Sunday, 20 February 2011

The Holiday Condition

The holiday condition is in my own words.

The semi delirious and ill advised state one can enter in foreign lands.

Yesterday was a perfect example of the holiday condition. With our island boat trip postponed due to heavy rain forecasts we decided to go to the beach. Think about that sentence carefully and continue reading. We got to the beach with the sun shining and set about getting loungers, swimming and drinking rum punch. The frozen cocktail lady strangely had the day off.

Just before lunchtime it clouded over and my  rain radar started picking up positive readings. It then began to drizzle. Not deterred we strategically moved our loungers to shelter from the rain, not sun and stayed on. The bar was still open and the temperature was at least 24 degrees. The rain increased in velocity and frequency and we were soon laughing, it never rains for long in the Caribbean. Unfortunately it did keep raining for at least two hours and I had an epiphany of sorts. What is it about being on holiday or in another country that makes you do crazy things like sit at the beach in the rain for hours on end? I'm not even on holiday but there is a link between this and strange behavior I am sure of it.

Naturally I did my best to try and brighten things up. This involved converting a lot of American currency into rum punch and playing some melodic electronic music at a very low(to my ears) level on my JBL speaker. This irritated a visiting American walrus so much he had the gall to request some Rolling Stones. I do not have any stones on my iPhone. I did offer better though, Led Zeppelin. He was not interested. Perhaps I could have played him some Beatles.

The rain did eventually ease in time for a volleyball competition that was put on by one of the evening entertainment venues. There were a lot of round objects bouncing down that end of the beach. What a strange sight. I blame it on the holiday condition.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Placeholder blogging

Placeholder blogging is a technique I delve into from time to time. Never heard of placeholder blogging? Read on as phrases are minted before your eyes. Wracked with guilt and starved of meaningful inspiration a placeholder blog is my way of keeping my place on the internet and in your minds. They often kick start a slew of posts. Think of it as blog constipation medicine if you can stomach it. Understand? Good, read on.

Don't understand? Clearly you need to read my blog more often. Read on.

Stranded on a quite inhabited island

Because we are in a state of perpetual readiness for our owner there is a blanket ban on traveling to other islands that are not a day trip away. This means I will not be going to Cuba in a hurry, it also means those other two big islands North and South America are out of reach. This is quite a shame, there are quite a few places I would like to visit on those large islands. Bugger.

Saint Martin is nice enough but I do feel like I have an almost normal extraordinary life at the moment. I work monday to friday, I go to the gym. I enjoy time with my digital extended family Macbook pro, iPad, iPhone and Nano. On the weekend I like to watch movies and drink pina coladas by the pool.

Why just today I had a lovely lunch on the aft deck, I was waited on by two stewardess's. I enjoyed a snapper filet on top a bed of beans with a salsa topping. I then enjoyed a palate cleaning shot of vanilla vodka surrounding a dollop of lemon sorbet. The finale was a baked Alaska fit for someone as awesome as me.

Enveloping all of this was an unending supply of frizz-ante and red wine expertly poured into my glass. Having only recently learned how to run away from my own drink pouring this confused my poor brain most adequately. Why, I do believe my physical and cognitive function was impaired this afternoon.

Fugitives in Spain

In our haste to conquer Spain, we may have been a bit hasty especially in our rental car. Some three months later two speeding fines were delivered on horseback by a Vaquero to our New Zealand postal address. The fines were sadly in Spanish but with months of imagined Spanish learning I could make out  some key words. Loco, Gringo and Joder . Knowing that the Spanish economy is hurting and King Carlos would soon be on my trail along with the Spanish football team I sought out the expert advice of El Fuerte. El Fuerte was holidaying in the north of Spain but he was only too happy to help and with a few emails our fines have been paid and we should be welcome to return come summer again.

My first Hawaiian experience

On Friday past we took refuge in the local watering hole before Anna's birthday dinner. I must have looked particularly friendly, interested, deranged or maybe a mixture of these. I say this because a  Captain latched onto me like a determined limpet mine and proceeded to explode upon me with a torrent of information some interesting and some gratingly annoying. It turns out this Captain was from Hawaii and was a little bit crazy. I blame this on being the sole captain for a Sailboat. He came across as the sort of sailor who had been at sea for year or so on a solo voyage. His saving graces were that he had been to New Zealand and was the first Hawaiian I had met. He did end up coming to our birthday dinner but promptly abandoned us for a table of girls who turned out to be strippers. Stay classy Hawaii!

What else?

I did have other ideas but they always come to me when I am not near my laptop or digital family. In somewhat good news our boss is not turning up this weekend. We hope to get off this island and visit........ another island!  

Tuesday, 8 February 2011


From what I have seen, America has left its mark all through the Caribbean. Some places more than others but if you want Oreo's, KFC and a Bud to wash it down you do not have to walk very far. Actually you could say that about most of the world. Except for Cuba and North Korea, more about Cuba at a later date. I have no desire to visit North Korea.

Anyway Basketball is everywhere and I am glad. You can watch Basketball at every bar, hotel lobby, and shop front you visit. Basketball courts are everywhere as well. The oppressive heat means that people only really play at dusk time. We have a Basketball court minutes away and our incredibly fit engineer was quite happy to take me off playing a couple of Sundays ago. He had destroyed our first mate with a three hour run on the day before.

Apart from a few lazy games here and there I have not really played Basketball in any serious capacity since I was at school. The years and yachting have not been kind. During my first game I was stricken with a strange paralysis which stopped me from jumping. I blame this on social games of netball. I also suffered from periodic brain freezes which meant for some very silly passes. Luckily the team we played had a player just as talented and we won both games.

Our second outing was much better and worse. Since the new year I have engaged in a new fitness and diet regime (photos and statistics will be forthcoming). I have also gone out of my way to watch a lot of Basketball on TV in bars and hotels. I did a lot of jumping, took great pride in rejecting Greeks, Australians and suspiciously non descript characters. I was named the garbage man by an American because of my rebound prowess. Things were going pretty well until I wrenched my ankle unceremoniously. This has ended my balling for the foreseeable future. It did give me something to write about. Budding writers take note, self harm is a fount. Just don't get EMO about it.

Now for the icing. Anna and I went to our favourite hotel last week. At 2am we got talking to some Texans in a bar. They were there on business. San Antonio was playing the Lakers. San Antonio won with 4 hundredths of a second on the clock. Turns out one of the guys was a CEO for a company and they have season tickets 5 rows behind the San Antonio bench. If we are ever in San Antonio we are welcome to watch a game with the guys. Got to love Texans and Basketball.