Caribbean Christmas (6): Twitter and Tinned Butter

Mosquito solution found (of sorts): Two electric tennis rackets which you wave at the passing blighter and it eloctrocutes him. A particularly sadistic sort of revenge. We looked at these two killer bats in the apartment for several days before we worked out what they are for. Imagine the demonic she-devil laughter as another parasite is despatched and you have some idea of the celebrations here at the death of the beastie.

We are also grateful for your tips from Marmite to garlic, both reminders, which we have put into play immediately.   We are also going to try something like Mosquito Milk which is getting rave reviews here although a brief Google search reveals that the only thing which works is DEET, as we suspected.   Apparently you would be OK if you could stop emitting CO2 but I think if that day comes, I will probably be, er, dead.   Not a good look, with or without a tan.

Yesterday we went on a beach crawl and have sussed out a couple of local opportunities – the nearest beach is the one where I nearly drowned last time in humiliating huge waves, the memory of which can still wake me up at nights at home in a sweat, even three years later. Although I am a good, strong and lifelong swimmer, one should never underestimate power of the sea and the waves which kept grabbing me and throwing me down on the sand.   All looked quiet as can be yesterday.

I think it may vanquish another sort of demon if we return there one day soon.

I am trying to find access to Simpson Bay beach at a place which is relatively quiet but provides all the comforts of home, shade, chairs, cool drinks etc. We are going to try out a bar called Karakter which has a rather worrying cool quotient but we will see how we get on.

I received an exciting message via Twitter that a pal is cruising from Barbados and will stop off in St Martin on 29th, so that’s fun and something to look forward to as that happens in the week when I am home alone here.   I have had that dream before, that I would be here while people would come to visit by cruise ship, and how it’s come to pass.   How funny is that?   Well, not at all actually, if you think like I do, that what you visualise comes to pass.

And finally yesterday’s news was that we discovered there is such a thing as tinned butter!   We met a British lady in the French supermarket who was provisioning a boat and she had a trolley full to the brim.   She asked if we had ever made bread and what sort of flour should one use; I pointed out the one marked Bread Flour and she seemed pleased enough with that.  

We enjoyed a really interesting chat with her.   Her eventual trip is sailing the Pacific for eight months starting next March and her task now was to work out whether SXM would be a good place from which to stock the boat.   I thought her trolley was filled with tinned tuna until she corrected me “no, that’s butter!”.   Butter?    In tins?   We had no idea butter came in tins and neither did she.   I love learning something new every day.

Imagine living on board a boat for eight months and baking your own bread!   No, I couldnt either.   We wished her good luck and asked if she would be blogging her journey.   Yes, was the answer but I forget how to find it.   You go to some sailing website which it sounded like everyone should know about (we are not yachties – yet) and then click on the name of the boat.   Will see if I can bump into her again as my mind has gone blank on that detail.

I have decided that if/when I live here, I will need to be able to sail a boat – one of those large-ish one with an outboard motor or two and now I want lessons.   So if you know anyone who gives outboard motor lessons, could you send them my way please?   Preferably in the sun, the lessons that is.   And no, I don’t mean sailing, I just mean buzzing across the lagoon on a little speed-boat thing but at a ladylike pace – to start with at least!

Then I lay in the pool and went through ideas in my head of how I could earn a living which allowed me to stay here and I came up with trading Forex which I had already rejected but now needs to come back on the table as that is something which would be perfect from here.   What reminded me was I saw an ad in the local paper for a trading group who were getting together to share the costs of a visiting teacher/mentor.   Brilliant idea and if I lived here already I would be in.

And the other idea was for an SXM website as all the ones I have seen have been adequate but quite poor, and as I lay in my Swimfloat chair, I had the whole site mapped out including how I would monetise it.   Then I HAD to get out of the pool to do some keyword research only to discover that the local paper have just launched the precise website I had visualised.   Check this out though.

What makes this idea different for me is that I think I could be interested enough in this island and its goings on to create a resource site for it, maybe about the stories of people like me who come here, settled here however temporarily, and/set up businesses like the Bryan who I met on Sunday night.   More thought will go into this when I am back floating in the pool later – ideal conditions for thinking, dreaming, creating, visioning.   Almost too good!

People are mainly searching on St Martin as a holiday destination but I was wondering what else they are looking for?   If I were settling here, I’d be looking for loads of information about how to rent a property for 6-12 months, how to buy and maintain a cheapish local car, how to make the best of things inexpensively so that your savings go further etc. There do seem to be a lot of people who want to live in the sun cheaply.   Of course, that book’s already been written more than once which is why my thinking cap is still on for my own angle.

What services could I provide to the local business/yacht/property community?   Because I would need to DO something!

Tan update:   Brown faces and arms, legs still fairly milk-bottle, need a beach for the all-over tan as our pool only gets sun for two fantastically peaceful hours in the afternoon.   Wherever we go we have to be back for 1.30 for that session!

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