Beep beep- watch out!! We bought a car!! This island beauty is 26 years old and purrs like a kitten. I'm not going to lie this is the best island car we have ever had to date! I love the vintage look of her- we just need some surf boards on top and we'd really look cool! I am so so so happy we finally have a car! With no public transport on this island (except expensive taxis) we were limited to what we could do. Now we've been out and about and going on adventures almost daily!
Island cars are always expensive...ALWAYS! The roads are always in need of repair...pot holes galore. Speed bumps are very very frequent and some unmarked...."oops sorry kids!!" Caribbean drivers are crazy...when it comes to driving no one is on island time...rush rush rush it is! The cars in the islands take a beating and we figured it's best to buy island Junkers we really don't care about not only because a junker is all we can really afford, they are going to get dented, smashed, sandy, abused and cost you money to fx in the garage anyway.
One of our first island vehicles we bought living in St Maarten was a white 50cc scooter (I named Roma) and Luuck got a matching silver 50cc scooter- I liked to call ourselves the Soeters Scooter Gang! Once we found out we were with child we traded our kickass scooters in for a 2 door Jimney that the air didn't work...no big deal...until....the window motors decided to quit- no ac and no windows...in the hot Caribbean heat...their was a lot of cursing! That car was chucked after we had Stormer...he would've otherwise died of a heat stroke... And got Hyundai Accent that only had 2 working door handles...but hey...the ac and all 4 Windows worked-who cares the passenger had to climb thru the window- it was a step up! Luuck eventually fixed the handles! Grenada we also purchased a car for the birth of Rio- once again an old junker, that literally broke down on the way to the hospital to give birth leaving Luuck to run 3 miles uphill at 1am to the hospital...we have a drama filled birth story- I'll save for another time tho. We ended up having to rent a car to come home from the hospital- nice, new rental and guess what...that broke down too! Ahhh our island cars....you never know what you are going to get!
So this beast has been good to us so far! I even braved a road called the elevator, which in a "normal" first world country it would be illegal to build, I'm sure! It's a 90 degree incline: on the way up I feared of falling backwards and once I started to smell something funny...of burning... My palms sweating- I kept say, "please God, please God please..." Stormer talking of something in the backseat about fish I mumbled back, "Be quite please, I'm concentrating!" he flowed back sounding like his dad, "Why because of the car? Don't worry mommy, its f$@&ing powerful...just step on it!" Laughing, I listen to my 4 year old backseat driver and put the peddle to the metal. Our 4 year old hears everything we say...even when we think he's not listening!! We made it up but I dreaded going back down. Going down was more scary than going up- Needless to say even though our car can handle that road I will avoid the elevator at all costs. Most of the roads here are in decent condition and are all very scenic. The main road wraps around the island like a snake following the sea and the roads leading up in the hills you have a gorgeous view of the surrounding island. That's one thing for sure- their is beauty always around!
Well we've been here in Tortola now for just over 2 months. While some things aren't as we expected others are better than we imagined. We have adjusted well to life attached to the dock! The marina is one of the best we stayed in- Nanny Cay has got it going on. A nice beach full of great shells for Stormer to find "treasure", a nice pool, the best coffee shop ever( my lady, Rose, sees us daily) grocery store, and restaurants.
We have our daily "structure" when Luuck is at work! While I love to have some structure to our days a routine day in and day out...I can't do- sure Rio has scheduled nap times but I can "wear" him in his ergo carrier- so I try and change it up as much as possible. The first couple weeks was hard to find a groove...it was tough not having Luuck around- he hadn't worked in months so we were together 24/7 with the kids. Coming here we knew it'd be full on and back to work...which is good. I just wasn't prepared for the 2 kid juggle. Putting Rio down for naps/bedtime on his own was a big issue and still is-haha! The kid is stubborn! At the moment we have given into him- so he's back to sleeping on or with us- I will break this habit one day...until then I will totally enjoy the sweet baby cuddles- they won't last forever. He's getting so big- he has a set of chompers on him now and taking steps- he'll be full blown walking soon. Stormer, I started "homeschooling" (for now) and he goes to art tots and tumble tots on wednesday and Friday. We are keeping busy.
Luuck has been busting his butt working and he is loving his new gig with Scott on Aristocat doing day charters. He's home every night to tuck Stormer in and to bounce Rio back to sleep in the middle of the night- he has the night shift! This job is A LOT better than his last where we only saw him 1 day a week for 3 months straight. While he is off making us the money I turned into miss Susie homemaker. I take care of the kids, boat, do laundry(with 3 guys-it's never ending) and make sure dinner is ready when daddy Luuck comes home...who would've ever thought?! Not I...but here I am doing it- Stormer helps me a lot and has become the little chef as well- we make dinner together. I am in love with the wonderbag- it makes my life so much easier!! I use it daily making dinner in the after noon- so it's ready in time. Less fuss later when the kids are on the breaking point after a long day! We are a total team,Luuck and I, to make this lifestyle work for us and that's what I love- we couldn't do it without one another. Our "jobs" while being very different are both equally important. Appreciation...we have for one another...
We are currently shopping for a car as much as I love the marina, I still need off the "compound"with the kids. And with Stormer getting more into activities it's needed. Luuck has gotten back into rugby and I back into yoga. We have done some island exploring on luucks days off and I must say every single beach we have seen has been beautiful here! Clear water, white sand, palms- very picturesque! I can get use to it here, I think. We have yet to go out cruising the area but just seeing Tortola I see why this is such a popular destination with bareboat charters and cruisers alike. We have just recently made a trip to St Thomas, (I wouldn't call the quick sail there cruising) as our tourist extensions were denied. We had to leave with less than 24 hour notice and get medicals done for Stormer and myself to come back in as dependents. While busy getting the doctor stuff done there we got a chance to see some of the island...I LOVE IT!! St Thomas is awesome! I haven't lived in the states over 7 years and in that time I've been home for a total of 8 months....so I was crazed, happy and excited to see "home comforts" only a short sail away. It totally makes me love where we are at even more!! A video of our trip is in the making!! We will get out cruising this summer when the crowds have thinned out and work isn't so busy. Until then we are just living the island life!