I arrived in Barbados. It took approximately 8 hours of flight time. Maybe a little more. I slept as much as I could.
Everything started Monday. I tried to stay awake as late as I possibly could as I don’t sleep well during the day unless I am very tired. So I stayed up until the wee hours of the morning on Tuesday to sleep all afternoon. Well staying up was easy. Sleeping not so much. I laid down several times during the day but really got no sleep. This hurt when 10 pm came because I was afraid I would lay down and not wake up in time for the drive to the airport. So I stayed up.
At 2:50am on Wednesday morning, Shihan David Pyke, Shihan Janice Pyke and Carol Gould arrived at my front door. I had taken all of my things outside as my wife, Jolene and daughter Rachel had to work in a few hours so I didn’t want to wake them. We hit the road for Dieppe, New Brunswick to meet Sensei Isabelle Bordage and catch our flight. This was my first time on an airplane and I read a lot of information and watch many tip videos. I had this I knew the security procedures, I knew what to expect. Final checks. “Oh right gum,” I think to myself and I take the pack of Extra out of my backpack and put it in my pocket.
We go to security and I remove everything. Then proceed through the metal detector. Alarm bells! So I remember my wallet. Oops sorry.Walk through again. Alarm bells! Maybe a coin slipped off of the magnet on my wallet and was in my pockets? No! I walk through again. Alarm bells. Well it would have helped if I was not wearing cargo shorts. I was now being hand checked my the security guard. I do this at concerts all the time but I was a little frustrated. There was nothing else metal in my pockets. The security guard started to check though my things. Case of business cards. No metal there. He opened it and read the business card. “Mount Allison Shotokan Karate,” he said, “I am not going to mess with you!” I laughed inside.
Finally he scans my last pocket. It goes nuts. He reaches in and takes out that wonderful package of gum. “I get held up in security because of Extra! Damn!
Last of the funny stories. We wait to board the plane and everything goes well. I was actually able to get some sleep. My concerns about being on a plane were gone. This was great. Just a little boring. We landed at Pearson and tried to find some food. At the airport, we ran into Shihan Bryan Mattias, Sensei Ron Porath and Shihan Marcel Lussier along with their teams. Sensei Isabelle Carol and I went and found some food then we heard the final boarding call for our plane. I guess we will have to eat on the flight.
This plane was a little larger than the first so there was a little more space but a lot more people. I think most of the flight were martial artist or the Canadian Cricket team. Would not have been a good idea to try to hijack this flight. LOL.
We arrived in Barbados and the heat hit us. It was the same temperature as home in Nova Scotia as we were getting a heatwave but something was different. It was really hot here.
We got to our hotel. I am staying in the room with Sensei Michel Gaudet. Our room opens directly onto the beach. It is really cool.
We went at ate at Mama Mias. A nice little Italian style restaurant. The meal was really good. Sensei Michel Gaudet, Shihan David Pyke, Shihan Guy Bourgon and myself at one table and Shihan Janice Pyke, Sensei Isabelle Bordage and Carol Gould at the other. I recommend Mama Mi’s if you are looking for a light lunch.
We enjoyed some free time on the first day.
Michel Gaudet and I decided to go for a walk to look for a store. We would be able to pick up some water and other things. We walked to a store according to Google Maps. Well the store was not there. So we headed back to the main street where we saw a large group of karate students in gi walking down the street. I approached them and asked were the dojo was. Well the store that didn’t exist, the dojo was through the field next to it. Michel and I went to the dojo and visited shortly with the Shihans of the IKD as well as some of our International karate family.
We then headed back to the hotel cleaned up and went to dinner with the rest of our team.
Finally we returned to our room. I guess I passed out with my phone in my hand. Michel took it out of my hand expecting me to wake up but I was so very tired.
Day One was great. It was a very long one for me. I am told that I am the worse tourist in the world. I don’t take pictures. I was once told by a very wise woman that taking a picture captures a moment in time but if you are viewing live through a lens are you really viewing life? I took that to heart. I hate to take pictures. I will do my best to snap some pics this week. I want to experience the beauty of the island but I want to also capture the moment.
If you are a reader of my blog and you are here for the tournament. Please come up and say hi. I love to know that people are actually reading this. Also if you are competing this weekend good luck. Do you best and don’t worry about winning or losing. If we ran the exact same event next week there could be a different outcome.