Ever watched Naruto? I think I’ve asked you this before. If not then I’ll give you a quick description that’s relevant to our chat. Naruto has a nine tailed fox, named Kurama sealed inside of him. There was a battle and Kurama was wreaking havoc in the village. To save the village, Naruto’s dad split Kurama’s chakra in two; the yin within himself (which killed him) and the yang within baby Naruto. So Naruto grew up with this cynical, no nonsense, not very nice, nine tailed fox within him. Kurama’s plan is always to escape but if Naruto dies so will he so he has to be careful. Over time Naruto learned how to ‘control’ (really pacify him somewhat) him and at times they will come to an agreement when Naruto have to borrow some of his chakra powers.
What can Japanese anime possibly relate to me? Well I feel like Naruto. I feel that there is a caged beast. Hmmm maybe not beast :-) but a caged animal (definitely feline) within me that prowls about from time to time. In 2007 I learned to understand her better and realized that she needs to be controlled. We came to a mutual understanding with certain things. When she’s not being fed I can feel her stretch her muscles, yawning and flicking her tail alerting me that she’s awake. This gives me very little time to find ‘food’ to feed her and if I can’t find ‘food,’ like Naruto and Kurama we have to come to some type of compromise because majority of what shewants to do if she have her way is just not good for me. Now I know this may sound weird. Rest assured it’s nothing awful or illegal that I’ve gotton myself in. It’s just that there are things that I’ve done in my past that are on the adventurous side (to state it mildly) that I think are normal that I’ve learned…just aren’t to majority of the folks I’ve encountered. I’m a Sagittarius. Look us up. Nuff said! So to compromise, when my feline counterpart wants to do something, instead of acting on it impulsively (I’m telling you God has been with me all these years) I have to sit and review it and think how can I do this safely and with tact to satisfy her and to keep me safe? If I can’t come up with a way then I deny her petition and she has to come up with something else. Needless to say I trrrrrrrryyyyyy my uttermost best to keep a balanced life but there are times, like now, where things slip through the cracks.
I can remember being little and staring up at the planes going by. Wondering where it’s going? My mother travelled to the States a lot and I wanted to experience that. What’s a plane like? How does it work? What’s there to greet you when you land? I would just sit in the yard and stare and daydream about what’s on the other side of those clouds. I told myself that I want to travel! My first airplane ride was when I was 9 years old which is when I came to New York. My second time was to Florida with a church family I was living with for a short time. This was the summer of 1999. I loved it! I like being in the airport knowing that I’m going somewhere. However, as young as I was I wasn’t satisfied. Other states? Blah! Local travelling doesn’t satisfy her (I need a name for my feline counterpart. I’m open to suggestions). There was something within me that just burns and I mean BURNS with the NEED to travel. I was too young to do anything about traveling but it never left my thoughts. I would watch commercials and look at pictures in books and just be so mentally turned on by it all. I want to go to these places. I want to taste the food. I want to inhale the air. I want see the beauty of the country. I want to feel the country’s ocean waves slapping against my body. I want to feel that sand between my toes. I want to meet the people. I want to dance to their music. I want to taste their best rum! LOL! (not joking). I want to immerse myself within their culture. That’s what I want to do. Each time I imagine it my heart soars. My spirit and soul become alive! ALIVE I tell ya!!! It’s one of the positive aspects she has. When I feel that burning desire I have to fight not to pull out a paid off credit card. So in September I felt her waking up. I was sharing how I’ve been feeling with Nikole, Juan, Alicie and another friend of mine. He gave me a sideway glance when I was explaining it to him in his van. He prolly thought I was crazy and yes I used the Naruto analogy to him. But I know I’m not crazy so I ignored it and continued my explanation.
