green palm trees on tropical beach

Adventures of a Modern Pirate: April 2019

We spent more than a few jocularity-filled days with our hosts, and now it was time to leave. My uncle suggested we head back to Sand Piper Beach, where we could relax and enjoy a couple of days of solitude in paradise. He was right; it was time to give Tom and Evelyn a break, as they had treated us like kings and we didn’t want to overstay our welcome. 

We shared warm, affectionate goodbyes, and with our backpacks loaded and one last quick glimpse of Evelyn, we left for the seclusion of Sand Piper Beach, where if one enjoys being alone, one can have solitude without loneliness in such a tranquil backdrop. 

Personally, I was happy to be back on the beach, nestled in between a few tall palm trees where we set up our camp, firepit and sleeping bags. Before my eyes lay a vast white sandy beach and the long, wide expanse of blue ocean. 

Once again, it was an awe-inspiring view! My uncle started a fire and the plan was to get hot embers going for later that night. Within the hour, we were fishing for the evening dinner and enjoying the sun on our backs and sand between our toes. 

The rest of the day was spent swimming, floating and sunbathing. It had been a good day until, under the shade of the trees, my uncle said something that would forever change my mind about the future of the Caribbean. 

He was a plastics engineer who had met a ton of people throughout the business world and he informed me that, someday, progress would swallow up the Caribbean with condos and hotels. According to him, developers would slowly overtake the beauty of the surrounding areas, as plans to build hotels, homes, restaurants and golf courses were already on the books. Soon the island’s beauty and its ecosystem would take a hit. We discussed the effects, and to me, it was a morose moment. I felt sadness for the beauty around me. 

Considering how much we had consumed with our friends, hunger wasn’t an issue, so we ate a couple of pan-fried fish without any sides and drank a couple of beers. Just enough to comfort our stomachs. It was a simple meal that tasted bittersweet as I looked around and tried to imagine all this beauty suffocated by progress. Truly a sobering experience. 

Was it time for a pirate brigade to protect the islands? 

Gotta get back to my coconut concoctions . . .

This column is part of an ongoing story of tales from the past that continues each month. Read Josh’s previous columns here:

To read more about Josh’s new novel, click here!

Joshua MacLeod is a NSB local and a Florida native. He is the author of Savage Tango and Chasing Latitudes. He lives with his dogs, Durango, Higgins and Oscar.

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