It has been around 6 months since I left Barbados to head for London to move forward with my business aspirations. In an ideal world, I would have had at least a couple of weeks back on the island enjoying all the Bajan delights, namely the ambiance of the place, beautiful weather, amazing beaches, cool Caribbean water, rum, banks beer and watching all the pretty girls go bye.
In fact I would honestly say that the best Pina Coladas in the world are to be found in Barbados. What I would give to be at Just Grillin at Rockley eating a juicy steak, drinking a delicious Pina Colada or two and then washing it all down with a couple of Banks Beers. I must admit generally speaking the food in Barbados is generally a bit of let down and but there are a few good places, which offer great food and value for money.
I however know that if I keep on working hard to make my business as successful as I know it can become, I will then be able to choose, when and how often I head to Barbados for some rest and relaxation. Meantime I will carry on enjoying life in London and keep on Barbados dreaming.
I developed an affinity and love of Barbados during the 9 months that I lived on the island and miss many things about the place. I have decided that I will have a couple of months back in Barbados in 2010, and this picture is where I will be staying and you can take that to the bank. We all must have something to aim for and this is my goal.
I personally feel it is about time that the David Thomson led Government for a change did something forward thinking for the average person in Barbados. I know for many people that have never had the pleasure of visiting this beautiful Caribbean Island, that it is perceived as being place of vast wealth and luxury, which is a long, long way from the cold hard facts of reality for many people living here.
I’m personally shocked sometimes when I hear what people working in shops, restaurants, hotels and even on the building sites are getting paid. I find it amazing that they can actually survive on the pittance that they earn.
It is not like Barbados is a cheap place to buy food or that electricity is dirt cheap. I will tell you a fact that it is cheaper to buy food in London than it is in Barbados. The only things that I can think of that are cheaper in Barbados are local booze and petrol.
I know all the local big, rich and powerful businessmen in Barbados will give you a hundred bull shit reasons, why it isn’t practical and how it would be a disaster for the island if there were to be minimum wage. I will tell you the main reason and that is they will make slightly smaller profits, which wont even effect there lifestyles in the slightest bits.
It was the same in the UK in 1999 before they implemented the minimum wage over there, and of course it was all the unscrupulous crooks, the big companies and rich businessman that were fighting tooth and nail for it not to happen. Sometimes I know life just isn’t fair, but if the Government does its job properly, things can become a wee bit fairer and easier for some people.
I hope David Thomson see’s the light and how huge a step forward a decent and fair minimum wage would be for the people of Barbados, or is he too scared to upset all his big business men cronies that are getting richer by exploiting the poor and working classes. I can here them all shouting from the roof tops but it’s a recession and when the recession is over there will be another excuse and then another. Just Do It!
A place I love to go from time to time for a delicious juicy steak and few cold bottles of Banks Beer is the Crawton Inn. Nothing too fancy about this place, as even the owner will even tell you. But what you do get each and every time is good old plain and simple fresh food that is cooked to perfection.
I have been in too many places and this especially goes for Barbados that get away with charging a fortune for crap food that I could probably cook better myself. In fact on my last trip to London I bought a takeaway in a Trinidadian place in London that would put most of your top restaurants in Barbados to shame.
The Crawton Inn for me is one of those wee unsung places that get things just right, they provide fresh food, which they cook to perfection and they make sure the beer is nice and chilled and to cap it all off they charge are fair price. And for me you cant ask for more than that, Exactly!
The Caribbean Sea for me is a fantastic and beautiful place, which I never get tired of looking at or enjoying myself in. Ever since I first clapped eyes on it only 4 years ago, I have fallen in love with it.
I suppose what makes Barbados extra special is all the amazing beaches that they have that border the Caribbean Sea. There is nothing quite like lazing on beautiful white sands and then going for a wee dip in the sea. It is a fantastic way to spend a day and yes I really do mean a whole day.
If you have never had the pleasure of enjoying the beauty and fun that the Caribbean Sea has to offer you, what are you waiting for? And you will probably think I’m being biased when I say you should go and enjoy the splendour of the Caribbean Sea in Barbados, and so what if I am.
Even at nighttime the Caribbean Sea provides an amazing backdrop for a romantic stroll along the boardwalk with your lover. If you are in Barbados or are planning on visiting the island and you still have an ounce of romance left in your soul, go for an early evening stroll along the Boardwalk just after the sun has went down and I can guarantee that you wont regret it.
