My friends and I decided on the island of Barbados.
Of course, back in those pre-internet days, we had to go to a travel agent and based on one tiny picture of the hotel and some rating stars, we would decide where to stay! Nowadays we can practically tour the entire hotel online, visit message boards and all kind of rating services to determine where to stay. I must say, I do like our current system, but there is something to be said about a little mystery when traveling!
I still remember looking out the window of the Pan Am airplane (really dating myself) and seeing the unbelievable turquoise water below. Everything was so exciting...
As soon as we arrived at Grantley Adams Airport in Barbados we spotted John Mellencamp....or was it John Cougar at that time...John Cougar Mellencamp?...
(No that is not me standing next to him...just a random autograph seeker...)
We stayed at the Barbados Hilton which was on the southern tip of the island and close to many restaurants and the bustling capital city of Bridgetown. The hotel has changed over the years but it is still the Hilton, just updated from when we stayed there.
Traveling with girlfriends...always a wild time. All 3 of us went on the rope swing on the famous Jolly Roger party ship. (Was that before or after all that rum punch?!!)
We did all the touristy things like a dinner cruise on the Bajan Queen and rented a "Moke" to drive around in. (It's like a little beach buggy). We also went to the typical dinner shows with steel drum bands and fire dancers.
Believe it or not, it was very beautiful there...(I had to scan these old pictures in and the color is just terrible!)
I just loved the gorgeous beaches, the food, the people...the rum punch...oh and those squeaky little tree frogs! I can still hear them in my head. We would hear them while seated in the outdoor restaurants at night. Such a unique sound and not all the islands seem to have them...or at least I haven't noticed them everywhere. Oh yeah, and Barbados has flying fish which are really wild to see jumping out of the water but even better to eat in those flying fish fritters!
It was probably about 6 years before I was able to return to Barbados with my future husband but I will never forget the first time!
And so, my love for the islands began...
What was your first island experience?