So I land in Barbados after an eight-hour flight from Gatwick, London after having been delayed in Copenhagen due to a snow storm, and so I had to run from Gatwick’s South to North Terminal at lightning speed so I wouldn’t miss my international flight. Oh and guess what the handle on my suitcase became dysfunctional, it wouldn’t lift, so I had to hold on to the pretty floral cloth that I used to identify my worn out, traveled out bag and lug it across the airport floor. Man, over the holidays in Denmark I put on like 10 lbs, I swear I lost 4 lbs that day. Anyway fast forward, lol started from the bottom now we’re here, I heaved a sigh of relief as a made it to my gate, “British Airways 003183 , now boarding economy class, duh the only class I could possibly be sitting in at 19, so I got on board , didn’t get a window seat like I did with all my other flights, but ended up sitting next to a Grenadian working in Barcelona on a cruise ship returning home for a visit, Sheldon Buckmire, man was he great company for the duration of the flight. It was rich meeting someone else from the “lesser” of the Antilles.
Anyway jet lagged, hungry and in need of some warm Caribbean sun, I arrived in Barbados (Rihanna Accent). Aunty Flora, a family friend picked me up, she put my stuff in the trunk and off we went to her humble abode in St. Michael’s Parish. It was there that I met her husband, he was a blind, bajan artist, wheelchair bound and tattooed with pigmentation from vitiligo. He had lived in London and had sold a number of his artworks to the government of Barbados. I tell you he was so rich in thought, in character in knowledge in belief and so we sat and talked for hours about art, poetry, music, culture, blackness. He had known racism, radicalism and had loved Nikki Giovanni, James Berry, Michael Anthony and Andrea Levy as much as I did. We only had a few hours, but he seemed to take a liking to me. He trusted me enough to take good care of copies of his artwork. He was so kind, the way he was reminded me of how I hoped to be in old age, firm, patient,very passionate, wanting to impart knowledge on youth, and sure of myself and the majority of the decisions I’ll have made.
So here goes, song of choice : Nina Simone – Ain’t Got No, I Got Life