Barbados was lovely. Breathtakingly, fabulously, exotically, lovely and Hugh and I had wonderful time. The weather cooperated, especially the tropical storms and hurricanes and we were blessed with both perfect weather for traveling and, with the exception of one rainy day, perfect weather while on the island.
We stayed at the Turtle Beach Resort, a very good choice given the other resorts we viewed when picking up fellow tourists for excursions around the island. Turtle Beach was all inclusive which meant never having to carry around our wallets and free booze for the duration of our stay. Hugh took full advantage of the free booze by downing his own body weight in strawberry daiquiris-the absolute girliest drink that I have ever seen him consume. I myself took full advantage of the pina coladas as well as wine that was surprisingly good.
Staying at a private resort, with its own private beach, also served to isolate us from the usual salespeople, beggars, etc. who sometimes troll the beaches hoping to earn some cash from uneducated tourists and, with the exception of one local woman hawking jewelry and a man who made it his business to chat me up as I lie on the chaise lounge, sipping a pina colada while Hugh boogie boarded in the ocean, we were left alone.
The jewelry the woman was selling was nice but, I wanted to shop around before making any purchases and she was very nice about that, leaving us with a wave and a smile. The man, on the other hand, was a little harder to shake and, at first, I was flattered by his attentions, I mean, the compliments rolled off his tongue as sweet as the syrup used by the locals to sweeten tea. When he asked if Hugh was, by nature, a jealous man, I had to admit that he is not and, with that, the man made himself comfortable on the chaise next to mine and began to tell me a bit of history of the island. After making chit-chat for a while, he asked me if I was a “healthy woman”, you know, no smoking habit…..? and I realized, with a shock, that he was
a) So enamored with my beauty that he was assessing my value as the future mother of his children or
b) Assessing my suitability as an unsuspecting kidney/liver/heart donor, which would make him a major player in the black market organ business or
c) A total drug dealer feeling me out for a possible transaction.
Now, I’m no great beauty and everyone knows that tourists having their organs stolen and sold on the black market is an urban legend (right?) so, it didn’t take too many brain cells-pina colada soaked though they might be-to figure that the answer was c and, as I made that realization, Hugh came back up the beach and my new friend disappeared like foam on the ocean.
This means that I can totally say I was approached by a drug lord on a Caribbean island. Awesome!
I can also say that I swam with sea turtles which was one of the coolest, creepiest, most amazing things that I have ever done (they are, like, huge and stealthy, silently rising underneath you in the water until you are practically standing on them, trying not to scream like a girl and choke to death on the mouthpiece of your snorkel…um, I've heard).
The catamaran tour that we took around the island included stops to swim with the turtles, as well as making several stops at ship wrecks. Snorkeling among the wrecks was surprisingly peaceful and the sea life was beyond cool. I took several rolls of film with me and, with any luck, my crappy underwater camera will do the fish some justice but, I doubt it.
After snorkeling, the crew of the catamaran served us an awesome lunch and, did I mention the free drinks? Because there were free drinks, lots of them (which in no way contributed to the girlie-like screaming caused by having a giant, 100 year old turtle suddenly appear between your legs, I’m sure) and a good time was had by all.
Of course, I’m happy to be back home. We missed the kids and, as much fun as vacationing on a tropical island can be (waking up everyday to the ocean right outside your door, never having to cook a meal much less refill your own pina colada, tanning to a golden brown on the white sands of the beach, swimming in sea waters warmer than bathwater, viewing a native carnivale parade, complete with men on stilts and women in traditional costume, shopping duty-free….wait, why did I come back?), it is always good to come back to the people who love and missed you.
I couldn’t have asked for a bettter anniversary.