Back From The Islands

So yet another Great Summer Of Running Around The Country Like An Idiot With No Job kicked off this past weekend with a little jaunt over to Bermuda–you know, ’cause I gots the bling like that. (That, and I’m married to a lawyer who had the good fortune to get invited to her lawyers’ association’s annual meeting.) Some observations about Bermuda:

–This place is pretty much friggin’ paradise. It’s on a latitude with Charlotte, N.C., believe it or not, but has the warm weather of Florida without the fat Wisconsin tourists, endless strip malls, and bead-hawking beach vagrants. It’s still a British colony, though they call it a “protectorate” or some such nonsense, which means the people combine decorum with island sensibility–so they’re polite when they take half a freakin’ hour to get you one drink.

–As the island is almost totally made up of narrow streets carved out of limestone cliffs, there’s not a whole lot of room for traffic–meaning they don’t rent cars to anybody. They do, however, rent scooters–provided you’re capable of handling one. Me, I found that four hundred hours of drive-by shooting practice on a Grand Theft Auto: Vice City motorcycle really doesn’t help you at all in the real world–I got on board an alleged “scooter” and nearly propelled myself right into a wall. One bruised ego later, I was drowning my fury in Dark-and-Stormies (rum + ginger beer) when I heard that someone just down from our hotel had pulled a “kamikaze lobster”–Bermudese for an idiot tourist who gets in a wreck because he can’t handle driving a scooter on the left side of the road with a passenger on the back of his bike. And so my metaphorical scooter flameout got that much easier to take. And yes, I probably should have worn a goddamn dress for the rest of the trip anyway.

–I took a ferry across the sound from our hotel to Hamilton, the main city in Bermuda, and the tour guide took pains to point out the homes of the presidents of finance companies and banks who call Bermuda home. They’re Bermuda’s version of America’s movie stars or athletes or England’s royalty–the island’s version of gods. Which makes sense–in a place where a friggin’ candy bar is three bucks thanks to all the shipping surcharges, everyone’s going to want to hang with the richest cat on the beach.

–That said, I do love their “Yorkie” candy bar–it’s a fistful of chocolate but it’s not sold in America, and that’s a shame, since its slogan is “NOT FOR GIRLS!”

–The beaches are dotted with three-story-high limestone cliffs, pockmarked with quiet coves that scream “Pirates of the Caribbean” so loudly they virtually demand you bury a little booty of your own. So we…no, no, I can’t continue along this particular path; my wife’s colleagues might end up reading this. Hey there, folks! Good to see you again! Sucks being back in Atlanta, huh?

–We stayed here. Choice, huh?

–Parenting in action: As two parents gawked at the lovely islands of Bermuda atop the ferryboat, their barely-walking toddler trundled toward a gap on the roof that opened out to the sea below…and would’ve made it, were it not for a more observant fellow passenger. And at the baggage claim back in Atlanta, a three-year-old kid was jumping on luggage. All well and good–except that this was luggage in motion on the baggage carousel, and the kid was doing a real-life version of Frogger hopping from Samsonite to Samsonite.

Plenty more to say, but being that there were planeloads of lawyers on the trip and all–plus the fact that, you know, I probably ought to respect my wife’s career–we’ll leave the observations at that.

Next stop: a return engagement with the Atlantic in Charleston, South Carolina.

Jay

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