Visiting “Romantic” St Lucia with a Friend

A view of Marigot Bay with beautiful blue waters, some boats, and lush green mountains and palm trees. This certainly got me in the mood for my trip to St Lucia with a friend!
A view of Marigot Bay in St Lucia

SO Romantic Platonic!

Couples looking for a romantic getaway typically tend to FLOCK to St. Lucia. The island of St. Lucia. It is well known for its romantic atmosphere and vibes. It’s frequently a “go to” destination for couples as a honeymoon spot, or just a romantic getaway. The rum punch, spectacular sights, and ample opportunities for relaxation provide all of the motivation needed for loving each other. Most people hardly would consider visiting St Lucia with a friend.

A view of clear blue water, colorful blue houses, and lush green palm trees and mountains. A beautiful view as I sail through St Lucia with a friend.
If you visit only one island in your life, see St Lucia! It’s gorgeous!

So, imagine everyone’s shock when Amanda (my best friend) and I decided to visit not with our boyfriends (now husbands) but with each other. We’ve always been super close, but I can tell you some eyebrows were definitely raised when we excitedly told people of our next destination: St Lucia

Two girls are all smiles as they are about to embark on the ultimate girls weekend. They stand on their hotel balcony taking a selfie. It's OK to have a weekend in St Lucia with a friend!
Amanda and I ready for some fun in the sun on our hotel room balcony!

We didn’t let that stop us! We never let anyone think we’re weirdos stop us from doing much of anything! 

The truth is, all types of relationships need to be cared for, including friendly/platonic ones, familial ones, and even ones with ourselves. Traveling to anywhere is a great way to strengthen any type of relationship and build memories of a lifetime! Even if that means traveling to a classically “romantic” island like St Lucia with just a friend.

Lounge chairs to lay out and watch the world turn.

(This is the line of bullshit we sold our husbands. We actually just wanted to get drunk and not have to deal with responsibilities. – KIDDING!!) 

The author in St Lucia with a friend.
Some much needed girl time in St Lucia!

Well Deserved Relaxation

We cook. We clean. We teach. We do everything for everyone. We is tired. Typically when we travel, we spend so much of our time “on the go.” It was so nice to lay out on the beach, or by the pool and just lay down without a care in the world. Sometimes, we would talk deeply about our frustrations, dreams, and past memories. 

The pool at Marigot Bay Resort and Dive. This wound up being the best place to lounge and create silly memories during my trip to St Lucia with a friend!
We were pretty much the only two people at our resort, so we had the pool to ourselves!

During other times, we would just nap on lounge chairs and watch the sun go down.

Other times, we got to be our normal silly selves. There is nothing better than having someone that you can be absolutely childish and stupid with together! We would laugh until we cried sometimes and there’s no better medicine for the soul than that! 

Three blue lounge chairs in the sand overlooking Marigot Bay. This was the perfect place to have many girl chats on my trip to St Lucia with a friend.
Rest and relaxation at our resort.

Drinking! The Flight of the Tropical Bird

Being the good Long Island gals that we are, we started our long weekend with the ever so potent rum punch. When we ordered it off the menu, I just thought it sounded refreshing. I had no idea that it would knock me on my ass. If you drink, you know this type of drunk. The type of drunk where you do silly, stupid, things.

Two glasses of red rum punch in front of Marigot Bay, St Lucia. These are the perfect drinks to have during a trip to St Lucia with a friend
Potent rum punch! Knocked me on my ass for sure!

A bird kept visiting our table, trying to eat our french fries. The first fry he took was too large, and when he tried to fly with it, he fell down. He made several more attempts to find or build the perfect sized fry, each one a failure. We were absolutely astonished, wasted, and couldn’t stop laughing at this amazing little bird. We were cheering him on, sipping our drinks, and completely marveling at his engineer capabilities. Finally, with our rum punch nearly finished, HE DID IT! He found the perfect sized fry and flew off with it! This is the tale of hope that I’m sure so many of you need during these trying times of COVID, and I’m here to deliver. This type of silly drunk is really a must when visiting any place in the Caribbean, is it not? It’s so innocent, unwinding, and so much fun.

A true symbol of hope.

