How to make gravy

The Aussies & Pinky stayed on for another week or so. They were at once both smart & silly boys and so, Steph & I hung out with them a bit in our free time.  Sometimes it’s reassuring meeting people from back home. Todd & Piers reminded me of boys I love back home: Snowy, Toby, Tyler, Scotte…

For me, they couldn’t have come at a better time. Island Boy had picked up with an American tourist and even though i knew it was never meant to be for he & I – it still felt like a slap in the face. Egos are a fragile thing, aren’t they?

The island began to shrink, and there were days when i just wanted to get the hell out of here.

When you arrive by panga in the morning sun to live on a small island for a month or more, you are full of anticipation. What a wonderful life awaits. Sunny days, blue seas, white sands, amazing diving, fruity cocktails, blazing sunsets, dirty dancing, hot sex. You know. That sort of thing.

At first everything seems so uncomplicated, charming, chilled. And on some levels, it absolutely is.

We drink water that we pull from a well. We eat beef that has been butchered by our neighbours in their front yard that day. We give thanks when the ‘town’ generator gets up and we have electricity for ½ a day. There are no roads. No cars. No malls. No cinemas. No bookstores. Just a handful of places to eat & drink. And only two places to bump & grind. Albeit, to invariably rubbish music. And with boys i have absolutely zero interest in.

In other words, there are not many distractions. And for the most part, I’m not a person who needs many distractions. I’m an only child. I can happily entertain myself in a million ways.

It’s been raining most days that i’ve been here. Sometimes for just an hour, sometimes all day. The rain doesn’t bother me so much. But it does make for shitty dive conditions. And it means there’s been a lot of just sitting around. I’ve spent a good whack of time getting stoned. Which isn’t something i normally do. But, when in Rome.

One of the great things about getting stoned, is just having shits & giggles with your mates. I love noting more than shooting the breeze with friends.

One of the downsides is you spend a lot of time looking for things you just put down. I also find i spend quite a bit of time taking a good long hard look at myself. Facing your demons can be a good thing. But sometimes you can get too much into your own headspace. There have been days and nights when i’ve definitely had island fever.

But it’s also an extremely difficult place to leave. I’ve made some really beau’ful friendships. Both with expats and locals. And I have fallen in love with more than one little person. They do make gorgeous kids here.

I had a lovely couple of days with them just this week – helping out with a beach clean-up that a visiting kiwi organised. And also with the creation of a colourful Christmas tree made from bits of plastic washed up on the beach. I now have three lil island boyfriends who come racing up to me with big hugs whenever they see me. What a way to make a girl feel special.

I came back to Little Corn Island because the universe conspired to have me here. A job and a house fell into my lap. Even if Island Boy hadn’t been part of the equation I would have come. It was disappointing things didn’t work out between us. It was hurtful to see him with another woman. But she left. I got over it. He & I have talked and we’re all good. We’re doing Christmas with our mutual friends up at his place. I’m grateful to my friends, especially Cimba, for convincing me to stay on for Christmas.

I believe now, I came here because I was supposed to learn a lesson. That being, to not push things. To just let it come.

I remember in my 20s having a ‘shroom-induced conversation with a good friend, who was a bit of a long-haired, patchouli wearing hippy, who said “you need to go with the flow, man.”
I replied, “only dead fish go with the flow.”
He shot back, “they’re all dead because they get around like you, y’fucker.”
It’s only now, I see he could well be right.

* * *

So, going back to the tropical island fantasy checklist: Sunny days (for the most part, no), blue seas (sometimes), white sands (potential without all that rubbish), amazing diving (one out of 10 so far & i still hold out hope), fruity cocktails (far too many), blazing sunsets (a couple), dirty dancing (don’t even go there), and hot sex (maybe Santa can help out here).

* * *

So it’s Christmas Eve today. Christmas Day back home in Australia. The sun’s out here and it will be back home too. I’m super excited about tomorrow. But it won’t be the same. This will be my first Christmas away from home.

I will miss my morning swim at Bondi beach. I will miss me Mum & Dad. I will miss Champagne and stuffed turkey. And I will most certainly miss my friends. I want to send a special shout out especially to Lyn, Scott, Shell, Lea, Andrea & Dave and Toby and all their families.


One response to “How to make gravy

  1. ‘Chelle,

    tried to call on a number you SMS’d me from, but no dice. So, I hope you had a great Christmas, and the New Year ushers in many happy surprises for you. Good ones, not the ‘exploding midgets in leotards’ variety either.

    Thinking of you,


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