I don’t really know where to begin. Got like a love hate situation here. This island has so beautiful beaches with white sand as soft as flour. But the tourism here seems to mainly be couples and more elderly people, hence the hate feeling. When it’s time to find the girl of my life, there’s a big chance I would bring her here because it’s a perfect place to spend time with a loved one and less good if you’re travelling alone. Well enough of that. Some crazy shit happened here, you never knew what was waiting around the corner. Things happened very randomly, and I love that. These things would never happen back at home in Sweden, sometimes it was hard not to burst out in laughter…
I’ll try to write everything in chronological order. This would bring me back to the airport in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Went through the whole airport twice trying to find the check-in desk. Couldn’t find it.. Asked around and people seemed to be as lost as me. Finally a guy working there knew where LIAT desk was. All the way back into a corner where only the company ‘JetBlue’ should have their desks according to all the airport signs. Got there, did my check-in, left my bag and got a hand written plane ticket. Never had that before. Feels like I’m too young for that shit.
After boarding and getting into the air, leaving Puerto Rico, we hit some turbulence almost immediately. Had turbulence throughout the trip. It wasn’t that bad but maybe one of the ‘worst’ trips for me. Worst here meaning most turbulence during a flight. I love the tickeling in my stomach when the plane drops. The landing wasn’t the best though. Felt very strange, like the plane came in a little bit sideways and hit the ground pretty hard. Don’t know if the pilot was drunk considering the rest of the things I saw on this island…
I found some cheap accomodation at Tyrones and his wifes house in Coolidge. Got my own room with bathroom, felt so good to finally have my own private space again and to be in the same place for a little bit longer than a few days. Just leaving stuff like chargers, soap, clothes where I wanted. Got here after 1am since it was a late flight. The morning after I got a ride to Dickenson bay. Got to see and feel soft sand, nothing like in Puerto Rico. Took a swim, nothing special here otherwise except for meeting Kenny. We changed numbers and made plans for Friday evening. This was on the Wednesday. Came back home and just took it easy. As I said, having my own private space felt wonderful. My whole Thursday was dedicated to my university studies. Didn’t even go outside the door. Heated up some pizza for lunch and cooked some noodles in the evening.
After having my university seminar on Friday, I went down to the main road grabbing the bus going to Long Bay. Though I had to go to Saint Johns first to switch the bus. Up until now, the place was nothing special, but this is where it all starts to get crazy and Antigua became something special for me. Don’t ask me why, most people would probably not like it. I jumped into the bus, being the only passenger because Tyrone lives near the end station. Sat down next to the driver so he could say when it was time for me to jump out. The driver talks to me a little bit, just small talk and I don’t really remember much of it. He then pulls over by the first gas station and this is still a public bus I’m talking about. The driver picks up a screw driver and pushes it into the ignition and switches of the engine. Didn’t expect that… The driver goes into the gas station and comes back with a beer/stout! Sits down, screwdriver in the ignition and off we go. He opens the beer bottle with his teeth and drinks while driving. By now we got more passengers jumping on the ride. It was such a strange feeling. What makes me angry is that he bought the worst tasting beer ever. I tried the Mackeson XXX the day before but had, for the first time in my life, to pour it out after a little sip. No way I would even try to get it down. Didn’t pay attention when I picked the beer. Not liking the taste of milk or cheese, a milk stout wasn’t the best idea for me. Got to the bus terminal after about 15-20min. Found the right bus and sat down in it, seeing the driver from the last bus buying a second beer and the clock was around 10 in the morning.
The bus I was in now was a rebuilt Toyota ‘KidneySmasher’ Hiace sort of van, made for 15-20 persons. The first bus was a real bus though. Sitting in the Hiace with 15 other people was something new. Did something similar in Dominican Republic last year. This one had a subwoofer system, a touch screen stereo and lots of wunderbaums hanging all around the vehicle. Even if taxis and buses sometimes look the same here, it’s easy to keep them apart. All buses have BUS on their license plate followed by a number. Taxis have the letters TX followed by numbers. When the bus left the terminal I got to see some real Antiguan driving. People are insane, every possible place you can overtake, every possible place you shouldn’t overtake, someone will proove it still is possible. Don’t be surprised if that someone is the busdriver. That was an experience I wont forget anytime soon. All roads being crap, like Tyrone said to me. Every driver in Antigua has a PhD in dodging potholes. It was a bit fucked up, being 18 people crammed inside the Hiace with crappy suspension and the driver still insisted on overtaking on the narrow and bumpy roads making my kidneys cry for help. Reason I wanted to take the bus was because it was too expensive to take a cab. Back and forth was around $4 instead of $60-$80 with a taxi.
