I’ve been in Trinidad over three weeks now. The time passes by slowly and uneventfully. The day’s are long but the weeks are short.
Finally, this weekend was one a lot more in line with the ones that I favour most. I got to be on the sea, in the sun, and shooting photos.
I work part time on a charter yacht which is actually my dream job. (Until of course I launch my own fleet of charter yachts or become a successful travel blogger.)
On Friday, I worked as a day charter crew member. It was a long day but one of good: vibes, food and views.
We anchored just south east of the Five Islands in calm waters, under blue skies.
The day was a success. Fish were caught, meals were eaten and our guests were pleased.
Despite my plans to go out that night I was sleeping soundly by 11:30 pm. It worked out because I was able to have an early rise on Saturday morning. By 5 am I was off to the NAMDEVCO farmer’s market in Port of Spain to sell fish, lambie (conchs) and shrimp, with my parents.
When we were all sold out, we packed up, said goodbye to our market friends and headed home.
It was only a matter of hours before I returned to the sea. I was visiting a friend who lives abroad at her Down the Islands home on Gasparee Island. While I’ve spent countless hours on most of the other islands strewn around the North Western point of Trinidad, and even more hours snorkelling around Gasparee Island, I had never spent an entire day on the island. I was stoked to experience someplace new. Simultaneously, I was pretty anxious about being around so many people, even though I knew the other girls who were visiting as well, for many years.
Saturday evening was spent playing cards and drinking the new national drink, “White n’ Sprite”. (With the exemption of me- for anyone who knows about my nutrition system.) This famed drink is White Oak Rum and Sprite as chaser. Sometime in the future I’ll give you my thoughts when I try it. We ate curried chicken and dal, with provision. We also tried to figure out why mosquito coils are called ‘Cockset’ in Trinidad. Google was useless. Urban Dictionary did not help much either. If you know why, please comment below!! ❤️
The sun set behind the mountains and we were graced with a light show as the clouds in the Eastern sky shimmered gold. The Western sky was blue, pink and gold.
After catching up, many more rounds of cards and iPhone games, we went out into the cool air under the starry sky for a walk in the small village on the island. The ‘village’ consists of a beach, a pool, a restaurant that was closed and empty streets. It’s not the activities that make a lime but the people. It was vibes. Good vibes.
Sunday morning started out bright and sunny. I was awake shortly after sunrise and got in some yoga flows with an incredible view. I was supposed to leave the island in the morning time but when an opportunity for me to stay until the evening time arose, I was game!
In a few hours however, the weather turned right around and we had a full out thunderstorm. Ah, a cornerstone of life in the tropics. The storm lasted no more than an hour. It drenched the Earth, then it was over and bright blue skies returned with limited cloud cover.
The sunshine beckon its friends. Unable to resist, I donned my swimwear and into the sunshine I went.
My friend who recently got a camera accompanied me.
We went though some theory for shooting in Manual mode and soon she had a grasp.
Together we enjoyed a walk to the beach and pool. We climbed mountains and hills, taking pictures all along.
[Check out my Instagram account in the coming week for the photos from this adventure. @rusharella ]
It was special to get to spend this time with a friend. We tried to get each other to laugh naturally as we modelled in each other’s photos by saying ridiculous things. Sorry, we won’t be able to make you laugh today. These things cannot be repeated.
On and on we went, taking photos and wandering until it was time to eat. More dal! I have a real life love affair with dal. I only discovered it a few months ago in Montreal. I got my Pakistani housemate’s mother’s recipe and I’ve been making it ever since.
The extension on my time on the island was coming to an end as the sun glided towards the horizon. I gathered my belongings and headed back to my parent’s boat on the mainland via a pirogue.
It was a short 15 minute boat ride away. We dashed through the waves while the sun dashed to bed. The weekend was in its last moments but the beauty was endless.
Days when I get to see the sunset tend to ground me. They bring me peace when my life feels like mayhem. Lately, it’s been feeling like the latter. The mountains, the clouds, the saltwater, the sky, me, all are one. An infinite loop expressed in billions of different ways.
Back on my parent’s boat, I took in the last of the sunset and peacefully contemplated my weekend. In the week gone by, I realized that I had not found a place of contentment since returning to Trinidad. Establishing that baseline had become my goal but the stresses of my everyday life had hindered my progress. I didn’t fight to find it either. I wallowed in my sadness, my loneliness, my frustration with crime and corruption in the country that I call home, and my lack of income.
Mostly, I felt overwhelmed and somewhere along the way I got a dull headache. It never left (it’s Monday night and I still have it). I was anxious about having to be around an old friend who hurt me. I wondered if the person hurt and missed the friendship the way that I did, while knowing that it won’t be rekindled. I wondered if our other mutual friends were choosing sides and if by default, they had not chosen me because I was not around for the last eight months. My relationship with my brother was strained because of the different lenses that we saw the world through. The ways that each of us chose to interact with the world upset the other.
I was trying to work hard on proposals to send out to companies that I would like to work with. It was so much work to do, so many hours of drafting, sketching, writing and creating engaging documents to present myself through. I felt like I could not ask for the price that I should place on my work because of my lack of experience in the field. I know what I am doing, I understand the industry yet still I find my self without the confidence to apply the deserving prices to the work, to the time consuming, technical work.
The sun disappeared below the horizon and the moon began its reign over the Earth. My pondering didn’t lead to any solutions, I didn’t find much peace but in my reflection, I found that I was doing a lot better on Sunday night than on Friday night. Multitudes better.
That was enough.
The sun, the company, the sea, they are embers inside of me that are trying to catch. The fire isn’t out. Whoever is meant to be in my life will find themselves there and I’ll love them.
In the meanwhile, I know that I’m never lonely when I’m by the sea. The salty air runs off with my pain and makes me smile as the airborne droplets of water dance in front of the setting sun.
We’re only a passing mist in the existence of the universe. Seek contentment. Share life. Connect with nature. Love one another.