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Love Actually


People have asked me, if I have ever been in love and when my response results in a “No” , they are shocked. It is the common belief that we have all been in love at some point in time

By my definition or “understanding” of love, I have to say that I have been “in like”, “strong infatuation” and “in lust” way too many times, but love…ummm never!

I am sure of it!

Then this happens………

On Wednesday afternoon, I pick up my god-daughter, Kai, from school to carry her home to Chaguanas.  All is going as planned so far. We first stop off at Hi-Lo in Woodbrook to secure a juice box, some gummi bears and bottle of water. While there she spots a toy purse with Dora the Explorer plastered all over it.

Kai: Uncle Tefan can I get Dora please!

I smile and first think if her mommy would be pleased if I purchased it. Fearing a sharp scolding and probably a thump in the head, I answered Kai:

Me: No Kai, we will get you Dora for Christmas, but not now

Kai’s face gives a slightly puzzled look and continues to look at the toy.

Kai: But I want Elmo

Me: Well will see about getting you those things for Christmas

Kai: But ah want it now.

I smile and push the stuff towards the Cashier to ring up and pretend she didn’t almost win an argument with me. I can’t always be a pushover.

Ok we are off again.

photo 2

There is a heavy amount of traffic on Wrightson Road and as a result we are stuck in it with slight movement every few minutes or so. Kai was singing to a song on the radio when all of sudden it was announced:

Kai: Uncle Tefan, I need to wee wee.

Me: (slightly panicking) Oh ok Kai, we will get you to a place just now.

Traffic is not moving an inch. I see Capital Plaza (formerly Crowne Plaza) ahead and I think it is an ideal spot for her to use the bathroom.

Two minutes later……….

Kai: Uncle Tefan I think it coming down!

Now, listen, I am not about to let my goddaughter pee at the side of the road like some proletariat’s offspring so I start looking at options.

  1. I can park the car and run with her in my hands to Capital Plaza and hopefully she can make it there.
  2. I have an empty glad container in the car and she can use that until we can sort stuff out.

Ok, yes I know the last idea was very bad but I was worried about her discomfort in slow moving traffic.

We start creeping to London Street and I see this Tyre shop called “Quick Service” at the corner and realise that if traffic were moving faster we could be by Capital Plaza in no time.

Kai: Uncle Tefan I have to go.

With that statement I climb the pavement and drive into the Tyre Shop, grab her out of the car and ask the woman at the front desk if there is a customer bathroom nearby. She points me in the direction of it and we are off.

We get there only to discover that the door is locked and therefore someone is inside.

Kai: Why we not going in?

Me: Because the door is locked so that means someone is in there. Hopefully they will finish quickly to help out this little girl who needs to use the bathroom (said in the direction of the door)

Did you think that person took me on?

Oh hell no, Mr Man came took his time and came out like 5 minutes later while everyone in the store could see the child’s discomfort. He didn’t even apologise. We had to clear the way to let him pass as he was a portly gentleman and I braced myself for the smell that might follow his extended bathroom visit.

Thankfully, the smell was mild and we got through the ordeal without any soiled clothing.

Disaster averted.

We drove up to Chaguanas incident free but I did have to play Glee’s version of  Gangnyam Style like 10 times because she wasn’t interested in hearing any other song I had in my Car’s CD player or iPod.

photo 3

  After dropping her home and driving back down to town, I realised that my fear wasn’t her wetting my car seats, I worried about the humiliation she would feel over the incident and how uncomfortable the rest of the trip might have been for her.

It was at that moment that it hit me. I love this child unconditionally. My first impulse was not to protect my nice recently acquired car or the upholstery (which is normally my modus operandi when dealing with adults who sit in my car), it was the child’s well being.

Wow, am I growing up?

So this is the way love feels? Hmm not bad.

I could grow to like this!

 
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Posted by on December 21, 2012 in Family, Humor, Travel, Uncategorized

 

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Leaving Las Vegas


To say that my Las Vegas vacation was a planned one would be stretching the truth a bit. November was carded to be my vacation month. I was supposed to have the entire month off to just relax. Plans were afoot to visit my Godson in England, see Heather Headley in The Bodyguard and take a trip over to the continent if a certain host was welcoming.

