacks from white suppressors, reuniting them with their homeland, Africa.
1935

The first branch of Rastafari is believed to have been established in Jamaica in 1935 by Leonard P. Howell.

Howell preached the divinity of Haile Selassie. He explained that all blacks would gain the superiority over whites that had always been intended for them.

Howell's action encouraged others to help develop and spread the message of Rasta theology, and as E.E. Cashmore explains:

All, in their own ways, added pieces to the jigsaw, and the whole picture came together in the mid 1950s when a series of congregations of rastas appeared at various departure points on Jamaica's shores, awaiting ships bound for Africa."

E.E. Cashmore

This marked the first uniting of Rastafarians and it paved the way for the future of the movement, bringing hope of repatriation with Africa and freedom for the black race.

edited to add quotation marks and attribution



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/04/2014 02:44PM by Exit Zero.

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 04, 2014 05:27PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Day 11 (continued).

All North Carolina beaches are the same, more or less. Not so on STX. All STX beaches are unique.

Crudely speaking, the STX beaches can be divided into "beach joints" and "non-joint beaches". An example of a "non-joint" beach is the Carambola Beach. To get to the Carambola Beach, you have to stop at the check point. They look over you car and record your license plate number. Then they ask you to state the purpose of your visit. Business or pleasure? Then, they ask series of questions designed to measure your IQ. They profile you in the manner similar to what the Israeli airlines do when you board their planes. The admission process is burdensome, and not all visitors can take the heat. In 2009, one of the visitors shot and killed the security guard at the check point of Carambola Beach.

When you are admitted to the Carambola Beach, the first thing you notice is the smell of money in the air. This place is upscale. There are restaurants, fitness center, and spa. To stay overnight, you'd pay about $500.

An example of a "beach joint" is Rainbow Beach. There is no gate, and they don't ask you any questions. The overnight stay is free.

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 04, 2014 08:21PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Day 11 (continued).

The Beach Side Cafe on the Sand Castle beach is closed on Tuesday. After 5 pm, I am the only one on the beach. I settle down and watch the waves. The water moves in a pendulum fashion, driven by gravity. At the most extreme point, the velocity of the water is zero, and the acceleration is at the maximum. Studying how the waves move gave me insight into how the financial markets behave. Supply and demand. Equilibrium. Reversal points. Manias and crashes. I make my living modeling the financial markets.

After a while, I spot a familiar guy nearby. I approach, and we find a topic of conversation: George Gurdjieff. That's a rather obscure subject. What are the odds? Let's see ... 5 billion people ... divided by 10,000 people who have heard about Gurdjieff ... multiplied by the probability that the two of them go to STX at the same time ... multiplied by ... Umm, I'd say the odds are 1 in 1 billion.

I come home, step out to the porch. Then I hear 4 shots, in rapid succession. Pop-pop-pop-pop! Sounds like the .22 pistol. I am not disturbed a single bit, and I am surprised that I am not disturbed. It's as if I take the shots as the tropical sounds.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/04/2014 08:36PM by wanderer.

Re: Living like a Crucian

LiquidFluoride
March 04, 2014 08:46PM

Registered: 5 years ago
Posts: 1,936

Quote
wanderer
It's as if I take the shots as the tropical sounds.

the pattern of the shooting tells a lot, from what I hear it's mostly just shooting for the sake of shooting (which I'm very used to from Alaska) I hear shots often, but only maybe 2% have sounded like they were "at" someone, 1 sounded like it had return fire.

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 04, 2014 08:50PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Quote
LiquidFluoride
Quote
wanderer
It's as if I take the shots as the tropical sounds.

the pattern of the shooting tells a lot, from what I hear it's mostly just shooting for the sake of shooting (which I'm very used to from Alaska) I hear shots often, but only maybe 2% have sounded like they were "at" someone, 1 sounded like it had return fire.

Yeah, thanks, Liquid.

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 04, 2014 09:18PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Day 11 (continued).

