Now some of you may know what good luck we have had with housing and landlords since living in St. Croix...can you hear the sarcasm? Thats right, with our experiences and friend's stories, good landlords are difficult to come by and housing to match is even more difficult. We have this fantastic warm weather year round, which also brings the not-so-fantastic mold and creepy crawlies that work their way into your bed at night and inject you with battery acid (at least that what it feels like).
We have had our fair share of both of these, combined with lots of other interesting landlord/tenant relations regarding vehicles, electricity, water, Alpie, paint, plants, termites, BBQ's, chemicals (or lack thereof.. and trust me, bleach becomes your best friend for the almighty MOLD) and and and...
The closure of Hovensa, the big oil refinery here in St. Croix brought a lot of unrest and led to alot of people forced to relocate which means... a big, juicy smorgasboard of houses on the market for people like us! After our experiences in the past, we decided to be not only picky, but downright fastidious about our next dwelling. Five months of searching and four property managers later, we found it...and we new this was going to be our next home from the moment we walked into it....a peaceful neighborhood, a fenced yard for Alpie and best of all - a house all to ourselves.
If Geoff and I were to build a house ourselves, it would be pretty similar to this house. All the doors to the large patio open up to create a big open space, the kitchen has a commercial stove, and the there is a seperate fridge and freezer... for those Costco shops we sometimes do :-)
A week into our new home and we are loving it more and more every day. Our first night brought some unexpected visitors....guinea hens...heard of them (pics to come)? We were under the impression that they were female peacocks but the almighty shrieking that had the walls of the house shaking on the first night here had us thinking that they were piglets to the slaughter.
Turns out, they like to roost in the tree in our yard, and now that their sleeping quarters had been disturbed by a fuzzy four-legged thing, they were not happy at all...and paid us back through a sleepless first night. (Happy to report that there are have been no more cases of shrieking throughout the nighttime hours).
A guinep tree is also an added feature in our yard, and now in the full height of Summer, this tree is FULL of fruit! We have been picking as much as we can, but still many fall off and....get swooped up by Alpie :-) Who would've thought - the countless times we've tried to feed her blueberries, banana, pineapple etc. that guineps would be her pick of choice?!
Finally, the grapes. Yes, we brought them with us from the other house and while we're not aiming to grow a vineyard yet (Virgin Vineyards would be a pretty fitting name though, would'nt it?), they are a beautiful vine and have produced some very sweet fruit for us up until now.
Unfortunately the soil in our new house is useless (extremely rocky), so we're growing them in oversized pots right now, crossing our fingers for lots of rain...something we havent had much of this year.