Welcome to My Jungle
Tell someone you live on a Caribbean island and their first response is a longing sigh, immediately followed by the words, "Oh, that must be paradise."
Having lived on St. Thomas for several years, all I can do is smile gently at those misguided fools. They have no idea.
Very funny story!
I have been reading everything I can in anticipation of a move to STT. I am anticipating a job offer and will be on a PMV next week. I have visited the islands in the past but have not lived there. I appreciate all the advice and want to be forwarned...however, I am starting to wonder if there is anything good to look foreward to. I am not expecting a paradise but I certainly don't want to subject myself to misery either. Reality in information is what I would like. As a single, professional woman who isn't into a "wild" lifestyle, my hope is to have a good job in a lovely place and develop a circle of friend with like interests. If anyone can provide me with both the pros and cons it would be appreciated. If the "welcome to my jungle" was supposed to be funny...I missed it.
medlady: if you really can't get the humour in the "welcome to my jungle" story, a relocation rethink might be in order. Thanks for the story, Big Hat - I got a BIG chuckle out of it!
That is one of the reasons I love the island so much. So many awesome and diverse critters to enjoy!! I love 'em!!!
Medlady, not to worry. I'm not into a wild lifestyle & living here has worked wonderfully for me as a single female. If you have good skills & get involved with what interests you you will make friends before long. A nice thing about STT is that nearly everywhere you live you can have a view that would cost a fortune anywhere else. I've built a very good life here as have many others. It's not paradise but it's also not the hell some make it out to be. It's just probably different from what you're accustomed to.
It helps to adapt to the island because the island won't change to suit you & if you can go with the flow & learn to adjust to the frustrations this could be a great place for you but you won't know until you give it a try. Good luck.
Do we make it out to be hell or are we expressing our opinions on our experience? Just because your experiences have been good does not mean someone else's will be. If living here was worth the view we would not have a large segment of the population that is transient. We would have a huge population if everyone who came liked it and stayed. Medlady read the forum, there is already a large list of pros and cons on it. You can also use the search function for more specific questions.
"I am starting to wonder if there is anything good to look foreward to."
The island population is very transient because many folks move here with a fantasy and are disappointed by the reality. This board has posters who've come and returned to the states as well as posters who've come and stayed on island. All of us try to provide the reality of island life as we've experienced it. I live on STT and am happy here but living here requires one to make a lot of trade-offs. Whether or not those trade-offs will suit you may be impossible to know until you've tried living with them.
Oh, my goodness, medlady! I'm one of the ones who came and left for reasons that varied in importance - but that was one of the funniest articles I've read in a while.....made me miss the frogs and the roosters that crowed at 3 a.m....and the chickens running through the guacamole dip as you attempt to eat lunch in downtown Christiansted.....I'm sure STT has it's own stories to tell that involve the iguanas that like to have scared me to death when I visited there!
If you don't like bugs and creatures....walk softly and carry a big stick......
My favorite creepy creature story occured one dark and stormy (oohhh dark and stormies....sorry about the digression already) night. I woke up to the sound of thunder and decided since I was semi-awake, I'd make the groggy trip to the bathroom. I finished up and reached for the t.p. and started to tug. As I did the biggest, ookiest cockroach I had ever seen in my life crawled out of the cardboard tube and stood his ground on the side of the roll. It was a good thing I was already sitting where I was.
Medlady: asking this board to give you a list of pros and cons is likely to open a can of worms and it doesn't sound as if you're too keen on the creepy crawlies. One person's pro may be another's con.
lmao! When I returned to Michigan both times from STJ it was kind of hard to explain to my friends that I missed the roosters crowing non-stop and the frogs that just wouldn't quit... like crickets on acid with megaphones was how I tried to describe it.
Sand fleas are my legs biggest fans, followed closely by mosquitos both whose bites i am quite allergic to.... which reminds me I need to check to see if their is anything that would help with this....
Speaking of creatures...
Does anyone know how many species of poisonous spiders are on the island? While I was there I experienced a large brown furry spider, luckily when i first saw it my friend had already killed it and I was no where near sober.
Might have been a ground spider. They can get large & hairy.
ahh thank you! That had been bugging me - just looked it up on wikipedia and that was defn. it.
I'm so grateful for the good dialog. I'm going to revisit the "Welcome to My Jungle" story after I experience island life and I'm sure it will be hilarious. Thanks.
Big Hat: I have one word for you. SCREENS
I am still amazed at the number of homes here, including very expensive homes, that are just open to the environment without a screen in sight. Obviously, many people are much more insect tolerant than I.
What a fantastic post! So funny!!
I don't live on-island, I'm just a visitor.
But I DO live in the woods in New England.
Our garage becomes infested with daddy-long-leg spiders all summer, we have squirrels in the attic, chipmunks have complicated tunnel systems all over the yard, a garter snake tried to attack me this past fall (I had a shovel- he lost), hawks steal chipmunks out of the yard for a quick bite and circle the yard while my little dog does her business and there was a black bear in the backyard last spring.
Unlike you, BigHat, I love the sounds of night frogs and night bugs. We have "spring peepers" here- not as loud as tree frogs but I LOVE the sound of the tree frogs on St John.
It's always entertaining to live in the natural world :).
Sounds like paradise to me. Out here in the Sonoran Desert:
The snakes in your bathroom are likely to be baby rattlesnakes (deadly if you're small enough and the hospital has run out of antivenin, otherwise you'll just be maimed).
The multi-legged creatures in your bedroom are either brown recluse spiders (very poisonous), scorpions (poisonous at various levels depending on species), very large hairy tarantulas (not as poisonous as reported), or "kissing bugs" (poisonous and enjoy getting under the covers with you).
The flying insects are either Africanized killer bees (very deadly) or mosquitos carrying West Nile Virus (potentially deadly).
The other flying things you see are bats (rabies is prevalent, and bites are hard to detect, so you have to get the shots if you think they may have brushed by your hair).
The nighttime creatures rooting through your trash are big smelly javelinas with bad eyesight and big tusks(aggressive).
The sounds you hear at night are packs of coyotes (do not let your cat or small dog out at night).
When you go out for a stroll or sit on your patio, watch out for rabid and aggressive coyotes, skunks, bobcats and mountain lions.
Be careful gardening, because every last thing in your yard has spines.
But lots of people just love it here.