Through the alleyways
To cool off in the shadows
Then into the street
Following the water
There's a bearded man
Paddling in his canoe
Looks as if he has
Come all the way from the Cayman Islands

These canals, it seems
They all go in circles
Places look the same
And we're the only difference
The wind is in your hair
It's covering my view
I'm holding on to you
On a bike we've hired until tomorrow

If only they could see
If only they had been here
They would understand
How someone could have chosen
To go the length I've gone
To spend just one day riding
Holding on to you
I never thought it would be this clear

Lyrics submitted by better half

Cayman Islands Lyrics as written by Erlend Otre Oeye Eirik Glambek Boe

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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Cayman Islands song meanings
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  • +1
    General CommentThe song is probably about a couple travelling through Amsterdam.
    This song was originally called "The Amsterdam Song" wich makes sense because of the
    lyrics "these canals it seems, they all go in circles"
    seitgeiston October 24, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI'm fairly certain this one has to do with a long distance relationship. One of the parties dares spend the money to go to see the other and spend time with him. But the money isn't enough (or the situation is too complicated) for the two to stay in the same place, hence the "cayman islands" ref.
    Everithing in this song is fanstaticly tasteful: "the wind in your hair, covering my view" meaning that fora short, well-desserverd while, he won't think ponder what could and couldn't be.
    the "canals going in circles", identifying the state of the relation but also the canals of Amsterdam (i.e: the song's title originally) .
    Personally, i love the way the L word is excluded in favor of "If only they had been here....", basically saying, no one's love is stronger so they don't know why someone would go to such length to just spend a couple of days with someone.
    Anyway, if you feel the situation relates to you, check out "Cubism Dream", pretty much the same deal.
    guigaon June 16, 2013   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis is a great tune. sounds like a love song to me I like the rythm and melody."places look the same, and we're the only difference" is a great line. with the way america has gone to big chain stores and and a lot of the places one goes looks just like where they just left, one has to remain true to themselves and be unique.
    dogARTiton April 14, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe Feist version is bliss..
    arcruton February 22, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentUm, you do realize that these guys are Norwegian, right "dogARTit"? Nothing to do with American commercialism, if you ask me.

    To quote another Kings of Convenience song, "Sheer Simplicity." That is the theme of their songs more often than not.
    TheDictionaryon March 04, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentReminds me of riding one of those little scooter motorbikes in a small italian village :)
    blasphemyon April 09, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentactually blasphemy, i kinda think that's what the song is about... being on a holiday with someone you love and just enjoying your life... Great tune.
    trasselfiaon May 14, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Comment'These canals, it seems, they all go in circles,
    Places look the same, and we're the only difference'

    This always makes me think of Amsterdam, and its canals. Plus there's the reference to the bike, which Amsterdam is full of! :)
    (unless he means MOTORbike)
    the curious caton March 11, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentsure, this is about taking a holiday and only caring about being there, then, in the moment, together.

    If only they could see, if only they had been here
    They would understand, how someone could have chosen
    To go the length I've gone, to spend just one day riding = postcard sentiments
    YoMamaWasaRodeoon April 09, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI love this song. It reminds me of Iron & Wine, except I like the vocals here a little better. AND, I'm from the Cayman Islands so even though it has nothing to do with the song, I think that's pretty rad.

    I think it's more about escaping with someone you love that hasn't exactly won the approval of friends/family/etc. Kind of like Romeo and Juliet. It's like they're in this place away from the rest of the world, just the two of them, and in that one moment everything is perfect even though they (or at least the singer) knows it won't last forever.

    "These canals, it seems, they all go in circles
    Places look the same, and we're the only difference"

    I think he's talking about the cycle of trying to stay with each other despite pressures from their environment, but the 2nd line..? I honestly don't know for sure.

    All in all, gorgeous song.
    suckknobon May 05, 2007   Link

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