Up From The Ashes


Last Easter weekend, Barbadians were happy to see the return of the Flying Fish.  The local delicacy had for quite some time become a scarcity, and an expensive acquirement to pair up with Cou-Cou, the national dish of Barbados (Cou-cou and Flying Fish).  As I recall from my childhood, during the annual four-day holiday Easter break, most Bajans would opt to serve a fish dish.  Back then the top choice would have been flying fish, or some other fishes like dolphin (mahi-mahi), red snapper, and marlin.  Well, it was reported that the local fishermen brought in catches they had not seen in over 20 years.  It was a welcomed surprise and most took advantage of it.  The price became a bit more affordable, and the hope was and maybe still is, that the Flying Fish has finally returned to our waters again.

Now this weekend in Barbados, daylight hours are as dark as night.  Due to the eruption of La Soufriere volcano in St. Vincent, black ash-laden clouds cover the skies over Bim.  St. Vincent is our closest island neighbor, 100 miles away.  Family reports and videos show ash falling like rain, and everywhere the sooty residue can be seen on homes, vehicles, streets, plants, and trees.  With the return of the flying fish last weekend and eruption of the volcano this weekend, makes me wonder if the two are not related.  Is it just a coincidence or is there more to it?

It is often said, animals, and maybe fish too, respond to natural occurrences by behaving in strange ways, for example, four-legged animals tend to climb to higher ground especially before an earthquake happens.  I do not know if there is any scientific explanation to back this up.  I have only read the Biblical account of the world-wide Flood when the animals went into Noah’s Ark for safety.  Maybe we should pay more attention to what the animals are doing 😊. 

The people of St. Vincent are probably feeling like they are in hell (no pun intended), as the lava creeps down into villages and gobbles up everything lying in its path.  As usual, my countrymen have opened their doors to welcome those affected and displaced because of this disaster.  I know it is the thought of many, including my family members, who thinks the inconvenience of the ashes is no comparison to the loss our neighbors are experiencing at this moment. 

Both Barbados and St. Vincent are tropical isles that depend on tourism as their livelihood.  The volcanic activity may negatively impact the draw of visitors to these shores in the coming weeks and months ahead.  As an itinerary planner, I would still recommend for the future, and when the dust settles (pun intended), that you check out both islands and consider adding them to your destination bucket list if it is not there already.   Setbacks are a part of life, and while you may have had plans to visit either place at its best showing, your plans do not have to be a dream cancelled, it can be a dream deferred.

Community Peeps, have you ever travelled to a country after a natural disaster?  It may not be the prettiest sight but over time people usually tend to rise from the ashes and build back better.  Big island in Hawaii, for example, though covered with hardened lava in some parts is still a beautiful place to visit.   Obviously, Barbados will recover from the cascade of ashes faster after a good dowsing of rain, but the impact and recovery our neighbor faces will be for the long haul.  Do any of you adventure seekers have immediate plans to visit either of the two islands in the aftermath, or in the near future?  I would like to hear if you are planning to go and how you plan to handle the situation.  Share your thoughts in the comment box below.

Readers, as usual, I invite you to click follow to receive timely updates, select like to show your love and support.  Share this post on your social media site.  Write your comment in the box below.  Your interest, time and attention are always appreciated.  Thank you for reading.

More times,

Itinerary Planner

A Small Ask, Wear A Mask!


Travel Itineraries’ high flying wings were unceremoniously clipped due to the dreadful Covid-19 virus in 2020.  Grounded in Barbados, I was able to enjoy the sea, surf, sand, and sun, which most people would consider to be the idyllic life, and what I thought was not a bad trade off.  With my original plans to explore, island hop, cruise the high seas, and peregrinate from place to place tabled, I have been eagerly looking forward to revisiting my deferred travel aspirations in 2021.   As usual, at the beginning of every New Year there is often anticipation that it will be better than the last.  Those feelings of hope and expectancy are contagious, and I am not immune.  I too, like most want this year to be better than the last.

The New Year’s hopefulness has affected my inner circle, family, and friends also.  They desperately long to breathe again.  For far too long, their travel balloons have been deflated, and they have become a little antsy for adventure.  To add insult to injury, as of writing, two newer viruses (the British and South African strains) are making fresh inroads on the world scene.  To the tourists this may signal a further setback that all contemplated or pre-planned holidays scheduled for 2021 is a no-go, but it is still too early to call. It is uncertain how it will all play out with the rollout and fulfillment of the vaccination initiative currently underway. We will have to wait and see.  We must be patient. 

Taking an optimistic viewpoint, every dark cloud has a silver lining ties in succinctly with my premise of hope.  So, I am simply saying, “do not panic.”  The days of suffering from claustrophobia exhaustion is nearing an end if you heed these directions.  You can resume planning month-long getaways to exciting exotic locations.  Prepare bespoke itineraries of a dream trip of a lifetime.  Decide to incorporate the tips I will outline below to help keep you safe.  Your safety is paramount and since returning to old norms is highly unlikely, I propose the sooner we adopt the safety measures, the sooner and safer we will get back to flying the open skies once again.

Here are a few tips to ensure you enjoy your trip abroad or nationally if you choose to travel:

  1. Pack extra masks, disposable wipes, and sanitizers for easy access in your carry-on and handbag.
  2. Wear a mask at all times and sanitize hands frequently.
  3. Choose to stand a safe distance apart from others.
  4. Take authorized virus test before and after reaching destination.
  5. Plan to quarantine for a week at destination.
  6. Re-take virus test a week later after initial quarantine.
  7. If test results are negative then you are free to enjoy your vacay to the max. Remember to follow steps two and three when in the public domain.

Hear me out.  These procedural suggestions are part and parcel of the lifestyle for the wanderlust sort.  The sooner holidaymakers accept the guidelines, the quicker it will become a norm and no longer viewed as an irritant.  Wearing a mask is a small ask when it comes to saving a life, which may be your very own. 

Who would have guessed that such a small slip to cover nose and lip,
 would become so trendy, necessary, and handy, who would have guessed?

Community Peeps, your 2021 travel plans may seem iffy right now, but do not fear or despair.  There is light at the end of the tunnel.  A New Year usually projects new hopes and dreams.  I pray that your travel plans will materialize, and a nice break where you can breathe, be revived, and refreshed in a location other than the confines of your home is in the offing.   Let us believe, claim it and call it done, God willing. Please share your thoughts on the issue in the box below.

Readers, as usual, I invite you to click follow to receive timely updates, select like to show your love and support.  Share this post on your social media site.  Write your comment in the box below.  Your interest, time and attention are always appreciated.  Thank you for reading.

More times,

Itinerary Planner