In 2006 she said to me okay you have a full time job, not much bills, and your of age. It’s time for us to see the world. I agreed. Well I just started the job so I had to wait to accumulate time to take off and resources to travel. The following year the company relocated and I was out of a job. I was unemployed for a bit and then I got a part time job. I was barely keeping myself afloat so she understood and backed off but trust I felt when she flickered her tail and heard her unappreciative huffs. 2010 comes and I was to be in Jamaica for two weeks but I ended up only being there for two days. SMH! That’s a whole other story. 2011 rolls around and I made a promise that I will travel at least once a year. Nattydread was going to Trinidad for Christmas and I was DOWN! I started stalking the flight travel sites for tickets. I’m a very organized and ‘on top’ of it person. I think and plan waaaaaayyyyyyy in advance. So the second she told me she was going to see her mammy for Christmas and that I should come I began planning. Airfares were in my budget but I wasn’t going to book my ticket without her booking hers first. Long story short I didn’t make it. Nattydread booked her ticket in November and I didn’t care how she felt but Shaniquea was NOT spending $1000+ on a ticket when they were $525 back in August. As the price went up so did my budget but I called it quits when it went over $850. She was NOT happy. Oooo chile! Being the diplomatic person that I am I mamaguy (Trini term for sweet talk) her and made all sorts of promises. 2012 comes around and I felt her stretching ready to prowl. I told her chill, we going away. Unfortunately, it turned out to be Jamaica and she was not happy. Remember, she doesn’t do local. Jamaica is local. Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE my country. But home girl is trying to see Tahiti, Bahamas, Peru, England, Bora Bora, Turks and Caicos, Spain, Germany, Norway, Greenland, Iceland, Brazil, Dominica, Trinidad and Tobago, Grenada, The Mother Land, Mexico, Dominican Republic, St. Kitts, Anguilla, and Fiji to name a couple spots. She’s NOT trying to hear Jamaica or a road trip within the states. Not when she’s up and about pacing. To compromise I did seven days at a resort and three days with family. I said to her: look I know you feel Jamaica is local because we were born their but let’s do it tourist style? We left at an early age and don’t know anywhere so let’s pretend we are tourists and do it tourist style. That settled her and we had a good time.
Oh baby….2013 came and this time the goal was to take two trips. Don’t know how but we will be taking two trips. I set aside some money from my tax and said this will be my vacation money. I can’t keep working and paying bills and not having fun. I kept that thought and visualization going. Then one day Marshall my ex boyfriend, (my favorite and my family and friend’s favorite guy) mentioned he was going to Trinidad to his sister’s wedding. I said take me with you! And ladies and gentlemen he did. He really really did. Just to be clear he was my ex boyfriend of 11 months when he took me. You see why I love Trini men. *shivers* I LOVE me a Trini man boi. Add dreads and I’m in heaven!!!! *swoons* Sigh. I will have me a Trini man with dreads one day. If I don’t he def gotta be Trini. Something about their men rubs me the right way.
I HAD A BLAST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! He and his dad and family showed me a GREAT time. No exaggeration on the GREAT! I considered that trip my first real vacation. First of all I’m going to put his dad’s house on blast. Daddy got a glass sink in the bathroom and the tub and shower separate. Yo, the man is living life! He also have a balcony where I spent a lot of time conversing with a banana leaf that insisted on telling me what the other leaves been up to. Yall ever heard of talking to plants? Si? Tis true you should talk to plants. Another post for another day. Anyway, I would sit on the balcony and look out at the neighborhood. I would look out at the sky every chance I got! Ahh man I’m grinning at the memories. I remember as soon as we landed Marshall’s dad took us home to drop our bags and we headed to the market to get some stuff. Apparently we needed to be at the market from a crack of dawn because he was not happy at the things that were left over. Only a trained eye noticed because everything was looking nice and fresh to me. LMAOOOOOOOOO. I just remembered a joke. So we were at the market right and daddy wanted pepper so we were going around looking for pepper but not finding a suitable price. We came to this little youth selling, so Marshall asked the price and the youth said $1 for one. OMG!! If you saw the incredulous looks on Marshall’s and his dad’s faces!!!! Marshall stammered a $1 for ONE? The youth looked way up (he was prolly 6/7 years old and Marshal is 6’1) at Marshall and repeated himself and gave him a stern look. Both father and son were like nah nah nah nah and shook their heads and walked off. All day I kept hearing: A dolla for ONE peppa?! So clearly that was too pricey. You see folks that’s the sort of thing I like. To go someplace new and different and shop in their market. I had kumar and fresh coconut water while in the market. I enjoyed the fast crazy normal driving of the natives. I took pictures of everything! Even of the dirt. Even going to the Optometrist was fun because I saw how their office and system differ from ours. One day to give me a real local experience we skipped his dad’s car and took local transportation. I was finally in a maxi taxi guys!! Inside the maxi taxi there was a buzzer. How fancy! LOL! The color of the maxi taxi tells you the route its going. Totally different from Jamaica. We even took a bus and we went to town to sightsee. I saw their Twin Towers, I had their KFC (sorry my fellow Trinis but Jamaica’s is better. Try it and tell me if I’m lying). We passed by their Parliament, visited different shops in town and all sorts of stuff.
