A Long Time Coming: Another Paradise
Updated: Nov 5, 2019
In 2012 Joey and I took a trip to Saint Lucia. It further cemented our love of the tropical jungle-to-sea, low key, low development vibe that the island shares with the places we had visited in Costa Rica and Mexico.
I’m not even sure how Joey found this island out of the more common list in the Caribbean, and more specifically the place we stayed: Ti Kaye.
A few aspects of that trip left a lasting impression and are an integral part in our current move and current plans.
Ti Kaye is located on the side of a hill with outstanding panoramic ocean views. There are 33 private cabins nestled in lush landscaping accessed by roaming pathways over the property. Flowering plants & trees were everywhere. Citrus and other fruit trees as well.
There was a small sandy beach at the bottom of a long winding hillside set of stairs. Kayaks were available for free.
Islanders arrived In the morning by boat and cooked grilled chicken on the beach over charcoal fired grills fashioned from car wheels.
Nightlife consisted of hanging out at the “resort“ bar or bringing a bottle of wine or a few bottles of beer to the pool or back to the cabin. Otherwise a ride into a “nearby” town took 30 or 40 bouncy long minutes. And, from what we were told, there wasn't a lot to do there at night anyway.
It was quiet, beautiful, private, secluded and perfect.
We took a couple trips offsite, once to the sprawling open air local market and another day taking in a few tourist spots like the hot springs and botanical gardens. Otherwise we spent our days lounging on the beach, at the pool, or snorkeling right off the beach and around the cove.
On one of those “stay at home days” we had the restaurant pack a few bags with beer, snacks & ice and took off in a couple kayaks. We paddled around the first and closest point, then the next and then the next. Our resort wasn’t near anything else, so each felt more and more remote and deserted. We found perfect little unspoiled beaches around each turn with palms and dense vegetation running all the way up to the sand.
We stopped and spent half a day on one of these beaches. A little piece of absolute paradise all to ourselves for the afternoon.
As we sipped beer and waded in the surf. We snorkeled. We sat in the sand and watched the occasional water taxi, fishing boat or cargo ship pass by. We talked about living like this somehow, one day. Far-fetched dreaming in an amazing space on the perfect day.
Another “discovery” from our Ti Kaye trip was the outdoor shower. Though the concept, generally, wasn’t new to either of us, but our only experience had been the “wash the sand off before coming in” beach showers found at the beach houses we’d grown up going to. Nothing fancy, pretty utilitarian. An elevated spigot really.
Not this one. It was gorgeous. High walls for complete privacy, gravel & stone on the ground with vines, flowers and all sorts of plants everywhere.
As soon as we came back home we added an outdoor shower in our backyard. We used daily most of the year. We said we’d always have one from that moment forward.
The last, and maybe most important, thing we took and kept from the experience was the diversity and the people. The blend of cultures and the results found in the language, architecture, art and most especially to us, the food.
Saint Lucia blends Caribs, Africans, those from Spain & Central America and a bit of India. The food reflects the same with stews, roti, curries, jerk chicken, ceviches, plantains & fresh fruits.
I remember Joey tearing up first when we drove away from Ti Kaye and next at the airport as we prepared to leave. By this point we’d traveled a good bit - but this was a first.
We talked about Saint Lucia for years, still to this day actually, as one of the most beautiful places we’d ever seen.
We promised ourselves that one day we'd live somewhere like that.