So you might be thinking, "duh, it's obvious why I should go somewhere tropical this winter. Because it's warm and nice and the only 'draft' I have to worry about is for my Viking-inspired romance novel." BUT, it turns out that there are some totally unexpected bonus reasons you should make moves to a tropical locale. Read on as we observe some of Jack Frost's worst havoc and provide further reason for you to start day-dreaming about getting away right now.
1. A hammock is hands-down healthier than your loft bed
As a book called Back and Bed: Ergonomic Aspects of Sleeping points out, a hammock means better ergonomics for your body by distributing your weight more evenly and reducing pressure points; the book also says “the most typical type of bedding characterizing the tropical areas is the hammock.” Although if you’re having trouble sleeping, maybe try reading a book about ergonomics.
2. Monkeys are more fun than squirrels
On one Caribbean island there’s a population of non-native monkeys that are wild in two ways. Introduced as stowaways on ships, these monkeys discovered booze after eating sugarcane that had been left in the hot crop fields and fermented. Nowadays, the monkeys hang around bars and leech drinks off inattentive tourists. Not a drinker? No problem. According to the BBC, roughly the same percentage of teetotalers exists in this monkey population as our own.
3. You can listen to more ska and reggae music
Remember the Might Mighty Bosstones, Less Than Jake, et al.? Well you probably at least like Sublime or Marley. Beach Boys? Whatever, now you can listen to all the beach-y tunes you want without feeling stupid like when you’re jamming to Jamin’ and realize your eyebrows are frozen.
4. Not getting enough sunshine could literally be killing you
According to a 2007 study in The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, roughly 1 million annual deaths worldwide can prevented with greater exposure to Vitamin D, via some sunshine.
5. You’ll be lionized as a hero for showing up to winter sporting events
If you want to go to the Olympics, move to Jamaica right now, and start practicing snow skiing on pieces of driftwood down dunes of sand. On the real, that was the point of Cool Runnings, right?
6. Sand is way (way) better than snow
For one, you don’t need to throw on cumbersome clothes before you can lie down in it. Also, imagine if Sandra Dee from Grease had been SNOW-dra Dee. Snowdra Dee sounds like a comic strip villain or what Goth kids name their goldfish. ADVANTAGE: Sand.
7. In the tropics, sometimes sand is made by colorful coral reef fish
The cherubic and colorful parrotfish does this by eating coral, and then pooping soft, pearl-white sand.
8. You can do a lot of things with sea shells
Need a makeshift musical instrument, or a Lord of the Flies-esque power totem? Shells. Want to hear the ocean? Shells. Sun is too bright when you’re tanning? Two shells. Zero questions.
9. Salting your coaster beats salting your driveway
Your drink sticks to your coaster when enough condensation collects at the bottom, as all those little droplets seal the air between the coaster and the glass, which creates a suction-cup-like vacuum. Disrupt this with a sprinkle of salt, which allows air to seep in between your drink & co.
10. You can break your puka-shell necklace back out
You know you’ve been thinking about them. You miss them. And damn, you look so cool wearing them. How are puka-shell accouterments not still a thing?
11. The ocean sounds way better than the blare of rush-hour horns and snowplows
According to a Stanford University neuroscientist, the ocean sounds are soothing, in part, because they happen at regular intervals; things sound like an ear-pollutant when they are irregular. A plain visual-scape, like a two-tone stretch of sand and sea, also calms the mind (much like closing your eyes does).
12. You’ll be much smarter on a tropical island
Not really. But you will have better attention and performance on cognitive tasks somewhere warmer, according to one study done by the American Journal of Psychology.
13.The tropics make you a friendlier person
According to the findings of one study done by the American Psychological Association, more sun exposure makes you more cooperative; it was also correlated with generous tipping, but your waiter is probably nicer when it’s sunny.
14. Umbrella in your hand < umbrella in your drink
This doesn’t really need any elaboration. For the sake of interest, this Berkley professor told Gourmet that while it’s technically possible for the alcohol to evaporate from your drink if left in the sun (without umbrella shade), if you’re leaving your drink in the sun that long you’re doing it wrong. Cheers.
15. No one will make fun of you for ordering a mojito
Mojitos is the dead of winter can seem a bit silly. Drop your hot toddy and pick up a drink that's purple and fruity. Drink them out of a coconut. No one will mind. Vacations are where you can do those things.
16. It will take you less time to travel there than to tunnel your bike through solid snow
This fact brought to you by the Journal of Duh.
17. You can wear a bathing suit at the grocery store
Shirt & shoes restrictions notwithstanding. Try wearing some board shorts on your public transit and see how that goes.
18. The only jerks around the tropics are edible
Jerk chicken was almost called mean-spirited chicken in 1921, but the inventor ran out of m-letters for his restaurant’s marquee. Not of that information is true, but JERK CHICKEN.
19. And we had to have one super obvious one.
Just look at this photo and try not to start looking up flight prices.