Drinking! And Jammin’

Another evening, we were a different type of drunk. The kind where you just jam out to music, sip a daiquiri, and admire the scenery around you. We sat on our balcony of our resort listening to Bob Marley and other reggae music that our guide had been playing, saying absolutely nothing to each other. It’s REALLY hard to live in the present in New York. It’s really easy to do in St Lucia. My mind was on my music, palm trees, and the sun going down over the water. 

A beautiful deck attached to a hotel room through a sliding glass door. It's the perfect place to sit and listen to music during a trip to St Lucia with a friend
Sitting on our deck and watching the sun go down.

Drinking! Piton beer at the beach

  • St Lucia has its own beer – a nod to its crowned natural jewel – the Pitons! There is something so refreshing about throwing back beers on the beach with your home girl, and not having to worry about that inevitable-bloating-in-a-swimsuit look. One of the many benefits of visiting St Lucia with a friend is you don’t have to constantly worry about looking your best. I can assure you, Amanda had no expectations of me coming to dinner in some flowing, tropical, ball gown like outfit.

Sightseeing

As teachers, we cannot go somewhere and not learn. That would be blasphemous. We ALWAYS jam pack our schedules with sightseeing and tours. As much as we loved relaxing, we had to spend a day exploring! Therefore, we took a private tour of Soufriere. So, were we met with heart shaped jacuzzis and couples only dance lessons? Since this is a “romantic destination?” No! Amanda and I were met with opportunities for exploring that anyone can do – not specific to “honeymooners!”

We relaxed in the sulfur baths! Then, we had the most bougie lunch views at a chocolate themed restaurant! Not to be missed, we gawked at the Pitons! For a more detailed account and to follow our itinerary, click here.

Getting Into Trouble

What’s a girl’s trip without getting into some trouble? I’ve recently written a post about a crazy experience with a group of local men that we met. It seems to have gotten a great response, I don’t want to spoil anything, but it was nuts! Read all about it here. 

Boats are needed to get to most places in Marigot Bay.

We became really good friends with a security guard at our hotel. He was a nice man, and elderly. He always looked out for us and gave us suggestions on where to eat and where to go in general. One day, he came up to us after a swim. He was clutching a black drawstring backpack and looking around nervously. “I get you a surprise, but you can’t tell anyone. Bring backpack to me when you’re done.” Anddd he was off. 

Wtf? What could it possibly be inside this bag? Marijuana? Cocaine? Local rum that has the alcohol content strength of sedating a horse? If it was we could just leave the bag somewhere and feign ignorance. We brought the bag back to our room. It was…

TWO MANGOES. LMAO. 

“DON’T SHOW THESE TO ANYONE!”

I have no idea why this was such a shrouded secret, but they were delicious and there was nothing hidden inside of them. Imagine if we had brought this to the attention of the staff? “Excuse me, this man is trying to smuggle this bag of…oh…um…this bag of mangoes to us.” This is just one of those bizarre memories that always makes me laugh! 

Lounge chairs sit around a beautiful but small infinity pool. It is the perfect place to lounge on a trip to St Lucia with a friend
Relaxing by the pool was absolutely heavenly!

Isn’t that what any trip is all about? Remembering the things that made you smile, laugh, and brought you closer together? It’s TOTALLY to visit a “romantic destination” with someone that you are not in a romantic relationship with. If you visit St Lucia with a friend, it just becomes a destination to explore. Destinations like these totally strengthen your love for each other, but since when it love limited to people we are sexually interested in?

Sitting at lunch and overlooking the Pitons with a bottle of champagne and your partner is romantic. Sitting at lunch and overlooking the Pitons with a bottle of champagne and your bestie makes you a pair of badass, bougies, bitches. It’s all about perspective. definitely think that this trip strengthened our friendship. We spent so much time talking because we had a ton of down time to relax. We made so many memories that couldn’t possibly be forgotten. I’m looking forward to the next girls trip, ASAP! For these reasons, have NO shame in your game about visiting St Lucia with a friend, neighbor, co-worker, or just by your gorgeous self.

A plane sitting on a tarmac with a group of people walking towards it. Author is sad that she her trip to St Lucia with a friend is over.
Heading back to New York! The tans may fade, but the memories will remain!