As most people in Barbados are fully aware the standard of football on the island is real bad. I thought us Scots were bad at football, but at least we have made an improvement over the last few years and we have a tiny glimmer of hope that things are headed in the right direction. I just wish I could say the same for Barbados.
It was just the other day when one of my Bajan relatives said that us Scots were as useless the Bajans at football. I would just like to put the record straight, Scotland are in a different league and class compared to Barbados.
In my time here in Barbados, I have watched a couple of matches and I can honestly say that they do seem to enjoy there football and they sure do try there hardest. And you have to give them credit for that.
I watched a bunch of locals playing beach football the other day at Silversands and these guys were a sorry and desperate bunch of footballers. But at least they played there football with a smile on there faces, which was a refreshing site.
Just to put the record straight for the family member! Scotland are ranked 24 and Barbados are ranked 120 by FIFA. Hopefully Barbados will get there act together and start improving and maybe start getting some decent results. I suppose passing to the same member of your own team would be a good start!
It is the end of another tough week and a guess what, I’m the mood to party. It is the 21st century and partying isn’t just for the youngsters, it is for anybody that has still got some life left in their body, mind and soul. And I sure as hell can answer a big yes to all three.
I may be a white Scotsman and I sure as hell aint the best dancer in the world, but give me a few glasses of rum and half a dozen banks beers, and probably a few Pina Coladas and I will hopefully be moving a bit better. Well I think I will be!
I have found an interesting video on Bajan Tube that has really put me in the mood to party. All I can say is that it seems as if beautiful Bajan woman of all sizes and I really do mean all sizes can move amazingly well. I don’t think I can express adequately in words what I mean; you will just have to watch it for yourself.
I was just lazing around indoors avoiding the cold weather on one of my trips back to London, when I was looking through the many pictures I had taken in Barbados. When I came across a picture that I was particularly drawn to and which I truly love and before you ask, it’s not because I’m in it, but because it reminds me of the beautiful Caribbean sea and the fantastic walk you get along the Boardwalk in Barbados.
When I was looking at that picture, I almost felt as if I had been instantly transported back to Barbados and that I was enjoying the warm sunshine on my body, I swear I could here the soothing sounds of the Caribbean Sea and that I could see countless pretty girls walking past me. Then I suddenly snapped out of it , when another police siren came whizzing past my home in London.
Picture this scenario that happened to my wife the other day in a shop in Barbados! You take a $100 dollar bill out of your purse to hand to the shop assistant in order to pay for something and it gets accidently dropped on the floor
You bend down and pick it and then the guy behind you claims that it is his money and he wants it back. Now this is something that I suppose could have happened in any city in the world, if there happens to be a crook behind you in the queue.
Now the shop assistant could clearly see that the money had came from my wife because she watched her take it out of her purse and the assistant had her hand on the money and watched it drop to the floor. Now did the shop assistant even open her mouth when the crook demanded the money, you guessed right! Of course she didn’t!
As far as the crook is concerned, don’t try shit with a Londoner with Bajan blood, you are gonna wish you never started and he ever so politely got tore a new asshole for his trouble. Oh! And the shop assistant felt the sweet tongue of my wife as well!
I suppose things like this are a normal enough occurrence in the times that we live, where there are plenty of people out there that want everything for nothing and if given half a chance will steal or cheat to take what doesn’t belong to them.
An incident like this could quite of easily escalated into something more serious. Could you imagine if my wife’s husband had been anywhere nearby when this happened, it could have turned into something more than just a bit of verbal.
I hear all your righteous bleeding heart social workers out there, which claim that it is society that that makes people resort to stealing, killing and doing whatever they want because they are so poor! There are millions of poor people out there that have never stolen a thing in their lives or hurt anybody to take something that don’t belong to them. I rest my case!
“Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth.”
This post is part of the world blog surf day, make sure to read it to the end to find the link to the next participating Expat blog. If you would like to step back and read the post my one followed on from, then head over to Golden Prague and read about a German now living in the Cezech Republic.
Living as a Scotsman in Barbados, is at times a fairly huge culture shock for me, but at other times it can strangely feel like I’m back home in Scotland, which is kind of weird.
For example the other day I walked down to my local shop, which is called the Montrose supermarket, hey Montrose is a little town only a few miles down the road from where I lived in Scotland.