However, it was seems it was not meant to be. As the end of October drew closer I found my boss unresponsive to my email requests on confirming my vacation dates (I had submitted them in July). Finally, on October 31st, he tells me, in the office corridor that if a particular transaction I am working on is not closed, my vacation will not be possible.

All things were in place for the transaction to close the next day and for me to board a flight on November 2nd. But he obviously knew something that he wasn’t sharing.

I spoke to him around 8pm that October 31st night and he said I would be reimbursed for my purchased ticket as he realised he was at fault for not communicating sooner. He also revealed that two important signatories would not be back in the country until November 9th, so that there was no way the transaction was closing. I closed my eyes at this point and imagined his head exploding as Michael Ironside did in Scanners. When I opened my eyes, he wasn’t even aware that I had closed them as he was still talking. I went home dejected.

Hope was still in my heart for a later flight on Sunday but that proved futile. So my UK vacation was off.

Vegas was mentioned to me by a couple friends planning a birthday lime there but I had committed to England and to be honest, Las Vegas was never even in my top 10 places to visit as I always viewed it as a soul-less city devoid of a real personality other then “Sin”.

All of sudden, Las Vegas became a strong possibility and despite the transaction and two others that were picking up extreme steam beyond November 9th, I got clearance to proceed on one week’s vacation from November 23rd. (Remember: how I was supposed to have the entire month off? Sigh. .apparently nobody else did).

Anyway off to Las Vegas I went starting with an 8am flight in Trinidad on November 23rd and arriving in Vegas at 6:50pm (11:50pm –Trinidad time). I was beat and tired like a whore after a navy vessel had come into harbour. But the group of people I met up with were intent on having as much fun as possible. This meant going out that night around 11pm- Vegas time (3am- Trinidad time). Obviously, no one cared how tired I was as they wanted to maximise the Vegas experience.

Palms Place Hotel Room View

Palms Place Hotel Room View

I will not recount all that occurred in Las Vegas but just give you a list of things I learnt while there.

THINGS I LEARNT WHILE IN LAS VEGAS

    1. Las Vegas is Overrated: I know i said this before and my  opinion hasn’t changed.Having travelled a fair amount of times but not as extensively as some of my friends, I found Vegas not to be a well put together city. It is a city for Americans who are afraid of foreign travel (i.e no passport) and who want to experience it close to home. Seeing a Parisian café or the Eiffel Tower or any random ostentatious hotel, didn’t move me to any great “Wow” or “OMG”. For me, I had seen stuff like this already in cities that actually had a real vibe and arguably a strong rich history of development. It just felt put together randomly. I may be wrong!
    2. The cheap things in Vegas are food, whores and alcohol (not necessarily in that order). Water is really expensive on the Strip unless you walk with your own or go into a casino and start gambling, then every drink is free. I’m not saying I did that but I am just passing on info.
    3. All Taxi Drivers have foreign accents. For the last time, I am not from Senegal nor am I from Nigeria!!
    4. McDonalds only serves Fried Chicken in Trinidad. One late night while the whole group felt for friend chicken, I ventured down to the closest McDonalds and asked if they sell chicken alone. The guy’s response with a perplexed look on his face: “Do you mean the patties?” Popeye’s and KFC close at 10pm. WTH!!
    5. Not all the Cirque Du Soleil Shows make sense. “Zumanity” while seemingly risqué gets boring really quickly. “Ka” on the other hand is worth the price of admission!
    6. You need Abs to work in Las Vegas: At no point was there a performer in any Vegas show that didn’t posses abs of steel. It seems a requirement for work within SinCity. Guess I’ll keep my day job.
    7. Indoor Skydiving is WICKED FUN!: While I wanted to pee myself when we got into the wind tunnel room, the experience turned out to be extremely amazing and I wish I could get to do it more often.
    8. Friends don’t like their pictures taken in Las Vegas: For some reason, people are afraid of cameras in Las Vegas. Unless you are a street performer (they welcome it), people generally run at the sight of a tourist with a camera. Especially if they are stumbling through a courtyard, drunk as a fish, singing trying to sing Bad Romance by Lady Gaga.
    9. Jet Lag is REAL: Going back in time takes longer for your body clock to adjust. Four hours behind Trinidad meant it took FOUR days for my body clock to fix itself and even then I was still getting to bed around 3am (7am- Trinidad time) and waking up at 8am (12noon) feeling refreshed. I missed going to Hoover Dam one morning all because my sleep patterns were off. Confession: Sometimes I would sneak a nap while everyone else was in another room hanging out and drinking.
    10. Peer Pressure is REAL: I have heard about peer pressure since I was a child but it never really bothered me as the fear of God and my mother always surfaced to remind me that these people didn’t matter. As I grow older and well my mother can’t scold me or give me the disappointing look, I find that peer pressure is a real thing that can force someone to end up in clubs and magic shows (Chris Angel or David Copperfield) that they would never ever think of visiting. So was the case when I found myself in a club one night that played only Southern Rap Music. I wasn’t sure if to be more scared of the women or the men in the club but because of my company I had to show no fear and somehow find the coordination to dance to this type of music. The last time I actually danced I think the “butterfly” was popular. So you see my predicament. And what the hell is the “Dougie”?