What are you feelings on guys and girls trips when you’re in a relationship? Have you ever traveled to a “romantic” place with someone who was a friend? Give me all the tea in the comments!

One Day in Soufriere, St Lucia

Take Me Baaaaaaaack!

As I write this, we are in the throws of the COVID19 epidemic in New York City. There are torrential downpours and grey skies. There are many places I’d rather be right now. As Pirates of the Caribbean plays in the background, I decide I’d rather be in the Caribbean. When I imagine green palm trees blowing around lazily, strong rum punch, world class sunsets, and warm sun I think of St Lucia. I specifically think of my one lavish day in Soufriere.

St Lucia is looking really nice right about now!

Speaking of piracy and robbery, Amanda (my best friend) and I got the trip for a steal. (I’m sorry, but the stupid jokes are going to come hard and fast, I’m a parent now.) We paid a little over $400 for a round trip flight and hotel combo for a long weekend in Marigot Bay, St. Lucia. We went during hurricane season, but that was a risk worth taking.

Typically, St Lucia is famed as a romantic spot for newly married couples. We might have been the only couple on the island NOT in a romantic relationship. Apparently, that meant we were ripe for the taking. More on that story, here.

Soufriere is an amazing city! Wish I bothered to brush my hair for the occasion.

Marigot Bay is secluded, and is only accessible by a small ferry that takes a minute or so to get across the bay. Besides relaxing and eating, there isn’t too much to do in the ol’ bay. Our driver from the airport offered to take us around Soufriere, the busier part of the island for the day – and so we did just that. 

The small and quick ferry that takes you to and from Marigot Bay!

The Pitons

Our day began with a drive to see St. Lucia’s world famous Pitons! Gros & Petite Piton is a UNESCO world heritage site. They are two looming mountainous volcanic plugs that sit side by side. They are the symbol for St Lucia and are largely what makes the island so famous and sets it apart from other islands. If you are visiting Soufriere, particularly for one day, you MUST visit.

A UNESCO world heritage site! The Pitons!

They are so famed and beloved that the local beer is named after them…Piton beer!

The enormity of the Pitons is incredible. I’ve never felt so small in my life. Mostly because I eat so very much. Seeing the Pitons from anywhere on the island is a beautiful sight. You almost might feel like you are seeing Te Fiti from Moana, post scary monster thing of course. Our guide asked, “can you believe that some people hike the taller piton? It takes about eight hours!” And, mmmmm no! My fat ass could not believe that people spend their free time doing that when there is rum punch to drink and caribbean treats to eat. I think viewing them from afar was a grand enough way to enjoy them.  

Stinky Serenity

The next stop were the sulfur mud baths. They’re slimy, they’re gray, and they’re stinky. But, the benefits far outweigh all of that. It was nice to visit a place where locals actually hang out. There were far more of them than tourists which was exciting to see. The baths are said to heal or help  eczema, arthritis, sun burns, and just about most diseases and ailments that you can imagine. 

The sulfur springs park area featuring a waterfall, natural pool, and many trees, the author says this is a must see during your one day in Soufriere
Sulfur Springs Park

Before we even got to the baths, we were given a tour of the park surrounding it. It was interesting to see the fruit trees that grow in the area and to see the actual sulfur springs. Not nearly as interesting to smell them.

First you paint yourself, or each other with white therapeutic mud and let it dry. If you really feel like being weird or creeping your tour guide out, ask them to paint you. Some guides even do really cool designs with the mud if you want a good picture. 

After it dries, you make your way into the murky black water and relax. It’s not to be taken too seriously though! Nearly all of us strangers were laughing about how crazy we looked with the mud all over ourselves and mostly our faces. 

Two women in white clay masks enjoy the sulfur springs in St Lucia, they are spending one day in Soufriere
Wearing our masks at the springs!

Our guide timed our stay in the bath, and I’m so glad that he did. He has seen people who stay in too long and collapse once they get out. Some even need to be dragged out. I’m pretty glad my one day in Soufriere didn’t end with me laying on the pavement unable to move. As soon as I got onto the side of the bath, I felt my legs go to jello – my body had never been so relaxed in my life! 

