When I first landed in St. Thomas I immediately felt over-dressed. I had caught the train to the airport from Philadelphia right after work on a blustery winter day. Even after shedding my coat and hat and scarf and pullover, I still had on a long-sleeved dark gray wool dress with black tights and pumps. I longed to take off my tights and shoes as I sat on the small boat taking me to St. John, rum punch in hand.
The water seemed to glow in the sunshine like a magical giant pool, clear as gin. It changed in colors from bright aqua to deep blue depending on its depth, where the sun hit it and where the clouds shadowed the sun.
I remember my amazement as the plane descended towards St. Thomas at how beautiful the water was. It was more beautiful than any photograph or anything my mind could have imagined.
As I sat in the boat looking out over that water with sweat on my brow, I longed to put on a bathing suit and jump in.
Throwing the office suit into my suitcase, I would pack away that person for now and become the beach bum that had always been buried inside of me.
I could see the fishes swimming as they approached Caneel Bay. The water was so clear it made my heart ache, the sun so bright it made my heart sing.
That was 1997, the first time that I saw the Caribbean in person. Ever since that day, I’d always find my mind drifting back there…
Remembering a perfect day sitting in the sand at Hawks Nest Bay as the waves washed over my legs and then went back out to sea. That image always makes my shoulders relax and my breath deepen.
Where have you been that causes your shoulders to relax and your breath to deepen?
Is there a person that you would like to pack away? Who would you become?