Las Vegas was an enjoyable trip and I found myself laughing a lot and sometimes scandalously. On Sunday, over the Bellagio Buffet, the entire table burst into laughter so many times that we wondered if we might be escorted out of the area. Of course, based on the laughter and range of accents, I met some other Trinis that were also in Vegas. Of course no plans were made to hang out with any of them as conversation was always kept short.

I do however, now need a vacation where I can actually just sleep. I still have the rest of my 14 vacation days to take as I cannot carry over that large amount into 2013. The problem however, is when do I take it and will I get approval.

STAY TUNED…….

Spent US$10 only

Spent US$10 only

Sunset at 4pm.

Sunset at 4pm.

Water Show at The Bellagio

Water Show at The Bellagio

 
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Posted by on December 3, 2012 in Entertainment, Travel, Uncategorized

 

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That Particular Time


I took a trip back to 2009 (through pictures today. It was a time in March when I vacationed in Barbados. While I had taken over 400 photos and 6 picture folders from that trip, there are some simple shots that I took that jogged my memory more than the pictures of people or food that I ate that particular time….

I will always thank my friend Matthew for introducing me to some amazing places in Barbados that despite me living there for 2 -3 years prior to this trip (2000-2002), I only saw them on this trip.

BTW: I still miss that Fuselli Pasta from that place in Hastings that I can never remember the name of……lol

There would have been a time when taking a picture stressed me out and sharing them was even a greater issue. So whether touched or untouched, I love them all. These are my memories…and they serve me far too well…..

 
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Posted by on October 13, 2011 in Emotions, Photography, Travel, Uncategorized

 

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My Love, My Need


About three things I was absolutely positive:

First, Edward was a vampire.   oops I mean, Janet Jackson is my one TRUE LOVE

Second, there was part of me — and I didn’t know how potent that part might be — that thirsted for her presence.

And third, I was unconditionally and irrevocably not the craziest fan she has…

(I wish I had taken pictures of these people, but I was in a strange city all by myself)

Case #1 – Thug Loving

I turn to my left and a couple rows in front of me and to the other end, there stands Kareem (I use that name because I’m racist ok and well he looked like a Kareem).

Kareem is dressed in a baseball hat (rim not bent), a white very starched shirt (outside of his tweed pants and a tie. He thinks he looks really good and keeps asking nearby patrons to take pics of him alone and then of him and his well-dressed girlfriend.

 Cut to the first appearance of Janet on stage and I turn to my left to see him on his feet jumping up and down and shouting “Yeah Yeah Yeah that’s my girl!!” His girlfriend is sitting with a shocked look on her face.

 CASE#2 – All that glitters is not gold

The couple to the back of me had just started up a conversation with me as I met the guy in one of my many walks near the theatre earlier that day.  His girlfriend was just about to tell me about he favorite JJ album when “BAM!!!” , there appears someone in some short blue shorts, and a bright gold jacket with their hair covering one eye.  The girl started to scream and got up and hugged the guy and they started to chat for another 5-10 mins. I turned back around to wait until they were finished. Then I spotted ….