Two women in white masks lounge in the sulfur springs of St Lucia, they are visiting for one day in Soufriere
Enjoying the springs!

Be sure to wear a suit that you don’t mind throwing out afterwards. You definitely will smell like sulphur after. I was REALLY self conscious about this because we still were seeing more of the Soufriere and now smelled like a baby’s doodoo diaper. However, locals are SO used to the smell because the sulphur springs are so highly used that no one ever comments or says, “why do you smell like you have never showered in your life?” 

The sulfur springs are featured here as well as some people enjoying them, they are a relaxing way to spend one day in Soufriere.
Swimming and relaxing in the sulfur springs! Super relaxing and really fun.

After the experience, our guide bought us two fresh coconuts to drink. Someone on the side of the road hacked two open and our guide paid him. I loved informal tone and matter of fact transaction of that mini experience. I die laughing every time I see this photo. We look like aliens who have never seen, nor heard of a coconut before.

Two aliens hold coconuts that are green in St Lucia during a one day trip to Soufriere
Greetings from Venus! Is this how earthlings hold coconuts? This photo of us kills me.

Boucan at Hotel Chocolat

If you are looking for a restaurant that has the best views on the island, look no further than Boucan by Hotel Chocolat. Our guide was so nonchalant about this place and framed it merely as, “a nice place to have lunch.” Boy, did he undersell it! Having only one day in Soufriere might stress you out because in that case you need to pick the perfect lunch spot. Look no further, fam…

Picture of black leather menu with words "Boucan" and "Hotel Chocolate" at bottom. Chocolate drink with straw in clear glass next to it. The best place to eat if you have limited time, like one day in Soufriere.
Boucan restaurant has a cacao centered theme that is so tastefully done!

Let me cut to the chase. We were one of exactly two parties that were present for lunch. I can’t wrap my head around that because these are the views! As we waited for the staff to get our table ready, we kicked back with a cocktail.

The menu is centered around cacao. That means almost everything on the menu has cacao in it, including the burgers, scallops, and gazpacho. I ordered the Boucan “roti” because it deemed itself as a dish native to St Lucia.

A view of St Lucia's pitons from Boucan restaurant by Hotel Chocolat. There is a fruity cocktail positioned in front of the Pitons view. You must see this view even if you only have one day in Soufriere.
Drinks while waiting for our table. Check out that view!

For dessert, we ordered the “genesis of chocolate.” It was a history lesson as much as a meal. It’s a nine stage tasting which tells the story of cacao from its most bitter to its sweet finalized product, all in the best taste and gastronomic genius of course. The dessert is rounded out with a shot of drinking chocolate. 

The Genesis of Chocolate dessert option!

This was probably the bougiest dining experience I’ve had while traveling. I tell everyone about it, and cannot wait to return. 

Two chocolate shots are featured on a wooden table. This restaurant, Boucan is one you should not miss if you have one day in Soufriere.
Chocolate shots!

Rum and Coke (How Dare I?)

Our last stop of the day was to go rum tasting. We stopped at a road side rum venue with a beautiful view. If you only have one day in Soufriere, PLEASE make it involve rum tasting! The island is well known for their rum, and for good reason!

Beautiful views while rum tasting!

Our guide introduced us to this man, Morgan, who was the procurer of all types of rums. I don’t remember that his name was actually Morgan. Captain Morgan is a rum, so I thought I’d roll with it. We were given a small shot glass of all the rums on the table (wooooo boy!)

Two women stand on either side of a rum procurer during their one day trip to Soufriere.
Yes, we tried all of those rums! My insulting coke bottle is to the left.

Morgan started us off with very sweet and creamy options, some tasted like a smoothie or ice cream! The rums got stronger and less candy-like as we went down the table. Knowing that I’m terrible at taking shots, I asked Morgan (now I’m thinking his name was Terry.) I asked TerrMorgan if I could purchase a bottle of Coke to chase my rum. He and our guide looked at me as if I asked to drink out of the toilet.

Then, it made sense. I had definitely insulted TerrMorgan. St Lucia is one of the finest procurers of rum, and hear I am sullying the taste of his homemade creations with soda. I couldn’t go without it though, or I’d puke out the rum which I think somehow would have been worse. He didn’t say anything, but I could see the hurt in TerrMorgan’s eyes.

