Monday, June 4, 2012

The REAL Pirates of the Caribbean


I had so much fun on my snorkeling excursion that I decided to explore downtown St. Thomas on Tuesday. For just $14, I got a round-trip ferry ride over to the main touristy area of St. Thomas.


I thought to myself, “Aww, what a cute little picture of a boat on the ferry ticket!”


But then I realized that the cute little picture of a boat was an actual representation of the hotel ferry to downtown St. Thomas.

I think I can. I think I can. I think I can.


The ferry takes twelve minutes to go from the Marriott to the St. Thomas main dock. We went back to pick up some late-comers. Four teenage boys from another country.

Boy, were they stinky. I would have been fine making them wait a whole twenty minutes to go on the next ferry.


Smells aside, I rather enjoyed the ride over. The Carnival Liberty was at port today, and that made for some great people-watching while cruising the main streets of the tourist trap section of the island.


It was nice to disembark and breathe some fresh air.


No one will believe this, especially since I have a picture of it, but I did not visit this store. Can you believe it? I was shaking because I was so hungry, so I was looking for a nice place to grab some lunch. I made a mental note to come back to this place for polite conversation after a normal meal was finished.

But I forgot. See what vacation does to the brain?! I forgot to come back for chocolate! I hardly know myself any more…


I wandered the main shopping districts while trying to find an eating establishment that didn’t rely on alcohol consumption alone. I just wanted some good food. There are lots of liquor stores and diamond shops in St. Thomas. Duty-free really draws the people in, huh?


During my visit to St. Thomas downtown, I kept getting overwhelmed with the feeling that pirates used to live here. Mixed in with the new buildings are some ancient ones that you just know were here when pirates ruled these parts.

They are certainly romanticized in movies, but pirates were bad critters.


Finally! A lunch restaurant that was calling my name! Welcome to Bumpa’s.


The view from my rooftop restaurant was amazing. I got to see all the goings-on of the busy main road. Just to the right was a steel drum band playing for all the tourists, so I even got to listen to some authentic music while eating my authentic St. Thomas lunch.


Bumpa’s sits right across from the main docking area. I feel a little silly that I walked right past it while looking for a good place to eat. It was worth the trek back, as this was my favorite meal of the entire week.


Meet my “authentic” St. Thomas chicken salad sandwich. Holy smokes, this was good.


It didn’t hurt that I was dying of thirst, and the strawberry mango smoothie was out of this world.

Another one was almost ordered as I walked out the door for more exploring. Now I regret that I didn’t get it!

These were just some of the many stairs around St. Thomas that looked ancient to me. Don’t you think these led somewhere dangerous and cool four hundred years ago? Argh!!!


I found a bench right by the water, and I sat to rest my feet. This perch provided a great view of the visiting cruise ship and an up-close look at some of the funny tourists.


Luckily, with my fanny pack, neck strap for my camera, and gardener's hat, there is no way in the world anybody would guess that I wasn’t a local.


From my bench, I could see the Marriott way in the distance. It looks a lot farther than twelve minutes, huh?


Just to add to the creepy pirate feel of the island, this boat takes tourists out for dinner cruises around the harbor. Doesn’t it look like something straight out of a book? Though I seriously doubt that they painted their pirate ships bright red, since the whole idea was to sneak up on other ships to pillage and burn.

Then they raped the horses and rode off on the women (name that movie!).

IMG_4896  IMG_4897

This was one of those oldies-but-goodies of buildings. This guy had to have been here when pirates were roaming these shores. Look how old that stonework is! Can’t you just see muskets and cannons popping out of those old windows?


After my roaming town for a few hours, I parked on a bench once again to wait for the return ferry to the hotel.


I was ready to go home. It was so stinkin’ hot and humid that some air conditioning at the hotel was starting to sound pretty good to me.

It made me appreciate the dry Arizona summer, even if it does get up to 130 degrees.


This is Captain Ryan from Oklahoma. He and his wife ran away from the States five years ago and have been working their way in a boat all around the Caribbean. It sounds like a nice life for a while, huh?


With all of the excitement of town, I had to play the part of a tourist and get some t-shirts. I searched long and hard to find Hubby a great shirt that I thought he would enjoy.


Unfortunately, all he sees is the “Bite Me” saying and not the cool little shark holding the sign. He thinks it’s a little too offensive to wear in public, so it looks like I wasted my perfectly-good Monopoly money on the wrong shirt.

If you’re a size XL and don’t mind being bitten, let me know.


Of course, with all of my paranoia fascination of pirates while visiting downtown, I had to get something for myself that represented my visit. It was pretty hard finding a pirate shirt that didn’t have some sort of liquor theme!


But I like my shirt, and I’m glad I spent my hard-earned money on it. I rarely buy souvenirs on my trips, but this was a special occasion. How often do I get to St. Thomas, after all?


After such an amazing lunch, I knew dinner wouldn’t be able to compete. So I settled for a turkey sandwich and some fruit from the hotel store.

Not bad for $19, huh?

It was a wonderful day in downtown of St. Thomas. On the ferry ride home, I was wishing I had more time to explore even more of the islands. Tomorrow we head home.

Next time I come here, I won’t be sick. Pinky Promise.

1 comment:

  1. And you get paid for vacations like that!.. wow, what a life...all I can say is your living right Captain Micah!...but enjoy...


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