CASE#3 – Mother of Pearls

Two guys are waiting to walk into the row in front of me. One is dressed all in black, the other has baggy pants, tight black t-shirt, a grey something that looks like an ill-fitting jacket and then loads of pearls around his neck!!

 “Lord, they are out tonight!!!!” mumbled the girl sitting next to me with her Jill Scott hair, who would later be sobbing on me while “Again” was being sung by the audience.

Anyway, they had just passed the two girls in front of me that looked too young to know what Rhythm Nation 1814 was about, when one girl looked down and said “Nice shoes”. He turned to her and lifted his leg and said “Thank You Honey, aren’t they beautiful?” They were heels. Black Boot heels but heels nonetheless.

 I started to feel really normal and not like the crazed fan I thought I was.

So what if I did pass by the Theatre multiple times that day for no apparent reason and yes I did sit near the entrance and played “Angry Birds” but honestly I was waiting for the Box Office to open to collect my ticket at “Will Call”. Honest.

So what if I happened to see when the dancers arrived and when a limo pulled up, but none of that meant that I was stalking Janet. Oh Hell No.

There were, however some guys outside, who seemed preoccupied with getting her autograph and who were having discussions about going to see Carrie Underwood next week. Janet and Carrie in the same sentence? Ugh..these people obviously were just ebay collectors and not genuine fans.

IN THE MOMENT

There are times when I question God as to the reason certain things happen and why does it happen to me. Of course the answer always either comes coded or just in the form of “WAIT nah, why yuh hurry so?”

I have stopped questioning why things happen in my life and have begun to accept that there is a reason for everything. Therefore, it baffled me for years why I never got to see Janet Jackson in Philadelphia in 2008. It hurt. It wounded me that she was fell ill and I was never able to see her.

Then August 19th happened and I understood why.

In 2008 I had really bad seats to view her show. In 2011, I was in 7 rows away from the stage and I could see her breathe. I could see her chest move, watch the sweat drip down her face, see every muscle contort as she danced. I could see that she wasn’t lip-syncing as she sang a note slightly flat (that was a relief).

 Sigh…

 I thought I was going to cry as time drew near for the show. I felt my allergies starting to act up as the screen announced that she dedicated the song “Control” to Minneapolis.

Then I saw her. I saw her outline on the stage and I felt the pollen dust get to my eyes and knew I was going to have an attack. Then this guy and his girlfriend behind me ( that I had met 15 minutes before) both grabbed me and said “Can you believe it?”

The moment was gone. My sinuses cleared up. I was ok. My hands however couldn’t stop shaking and while I was trying to take a picture of her I found myself screaming out her name as if I was in primary school. My screams went unnoticed.

Reason?

Well everyone else was screaming. Thug guy two rows to my left with a baseball cap, was still jumping up and down  going “Yeah Yeah Yeah “to the shock and horror of his date who seemed not to know how much this guy liked Janet. Some overly made-up very tall women/drag queens (I’m not sure) kept screaming even when there was a quick change on stage.  I realised that I was tame. I was composed. I was not hysterical.

The highlight of the night was when Janet asked the crowd to sing “Again” with her. NO backing band, just her voice and the audience. Sigh…during that number, the girl with the Jill Scott hair next to me started to sob uncontrollably and I wanted her to cry a little softer because she was still trying to sing the damn song.

Picture this: A girl crying and trying to sing the lyrics, “How can I be strong I ask myself. Time and Time I’ve said….” and just weeping during it. Sigh… Very Inconsiderate.

The most obvious thing about the crowd was that, we were all mainly middle aged. No spring chickens in the midst, save for Selena and Miley in front of me who just giggled all night.

When she did the dance for “Rhythm Nation” and then the routine for “Miss You Much” I just stood there frozen. I could not believe what I was witnessing.  I still recall that during “Let’s Wait Awhile”, my head was cocked to the side and I was just singing along and using the same intonation from the single . I was an unashamed mess but I was in the midst of good company so it did not matter.  Sigh….This woman and her music have been a part of my life for decades and every song has a memory attached to it. I really love her!!!

