On St. John…The BreakAway Begins

Posted on: Thursday, December 18th, 2008
Posted in: Travelog, 1st Stop: St. John, Latest Trip | Leave a comment

Face it: 12-hour travel days do not a great BreakAway make. But we survived it, as did the luggage and children. Air travel becomes increasingly bumpy, so to speak, but that’s survivable too. (So far.) It’s all about managing expectations.

Finally.  We made it.  The journey has begun.

Finally. We made it. The journey has begun.

That said, a Sabbatical-taker or schemer might be well advised to repeat those five words often. I’m just happy to be HERE, on the isle of St. John (and yes, I Love St. John), in tranquil Coral Bay—overlooking gumdrop mountains and islands, feeling cool breezes and soaking up the sun. Did I mention the popcorn clouds and bobbing sailboats?

I’ve got a feeling (“a feeling deep inside”) we’re not in Minnesota any more. But like life in Minnesota, an escape like this still features pesky “to do” lists…

  • Work. There’s always work to do, of all kinds: Job work; Life’s work; house work; parenting work; home-school work. Most of that is more challenging here, and can seem out of place.
  • Mission. Modern BreakAway theory holds that a hiatus holds some responsibility to self: Why ARE you here? In my case, the Mission list is long. This site tops it.
  • R&R. After unpacking, meal plans, grocery runs, and internet grapplings, each day should hold some “down” time. Wa-a-a-a-y down. Read. Do music. Talk. Listen. Chill (but not in a Feeling Minnesota way.)
  • Learn. Most days in most places have much to teach. Here, the observant participant can experience nature, culture, history, new friends, and maybe a little local libation and color.

A popular t-shirt here says, “Coral Bay…2,000 miles from reality.” While that’s true, everyone knows that Reality actually follows you wherever you roam. As troubador Harry Chapin sang,

You can travel on 10,000 miles, and still stay where you are.

So you can’t run away, really. But you can get away. Even BreakAway. A respite is a time set aside for revering reality—while re-creating it too. The journey has begun.

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