The "Rose's" restaurant on King street in Frederiksted is where I am planning to return to. I was there yesterday with two of my neighbors, for dinner. The best thing about the "Rose's" is the feel. How do I describe the feel of the place to someone who has never been there? How do you describe pain and orgasm to someone who has never experienced pain and orgasm? How do you explain to someone how to maintain balance while riding a bicycle, without actually giving them a chance to ride the bicycle?

The building in which "Roses's is situated is a building with a heart. It was built over 300 years ago. Its thick stone walls absorbed everything that has happened ever since. The walls radiate the feel of this place.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/04/2014 09:20PM by wanderer.

Re: Living like a Crucian

pt
March 05, 2014 08:01AM

Registered: 12 years ago
Posts: 160

Describing the feel of a place is what writers try to do, is what most non-writers try doing.

PT



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/05/2014 08:20AM by pt.

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 05, 2014 09:07AM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Quote
pt
Describing the feel of a place is what writers try to do, is what most non-writers try doing.
PT

Right.

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 05, 2014 10:16AM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Day 12.

I am on the porch, humming Bob Marley's "No woman, no cry". I think it's the only way to get it out of my head. I've always misunderstood that tittle. I thought what it meant was, "when there is no woman around, no one is crying". What it really means is, "No, woman, nuh cry". I had to come all the way to STX to understand that.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/05/2014 10:38AM by wanderer.

Re: Living like a Crucian

OldTart
March 05, 2014 12:58PM

Registered: 6 years ago
Posts: 6,524

Quote
wanderer
Day 12.

I am on the porch, humming Bob Marley's "No woman, no cry". I think it's the only way to get it out of my head. I've always misunderstood that tittle. I thought what it meant was, "when there is no woman around, no one is crying". What it really means is, "No, woman, nuh cry". I had to come all the way to STX to understand that.

"Woman, don't cry".

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 05, 2014 01:03PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Quote
OldTart
Quote
wanderer
Day 12.

I am on the porch, humming Bob Marley's "No woman, no cry". I think it's the only way to get it out of my head. I've always misunderstood that tittle. I thought what it meant was, "when there is no woman around, no one is crying". What it really means is, "No, woman, nuh cry". I had to come all the way to STX to understand that.

"Woman, don't cry".

Right.

Re: Living like a Crucian

STXBob
March 05, 2014 02:39PM

Registered: 11 years ago
Posts: 2,116

From [en.wikipedia.org] :

Lyrics

The title and main refrain, "No Woman, No Cry" is rendered "No, woman, nuh cry" in Jamaican Patois. The "nuh" is pronounced with a short schwa vowel (a "mumbled" vowel, often represented as "uh" in spelling) and represents a clitic ("weakened"wink form of "no". It is the equivalent to the contraction "don't". The song is about growing up in the ghetto and persuading a woman that things will get better, entreating her not to cry.[5]

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 05, 2014 08:35PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Day 12 (continued).

I think I've just invented a new cocktail. I call it, "The West Side Wanderer". 1 part Cruzan Rum, 2 parts orange juice, 2 parts mango juice.

The island is coming to me. When I first started taking piano lessons, my first reaction was rejection. I was angry with the black keys. Why are they sticking up, and why are they narrower than the white keys? Why couldn't the keys be uniform in shape and size? The keys were pieces of dead wood to me. Instead of playing, I was chopping wood. My piano teacher has 40 years experience. She said: "stroke the keys and tell them that you love them". That changed everything. I fell in love with the keys, black and white. The keys fell in love with me. The piano came to me.

Re: Living like a Crucian

noOne
March 05, 2014 09:00PM

Registered: 7 years ago
Posts: 1,495

Heh I've lived in NC for 17 years now, and I have yet to be to the beach (I live inland) I only go to the beach in the Caribbean, preferably STT.

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 05, 2014 09:09PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Quote
noOne
Heh I've lived in NC for 17 years now, and I have yet to be to the beach (I live inland) I only go to the beach in the Caribbean, preferably STT.

Bald Head Island off the North Carolina shore, mon!

