Living on tropical islands

Oh, the beautiful, lush vegetation, the sun on the sky, the sea all around… paradise. Before you fall to this wonderful image, make sure you are actually built for this life. Don't be discouraged, just know what's in it.

(Note: the following are personal experiences and thoughts of someone who lives on a tropical island. Special thanks to Lost_in_Samoa for this real world example.)


The island I live on now is so remote and isolated that they cannot start a profitable tourism industry. It's too expensive to get here. They've paid out millions of dollars to consultants and agencies to try to kick start a tourism industry, and it still won't get off the ground. And this island does have the "tropical Polynesian paradise" goods to market. The distances are just too great. Its not profitable for the cruise liners to come here. Travel agents avoid the place because the cost to fly here is larger than the cost of other entire vacation packages.


Every year my island imports twenty or thirty young, fresh accountants and lawyers on contract. These people are promised the "come live and work in paradise" gig.

When they get here they are stunned by the beauty and laid back lifestyle ………… for about 6 months.

Once the novelty wears off they start noticing that it is not very convenient or cheap to live on an island. In fact it is expensive as hell.

And they notice that you cannot get parts for your stuff that dies because it's constantly 90 -> 100 degrees with 90 -> 100 percent humidity.

Every piece of leather you own melts with mold. You develop a case of crotch rot that panics mainland ICU staff. The meat between your toes starts coming off in chunks when you take your socks off. Your watch stops because salt from the humidity has crystallized inside of it and played hell with the works.

Then the local flora and fauna start in on them.

Dengue fever is a lovely way to spend your time. Talk about guaranteed weight loss!

Centipedes that are a foot long.

Rats that are the size of alley cats.

Termites that burrow through solid poured concrete to get into your stuff.

Gecko lizards who are shit bombardier's of peerless skill. If you don't cover it with a sheet it will be plastered with lizard droppings by the time you come home. Ever want to brush your teeth with a toothbrush that has been anointed by the house Gecko's ?

That puts "paradise island" living into a whole new perspective.

Not to mention the fact that there is a better than 50/50 chance that there are no replacement toothbrushes to be found.

After about 8 months they are sick up to their eyeballs of "paradise" and chomping at the bit to leave.

Very, VERY few actually finish their contracts. Most get pissed off, pay their penalties and leave early.

The point of this is that not everyone is cut out to live in isolation. Matter of fact VERY few people are. And everybody wants to. At first.

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