“Once You Have Slept on an Island…”

“In the middle of the Pacific ocean where East meets West, 
Is an Island of fire and ice, Home of the volcano and doorway, 
To another dimension and a different reality. Here magic lives, 
Where the Earth herself liquefies and nothing is quite as it seems.” – Pila of Hawaii 

Hawaii poems
Kauai, Hawaii

March, a month signaling the budding of a new season, is a time for “Spring” breaking — students breaking from the tiresome cycle of classroom lectures and late night studying, adults breaking from a grueling schedule of business meetings and client deadlines, and all of us breaking from the cold, dark days of winter.

Many will break away to the coast of Florida, some maybe to the Caribbean, still others to far-off destinations. But here at ATG, we’ve always “breaked” at an island (Hilton Head Island) — an island with windswept beaches, transcendent sunrises (see below), and a soothing calmness felt in the warm, sand swirling winds.

Its beauty and serenity has kept us returning for more than 30 years, replenishing, restoring and reinvigorating our vitamin-D deprived souls.

There certainly is something about an island. After all, as Rachel Lyman Field writes in the poem below, “Once you have slept on island, you’ll never be quite the same.”

For a little island destination inspiration, check out the 10 islands below that were Traverlers’ Choice Awards for 2015. Happy Spring Break-ing!

Top Ten Island Destinations (via TripAdvisor):

  1.  Providenciales – Turks and Cacos
  2.  Maui – United States
  3.  Roatan – Hondurus
  4.  Santorini – Greece
  5.  Ko Tao – Thailand
  6.  Madeira – Portugal
  7.  Bali – Indonesia
  8.  Mauritius
  9.  Bora Bora – French Polynesia
  10.  Fernando De Noronha – Brazil
Hilton Head Island sunrise
Hilton Head Island, South Carolina; March 2016

“If once you have slept on an Island,

you’ll never be quite the same;

you may look as you looked before,

and go by the same old name.

You may hustle about in street and shop,

you may sit at home and sew,

but you’ll see blue water and wheeling gulls

wherever your feet may go.

You may chat with neighbors of this and that

and close to the fire keep,

but you’ll hear ship whistle and lighthouse bell

and tides beat through your sleep.

And you won’t know why and you can’t say how

such change upon you came,

but once you have slept on an island

you’ll never be quite the same.”

– Rachel Lyman Field

Read also:

“The Island Poem”
by Margaret Haig

The Island was there surrounded by sea,
Where the family stayed, so much to see;

The birds flying in the sky, and on the water too,
Yes! They were enjoying their holiday, it’s true.

The Island stretched for many a mile, they could see,
With plenty of shells, and sand, the sunsets so pretty;
The Coconut palms, and date palms, to walk in the cool,
And the children enjoyed it all, for there was no school.

The husband enjoyed to go fishing each day,
The children loved to run on the sand and play;
The wife, she enjoyed it too, to rest under the tree,
Then she called them all at night, it is time for tea.

The Island holiday soon came to an end,
The children said, our holiday we can pretend;
That we are still on our lovely holiday retreat,
And remember the birds, and the birds so sweet.

Have you ever been to an Island, for a holiday?
Maybe you travelled far, to Queensland, is what you’d say;
Or was it somewhere in the Islands of the south see?
You’ll know it was a holiday to feel so very free.