If you’re a baby boomer, you’re going to like this. In fact, you might want to change places with the authors of the story, who also are the authors of a book about living an adventurous lifestyle, called Another Cocktail Please. They are Carrie and Jack Janssen, who live in Canada but only half the year. The other half? Well, right now they’re in the Virgin Islands. After that? The answer is part of the fun.
We’ve paid our dues, raised our children, and now it’s time for us. Although our backpacking-around-Europe-and-Asia days are long in the past, we still love to travel. Only now that we’ve enjoyed the creature comforts in life, hostels and questionable motels are not our style.
Yet still, if “budget-luxury-living” is a term, we’ve perfected it. Our passion is discovering new and exciting places to temporarily reside, to immerse ourselves in a culture and fully experience what life is like in our new locale. Our friends and family call us “seasonal nomads” since we aren’t ready to settle full-time. Instead, we live in a different, typically tropical and often exotic, locale for five-and-half months each year. And we do so on a budget, with panache.
Eleuthera, Bahamas – San Jose del Cabo, Mexico – Providenciales, Turks and Caicos – Roatan, Honduras – Cap Estate, St. Lucia – Vanua Levu and Viti Levu, Fiji, South Pacific, and currently St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands.
From our temporary homes, we can explore neighboring areas. While in the South Pacific for instance we traveled to Singapore, Java, Bali, and Lombok islands of Indonesia, and the north and east coasts of Australia. Another year, on another island in Fiji, meant we could spend time on some of the smaller of its 322 islands and also travel to New Zealand.
Not quite gypsies, we do have a permanent home base back in Canada where we enjoy the temperate months. Surrounded by lakes and pine trees half the year and a sea and palm trees the other half, we have the best of both.
Making friends along the way is one of many perks of this lifestyle. Everyone has a story and we’ve met some very interesting folks. It was one older, wiser couple who told us that we should write down something about everywhere we have ever traveled to. Because, they said, if we didn’t, we would forget. This simple statement got us thinking. At times not recollecting what we ate at breakfast yesterday, conjuring up distant travel memories proved to be more challenging than we anticipated.
Traveling back in time resulted in documenting what we ultimately called Jack’s Evolving Bucket List. Not a “to-do” list, nor a finished “already-done-it” bucket list. We still have a lot of miles left in us, and so, this list is ever growing. Evolving. It gives us the opportunity to recollect fond memories while continuing to add to it each time we experience something new and exciting.
While here on the island of St. Thomas, we plan on exploring neighboring islands such as St. John, Tortola, various islands in the BVI’s and possibly Puerto Rico (since it is a quick fifteen-minute flight).
Before heading home next spring, we will decide where to go later in the year. There are still so many destinations we hope to explore. Planning ahead means we have another adventure to look forward to!