 

By the time “If” came on I was out of my daze and just screaming out the words. Jill Scott hair had recovered fully by then and so coming down to the end when she did “That’s the Way Love Goes” we started to sway side to side and even did a little dance together in our seats. Granny Myrtle Gurtle behind me was upset about it as she had remained seated for most of the show while everyone else got up to view it. Who cared!

There were moments in between where she had footage on screen and it was nice to see the transition from Control to Number Ones. I was only mortified once, and that was when she decided to show some of her acting work on screen. She went from Penny to Charlene, to (sigh) Justice to that stupid sequel to the Tyler Perry movie where she smashed up all the glass in the house. The crowd cheered but I was mortified that she felt proud of her later work to actually show it. Oh well, you can’t win ‘em all!!

She ended the night after THREE encores,(yet she didn’t sing Black Cat), “Got Til It’s Gone”, “Best Things in Life are Free” were the initial encore songs. “Together Again” was a fitting end to the night and when the footage of her and Michael came up on screen, “Jill Scott hair” next to me lost it again. This time she had no shame in holding onto to me and soaking my shoulder with her tears. Afterwards she apologized and asked if I wanted to go for a drink after with her friends. I said “No Problem” but being the paranoid fool I am, I knew that I was going to lose her in the crowd and that I was going to head straight back to my hotel!

 

After fighting up to get some memorabilia, I exited the theatre to see people at the side of the building waiting for Janet to leave. She drove out in a Black Escalade and I saw her for one last time.

…….My abandoned heart just doesn’t understand…My undying love for you won’t let me leave………….

 

Please come back to me.

I miss you so much….

Wherever you are..

I LOVE YOU

 
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Posted by on September 6, 2011 in Entertainment, Music, Travel

 

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Good Times


I just posted a pic on my Facebook wall of some of the shows I saw while in New York on vacation and the theme song for “Good Times” popped into my head. I was feeling good about my vacation particularly since I saw Janet Jackson in Minneapolis and was close enough to see sweat glistening on her arm and see her lips quiver during “Again”. Focus Stefan!!!

Oh Yeah,then I saw War Horse (where an old schoolmate Jude Sandy is in the cast) followed by Audra McDonald & Norm Lewis in a preview showing of Porgy & Bess The Musical (AMAZING!) and capped off with Sister Act. I didn’t expect to like the last one as it was a last minute choice since I was unable for the fourth time to get tickets to the Book of Mormon, but I was blown away at how much I enjoyed it. Sister Act is some serious fun and entertainment.

So as I was basking in my euphoria and humming the “Good Times” theme it was then I realised that i never knew the actual lyrics to it. Just the words “Good Times“.

So I googled them and well..see for yourself:

Good Times Theme – Dave Grusin & Andrew Bergman

Good Times. 
Any time you meet a payment. 
Good Times. 
Any time you need a friend. 
Good Times. 
Any time you’re out from under. 

Not getting hastled, not getting hustled. 
Keepin’ your head above water, 
Making a wave when you can. 

Temporary lay offs. 
Good Times. 
Easy credit rip offs. 
Good Times. 
Scratchin’ and surviving. 
Good Times. 
Hangin in a chow line 
Good Times. 
Ain’t we lucky we got ’em 
Good Times.
———————-

How depressing are those lyrics?

It just goes to show that you put a happy spin/music on anything depressing and people will like it. I have listened to this song for years during its run and I always assumed it was a happy empowering song. How wrong was I?

Temporary layoffs? Scratching and surviving? Hangin in a chow line? Jeez, these people had it rough.

Then I remembered the ending theme:

Just looking out of the window, watching they arkjdsf for soooo. Thinking how it all would end in time

(Well that ‘s how I remember it)

Here’s the real lyric:

Mmmmmm
Just lookin’ out of the window.
Watchin’ the asphalt grow.
Thinkin’ how it all looks hand-me-down.
Good Times, yeah, yeah Good Times

————————————–

Watchin the asphalt grow? Err WTH!! How does asphalt grow? These people were poor and ignant too?

Sigh I guess some things are better left in the past the way you remembered it back then.

I remember thinking how funny “Family Ties” was and then I saw an episode a couple of years ago and wondered what the hell made me laugh about this show? It was boring….

