Part One // The Offer
We have decided to return to the States. It’s been a painful decision and we’ve spent many hours talking about our options, all the while gazing out on this beautiful sea and reef in front of us. I have missed my family these past months and I’ve come to realize it may not be possible for them to visit as frequently as once thought. And island living is much different when being a resident opposed to being a vacationer. Word has gotten out that we are contemplating a move and we are approached by a wealthy couple who have moored their yacht close to town. We get invited one morning to their home on water for an evening cocktail and to “get acquainted”. Of course we have a good idea what this will be about. We’ve known through friends this couple are buying up beach front lots to build a condo complex and to dredge the seabed deeper for the mooring of deep draft boats such as smaller yachts and large boats. We are boated out to their yacht by their Captain in a small yellow skiff and are meet at the ladder at the side of the yacht by the Mr. and Mrs. Greetings and handshakes are exchanged and we are ushered into their opulent cabin room. They claim to hail from Maine yet I detect no upper Eastern accent in their conversation. A pleasant couple, perhaps in their late 50’s. She is very easy going while he is jittery and seems to be off course at times. He talks incessantly about currency, who the best money changer is besides Atlantic Bank and how much land they have been purchasing along the coast. He tells us their plans to build all along the beachfront, of “6 figure” condo’s. A gourmet restaurant with imported wines and cheeses, a tennis court and swimming pools. He touches briefly on the dredging of his waterfront and crows about how he paid the environmental commissioner to bypass the inspections for permission to dredge. He appears to have much horsepower behind him. And he wants us to know this upfront, regardless if there is truth to what he’s just now told us. He gets to the point promptly by offering to buy our two lots which would sit behind his beach front. We can see this would be a valuable transaction to him. He then states ….. name your price. We are having a hard time keeping up with his train of words strung together and we beg off from giving an answer right there. We need to talk this over between ourselves and put some figures together and will get back to them in a few days. As we prepare to leave the Mrs. presses my hand and says, “you can call us Marni and Jim”. We boat back to the pier in complete silence, knowing the door is now open, and all we have to do is step through it.