SXM1Lists have been made and ticked off, boarding passes printed, bags packed, and it’s time for us to relax before tomorrow’s flight. Not so for the dogs, who have been pacing around, giving us that look that says, “We know you’re leaving.” I’m positive their eyes get bigger and more melancholy whenever the suitcases come out. As punishment, they drag the 12 (yes, 12) squeaky toys and balls from the basket in the living room and scatter them all over the living room as if to remind us that when we’re gone they OWN this house.  And they know the pet sitter is a softie who will indulge their appetite for treats, using the afore-mentioned pathetic gaze as a hook. Good times, baby.

Since this is our first trip to this corner of the Caribbean, we don’t really know what to expect. St. Martin is a tiny island of only 36 square miles, but over a dozen beaches serve all kinds of tastes. We’re staying near Orient Beach, perhaps the most popular. That itself is unusual. We seem to make a point of avoiding the tried and true in favor of the road less traveled.

This will be interesting.