 

Anyway, let me go back to being happy about having a GREAT vacation and getting to rest alot. The moment I realised that I was having fun and feeling really blessed was the morning of August 18th when I was sitting in a Starbucks in Mall of America, Minneapolis and felt a little verklempt.

I still owe you all a blog on the Janet Concert but the three versions I have written so far are insane and just make no sense at all. I’ll try something this weekend and see if this one is coherent.

 

Have a good night!

GOOD Taiiiiii I eee aiiiiiii eh eh emmmmmms!

 
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Posted by on September 3, 2011 in Emotions, Entertainment, Music, Travel, TV

 

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High Flying, Adored


By now I think it is safe to assume or guess that wherever I go,  there must be some kind of drama or event that must take place otherwise Stefan would not be having fun. Correct?

Picture this :

Date:   December 17th 2010

Time: 2am

Place: Somewhere over the Atlantic,  aboard

CAL 425 from Port of Spain  to New York.

:

I am in my window seat in Row 24 that has is now vacant as the flight attendant has removed two teenage girls (who were travelling unattended) to the front of the aircraft.   I am watching episodes of Shameless (UK – Season 6) on my iPod and all of a sudden the lady in front of me starts waving her hand frantically to signal to one of the flight attendants that she requires assistance.

My first instinct as that the woman couldn’t wait to get her turkey snack so she was making up some excuse. Then I noticed that the man next to her we acting funny and she kept pulling on his ear and squeezing his jaw intermittently for some reason.

Sigh……the man was having some kind of attack and his wife was panicking.

So after the halt the serving of food so that every flight attendant nearby could take care of them, they announce over the intercom to see if there is a doctor on board the flight. Turns out, there was one on board and after a quick examination she determined he was okay. Unfortunately for us the main flight attendant wasn’t that convinced. At this point, we had a short window of opportunity to decide if to move forward with the flight or turn around.  The doctor voted to go forward. Guess which option they chose?

Yes folks, so after leaving Trinidad at 12:50am I find myself back on its tarmac around 3:45am. Nice! Just nice. Forget that someone had to get up early in New York to pick me up at the airport around 6 am and forget about the delay in arrival that this incident might cause. They did it anyway.

They got him off the plane and refueled the plane and we left after 4:20am and arrived close to 9am in New York which saw us meeting up with 4 other flight arrivals resulting in a longer processing time in JFK.

This, my friends was the start of my vacation.

———————-

This was the end of the vacation.  Picture this :

Date:   December 29th 2010

Time:   6:25pm

Place: Somewhere over the Atlantic (Near New York)

Aboard CAL 424 to Port of Spain

This flight was initially set to leave New York at 2pm. We only boarded the flight at 3:30pm and left New York some time after 5pm.

Was I upset?

Oh Hells No!! I was seated in First/Business Class on this flight. My seat was BIG, leather and very comfortable. The lady next to me was already snoring out some Aria and I was on my iPad playing Scrabble. All was well with the world.

Around the time I stated above, I decided that I needed to use the bathroom. So I got up and was making my way to the facilities at the front of the plane. The Head Flight attendant was busy doing something and our paths crossed.

Head Flight Attendant (HFA) – Can I help you sir?

Me: Err no I am just going to the bathroom

HFA – I’m sorry but you are going to have to use the one at the back of the plane.

Me : Are you serious?

HFA: Yes Sir

Me: I have to go way back there?

She nods…

Being the nice guy that I am (plus she was a hottie), I obliged.  I waited for two gentlemen to use the facilities and then I held my breath and entered.

On emerging from the facility, I see HFA there blocking my way. She then grabs both my hands and starts to place them on her forehead and then she kisses them. I am stunned and a tad bit uncomfortable with the level of affection being displayed at the back of the plane.

Me: Err is everything ok?

HFA: You are Mr Simmons in seat 2F?

Me: Yes

HFA: I am so sorry sir. I am so sorry.

Me: For…..?

HFA: I could’ve sworn I saw you come through the curtains to use the bathroom. That is why I made go to the back of the plane.

