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After seeing my last post, Brian said matter-of-factly, “That’s not a great picture of you. You look kind of weird.” I took a second look and, yeah, I think I need to say something about it. 

That picture shows what happens when you go from living in a house in the city, your main job being taking care of kids and driving a car most places you go, to living in a house on a mountainside that you can’t drive to, hence your children and every single item you eat, use, or need (including propane tanks and gasoline for the generator) has to be carried up the mountainside, plus accomodating guests whose rooms are scattered throughout a 50 acre valley, and a dependence on boat transport (in which you, yourself, are often responsible for hauling said boat in and out of the water) as your means of access to the outside world.

Want to see the picture again?

Now I’m not saying taking care of kids in the city is a walk in the park. In fact, I considered myself to be in pretty good shape from chasing kids around all day. But compare the photo above to this one, of Brian and I six months previous, while we were vacationing at Petit Byahaut.

We’re not really looking our best, having just gotten out of the water from snorkeling in the rain, but there is a difference between the photos, no?  I know this would be more impressive if I had been more ample before starting our lives as resort operators, but I think I look, you know, reasonably healthy in the bikini photo. My collarbone isn’t bulging through my skin and my face is more oval than gaunt.

My mom took the picture of Remy and I in the dining room. We had been on the island for two and a half months and Mom and Dad had just arrived for the holidays. She had a look of concern on her face when she said, “You look really different. You’re so thin, but you’re muscular. You just look so different.”

All I had really noticed was that a) all my shorts were falling down, and b) I could now almost sprint up the mountainside to retrieve or deposit this, that, or the other from The Treehouse where we lived, if I didn’t have a kid on my shoulders.

So while my parents were visiting, my mom put darts into all my shorts, just like she had done when I was seven. And Brian started using a piece of nylon cord, left over from the installation of the incredibly appreciated and loved no-see-um net Mom had sewn for our bed, to hold up his shorts. So functional was that cord that Brian still uses it today to hold up his pants.

As the months passed, I’d like to think our bodies got used to our new lifestyle and eased into a more natural looking state. They were just in shock in the beginning.

So, anyone looking to drop pounds and build muscle for the upcoming bathing suit season?

Christmas Winds. Sounds sort of lovely, doesn’t it.

But the month-long period of Christmas Winds was anything but lovely for a couple of novice dinghy operators. Mostly it meant hairy beach landings in big waves, except for one dark and stormy night on the sea when the dinghy suddenly flipped over—with our whole family in it, including my visiting parents.

Sailors in the Caribbean are familiar with the term, Christmas Winds. It’s the time of year when high pressure settles in to the northeast of the Caribbean, increasing winds from the usual 10-25 knots to 20-30 knots. Although we weren’t sailing, traversing the sea several times every day familiarizes a person intimately with the effect wind has on water.

That dinghy flipping incident, well it’s quite a story for my parents to tell. 

Suddenly ending up in the water is just the the beginning of the story. If you’ve read the page titled The Resort, you’re familiar with the hazards of hiking in to Petit Byahaut. That night is when we learned of the rash causing bushes. My dad can tell you of his treatment plan once he returned to the States. And Brian’s rash? I don’t know if you want to open that can of worms.

My parents in a less adventurous moment:


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