Postcard Of The Week(end): A Rosy New Year in Eastern Tortola


January 1, 2010 – Tortola, British Virgin Islands

I woke up early, mind made up, determined to make it a fantastic first day of the year after a lousy new year’s eve. I got ready, went downstairs and grabbed a driver I’d met during my stay who was often there to pick up anyone needing a ride. I asked him to take me around the island, whichever direction he thought best for rare sights, because I needed to jump start my year remembering the beauty that surrounded me and doing what I love: exploring and shooting. We hopped in and he drove me to the far eastern, less crowded side of the island. The most memorable: Long Bay Beach (up east, by Josiah’s Bay), with its endless stretch of pink sand. The weather was a little rough that day, lots of winds but I didn’t mind, it was just what I needed. At the end of the day, after sunset and more amazing stops, we reached back safely to my hotel in Cane Garden Bay. And when I was ready to pay – he refused. I insisted, and he refused again, not even a tip for an entire day’s drive. He told me he was inspired watching me do what I loved all day, and that he was glad to contribute. I thanked him and left feeling even more inspired. It’s amazing the good that comes when you wake up and decide to have a positive day, no matter what, new year or not!

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Lebawit Lily Girma

Lebawit Lily Girma has contributed writing and photography to CNN Travel, New York Magazine, AFAR, American Way, Travel Channel, BBC Travel, and others. She’s the currrent author of MOON BELIZE for Moon Travel Guides and is completing a second title, MOON BELIZE CAYES. Lily is also AFAR's Jamaica Expert, and author of the AFAR Jamaica Country Guide. A serial expat, she's lived and studied on three continents, including Africa–from her native Ethiopia to Côte d'Ivoire–and Europe, and is fluent in four languages. A former attorney who ditched the office for the road in 2009, she favors all things culture, adventure and storytelling, and escapes Washington DC’s winters every year.

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  1. Diana 25 June, 2011 at 12:49 PM #

    Girl! I love this picture, you’ve captured the essence of a great moment. I just want to jump through my computer screen and lay on that sand!

  2. Lebawit Lily Girma 25 June, 2011 at 1:50 PM #

    Thanks Diane! Me too! :)

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