I rounded out my 40th birthday in Barbados. I planned to blog about my splendid weekend in the sun. My body had other plans. I fell ill for the greater part of the last weekend of April (I’ll spare you the details).
One event I was able to attend was one of the most anticipated events of the Barbados calendar, Reggae on the Hill. It is an all day concert staged at Farley Hill National Park in Saint Peter. Every year the best in Reggae entertain tens of thousands who travel from near (Barbados) and far (UK -me). This year we had the pleasure of swaying and skanking to to Jah Cure, Maxi Priest, Queen Ifrica, Taurus Riley, Everton Blender and more.
I enjoyed the libation, entertainment and the company of my family. Let’s face it, even being sick, I was happy to be outside and in the sun! My life in the UK is probably the most boring of existences that one can imagine.
Towards the end of the evening near my favourite place (the bar 🙋🏽♀️), I met Bob and Bud (you know I gave them pseudonyms since everyone on this dodgy blog gets cloaked), two guys from New York I overheard discussing the merits of travel and various destinations. I say I met, I kind of insinuated myself into their conversation because I was bored and I love chatting to fellow travellers (I know so few of them).
I share this story of Bud and Bob because this is so far out of my character. I have four modes: pensive, annoyed, angry/aggressive and playful. Playful only comes out with a handful of people. Playful is slightly naughty but I like to think, funny. I usually don’t speak to anyone, I am known for blanking people I know if I can get away with it! Playful Reds was definitely out.
Anyway, Bud, Bob and I got to talking. “I’ve been here” “I’ve been there too” Blah blah blah blah blah. “Where have you not been?” I’ve lived in the US, UK, Barbados and South Africa. I’ve visited so many countries, with many special memories etched in my mind… Taj Mahal, visiting the fountain in Evian, seeing the Last Supper. But there’s one place I’ve been yearning to visit. The Seychelles. The archipelago republic of 115 islands in the Indian Ocean.
Coincidentally, it seems that Bob and Bud have lusted after the Seychelles as well.
Seychelles Shuffle 2018
So the gauntlet was thrown down. A challenge between strangers (well two friends and me, the stranger). The three of us would continue to travel and at the end of this year, the person who traveled to the most countries wins a trip to Seychelles.
You’re reading this and thinking “bitch, you’re crazy”. And I woke up the day after Reggae on the Hill and questioned my slither of sanity. These dudes could be heads of a sex ring, luring me to Seychelles. Then I snapped out of that train of thought. After all I’m hardly in sexy shape to be pimped out, 🤷🏽♀️.
Next I thought about how I committed to myself to slow down, take care of myself. This past month I’d been unwell and I reconciled to cut back on travel including my beloved Crop Over. On the other hand, the adventurist inside me who has been dying to get out welcomed her entry back into the world of the living. So I’ve accepted and courted this challenge as a way to bring some excitement back into my life.
You see, I am very competitive. I try to suppress this. I used to go walking with my friend and when someone walked in front of us, I insisted that we walked faster. The one year I was a Brownie, I strong armed my dad to sell Girl Scout cookies to his clients so that I had the benefit of not putting in much work but gliding to the top of leader board.
Bud and Bob have reignited something that has been missing in me for sometime. I have a few trips planned but this challenge has forced me to be creative, something I haven’t been for years. Wish me luck. Look out for my Seychelles snaps next year. 😉
If you are going to Barbados and need a comprehensive planning guide, download the Reds Little Black Book of Bim here.
In the meantime, here’s the few pics I captured in Barbados.
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