Thursday, May 20, 2010

The Vacation, Part Two: St. Thomas, USVI (Day 4)

Dearest Rememorandom,

You won’t believe the incredible sights I witnessed here on St. Thomas today.  It’s been such a trying day I scarcely know where to begin.

The boat was supposed to arrive at 8:30 this morning, but due to an emergency medical evacuation of some passenger, we didn’t exit the boat until almost noon.  The evacuation was rather exciting, seeing the helicopter from the USCG fly out to meet us.  I stood in a parlor and watched through the glass ceiling as a man lowered himself down a rope and landed on the roof.  After that I stopped watching, but I daresay it was quite a sight!

StThomas06 But enough of that.  You want to hear about St. Thomas, eh?

After a dreadful debarkation process, we quickly boarded a taxi/open-air bus that took us across the island to one of the world’s most beautiful beaches, Megan’s Bay.  But I get ahead of myself.  St. Thomas is quite different than Half Moon Cay.  See, the island is very hilly and steep, not to mention much bigger.  The taxi ride was heart-pounding.  The vehicles all drove on the wrong side of the road, and everybody honked at everybody and everything.  I kept the video camera on nearly the whole trip, and you’ll have to see it when I come home.  Finally, though, we made it to Megan’s Bay.

Meh.  Even if National Geographic says it’s super beautiful, I didn’t think it was any prettier than Half Moon Cay.  Sure, it was nice looking, nice enough that there were some people getting married down the strip.  And the actual beach itself was enormous, but I just wasn’t as impressed with it as I was the day before yesterday.  Locals were charging to rent beach chairs and the food was absolutely ridiculous ($10 for a cold sandwich!), so Keisha and I just walked down the sand and collected some shells and swam for a bit.  It rained a bit off and on, but that wasn’t much of a bother.

After a time, the taxi was back for us.  Another rise in blood-pressure later and we were stopped at a beautiful lookout point.  We took some photos and then headed to the downtown shopping district of St. Thomas.  Keisha was excited to see the discounted jewelry and to haggle with the jewelers.  See, here in these islands you can negotiate a price and everything is relatively cheap, compared to back home.  Well, Keisha picked out a diamond ring that she liked and the jeweler casually told us the price: $25,000.  Casually, as if we had that much money, we declined.  My heart fluttered more here than in the taxi, I do believe.  Most jewelry was much cheaper than in the States, but still everything was more than we wanted to pay, so we didn’t wind up getting anything.

StThomas18 We walked through the open-air market, killing time and waiting for the taxi to take us back to the port and the other shopping district.  I had another rum & Coke, but that turned out to be a bad idea on an empty stomach.  When we got back to the other side of the island we rejoiced at seeing a Wendy’s.  Furthermore, it was reasonably priced, and we had lunch at 4:45pm.  Afterwards we felt much better and hit up the few shopping places that were still open.  (Apparently St. Thomas closes at 5:00 for the most part.)

I bought some excellent priced liquor: 3 bottles of rum and 1 bottle of vodka, all for $40.  (As it turns out, liquor and tobacco are very cheap outside the States.)  I’m not really sure exactly what I’ll do with it, but I imagine it’ll last for a very long time.  We didn’t buy much else, and headed back to the boat to the Glory to get ready for our super elegant dining night in the Emerald Steakhouse.

The Emerald cost $30 each, but the meal mimics a New York elegant dining experience.  It took over two-and-a-half hours to eat our five course meal, complete with a visit from the chef himself.  I tried escargot as an appetizer and found it very tasty.  I had a 24oz. porterhouse that was quite delicious.  For dessert I got a cheesecake that was probably three inches tall.  All in all, the meal was definitely worth the price.  Definitely.

Tomorrow we’ll be hitting up San Juan, and we’re both pretty excited about that.  I’ve included in the photos some spectacular pictures of a sunset here in the ocean, a few more shots of St. Thomas, and one very nice picture of me with my normal, crazy hair.  Do share them with all your friends, Rememorandom.

Always faithfully,

Your maker and creator,



David Wagner said...

You must have seen hundreds of sunsets there! Well, based on your pictures anyway... :D

24oz porterhouse... wow! I could do with the escargot cheesecake though... *shudder*... (I know, I combined them on purpose... trying to be funny... didn't work...)

So you were one of those touristy tourists that carried a running video camera everywhere? Dang... will you ever edit together a summary video of the trip, or would that require wading through too much footy?


logankstewart said...

@Dave: Hmm... not quite hundreds, but close. Yeah, I had my video camera with me at all times, but I didn't have it on constantly. Maybe eventually I'll create a short enough video to post here. It's a good idea.

Krista said...

Wonderful pictures, logan, so very pretty! I am so envious of your vacation! I need one...

Ohhhhhhhhhh, you already finished reading Catching Fire I see! Hope you liked it as much as the first one :) I totally cried a couple times in this one.. LOL! I'm such a girl! LOL! I just can't wait till I can read the third one!

logankstewart said...

@Krista: Hello, stranger! I did like Catching Fire quite a bit, too, and I'm very ready for the last book now. Thankfully I don't have to wait long.