I ventured into the Montrose Supermarket and I bought a few cakes that were made by a bakery company called the Dundee Bakery. This is now really making me feel like I’m back home in the North East of Scotland, because Dundee is only 50 miles away from my home city.
I come out of the Montrose Supermarket with my cakes made by the Dundee Bakery, and I carry on walking for a mile or so and I walk past a complex of shops named after the city I come from in Scotland called Aberdeen. I feel there must be plenty of North East of Scotland roots in my neighbourhood in Barbados from days of old. Maybe the stretch of beach at Oistins where I sometimes walk to, to eat my cakes, should be renamed Aberdeen Beach, now that really would be too much!
Whenever I get homesick for Scotland and believe me it does happen from time to time, because there is no place in the world like home. I jump in the car and head over to the Parish of St Andrew and go and spend some time in the Scottish District. Which was given its name by the early Scottish settlers on the Island, who felt that it reminded them of home. Which I can empathise with because it is a truly beautiful part of the island, where you get some amazing views and it is of course the most hilly part of the island.
I may be over 4000 miles from my home in Aberdeen and Scotland but sometimes it feels like I’m not so far from home after all.
If you have enjoyed this post and I know you did, please head over to Romancing Italy, where you will find Bev who is a Trinidadian that is now living in Italy. I know you will enjoy what she has got to say.
Because I have been travelling quite a bit recently between Barbados and London, I hadn’t been keeping up to date with local news as much as I should have.
I had of course heard that a couple of female Canadian tourists had been mugged and beaten on Long Beach on the 28th of February. In fact the woman were severely beaten with a piece of wood and left unconscious.
One of the women Terry Schwarzfeld suffered serious brain injuries and never regained consciousness. A friend of the family confirmed that Schwarzfeld died at the Ottawa Hospital’s Civic campus Wednesday March the 18th.
The police thanks to a $20,00BDS reward have supposedly caught the killer, who is a 24-year-old local man. But that one wont be answered until he has been proven guilty in a court of law! What surprises me is that they never rounded up a few Guyanese and blamed them!
Is Barbados really a paradise like Caribbean Island, well sometimes it looks like one and feels like one, but at other times for me it has a dark and dangerous underbelly just like most other places in the world.
I have personally walked along Long beach numerous times and what I liked about it is was the solitude of the place and peacefulness, but what you always find at these quiet beaches in Barbados is that there is always somebody lurking in the bushes or in the trees that makes you feel a little bit uneasy and keeps you guard. I normally have my Staffordshire Bull Terrier with me and she seems to scare the hell out of the Scum and for very good reason, they aint as dumb as they look. But I have to admit my bite has been known to be as bad as my Staffies!
If David Thomson, the Police or anybody else in Barbados can answer me, why is it that every time I go out my door, I have somebody trying to sell me cocaine, weed, girls or are begging money off me, “any bad habits”. Does that sound like paradise to you, it doesn’t feel like paradise to me.
I will give it to you straight I have never had so many offers of people openly coming up to me in broad daylight and offering to sell me illegal things in my life and that includes places like Glasgow, London, New York, Paris. The druggies and vermin in these places are discreet because they don’t want to be caught by the cops and sent to jail.
It makes me wonder about the police force and for that matter the politicians in Barbados are they just totally useless or are they getting a cut of the drug dealer’s money? I for one am not too sure about the answer to this, but nothing in Barbados would surprise me.
I know for a fact that the tourist industry is taking a big, big, big hit in Barbados this year, and anybody that can read can go online and see the amount of complaints that tourists are making about feeling uneasy and in danger when on holiday in Barbados.
The only time you seem to see a lot of cops out and about in Barbados is on a Friday night down at Oistins and I personally feel that is because they must get a some free food and drink. I will go as far saying that the politicians and the Police haven’t got a clue about preventing, dealing with or even understanding crime on Barbados and I don’t just mean crime committed on tourists but on local people as well.
It doesn’t matter where you are in the world, whether you are on holiday in paradise, or in your local neighbourhood, wherever that may be in the world, there are dangerous and crazy people waiting in the shadows to create devastation on innocent people without any regards to the consequences.
All I can say is keep your eyes wide open and be prepared to react in whatever manner possible to protect your own life and the life’s of your family members. My own personal philosophy is to always stay alert and be prepared to do what ever it takes to take out the perpetrator, before they get you. So whether you are in Barbados, South Africa, Ireland or England stay on your guard!