Author smiles at camera as she embarks on rum tasting during her one day in Soufriere.
Refusing to put my chaser down for some reason. Awesome road side rum tasting!

My favorite wound up being a bottle of passion fruit rum. It was homemade, authentic, and had hundreds of passion fruit seeds inside. True story: I declared this at customs when back in the US. I waited forever to see a customs agent who then laughed at me and asked me why I declared it.

After some purchases, I saw something that stopped me dead in my tracks in the gift area. It shone like a beacon of yellow absurdity. What…what…what was…banana ketchup!? Popular in St Lucia, not so much in the US. It’s a ketchup minus the tomatoes. Like all good local food, it was invented during a time of necessity when tomatoes were not available. There are no tomatoes in it, but there are vinegar and spices.

Courtesy: St Lucia News

It was a wonderful time in Soufriere, St Lucia during our one day adventure! I’m so glad that we got to see some of the unique features of the island!

Two girls stand smiling at the camera with mountains, a bay, and colorful houses in the background during a one day trip to Soufriere
Beautiful day, beautiful views, beautiful life in St Lucia!

Sniper and St Lucia

The rum punch in St Lucia is no joke!

A Desire to Speak Out

I wouldn’t say I was bullied throughout my life. But, from a young age, people were more than willing to let me know how abnormal I was. 

Was it because I talked to trees? Spoke in tongues? Ran around in circles until I collapsed? No, it was none of this. People found me abnormal because I spoke my mind. 

Amanda and I enjoying girl time in St Lucia

Injustice has always really bothered me, whether it was happening to me or someone else. Now, of course, it’s all the rage to speak out against it. When I was doing it for most of my life, it wasn’t in fashion. Growing up, I was a weirdo for being so impassioned. 

This is the first time I’ve spoken these thoughts out loud because I tend to like to play it cool. Growing up being called abnormal by others? It hurt. I was told to act like a lady and keep my thoughts to myself. I was always asked by people, “why can’t you be normal? Why can’t you just shut up?” 

Much like this bird we found that enjoys French fries, I was abnormal for most of my life.

I did kickline (dance team) in high school. One year, I spoke out to some teammates about an unfairness I had witnessed, I don’t even remember what it was entirely. Anyway, at the end of every year the seniors give “gag gifts” to the rest of the girls. My gag gfit? A diary, so that I could write my thoughts down instead of speaking them aloud because “nobody cared.” A room full of people laughed. Not just my peers, people who should have known better. My coach, parents of the other girls, and friends.  

Thankfully, as is often the case in young adulthood, I found my tribe. I found other women like me, and men who were not intimidated by my having opinions on matters. However, society’s message of “act like a lady” stuck with me. In this case, acting like a lady means always being polite, agreeable, meek, and likeable. Don’t discuss politics or society. Agree with whatever the popular opinion happens to be. Smile, always.

So, what does this anecdote have to do with travel? This type of acquiescence, of keeping one’s mouth shut, put me in potential danger. 

Driven by Hunger

My best friend (Amanda) and I traveled to St Lucia for a long weekend. The hotel and flight deal was an unreal steal, lowest price I’d ever seen. I’d always wanted to see St Lucia, and figured what better time than now! However, our hotel was in a BEAUTIFUL yet isolated part of the island – Marigot Bay. The only way to get to and from our hotel was a one minute ferry. Many of the the restaurants in the area required use of ferry or boat to get back and forth. By the way, “ferry” in this case is a very small pontoon type boat. I didn’t want anyone to have the image of us sailing to the new world on the Titanic. 

The ferry that takes you back and forth from Marigot Island to the mainland.

One evening, we were at a loss as to where to go for dinner. We left our hotel and were met with a group of three local men sitting at a makeshift and rustic bar. “Can we get food here?” we asked hopefully. The bartender smiled and shook his head. “No, I’m sorry, we only serve beer here. However, if you wait at the end of the dock over there, there is boat service to a great place to eat. We thanked them. I’d be wrong to not mention that as we conversed, a giant flying cockroach flew into my face and landed in my hair. I panicked and screamed off the top of my lungs sending the men into confusion.  It was dark out, and apparently no one saw the roach except me, so I just looked like a weirdo. 

