Saturday, 28 April 2012

CYOPro in Barbados

I had the pleasure of spending my recent vacation - into birthday - in Barbados.  One of the friendships that started many moons ago at the University of the West Indies, flourished over the years.  As with many friendships, there were periods of silence, but, when we caught up, we caught up!  I paid her a visit almost fifteen years ago.  Now, a family later, we arranged the vacation and birthday celebration in her country, Barbados.

For some reason, I noticed quite a bit more this time around.  I think one of the main reasons is that, back then, I was getting over a very recent breakup.  Time away, anywhere, away from him and everything that reminded me of him, was good enough.  I had spent quite a lot of time writing, as well - a different sort.  Then, my friend, Debbie, was kind enough to take me around to most of the touristy spots.  We took quite a few pics - those that you had to send out to get developed and wait a week or so before you got them in your hand!  Good times.  Good times.

This time, we still did a few touristy spots.  But, for the most part, I was just happy to reunite, meet the family and get time away from my usual surroundings to write.  I did all of that!  Several hundred pics later (yeah, it's 2012), I gotta say it was a lovely, lovely trip.

One of my most memorable days was the day before my birthday.  We went on a picnic to Barclays Park, only for them to surprise me with a cake.  Not just any cake, but a birthday cake!  That was waaay cool! And so thoughtful.  Another highlight was the birthday itself.  What a fantastic day by the Boardwalk, along Rockley Beach!

I'm sure if we'd tried, we could have got 41 candles to fit!

A few things stood out during this trip.  On my first visit to the Boardwalk, I was eating cane.  Yes, peeled and sliced pieces of sugar cane.  I love cane!  So, there I was walking along and soon realized that I was getting a few glances from other folks going in the same and opposite direction.  It became so noticeable that I asked my friend about it later on.  She let me know that it was an unusual occurrence.  Bajans don't normally have sugar cane like that.  No big reason, either.  I thought back to Jamaica and became even more thankful that there's a "Caney" on almost every corner.  Well, not exactly, but, you catch my drift.

View from a section of The Richard Haynes Boardwalk

The day before I left, I went into a store to buy a few souvenirs.  I asked whether they accepted Canadian currency.  The cashier said they did not.  I used the BBD cash I had.  Perhaps I would've bought more souvenirs if they did.  Actually, scratch the "perhaps". They accepted US dollars, US credit cards or travellers' checks.  I didn't check with any other store re the accepted currency thing.  I figure it was standard, though.

Another thing.  What you see on the price tag is what you pay.  No taxes added at checkout.   Now, eating out may be a bit pricey, say, BBD$24 for a lunch of Rice and Peas and Chicken.  Or, as I noted by looking in, a footlong Subway sandwich is about BBD$25 - a bit more if it's going to be a combo.  The exchange rate is about CAD$1 to BBD$2.

And, this one always makes me smile.  Almost everybody - with a few exceptions - tell you good morning or good evening or hi or whatever!  Yes, exclamation sign.  It was a pleasant difference from what I'd become accustomed to in Canada, actually, in the US, too.  (I had lived in the Rochester, NY for several years.)  Here in Canada, once you get talking with most people, you discover they are nice to talk to.  However, on too many occasions, far too many to count, someone will enter an elevator, for example, see me and/or five others in it, and not say one single solitary word!  So, when I heard people passing by and wishing me a good morning and so on, it was a bit surprising, then, simply delightful.

I enjoyed visiting the St. George Parish Church; visited that lovely beach near Oistins; loved the sight of kites in the sky on Easter Monday and even saw a few monkeys paying unwelcome visits in people's yards!  Codrington College was also a pleasure to behold.

Codrington College

The sand felt goood under my feet.  (Beach near Oistins)

Ahh the majesty of big strong trees! (Beach near Oistins)

Still, nothing came close to the Boardwalk!  I'm glad I "carpe the heck out of the diem!" and shot my first CYOPro destination video right there and then.  Journey of a thousand miles... Well, just visit my channel already :-)

NB: Need to add this further to the previous post - eating humble pie while I type.  I signed in to YouTube a few days ago.  My Gmail tab was also open. There, in the upper RHC, was a whitish arrow pointing downward to the Gmail account I was logged into. How I missed that the last time must have been by divine intervention!  It caused me pain, but, I've come to realize that the current name works out better, given the ideas I have in mind for when my website comes into its own.  More anon :-)



  1. Yes, I think we all need to "carpe the heck out of the diem!" once in awhile :). Beautiful piece!

    1. Certainly is liberating! Thanks, Durie!