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 06, 2014 07:55PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Day 13.

I am on a beach, and ready to go home. I get up, and walk to my car. My step is confident. I feel that I've graduated to the "local" status by now. I know exactly what's going to happen next: I'm going to get in my car, put it in "drive", go home, and drink my Woodbridge Merlot on the porch. I indulge into my "localness", and I admire myself for it.

I get in the car, put in drive, and hit the gas. The car moves one foot and stops. I am stuck in the sand on the beach. It's after dark. I put it in reverse. The car moves half a foot, sinks deeper in the sand, and stops. So much for my "localness". I dig the sand around the wheels with my hands, and try again. Nothing.

A car stops by the road, and the driver asks, "Are you OK?". I explain that I am not. He gets out, and tries to push my Ford. Nothing. He calls his friends. They come in 5 minutes in a Jeep. We tie a rope, and he pulls my Ford out of its misery. I thank them, and thinking of offering some money. But they are not waiting for it. The Jeep driver says, "Buenas noches", and they are gone.

Thank you, Crucians. Really. I mean it. Lesson for myself: do not indulge.

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 06, 2014 08:23PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Day 13 (continued).



The sunset on the beach.

In Germany, the steam rooms in saunas are gender-neutral. The are fathers and mothers, boyfriends and girlfriends, children and elderly, all in the same steam room, all fully naked. The steam room attendant comes in, and starts flapping a big towel, to create the variations in temperature. He does it for 10 minutes. After he is done, everyone in the steam room applauds to his efforts.

No one applauds when the Sun goes down, below the horizon, on the beach. People take it for granted. There is a non-zero probability that the Sun would not rise tomorrow. In the quantum world, anything is possible. When the Sun goes down, I mentally applaud to it. It's a lot of hard work to shine all day long.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/06/2014 08:25PM by wanderer.

Re: Living like a Crucian
avatar

Novanut
March 06, 2014 10:05PM

Registered: 12 years ago
Posts: 897

Hey 'W'. Be sure and watch for the Green Flash on the next sunset...

Keep on Keepin On!



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/06/2014 10:06PM by Novanut.

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 07, 2014 12:56PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Quote
Novanut
Hey 'W'. Be sure and watch for the Green Flash on the next sunset...

Keep on Keepin On!

Didn't know what "Green Flash" was. I had to look it up. Thanks, Novanut.

Re: Living like a Crucian
avatar

Novanut
March 07, 2014 04:45PM

Registered: 12 years ago
Posts: 897

Have your camera ready...

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 07, 2014 04:48PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Day 14.

The Rainbow beach. Has water scooters and beach volleyball. Caters to younger, more active segment of demographics, compared to the Sand Castle beach.


The Philly steak sandwich is nice and juicy at the Rainbow beach:


The Virgin Islands National Guard installation. The mission of the United States Marine Corps is to go to exotic places, meet interesting and stimulating people, and kill them. The mission of the National Guards is to stay in exotic places, and to prevent interesting and stimulating people people from killing each other after the major hurricanes.


A nice secluded beach:




Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/07/2014 04:51PM by wanderer.

Re: Living like a Crucian

wanderer
March 07, 2014 05:40PM

Registered: 3 years ago
Posts: 596

Day 14 (continued).

In my two weeks over here, I am yet to see a single police cruiser or a cop. I've been told that to see the police presence, I have to go to the fishing spots. Over there, fully uniformed police officers fish. Cops are people, too. On STX, many streets are unmarked, and most residences have multiple addresses. USPS recognizes the "Dutch-era" addresses, UPS recognizes the "American-era" addresses, and the cops don't know what to recognize. If you are shot in front of your home, and call the police, they may inform you that they can't find you on the map, and why don't you stop by the station?

Because the cops are severely underfunded and poorly trained, the law and order on STX are self-regulated and self-controlled to a significant degree. Guard dogs, barred windows and entrances, fences, private security, armed employees, and militia (i.e. the neighborhood watch groups) are omnipresent.

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