Time to leave the beautiful hotel of Karma St.Martins, what a fabulous experience on every level, and move slightly inland to a different location. 'Goodbye' I say cheerily whilst all the other departing guests look very forlorn indeed. 'Time for the boat Sally' they say. 'I'm not leaving' I trill, and I swear the staff are so professional that not one flicker of dismay or alarm showed on their faces.
Decide to take a trip to St Mary's and as I step off the boat it all begins to feel surreal. The video's on YouTube that I have been soaking up for weeks, the webcams I have on, the weather forecast I watch with a wry smile from 619.58 miles away in Carcassonne. I know the roads from years gone by. I make my way to our first holiday cottage overlooking the sweep of Porthcressa Beach, I am there on the same seat shelling peas with my Father early one evening . Cut through a connecting path and I am on Church Street and there before me is the tall house we came to every year with the large graceful bow window. The Agapanthus blue plants were poking their heads out of the gaps of the freshly painted wrought iron fence, I had to turn the knob on the gate and it squeaked just as it had always done. I felt terribly self concious, what was I doing here ? The house silently regarded me and I wondered what it saw in the woman that now stood before it rather than the small child peering without a care in the world from the upstairs window. And I am so stunned that I take no pictures, not that it has changed drastically from the outside it's just an image I want to retain privately in my mind.
Nearly missed the boat going back to the island. I wondered who was calling my name along the quayside. 'Will Sally please make her way to the boat where everyone is awaiting her' Honestly, you couldn't make it up.
As I return 'home' to St.Martins I sternly remind myself that it is people and places not possessions that are important in life.
Three beautiful children pass by with their Father. 'Stop stop' I shout. 'Would you mind terribly if I took their photographs' ? The picture encapsulates the rare ingredient of happiness and contentment that no amount of money can buy.
You either have it or you don't, but as visitors to these islands will happily confirm, and whom return time and time again, the magic will stealthily creep unseen into your heart.