WanderingDan’s Weblog


August 19th….Mosquitos
August 23, 2011, 12:28 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

The mosquitos really love me this morning, especially as I’m laying completely still on the futon bed with acupuncture needles reinforcing that stillness. Little bastardos! Notwithstanding, the self-treatment is much needed, and much to my benefit. Feeling recharged now, I pack my bag, and head out again up the steep jungle road, this time with a more tentative destination, Tutu. Tutu is in the valley of the center of the eastern half of the island…we were there last night when we went to Jack’s. With the yoga studio, theater, and art galleries, I figure there has to be an Internet coffee shop too. If not, I know I can catch the bus there to Havensight where all the cruise ships dock…mucho Internets in that sector. Halfway up the hill I get picked up by Ron, a 60’s something continental, who has been here for over 20 years. He is a pretty chill guy, and we talk about his life in L.A. and Aspen before he moved here…I tend to ask people alot of questions. Enroute, Ron tells me he doesn’t think there is WiFi in Tutu (I question his knowledge on the subject to myself, since he admittedly doesn’t even know how to check his own voicemail), and kindly drives me to the safari bus stop where I can jet over to Havensight. Hitching rides here is very common place, and pretty awesome…apparently, according to Joe, there has only been one bad incident of hitching on the island recently. Last year someone picked up a couple guys, and they found his body mangled on the roadside the next day. Incidents like that, however, don’t seem to last long in people’s memories here…the laissez faire culture tends to prevail. While waiting for the bus, I strike up conversation with a young woman, of Dominican heritage I find out, who is headed to the university to register. I don’t remember her name. Like everyone else I’ve met here, I litter her with questions about island life, culture and geography. She has been here for twelve years, and gives me some great info about both St. Thomas and St. Croix. We continue our conversation on the safari bus, and I’m glad we acquainted, because if she hadn’t told me where to get off, I would’ve gone back into town and had to bus or walk back! Thanking the young lady for her conversation, I hop off, pay the driver, and start wandering. It becomes clear very quickly most of the shops here cater to cruise ship tourists…the same bland, meaningless touristy shit for sale at almost every boutique. Joe told me there is a coffee shop here called ‘The Barefoot Buddha’ that has internet, and after enough walking around and asking people, I finally find it in the building next to the tattoo parlor, right past the arial tram that goes up the mountain to the random ferris wheel on the hill. They charge me 5 bucks for a day’s worth of internet…god damn it…really? Whatever, I’m here, might as well. Whether it’s their hardware or my dinosaur computer, but I can’t get the damn thing to connect. Christian, a New Hampshire born employee of the cafe who looks like a Portland granola type, tries to help me out…to no avail. In the meantime though, we have a great conversation about his sculpting and other artwork…and his discontent with how people mistreat the island by littering, etc.. He is moving off island next week to go back and help with the family farm. Really great guy…mumbles a bit so it’s a strain to hear him sometimes. Fortunately they have computers set up, so I just use them to do my business, most of which is to find a couch-surfing host on St. John for next Monday. I finally hit the streets again, and much to my surprise, feel remiss to step out the air-conditioned building. Heading towards ‘Town’ I pass a natural foods market, and stop to check it out, and feel a certain flavor of relief to see such a market on island. I find my emotions its presence peculiar, and ponder it as I peruse the isles. Picking up some sunscreen (so I can stop pirating all of Joe’s) I head to the counter and start talking to Stacy, the woman at the checkout register, asking her about acupuncture on the island. She starts telling me about an acupuncturist who moved on island last November. After 6 months of waiting for the horribly slow bureaucratic licensing office to process her application, she and her husband became frustrated and left the island…the day they flew out the license showed up in her mailbox. Hmmm…interesting. The guy behind me in line starts talking about May, the doctor and acupuncturist who practices on Estate Glandon I think it’s called…who also built a Buddhist temple. This was a very fruitful pitstop! Starting to head west on the southern shore of the island, I pass the rich yacht clubs, Town, and detour through Frenchtown. Frenchtown sprang into being after a revolt on the French colonial island of Beorgias many years ago. Many french nationalists fled to St. Thomas, and are now the islands most noted fishermen. They keep a tight community…hence Frenchtown. It’s a curious and quaint little nook, certainly drenched in island culture, yet a little more…well…french! Continuing west, I eventually get into the industrial section, and turn around. I’m pretty tired, and welcome a nice long safari bus ride back…though not yet sure where I will take it. Since I’m out of water, and really feel like cooling off in the water, I ride the bus all the way back to Picaso cafe, the same place I went to yesterday on the epic walk, right before Lindquist beach. Today the owner is there, and kindly fills my water bottle while I ravage a gatorade. She and her husband are from New Jersey, and we start talking about island life…I never did catch her name though. She gets super excited when I talk about my plans to open up a community practice, and tries convincing me why it would better to set up shop on St. Thomas versus St. Croix, and offers to spread the word when I do. Cool! By 4:30 I make it to Lindquist beach, and happily soak up the late afternoon sun in super-salty aqua blue bliss. I love how the water takes away the itch of my countless mosquito bites.

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