Mold is your mortal enemy. This fluffy foe appears in places you didn’t know could host any form of life. You clean, dust, air-condition, curse, and yet, it persists.

You can’t go anywhere without seeing everyone and their second cousin. Your days of being anonymous in a big city are long over. And don’t bother asking people if they’re going to the only social event in town — they are. 

Sunscreen and an umbrella are everyday necessities. Forget them, and you’ll return home with a sunburn and wet clothes.

Fresh coconuts are a diet staple. I googled it and it turns out that you can consume too many coconuts, though the limit is pretty high.

Your legs have forgotten what it’s like to wear pants. The first time you put denim jeans on again, your skin will wonder what it did to deserve all the itchiness.

Your sweater only comes out if you’re going to the air-conditioned movie theater, or if you’re flying home. Until then, it stays in the corner of the closet collecting mildew.

Your friends comment on how pale your skin is every time you return from a trip away. I’m not off-white, I’m eggshell.

Grocery shopping is an all day excursion. Fresh produce from the fruit stands up the road, staples from Fiji’s take on Costco, and random items collected here and there. Friends know to get friends extras of the good stuff. If there’s a new grocery store in town, it gets rushed like a Best-Buy on Black Friday.

You don’t adopt pets. Pets adopt you. You tell yourself it’s a bad idea to let the mangy dumpster kitty into the house, then do it anyway.

You know to appreciate water, internet, and electricity. Any of these can and will go out without notice.

You turn into the world’s biggest consumer every time you go into a big city. Oh you sweet, sweet air-conditioned shopping malls filled to the brim with overpriced junk. You mean you can just buy whatever you want, whenever you want?

You know the disappointment of hearing, “I got it overseas.” The only answer to the question, “Where did you get that?”

Time goes by so slowly. Every little thing that you say or do, people wait, people wait for you.

Cartels have mules and so do you. Any visitor knows that most of their baggage allowance should be reserved for shipping snacks from their home to mine.

Formal events are colorful events. City-slickers wear dark suits and matching ties to events. Meanwhile, we wear patterned shirts and maybe close-toed shoes.

You wouldn’t live anywhere else. Yo ho, yo ho, an island life for me!

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