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Connecticut residents stuck in St. Thomas following Hurricane Irma

ST. THOMAS --  Shamara Scott's birthday trip to St. Thomas didn't go quite as planned.

"The storm actually blew out the sliding doors of one of the rooms," said Scott.

Scott, a Windsor resident, and seven friends arrived in St. Thomas on September 2. It was a trip that was only supposed to last for a few days but has extended to nearly two weeks, thanks to the hurricane.

"The water was just being hurled at the window and the glass was shaking," said Ivorie Blake of Hartford.

The women weathered the storm at a beach resort, pushing their bed board and a dresser up against a glass sliding door, and taking cover in their bathroom. They've now been stranded on the island for nearly an additional week and, although they could easily see the trip as a total disaster, they do not.

"We feel very fortunate, and we've conditioned our minds to think its a glamping trip, versus a devastation," said Scott. The women are calling it "glamping," or glamorous camping trip.

They had a stash of water and food, and a generator in their hotel, all making life a bit easier. They said the resort became like a small community.

"The following day, everyone pitched together, guests and everyone, just to help kind of move things out of the way and help clean the resort," said Scott.

The women spoke with FOX61 while boarding a Royal Caribbean cruise ship, sent to St. Thomas to rescue stranded travelers. The ship is scheduled to reach St. Maarten Wednesday evening, before docking in San Juan, Puerto Rico Thursday morning.

Not far from that Royal Caribbean cruise ship, Farmington native Jason Coscia spoke to FOX61 from his friend's apartment. Coscia moved to St. Thomas about three years ago, and runs a tourism website called explorevirginislands.com.

Coscia is using his tourism website, as well as a Facebook page he runs called "What's Going on St. Thomas" to streamline storm information to residents.

"I have friends listening to the radio all over the island, sending me text messages with the governor's updates," said Coscia. "Then, I'm posting it onto this group."

Coscia is also raising money to help bring in supplies via private boats from Puerto Rico.

"We need money for these supplies," said Coscia. 'We need money for the gas for those boats."

Coscia said people are running out of food and water, with many grocery stores unable to meet demand.

"There are lines out the door," said Coscia. "A lot of these grocery stores are only allowing about 15-20 people in at a time."

He said that widespread power outages are making it tougher for people to buy the supplies that are available.

"Because there's no Internet, there's no electricity, nobody can accept credit or debit cards, so people are running low on cash," he said.

Coscia said the island desperately needs resources.

"We are rebuilding the best we can, but we absolutely need help," said Coscia.

To donate to St. Thomas relief efforts, click here.