I pulled my hands away

Me: Oh…..So you decided not to ask for my seat number. Instead you just decided that I didn’t belong in  Business Class? Nice

HFA: Mr. Simmons, I am so so so so sorry.  Please do not be upset with me.

Suddenly a chorus of flight attendants started agreeing with her and telling me that she is too pretty for me to be upset with her.

Me: It’s ok. Mistakes can happen. Too bad they always happen to me.

With that I walked back to my seat with an evil grin on my face.

For the rest of the flight, there was no request my little heart could not desire that my new best friend (HFA) did not supply. Extra pillows, candy, food, gum , wine ….sigh (snicker)…I was content.

Alas, I still feel a little hurt over the incident but I loved her groveling for my forgiveness. Here’s to hoping I get to see her on another flight.

Let’s see what happens…..

 
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Posted by on January 6, 2011 in Travel

 

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Miles To Go


Here is a recap of my travel from St. Kitts back to Trinidad yesterday. My assistant booked me to return to Trinidad on LIAT (Note to self: Need to get her performance appraisal reviewed).

 

My flight Itinerary looked like this:

 

ARRIVE – St. Kitts (SKB) to Trinidad (POS)

Wednesday, 04 Nov 2009

 

Flight LI 503                  Depart St Kitts at 8:20am.          Arrive: Antigua at 8:50am

Flight LI 521                  Depart Antigua at 9:20am.          Arrive Barbados at 10:50am

Flight LI 727                  Depart Barbados at 11:45am.      Arrive Trinidad at 1:35pm*

 

* – There is a stop in Grenada to drop off passengers that I was unaware of but everyone else seemed to know about.

 

So it will take me roughly FIVE (5) hours to get from St. Kitts to Trinidad.  It could take less but apparently no Caribbean Airlines flights were available back to Trinidad from Antigua that early in the morning.  I also didn’t want to spend another waking minute in St. Kitts. Ten days on a workshop for securities licensing followed by a six and half (6 ½) hour exam. I have had enough of this island!!!!!

 

So let’s begin:

 

6:00am            

Alarm goes off. I turn on TV to VH1 while I get ready.

 

6:30am            

Realize that suitcase is mad heavy due to the Herculaneum binder of info from the workshop.

 

6:45am            

In Hotel Lobby confirming no additional charges on my hotel bill. (I paid it the night before.)

 

7:00am            

At airport, no on else in line. Attendant looks at scale and declares I have US$40 for her due to being 4 lbs over-weight. Actually

She said:          You wah remove anyting from insidah dey?

Me:                   Why?

She:                 Yuh 4 lbs overweight. Dat is 40 US Dollars.(rolling her eyes)

Me:                   Ok I’ll pay it. I’m not taking anything out of the bag.

She                  Ok but if they stop you in Antigua that is not my fault.

Me:                   I’m paying you so you tag my bags all the way to Trinidad

She:                 Oh is dat where yuh going? I taught it was to St. Lucia. Leh meh change it.

 

7:10am            

On my way up to the Departure Gate, a woman stops me let me know that I need to go pay Departure Tax of US$22.00. Jeez US$62 in less than ten minutes.

 

7:12am            

I walk to the Emigration desk (as it says in front of the officer). She looks at me and tells me to go get something to drink as she needs to go to the bathroom.

 

7:19am            

She returns and processes me. I pass through scanner after this and get felt up by female officer there even though I did not beep while going through the machine. (I am just too sexy for my own good)

 

7:45am            

Call to assemble is announced for the flight. Already?  How strange!!!  Woman who searched me just waved at me. (Why did I look up?)

 

7:47am            

Call to board flight is announced. (Huh I thought the flight leaves at 8:20am?)

 

7:50am            

On flight (Mia Mottley is on board too)

 

7:55am            

We take off

 

8:15am            

We arrive in Antigua

 

8:20am            

Still in the “Intransit line” as the sweaty LIAT guy is talking on his phone and trying to check-in passengers.

 

8:30am            

In departure lounge in Antigua. I buy a Jamaican Patty and some juice. Apparently Kenny Anthony was also on my flight. No crazy woman singing “Party in the USA” like the first time I was there

 

9:00am            

On board flight to Barbados. I spot a pasty looking white lady eyeing the seat next to me but for some reason she sits in the opposite aisle.

