An ambitious stockbroker finally decided to take a vacation. He booked himself on a Caribbean cruise and proceeded to have the time of his life–at least for a while. A hurricane came unexpectedly. The ship went down and was lost instantly. The man found himself swept up on the shore of an island with no other people, no supplies, nothing. Only bananas and coconuts. Used to four-star hotels, this guy had no idea what to do. So for the next four months he ate bananas, drank coconut juice, longed for his old life, and fixed his gaze on the sea, hoping to spot a rescue ship.
One day, as he was lying on the beach, he spotted movement out of the corner of his eye. It was a rowboat, and in it was the most gorgeous woman he had ever seen. She rowed up to him. In disbelief, he asked her: “Where did you come from? How did you get here?”
“I rowed from the other side of the island,” she said. “I landed here when my cruise ship sank.”
“Amazing,” he said, “I didn’t know anyone else had survived. How many of you are there? You were really lucky to have a rowboat wash up with you.”
“It’s only me,” she said, “and the rowboat didn’t wash up; nothing did.”
He was confused, “Then how did you get the rowboat?”
“Oh, simple,” replied the woman. “I made it out of raw material that I found on the island. The oars were whittled from gum-tree branches, I wove the bottom from palm branches, and the sides and stern came from a eucalyptus tree.”
“But, but, that’s impossible,” stuttered the man. “You had no tools or hardware-how did you manage?”
“Oh, that was no problem,” the woman said. “On the south side of the island, there is a very unusual strata of exposed alluvial rock. I found that if I fired it to a certain temperature in my kiln, it melted into forgeable ductile iron. I used that for tools, and used the tools to make the hardware. But enough of that. Where do you live?”
Sheepishly, the man confessed that he had been sleeping on the beach the whole time.
“Well, let’s row over to my place, then,” she said.
After a few minutes of rowing, she docked the boat at a small wharf. As the man looked onto shore, he nearly fell out of the boat. Before him was a stone walk leading to an exquisite bungalow painted in blue and white. While the woman tied up the rowboat with an expertly woven hemp rope, the man could only stare ahead, dumb struck. As they walked into the house, she said casually, “It’s not much, but I call it home. Sit down, please; would you like to have a drink?”
“No, no, thank you,” he said, still dazed. “I can’t take any more coconut juice.”
“It’s not coconut juice,” the woman replied. “I have a still. How about a pina colada?”
Trying to hide his continued amazement, the man accepted, and they sat down on her couch to talk.
After they had exchanged their stories, the woman announced, “I’m going to slip into something more comfortable. Would you like to take a shower and shave? There is a razor upstairs in the cabinet in the bathroom.”
No longer questioning anything, the man went into the bathroom. There in the cabinet was a razor made from a bone handle. Two shells honed to a hollow-ground edge were fastened to its tip, inside a swivel mechanism. “This woman is amazing,” he mused. “What next?”
When he returned, the woman greeted him wearing nothing but vines-strategically positioned-and smelling faintly of gardenias. She beckoned for him to sit down next to her. “Tell me,” she began suggestively, slithering closer to him, “We’ve been out here for a very long time. You’ve been lonely. There’s something I’m sure you really feel like doing right now, something you’ve been longing for all these months?”
“You know …” She stared into his eyes.
He couldn’t believe what he was hearing … He replied, “You mean I can check my e-mail from here?”