Barbados’ St Lawrence Gap: What’s Wealth Got To Do With It??

Barbados’ St Lawrence Gap: What’s Wealth Got To Do With It??

When I was 29 I moved from Washington, DC, to Albuquerque, New Mexico.

I lived in Albuquerque for 13 years.  The best thing I can say about Albuquerque is that it’s easy to find a parking spot there.

As a city, I didn’t love Albuquerque. But I learned something really important there:  You can’t tell how rich someone is by looking at them.  Not like you can on the East Coast where wealth is broadcast as plainly as a funny fez hat broadcasts membership in a men’s lodgers’ club. Let’s see, what’s the I-am-rich checklist in New York, New York, and Boston?  Louis Vuitton briefcase? Check.  Rolex watch? Check.  Manolo shoes?  Check.  Mercedes Benz?  Check.

In Albuquerque, the guy in jeans and a muddy cowboy boots might be as wealthy as the bling-y guy from Boston with the LV briefcase – you just wouldn’t see his wealth.

Actually, the same is true to a lesser extent in my home state of Colorado, where my ancestors homesteaded land that is still a working farm today.  When my uncle wrote me that he’d love to give me away at my wedding he asked if he could wear his overalls.  He was kidding, but I wasn’t kidding when I wrote back that I’d be proud if he did.

So. I didn’t know how to respond to the gentleman who inquired about a holiday rental at St Lawrence Beach Condominiums yesterday.  He asked me, “How would you classify the neighbourhood that the Condo is located in: high end, middle/average or Blue Collar?”

A guy you might meet on Dover Beach in St Lawrence Gap: Tony, owner of Silverback Catamaran Rental

Meet Tony, owner of Silverback Gorilla Catamaran Rental, based on Dover Beach in St Lawrence Gap, Barbados

I actually had never thought about how one might characterize the south coast of Barbados or St Lawrence Gap with regard to wealth of the neighborhood.  I was flummoxed.  I’m so caught up in how blessedly authentic the south coast is as a holiday destination … Real people live and work and play here and that’s what I see.

We eat like kings seaside at Josef’s next door, walk hand-in-hand on Dover Beach, take an afternoon swim in the sea, kick back at Southern Palms with a rum punch, trade small talk with the street vendors … it’s not that money is completely unimportant – it’s just not the focus of life.  And whatever Four Seasons-type resort St Lawrence Gap lacks, it makes up for in character with its roosters and occasional green monkey, scruffy Reggae Lounge, and, er, actual characters.  God bless ‘em.

Still can’t answer the gentleman’s question.  What would you have said??  (Nothing snarky now…!)

9 Responses to “Barbados’ St Lawrence Gap: What’s Wealth Got To Do With It??”

  1. […] here: Barbados’ St Lawrence Gap: What’s Wealth Got To Do With It?? albuquerque, author, barbados, barbados-travel, boston, cricket, derails, dover-beach, lawrence, […]

  2. Ashmita Maharaj says:

    It’s like in Goldilocks – St. Lawrence is “just right”. Not too hot, not too cold. There’s opulence here, quaint normalcy there – it’s just so refreshingly ideal. Wish I lived there! It sure beats the West Coast.

  3. planetbarbados says:

    I absolutely love your characterization of the Gap … it’s Goldilocks-just-right! Why does it beat the West Coast? I’m not there often enough to truly understand what it’s about.

  4. Hammer says:

    How would I describe the South Coast? “It’s the playful side of paradise” Does it beat the West coast? I don’t know but I think each one has a role that is separate and distinct.

    And both West and South coast are exceptionally beautiful all year round.

  5. planetbarbados says:

    I like that line, “the playful side of paradise.” Should definitely be in an advertisement! I agree that the West Coast has its own distinct role; I just don’t know the area well enough to be able to characterize it. Anyone who can help? I’m very open to discovery about all aspects of Barbados. For now, I’ll savor the playful side of paradise here on the south coast.

  6. Ashmita Maharaj says:

    The West Coast is nauseatingly pretentious. I’m not a Barbadian and even I am annoyed whenever I drive along Highway 1 and see the mass of condos, hotels and (shockingly), no beach! It’s a concrete jungle with the occassional palm tree, ridiculously overpriced and generally not very ‘Bajan’. My friends say I’m stupid for choosing to stay anywhere apart from the West Coast, but hey!

    Btw, if you’re in it for property investment, don’t leave! I sold my Sandy Lane villa after a few months, only to discover that it’s now worth almost twice what I bought it for a few years ago. Darn it.

  7. planetbarbados says:

    I’m sad, too, that I can’t see the sea when I drive down the West Coast. But I don’t have enough experience with it to be able to agree or disagree with your assessment that Barbados’ west coast is “nauseatingly pretentious.”

    Big ouch on your Sandy Lane villa story …. I have the same story with property in San Francisco. So it goes, eh? Shoulda, woulda, coulda …

  8. Rob says:

    I think St. Lawrence Gap is the perfect place to vacation as the area has a real local feel to it coupled with everything (great beach, incredible dinning, exciting nightlife, plenty of shopping etc.) you need and it’s all within a 10 minute walk, no matter where you stay. I stayed at a new, modern condo complex (The Terraces) which is centrally located. The price per night was very reasonable and I highly recommend it. I came across ot here:

  9. Jane says:

    Hello, Rob. Thanks for writing. Yes, the Terraces is right on the St Lawrence Gap. Alas, not on the beach, but certainly very near it … !! I’m glad you had a wonderful holiday in this VRBO rental. VRBO is a great place to find vacation rentals.

    Cheers! See you in the Gap! xx Jane

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