We took their suggestion and hopped on the boat to be taken to the restaurant. I enjoyed the cool breeze whipping through my hair as it had been a very warm evening. The houses and hotels along the bay were lit up, high in the hills around us. I remember being surprised that even with so much light, it was very dark on the water. 

We thanked our driver, and stepped onto the VERY small island. The restaurant was entirely outdoors and small. It was rustic, but had a nice tropical vibe. It felt so exclusive as the only way to and from the place was by boat. 

We were the only ones there, and being as it was low season, we presumed that maybe it was closed. We didn’t even see a worker. After looking around and being unsure of how to proceed, a very tall man came out from the kitchen. He welcomed us, seated us right along the water, and handed us menus. 

It gets super dark out at night in Marigot Bay.

Amanda and I combed the menus over. The restaurant was lit nicely with Christmas type lights of all colors and types. What a contrast to looking out to the very dark water, I couldn’t see more than a few feet out that way. The chef took our orders. I got some mussels and couldn’t wait to eat one of my favorite seafoods beside the water. 

Aside from some light music, it was deadly quiet. That’s why I remember the sound so well. At first faint, but it grew louder and louder. The motor from a small boat gunning toward the restaurant. Even before we ever saw who was onboard, I remember being disturbed. The sound was raucous and didn’t fit in with the serene ambiance around us. The boat that drove us over had not been nearly as loud. 

Unexpected Guests

When the boat docked at the restaurant, I started to sweat profusely. Four loud and rowdy men jumped out of the boat and began yelling, stomping, and speaking French Creole very quickly and loudly. The behavior was so inappropriate for where we were. Also, most of the bay seemed to be asleep – there was no partying or celebration going on, so I Immediately dismissed the notion that they were just drunk and happy. 

My heart pounded in my chest as they began yelling to us in French Creole. I looked around and realized that there was no escape from the island, we couldn’t just walk away. Everything inside of me told me to get out of there, to run into the kitchen, to hide. I have been in many a plenty precarious situation, none evoked such a primal fear inside of me. I took the butter knife given to me at the start of the meal, and tucked it under my shirt. We were two foreign girls alone on an island surrounded by strange men. I remember looking at Amanda, both of our eyes filled with terror and confusion. “Are we about to be kidnapped?” I asked quietly. Before I could hear a response, the raucous men sat at our table. 

“Hello, mind if we sit here?” one asked in English. There was an empty restaurant full of tables, and they had to sit with us. Here, in the middle of nowhere, in the dark. It didn’t feel friendly, it felt imposing. It didn’t at all feel like we have an actual choice, as they stood touching our table anyway. Both of us didn’t know what to say, and didn’t want to upset the men. By now, it was obvious that one had been very drunk. “I guess so” we said. 

I was surprised how dark the bay got at night. It was peaceful, but eerie at the same time.

Before any type of conversation occurred, the chef came running out and yelled in French Creole. A weight lifted off of my shoulders. The owner was going to tell these men to get lost, he was coming to protect us, and tell these men what we were too afraid to say. The scolding ensued for what felt like an hour, but was more likely a few minutes.

 One of the rowdy mend spoke. “He thinks we’re bothering you. He thinks you might write a poor Tripadvisor review because we’re bothering you. He wants to know if you want us to leave.” My heart sank into my feet. 

 Let’s unpack that. Two young women are sitting on an isolated and desolate island, nearly in the dark, and a group of strange men invade their privacy and any semblance of safety. The owner is concerned not because of how we might feel, but because of the reputation of his business. 

The fact that he even had a doubt that these men were not welcome – to me means he should have kicked them out. Instead, he stood with his arms crossed and asked right in front of everyone if we wanted them to stay or go. 

Could I have said, ‘kick them out?’ I could have. But, what’s to say they wouldn’t be waiting for us after dinner and hurt us for getting them kicked out? The safest option was to say, “no, they can stay, they’re not bothering us.” 

