When we moved to the Caribbean last year, we arrived on the last Saturday of Carnival and just narrowly missed the first ever slider showdown. In the course of the year we attended two other major food competitions, including the King of the Wing and the annual chili cookoff. Did we mention we like to eat?
When the slider showdown posters started appearing we knew we had to go, and the event did not disappoint. Our neighborhood spot Hull Bay Hideaway won the competition in 2014, and we looked for them again this year. Since they changed up their surf shack menu from sliders to sushi in early 2015, they weren’t there (sad face). BUT we got to taste some really great bites from restaurants and organizations all over the island and brought our Iowa State Fair eating skills to the table. My personal favorites were a pork belly slider from the St. Thomas Sport and Social Club and some other morsel of pork heaven from Off The Grid. Tap & Still always makes a great burger, and their sliders were no exception. We had an absolute blast and came away desperately needing some rabbit food.
I get emails from people who find our blog and have questions about island life, and a few months ago, a traveling nurse reached out to me as she and her boyfriend were moving to the USVI. We got to meet in person for the first time at the slider showdown and it was so fun! Hopefully they enjoy their island adventure and we get to hang out again soon.
My parents came to visit St. Thomas for a week and we had a blast spending time together doing new things and some island favorites. We all made our first trip to the Paradise Point lookout for cocktail hour and enjoyed the sunset from high above the Charlotte Amalie harbor. We had a really excellent day on the water on Saturday with our friend Kevin of CrewZen VI Charters, and my mom and dad got to see The Indians rock formation, Cooper Island and Jost Van Dyke, BVI.
A & M joined us on the boat and the snorkeling at the Indians is truly remarkable. With tons of coral and unique rock formations, it was a blast to take the GoPro underwater with us. Maybe someday I’ll fulfill my dream of becoming a mermaid…sigh.
There is a short cave to swim through at the Indians that this Iowan nearly chickened out of experiencing. I watched Dan go through, the Michiganders sail through and it was finally my turn. Sucking in a big breath, down I went. I was focusing so much on kicking hard and not whacking my elbow or knee against a rock that I wasn’t paying much attention to the view. At the last minute, I gave one last kick and my heel kissed the mouth of the cave, successfully prying my foot out of my fin. I felt it slip into the abyss and I said SEE YA!! Once I got to the surface, I told the guys what had happened and they decided to venture back through the cave to see if they could find the fin. After two trips through the narrow opening and still no fin in sight, A has a brilliant thought – the fin has floated to the top of the cave. M went through again and emerged once again, fin in hand. Day saved!
After swimming to the other side of the rocks, the water was nearly 60 feet deep and we saw some beautiful fish and coral on the sheer face of the rocks. As we swam back to the boat, Kevin and my parents were tossing pretzels into the water and we were swarmed with fish.
We have some more visitors coming in June, and lots of fun island things to do this summer so we won’t even know it’s hot (wink, wink)!