I look up at the moon, high in the sky as the sun disappears. And yet, darkness isn’t descending. The moon is almost full.
The moon was full when I arrived on the Caribbean island of Grenada for my three-month house-sitting tour of duty. And each time the moon shines full (as it has done three times since I arrived), I enjoy recounting the passage of time in Grenada.
And quite the few months they have been.
A Rough Start
I arrived in October, giddy to be in Grenada and excited for three months of living an easy island life. On my second day I got a live lobster from the local fisherman and figured out how to cook and eat one of my favourite foods – from scratch (literally – those spines are sharp!).
The following day, my plans changed dramatically when I realized l’d be going it alone and not with a partner as planned, and a few days after that, I came down with what I suspect was Dengue Fever and was bedridden for a week.
So that was my first two weeks in Grenada. Crash-Bam.
In the ensuing weeks as my strength and sparkle returned, I explored the property and the island a bit, going for long walks in the rain, checking out the markets in town, and making friends with a few people.
I also have been reading voraciously, taking advantage of the library of books that are here, often reserving hours each day to simply relax and get caught up in a riveting plot. This is a luxury I have never before afforded myself.
Despite a mild laptop/internet addiction, I limit my work time to 4-6 hours per day, maximum. This usually includes a good amount of “goofing off” online, and a variety of social media activity to increase my profile. (Speaking of which, you’re following me on Twitter and Facebook, right?)
Time for Nora
In addition to my work and my reading, I practice yoga and meditation daily. I go for regular walks – both on and off the property. I watch evening movies and tv shows (which I’ve accumulated on my hard drive), and I cook delicious healthy meals.
A reader recently commented that she thinks I may be a bit lonely here in Grenada, probably because I’ve recently been extolling the virtues of being alone (due to the novelty factor, since my travels rarely afford me such a luxury). But I’m far from a loner here in Grenada! In fact, one of the charms of Grenada is how easy it is to meet people – from locals, to expats, to people on boats sailing through the area.
So when I’m not enjoying my quiet little paradise of a beach hut, I’m out enjoying the company of a wide variety of people from all over the world, who all share one thing in common: a love for Grenada.
Watching the Moon and Tides
I’ve seen the tides hover around very high (with the full moon I enjoyed on arrival), to low, and seen how the environment around me changes with the tides. On a small island in the Caribbean, the tides play an important part in daily life, in both practical and undefinable ways.
I still have to pinch myself when I realize I have spent the last three months house-sitting on a tropical island, caring for a largely-outdoor dog with an adorable personality and low-maintenance regime. My expenses are next to nothing; the cost of fresh topical fruit and vegetables, excursions, and the odd tank of gas for the car.
Rural Island Life
Living rurally on a tropical island has its ups and downs. The isolation could drive some people insane; for me I tend to love being closer to nature than cities. Sure, the bugs have had their way with me – more than once – including having caused dengue fever shortly after arrival. And sure, the heat can also be oppressive, but I generally love the heat and will take it over the cold any day.
As I gaze at the almost-full moon once again, despite the challenges my first month held for me, I look up with gratitude for living such a charmed life. It’s a far cry from my days as a financial planner – five years ago – and although I couldn’t possibly have imagined this scene when I took that bold first step and sold everything to travel full-time, now, I couldn’t imagine anything else.