Got to the beach, bought some breakfast. Saw that the beach was attacked by massive amounts of sargassum seaweed. This is a big problem throughout the Caribbean islands. It sometimes smells bad and it attracts sandflies. As you maybe seen on my earlier pictures, my legs and arms were totally massacred by these little annoying bitches. The bartender said the seaweed just came overnight, and that Long bay beach usually is spared from the seaweed. Well couldn’t really take so much beachy pictures because of this.
Whilst lying on the beach sunbathing, a guy named Pablo came by trying to sell me some watersport activities. Like renting a jetski or something similar. Told him I wasn’t interested. But since he’s walking up and down on the beach, I had to ask him if he saw girls anywhere near because I only saw couples and old people. I believe he misunderstood me a little bit. This escalated quickly, Pablo was G. Now he changed his name from Pablo to 8-ball. He was very dark skinned and had a tattoo of an 8-ball on his calf but you could barely see it because of this. 8-ball could hook me up with a girl that would come to the beach and we could go into the water “to have fun”. Told him I was okay and just wanted to relax on the beach. Well not enough for the guy. Still had more things to offer. He got the best weed and also had the best cocaine straight from Colombia. Took his number so he would go away. I felt the crazyness of this day building up knowing that I’d be hanging with Kenny and his bros later on.
Got back to my room later on. Laid down for a nap, ate some noodles again and just took it easy. Left my room at 9pm to get to Kennys brother, there I saw the massive house. It was huge. Kenny opened up and invited me inside. I was totally impressed by the house. They had a movie theatre, fish tanks, pool, so much space, luxury bedrooms, jacuzzi, pool table, well anything you could ask for. Getting the tour around was just like watching MTV Cribs back in the days. You could even take the zipline from the second floor down into the pool. One of the bedrooms with the bathroom was probably larger than my apartment back home. We sat down in the porch and listened to some music while waiting for a coke delivery (Coca cola). Kennys talked about his Long island iced tea mix on the first day we met. It’s a crazy mix with equal amount of vodka, gin, tequila and rum. Then adding a few wedges of lemon and a little bit of coke. Sounded like my feelings earlier about a crazy night would come true. About the same time we started drinking the Long island iced tea, Kennys brother came with a bottle of Goldschläger. It’s a liquor with 24k gold flakes in it. Tasted like cinnamon, the taste was pretty lean. Tried to come up with solutions for filtering the gold from my pee but other things came to my mind… Didn’t take long before we felt ready to go out. Well, crazy night! Went through some bars and yeah.. Had a great time hahaha…
Slept for a very long time yesterday. Woke up after 2pm, got a drive to the chinese restaurant and went to Dickenson bay again. Got to see a magical sunset. A nearby hotel had some photo shoots for its guests (need I mention the word ‘couples’?).
Antigua really is something else, at least if you’re travelling alone. People drive like there’s a record time to beat on each street. Saw many nice japanese tuner cars, which was a little bit confusing to see in this part of the world. Skylines, Evo, a sunny Pulsar GTi-r amongst others. The bus driver who drank beer while driving and used a screwdriver to start the bus. One bus driver on the way back thought he was Colin McRae, I was again the only passenger. He drove flat out on the narrow road, I know when you’re getting near the edge, and this time the driver wasn’t far away from crossing it. Enough of vehicles and driving.
The Antiguan flag is very special and I like it alot. This is the land of sea and sun. As I mentioned earlier, if/when I find a person worth sharing my life with, there’s a big chance she would be brought to this country. I came here without any expectations, my Antiguan experience most surely is totally different from others. I love the fact that everything was so unexpected. The only fear before coming was that it would be a bit too relaxing. Guess I was wrong. Thanks Antigua for not boring me to death.