Thursday, June 11, 2015

And then there was St. John...

Having never been anywhere tropical it was hard to believe that within two months of each other we'd be in Hawaii and in the US Virgin Islands on St. John - but alas, life has a funny way of surprising you - and in this case it was a very pleasant surprise. Andy's longtime colleague was getting hitched down there (more on that later) and we couldn't miss the opportunity to celebrate with her and of course enjoy a short little getaway to the Caribbean. 

So off we went to meet up with Kristine, Kathleen & Ellen who were our roommates for the long weekend. We had an awesome three bedroom condo overlooking Cruz Bay which was within walking distance of lots of restaurants, bars, etc. oh and the beach! Sitting on our covered deck looking out onto the bay was simply perfect - I could sit and stare at the view all day. 

Of course we didn't just sit around - there was an island to explore! One day we packed up our gear and headed off to Cinnamon Bay Beach to spend the day. We ventured down the beach to a spot that was pretty deserted making it feel like we were on our own private island. Views for days. The water was amazing - clear as can be and just the right temperature to cool you off. We even did a little snorkeling - though I quickly called it quits after I heard someone shout the dreaded words - "jelly fish!" Turns out - the jelly fish don't arrive until much later in the season, but we did learn that the "sea lice" were starting to arrive. Those were these little jelly looking things that turned out to be the cause of the little stings we started to feel later in the day. A sign the water temp was rising. No complaints here though - by the time that started we were ready to head back anyhow. 

We also spent one day on a snorkeling excursion. We hopped on a catamaran with a few other vacationers - all very friendly folks - and got to enjoy a beautiful sail to Christmas Cove where we did some really amazing snorkeling. I of course had to ask why they call it Christmas Cove and was told it was the place Christopher Columbus spent Christmas on his second pass through the area. My kind of cove! We had the pleasure of snorkeling with an actual marine biologist who pointed out the various sea life we were seeing. She was also the one who told us about the sea lice - which we didn't encounter at Christmas Cove - water was still a little cool for those to have started blossoming. We saw sea turtles, sting rays, fish of all colors and sizes, and some of the group even had a barracuda swim right past them (I was back on the boat by this time thank you very much). After our swim the crew put out an awesome spread of snacks for us and started serving up beverages for everyone. We all chatted it up and then it was time for our sail back to Cruz Bay. Nothing beats a day out on the water on a boat - it's relaxing and beautiful. 

Our evenings were spent having some amazing dinners - some that lasted 4+ hours. That's the thing about good friends - the stories never end, the laughs are hard to contain, and before long the restaurant is closing up and you're still sitting there not wanting to leave. 

Our view from dinner on our last night - minus the clouds it was gorgeous and that's our condo across the way

We couldn't have asked for a better group to travel with - we might just have to do it again - maybe next year. 

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