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  • Kathy Dunmire

The Gift of Shared Experiences

Hosting family and friends in St Thomas has been a whirlwind of fun and adventure. We’ve created many wonderful memories together.

Each visitor brought new perspectives, some new finds, interesting conversations, and shared experiences to treasure. One visitor liked the variety of activities. Another commented about feeling like an insider with Doug’s cadre of new friends. Snorkeling discoveries were often mentioned as a favorite. Perfect sailing days, spinnaker up with starlit overnight moorings – what a peaceful feeling. We had many fine dining experiences in exquisite settings, watching the sunset, relaxing with frozen drinks in Adirondack chairs on the beach, just taking in the warm breezes and beauty around us. So wonderful to be able to share all these things with some of our favorite people.

Most of my favorite experiences happened in the water.

Coki Beach serves up the most incredible, colorful, variety of fish that I have ever experienced. You simply step into the water and peer in and wow – immediate gratification. Swim toward the rocks and coral and the variety increases. I was able to swim with entire schools of fish surrounding me. It was too much to even take in. Skimming along the surface were needlefish and blue ballyhoos with their pointed blue needle noses. I could not stop admiring the colorful parrotfish, in particular the Princess parrotfish with every color of the rainbow. There were Blue Tangs, Angel fish, crazy looking Trunk fish. We picked up fish identification cards and it seems as if we saw something from every classification of fish. It was a bit like being part of an aquarium of exotic fish

Secret Harbor was a completely different snorkeling experience. Here we were on a mission of discovery. Moving slowly though the water, allowing ample time to search we were rewarded with amazing sea creatures. On the East side of the bay we consistently discovered turtles, swimming, hanging out, munching on sea grass. On the West side we spotted squid, a sea cucumber, two octopus (octopi? Octopuses?) some kind of sea worm yet unidentified, rays, and a few barracuda. Unusual finds along with fish hiding within the rocks and coral. A day spent snorkeling in Secret Harbor was always followed by watching the dramatic sunset on the beach or the beach-side restaurant.

Scott Bay over on St John felt like a discovery only a few sea-faring folks found. It was once part of a large resort area but, since the hurricanes, is now only accessible by boat. A nearly pristine swimming beach with soft white sand and shimmering teal green and blue water greeted us. The sea grass about midway into the bay attracted many sea turtles. This area is also where I was able to swim with an approximately 4-5 foot wingspan ray as he headed slowly out to sea with his “wings” gracefully moving up and down. Just WOW. This beach was perfect for strolling, bobbing in the warm water, sitting on rocks and letting the waves rush over my legs.

We almost missed out on Lindqvist Beach. Remote feeling with rocky shores on both sides that beg exploration, and a very gently sloping white sand beach in the middle that lets you go on forever. There are picnic benches, trees on the beach that let you nap in the shade, and almost no one else there save what appears to be a few locals. My brother-in-law walked the tide pool areas and discovered a large octopus, riding the current. Eventually the octopus grabbed onto a rock and quickly changed color to blend in. Amazing. My time at this beach may have been one of the most relaxing beach days that I had.

I have so many wonderful memories made better by being able to experience them with many of you. Thank you to those who found a way to join us in St. Thomas.

Doug and I are now shifting our focus to journey prep. Crew arrives soon, our launch date is set, and Jamaica is calling.


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