Former Crossroads couple featured on House Hunters International
Dec. 31, 2017 at 3:48 p.m.
Updated Dec. 31, 2017 at 3:54 p.m.
The sand, sun and ocean of St. Croix are more similar to Inez than people might think, said Brooke Myers, formerly of Inez.
"It is a small town; you see a lot of the same people everywhere you go," said Myers, 26. "The huge difference is it's a beautiful island without pastures and the countryside, and we don't get cold weather."
Myers and her boyfriend, Colt Cook, moved to St. Croix, an island in the Caribbean Sea and a county and constituent district of the United States Virgin Islands, two years ago.
Myers' tropical Caribbean three-bedroom, two-bathroom concrete home will be featured on the Jan. 1 episode of House Hunters International.
It is about 40 yards from the water.
House Hunters International is about house hunters and their Realtors checking out architectural styles as they work through the idiosyncrasies of buying real estate in other countries, according to imdb.com.
The blue-and-green home, located on the north shore of the island, has a yard full of fruit trees, flowers and plants and sits on the edge of the rainforest, she said.
Myers contacted HGTV in May and shared their story. The show was filmed the last week of August for five days.
"It was long 12-hour days and was much more work than I would've guessed," she said.
A three-man crew had the couple travel all over the island to shoot scenes and look at several houses, she said.
Although the show is staged in many ways, Myers said, it depicts the island life they live.
"We love to go to the beach and snorkel. That is our life," she said. "They filmed (my boyfriend) fishing, and he caught a really big tarpon one day on camera, so I'm hoping they show that."
The home they chose is like no other and fits the couple's needs, including the spot for a boat, Myers said.
"We might not have a million-dollar view, but we can walk to the beach in 20 seconds," she said.
Myers graduated from Industrial High School in 2009, moved to Austin and graduated from the University of Texas with a degree in broadcast journalism in 2013.
Barbara Charbula, her mother, has been an English teacher at Industrial school district for nearly 20 years. Her stepfather, Ronald Charbula, also has lived in Inez his entire life.
Myers and Cook, who is from Bay City, have been dating for eight years. The couple met while in college when she was a freshman and he was a graduate student.
After she graduated in 2013, she moved in with Cook in a travel trailer.
"Not very romantic at all," she laughed. For two years, they saved money and got to know each other.
Her first job was at Regency Healthcare in Victoria as a media and marketing coordinator. Cook worked for Texas Parks and Wildlife in Port O'Connor.
"We both liked our jobs, but we felt like we were getting stuck in the everyday 8 to 5 lifestyle, and it just wasn't for us," she said. "We wanted more."
The couple devised a plan to move to St. Croix and start a fishing charter business.
"We were nervous; we didn't know if we would make it, but we had to try," she said. "That's part of the reason why we stayed in the RV so long - to save money for the move and new life we had ahead of us."
Fast forward two years, and the two have now bought a house, started a successful business and experienced two Category 5 hurricanes, Maria and Irma.
"We still don't have power and have adjusted to life with a generator," she said, explaining tourism has been slowed by Hurricane Maria. "Dec. 28 will be 100 days without power."
Myers said she hopes to have power by Valentine's Day.
The ups and downs of Myers' island life can be read at her blog, txsoulsislandgoals.wordpress.com. Her latest blog post was about their experience with Hurricane Maria.
"Life here isn't perfect, but St. Croix has become home to us, and there's no place we'd rather be," she said. "Will we be back in Texas one day? I do think so, but for now, we are soaking up the sun."