The Worst Dinner Ever

Some awkward and tense conversation ensued. What were our names? What were their names? What were we doing here? Them speaking and laughing in their language. I tried to make myself small in my seat, hoping if I tried hard enough I would shrink like Alice in Wonderland and could escape. I’m telling you that straight up, I am a weirdo magnet. If there is a weirdo anywhere, that person will find me and talk to me. One man in particular was eyeing me.

“My name is Sniper. Do you know why?” he drew his head back and looked at me cooly. I felt tears well up in my eyes. He made a gun with his fingers and said, “I don’t have any problem shooting someone. I’m good with a shot. There are plenty of people who want me dead, will try to find me, and I’ll be ready for them. My best friend was shot in that house right over there” He pointed up hill. The same hills I had been peacefully admiring only moments before. I could have fainted.

 In my entire life, this was the most terrified I had ever been. I didn’t want to be fucking sititng next to someone who just admitted that there were people out to kill him, and that he had plans to kill other people. I didn’t want to be mixed up in this. I remember in that moment thinking that this is literally where I was going to die. I felt my body go hot and my vision go blurry with tears. I really thought I’d gotten mixed up in some bullshit, and was going to wind up shot in the pitch black middle of nowhere because this psycho was sitting next to me. 

The guys ordered a round of beer, and our food came out. They didn’t order any – just stared at ours. Great, now I had to choke down my dinner like a prisoner being watched by a captor. I didn’t order any alcohol, I didn’t want my judgement or thinking to be impaired in any capacity. 

Taken on a different evening at a different restaurant. Banana ice cream and a Piton beer! What a St Lucian combo.

One of the four men had wandered off, and never came back. Another one seemed different from the other two. His name was Nigel, and he began asking normal questions. Had we been to any other islands? He loved Martinique even more than St Lucia and told us all about it. He told us he worked on boats, he seemed interested in the fact that we only could speak one language, he spoke three. 

I let my shoulders down. This was the weirdest fucking paradox of my life. One man, seeming so normal and nice, trying to have a genuine conversation. In the exact opposite, his friends talking about murder and vengeance killings. I feigned politeness and tried to limit my conversation to Nigel while ignoring the other two. 

Tagging Along

Eventually, I realized that I probably wouldn’t be killed or kidnapped. I tried my best to choke my dinner down and not cause any alarm. I didn’t want to give someone like Sniper a reason to hurt me in any way. I think I even laughed at some points. Mostly because this entire situation was so weird. Eventually, the check came and we wound up paying for their drinks. Shocker.  

The owner called us a boat. Let me correct that, a small, fast boat to transport us back to the hotel in the complete pitch black. I was relieved to be heading back to where there was more lighting and more people AKA safety. I felt myself grow angry when the men announced that they would be riding back with us. They knew our hotel and wanted to get drinks at the bar. 

You have to be fucking kidding me. 

The boat ride was OK. I grew accepting of the fact that I might be killed and thrown overboard into the pitch black. Sniper had obviously been drinking, and kept repeating the same sentiments over and over. It bothered me immensely. I would rather chew hot coal than listen to him, but I acted polite. I didn’t want him to get angry and do anything stupid. 

Worst Evening Drinks Ever

Considering the men knew the staff at our hotel, I thought they would leave us and hang out with them. Amanda and I ordered two drinks. Nigel stuck around, and that didn’t bother me. He was nice enough, and kept apologizing for his friends. Sniper on the other hand wouldn’t stop trying to whisper in my ear. I repeatedly said I had a boyfriend and that I wasn’t interested in his flirting. His response? That I would ‘cave in eventually.’ 

I didn’t even finish my drink. I couldn’t. I was so disgusted. 

Well, that escalated quickly.

I told Amanda I wanted to go back to the room, and so we did. We gave a quick goodbye to Nigel and…”Sniper”. 

The bar at our resort. Other than the company, it was a really nice place to drink.

“Well, goodnight.” I said meekly to the tallest of the trio, I forgot his name.. He crossed his arms, and I’ll never forget the death stare I received. He said not a word and stood staring at me angrily. I knew that he was angry because I had not given his friend what he wanted. I shrinked away, and he continued to stare at me before looking past me angrily. 