 

9:10am            

Granny next to me still can’t put on her belt. Thank goodness she doesn’t smell. The white lady is revealed to be a Russian and on her way to Guyana to meet her new fiancé that she met online.

 

Russian lady spoke all the way to Barbados. ALL THE WAY. Non-stop Chatter. I slept and got up and she was still talking. She even asked for coffee, a small juice packet and two packs of Ovaltine biscuits when refreshments were served. (hmm somebody is hungry) She had most of the people around her asking her questions about her new fiancé and why is she traveling so far to meet him. She said she was happy to do it because she felt a connection to him. I just got the impression that she was a prostitute going to a new job assignment. Why would someone pay for you to travel on LIAT to Guyana when there are more direct ways to get there? One would only do that if one is avoiding certain check-points. Hmmm but then again I am suspicious of most people. Lord she is still talking. Apparently her friends told her not to go to a third world country or she would be sold into slavery. Ha Ha Ha Ha. Her English is very good. Me no think she travel from Russia recently.

 

10:45am          

Plane arrives in Barbados. We have to disembark and enter the LIAT In-transit Terminal. Here we are met with another round of scanners and metal detectors. Umm why do we need to go through this process again when we just left another country where we were searched before we could enter the Departure Lounge? I am confused at this process totally.

 

Russian lady sits alone trying to make eye contact with me to talk, but my Ipod is in my ear and my laptop is open. There will be no conversation being had at this point.  I am so not a sociable animal anymore.

 

A fat guy who was on my flight comes over and asks me if I am going to Grenada as well and if I can help him with some stuff he has to carry.  …………… Silence ………  He just walks away. WTH!!!!

 

11:15am                      

Wait a minute did he say Grenada!!!! So this is not a direct flight from Barbados

 

11:16am                      

Spoke with Airline Ground Rep. Son of a BITCH!!! We really do stop in Grenada first!!1

 

11:35am

I board the plane to realize that it is the same one I just got off of with the same flight attendant. I asked her why I couldn’t have just stayed on.

 

“Sir, this is not Caribbean Airlines!!!”

 

She answered my  question with that.

 

11:37am

 I don’t have a window seat and the guy next to me is holding his T&T arrival form as if it is an exam sheet. Jeez he is so gonna ask me to help him fill it out.

12:15pm

Arrive in Grenada. Fat guy comes off and gives me a last nod. Ipod is still in so I pretend I didn’t notice his greeting as I am staring into blank space.

 

12:45pm

“Yuh have a pen ah cyan borrow?”

“Sure”

“you heading to Treenidad right?”

“That’s why I’m still on the flight”

“Oh ok”

 

1:00pm

While in flight. He has only written his name in the last ten minutes and keeps putting the paper close to his face. It is coming. I can feel it.

 

1:10pm

Flight attendant distributes Arrival forms throughout the cabin. I get mine and finish it in no time. He took an extra form from the attendant.

 

“Here nah, de lighting bad and meh eyesight not good at all.”

“Yuh could help me fill this out?”

“Sure!!” (I say with a smile on my face)

 

He then pulls out a US Passport and my face changes?

WAIT A MINUTE!!!!

He can’t read and he has a US Passport!!!!!!

Life is soooooooooo unfair.

 

1:25pm

Touchdown in Trinidad. I am so happy to be home. LIAT actually came in a little earlier than expected. Hmmm I know this is not a normal thing but I am grateful.

 

My fellow row passenger says goodbye and proceeds to immigration where he chats up the immigration officer.

 

1:50pm

After a long wait, the Customs Officer takes my form.

“You bringing back any fruits from St Kitts?”

“NO!!!” ( perplexed look on my face)

“Why were you there so long?”

“I was on a training course at the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank”

“Are you a Trini?”

“Umm Yes” (shows him passport but ready to cuss right now for that statement)

“Ok go ahead”

 

2:45pm

Purchased a CD:  “This is It” by Michael Jackson. Just to calm my nerves from the long day.

 

3:35pm

Home…….

 
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Posted by on November 5, 2009 in Travel, Uncategorized