Months five & six: Time flies when you’re having fun (even under lockdown)

It was bound to happen, that I would slack so soon on my monthly updates! In my (somewhat lame) defence, I got new freelance work that kept me busy, to the point I was pulling multiple all-nighters in June.

And excuse me for the cliché, but where is the time going? I’m now in my seventh month in Barbados, which seems to be stretching credulity but is absolutely true. The longer I stay here the longer I want to stay, but at the same time, my hunger for other destinations and experiences is nagging at the edge of my comfort zone.

I’m still yearning for southeast Asia and would love to salvage part of my plan to spend some time with friends in Toronto. Typical of my life to embark on long-term travel just as travel to most countries is banned!

In the meantime I’m taking the opportunity to build up my network of freelance clients. I’m finding that persistence is key with Upwork – the more I work the more I receive messages from new clients offering work.

Spending some time at the beach and then going back to the apartment to work in the evening became some kind of lockdown rhythm. The wildlife were clearly enjoying the quiet streets — a few times I’ve watched a monkey wander past my door.

What a strange new reality we reside in where masks have become a fashion accessory and curfews have become the norm. It’s eerie to see Oistins, site of the legendary Friday night fish fry, open for takeaway food but completely deserted.

In June with restrictions beginning to ease I started to go for drives. All those beautiful sunny days while under complete lockdown, and restrictions ease during rainy season!

Barbados is a great place for a newbie driver or visitor unfamiliar with the riads, because it’s very difficult to get lost — I maintain that if you keep driving you’ll either end up at the highway or the beach. One afternoon my friends and I headed out for Codrington College, a former plantation house in the east. After a few detours — try asking a Bajan for directions if you need cheering up — we found the beautiful tree-lined entrance to the sprawling grounds.

So happy to be outside!

People keep asking me what I’m planning to do next — stay in Barbados, return to London, go somewhere else? It’s impossible to know how things will pan out with travel restrictions. All I know is, this isn’t a bad place to be.

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