When we got to the room, I felt relieved and sickened. Rather than consider those feelings, my own feelings, my immediate thought was to feel bad for Nigel. He had been very nice, and seemed to only want to get away from his drunken friends and hang out, he seemed normal. That’s the curse of being a woman. Constantly wondering, Am I over-reacting? Even in the face of blatant sexual harassment. 

We sat on our balcony listening to music and shooting the shit. At some point, we crawled into bed and fell asleep. 

The view from our balcony! It was beautiful.

Eerie Event

In the middle of the night, I felt something drop on my face, and I shot out of bed. I looked down on my sheets, and a purple dress of mine was laying in a crumpled ball. Where had it come from? It felt as if it were thrust at me. My heart pounded so loudly that I could hear it in my ears and my back was drenched with sweat. I lay in silence hearing my heartbeat, in the pitch black. 

Time kept moving, and there were no other incidents. I had trouble getting back to sleep and lay staring at the ceiling afraid to move. I don’t remember how or when, but I drifted off to sleep. I held my piss in my bladder until the next morning. 

That morning, Amanda and I agreed the incident was weird, but did we think it was a ghost? Not likely. We carried on with our morning ritual of getting ready and lathering up on sunscreen. We even laughed about the weird incident, crumpling the dress up and throwing it at each other. Our giggles were interrupted. Suddenly, there was a knock at the door. I opened it cautiously, and it was a female employee of the hotel. 

Our resort leading to the water.

“Ma’am. Are you aware that you left your hotel room key in the door last night?” She dangled our room keys in her hand. You need to be more careful, anyone could have gotten into your room just by turning the knob.” I froze. 

There was no doubt in my mind at the time that someone was in our room. The night of Sniper gate we had been sitting on the balcony with our backs turned and swore we heard rummaging in our room as if someone were behind us. Was there really anyone ever there? I’ll never know. The idea that someone came into our room, Sniper or otherwise, and of all things threw a random dress at my face is fucking ridiculous. As much of a douche as he was, I will not falsely accuse him of stooping that low. I have absolutely no proof. But, the fact that the key was in the door is what gives me chills to this day. It means that there is a possibility that he, or someone did come into our room as we slept. 

Looking Back

So, why didn’t I speak up? Why didn’t this loud mouthed girl from New York say, “Why don’t you FUCK off?” Partly, because I didn’t want to create a heated scenario where we wound up getting hurt. Second? The sad truth? Isn’t it what we just do as women? We grin, smile, and blink our eyes in the face of blatant unwanted advances, harassment, and discomfort. Society tells us that it’s far better to keep our composure than speak out. There are undoubtedly people reading this now, dismissing me as a “hysterical woman” as it is. Imagine if I had actually screamed? Shouted? Took action?

Am I saying men can’t try to flirt with and chat up women? Certainly not. But, sit at your own fucking table. Send us a drink. Or, come over and ask how we’re enjoying the evening or if we’ve heard of any good bars in town.  

It’s 2020. Can we please allow women to speak freely?

Please stop telling girls that when they engage in heated discussion it is “mean” or “unbecoming” because when a boy does it, it’s brilliant and admirable. Please stop telling girls who say “no” when they are uncomfortable doing something that they are being stubborn and bitchy. Please stop telling girls not to have an opinion, especially on matters that concern their future and the future of the country and state that they live in.

Please stop equating the bravery of a girl having a voice to a castrating, shrieking, dangerous sound. Please don’t mistake passion for an inability of a girl to control her emotions. For the love of God, please stop telling young girls to be quiet. When the time comes to speak out, when it really matters, they might not find the courage to do so. And then what? I was too afraid to express my feelings in a situation that, at the time given, made me feel as though my safety was compromised.

I spoke out for most of my life because I felt that I had to – it was always within me to do so. On the night I should have spoken up and out, I didn’t. I knew better and I didn’t do it. All I kept hearing in my head was, “don’t overreact, don’t be emotional, don’t be argumentative, and don’t be impolite.” 

I speak my mind more than I think I ever have nowadays. I don’t know why, but I feel like it’s my job to stand up for those who can’t find their voice. We all have a calling, maybe that’s mine. Why me? I’m not sure. I don’t think there’s anything particularly special about me. I’m just willing to say what I feel because I stopped caring about what people thought. And as the old adage stays, “if not you, then who?”