Gem of the Caribbean Sea is an understatement. This is paradise; as close to heaven as you’ll get. From since I was young, I’ve been infatuated with Barbados, dying to travel to this beautiful island. My stepfather, a bajan born, offered to take me to Barbados as a birthday gift and I surly accepted.
I arrived in Barbados summer of 2014, specifically for the Crop Over Festival (Barbados Carnival). From the moment I boarded the plane, to the morning I left it was pure “madness”. My plane experience was wonderful being as it was full of bajans, as well as other carnival junkies. As the plane landed, a few blasted soca and had a plane fete. Lol
During my stay I resided at Cumber’s Tropical Apartments (Guest House) with my mother, located in Christ Church. Nearing was Oistins Fish Fry (held every Friday night), Miami Beach, and the St. Lawrence Gap. I loved the location simply because it allowed me to get a feel of what it was like living in Barbados, interacting with the locals.
On our first full day, I was taken to the Oistins fish market to purchase fresh fish, in which I thought was so amazing! Everything is done in plain view, compared to how fish are sold in Canada. During this time, I noticed how much fowls run the streets of Barbados. For a brief moment, I forgot I was 21 years old and started to act like a child by chasing the fowls. It was so adorable to see how free they were to walk around as if they were paying rent somewhere on the island.
My first visit to Miami Beach, I encountered some very friendly young men who sparked up a conversation with me, curious to know where I came from due to my foreign accent. In return, they offered me free ackee (type of fruit), which they were selling, so nice of them. Afterwards, we gave the town a tour. The people of Barbados are so friendly, I love it! During the trip, I managed to pop my sandals and had to walk barefoot for a few hours until I was able to find a store that sold sandals. While waiting, a young man offered to fix my shoes with a safety pin… Due to his generosity, my mom gave him money for his helping hand.
The first fete I attended was a scrawl up fete. I do not remember the name of what was being held that night, but I was able to see Machael Montano LIVE! In the VIP and he even pointed me out in the crowd being I was the only person there that night with a Grenadian flag (as my parents are Grenadian). “Grenada, I see YOU!” he yelled. Although rain fell, and I got my shoes all muddy, I had a blast! Front row, pumping my flag with all inclusive driinkkks!! Funny enough, I managed to pop another sandal, but a nice young man fixed it for me.
The following day I was taken to Bridgetown , we looked around, went shopping and bought coconut jelly. Later in the evening, my mom and I decided to give Oistins fish fry a try. There we saw dancers on stage, live bands and so much people having fun.
After, I returned home to get ready for foreday morning jam! (street parade with carnival atmosphere and starts at midnight until morning) For foreday morning I was with the band “Nuvision Family”. It started off slowly since my band was one of the last bands to leave, but once we started rolling down the road, the fun started.
That was one of my top five favorite carnival nights. Drink after drink, wuk up after wuk up, and bend up after bend up. I enjoyed myself so much, I didn’t even realize my wig fell off. Someone, who later became my friend, told me that my hair was on the floor. So embarrassing, but I was having so much fun I didn’t care. It was so hard for me to NOT make friends being in Barbados. I being a social, extroverted person mixed in with very friendly people was bound for me to make new friendships.
The next night I went to an all-white party (wearing white), where I made more friends 🙂 First party I attended that ended past 4 am, hardly see that here in Toronto.
Unfortunately, my sequence of events of what else I’ve done is kind of off, but I attended several other festivities, like going to the Cohoblopot. The Cohoblopot is a gathering where all the singers perform their biggest hits. I also attended a street fair that was kid friendly named “Bridgetown Market”. Families were out, strolling, blasting music, kids running around, buying toys etc… it is a good thing for families to get together and enjoy themselves.
A friend of my mother was nice enough to take us around Barbados, kind of like a tour. One of my favourite moments was being in a house next to Rihanna’s old HOME! Yes, for a day I stayed next to the house Rihanna grew up in. There my step father made me Cou Cou and fish, my favourite, and cucumber pickle, of course it was complimented with some vodka and bajan cherry juice. Fantastic I must say.
I was also fortunate enough to play mass carnival day, called “kadooment”. I don’t remember the name of the band, but I had so much fun. That was my first time playing mass with a costume. I didn’t get as drunk, because it was suggested to me that rum and hot Barbadian sun don’t mix well. Nonetheless, I was able to make the best of it for the time period. I still remember when I crossed the field, my band danced to the song “Hands up and roll your batty” Received the best wine ever. The greatest part, I didn’t pay for my costume. It was given to me as a gift by my step sister — that alone goes to show how warm and welcoming bajans are. Seeing how much I love carnival and that I’m a party animal, my step sister is currently asking for me to return this year again. Let’s just say I have my fingers crossed that I’ll be able to make the trip!.
On my last night, my mother’s friend, my mom and I went to the St. Lawrence gap. I was given the hand to decide which restaurant I wanted to go to. I picked a karaoke bar. Near by, a local was selling food from a mini cart, which I bought pork, rice and peas and macaroni pie. It was so delicious, I went back for seconds.
My trip to Barbados was epic! I loved every bit of it. I loved it enough that eventually I hope to relocate to Barbados. Obviously once I am done my schooling and have my career going – this is my go to place. I hope I’ll be able to run my own business & own property in the near future.
P.S … I love “BarbadosWeLove” posts on your blog and social media, you do a great job promoting Barbados