Give you another joke. One day we were stopping for food. I think it was Day 2 and I was asked what I wanted. Well the men ordered curry goat roti so I decided to order the same. When you order you are asked if you want slight or hot, meaning the tenacity of the pepper on the food. Well Marshall and his dad ordered hot and I ordered slight. They watched me and asked me if I’m sure. I said listen, I’m used to peppa. I’ve been around Trinidadians since 1999 I can handle slight………..Heavenly Father full of grace! I took one bite and handed it to Marshall. They laughed so hard at me it was a shame! I was drinking Stag (a beer) and water all day. I lost my appetite. All I was tasting was pepper pepper pepper. If slight tasted like that I would NEVER want to know what hot tasted like. That taught me a lesson. The pepper used in the Caribbean Cuisine stores in New York is NOTHING compared to the pepper that they pick from the native soil. Needless to say whenever I ordered anything and I was asked about pepper I said none. I even took it a step further and asked if it was seasoned with pepper I didn’t want it. I really thought I could handle spice but that ‘slight’ pepper set me straight! Again this is another thing I enjoyed about being in another country. I’ve had Trini food countless times but it tasted different there and I LOVE that! I love the fact that at 9am the bars are open and YES serving alcohol. I mean that’s my type of country. Just passing by and overhearing conversations. The people are just so laid back. I just love it!
Of course you know I had to visit the water. They took me to the famous Maracas beach where I had the famous Richard’s bake and shark. Sweet heaven!!! I had 4 bake and sharks total with Stag that day. Maracas in my opinion is overrated. Lovely but overrated. The sand looked like granulated sugar and the water was so blue but my vibes wasn’t 100% there. We drove up to Las Cuevas beach not far from there and that was nice. Reggae music was blasting and I had me a coconut water and although I didn’t go in the water the energy there sat well with me. On our way back I asked if we could stop for two more bake and sharks. Smh. If you plan on going to Trinidad and you’re going to visit Maracas or Las Cuevas, stop at Richard’s for his bake and shark. It was hmmmhmmm GOOD!
Then he took me to Tobago. We took the ferry over and it was so upscale. You can take your car with you on the ferry. We didn’t. We had two rented cars waiting for us in Tabogo (I told you he showed me a GREAT time). The checking in and boarding was just like going through an airport. The seats were just like the airline seats. Flat screen tv for our entertainment and of course bars. Hehhehehehe. Tobago is definetley the tourist spot. Its much nicer than Trinidad but I much prefer Trinidad. I feel the heart of the country is there. Now now don’t beat me up I’m just saying how I feel. I don’t mind seeing the tourist part of a country but I LOVE to see and experience the heart of a country. Take me to town. Better yet take me to the ghetto (safely). I didn’t grow up in a fancy area so I have an appreciation of that. Feel me?
I can go on and on about Trinidad and Tobago…trust me I can. I’ve included some pics from the trip. I took over 500 photos on that trip. *sigh* I miss Trinidad. I have a friend there right now and I so so wish I was there and Nattydread going soon and I wish she could pack me in her suitcase. Best believe I shall be back there again. After experiencing that wonderful country I knew I had to travel more. Once a year or twice a year wouldn’t do it. I’m in complete agreement with her that I need to travel ever 3-5 months. She’s not rushing me to do so just yet but I NEED to get away. I was supposed to go to Turks and Caicos during the summer but that didn’t happened and I learned a lesson: wait on NO ONE! I like to experience things and I like to share things with others. Travelling is something I want to share with others and so I always want to go with someone. I’ve learned that not everyone shares my enthusiasm or my NEED to travel so it’s not as important to them. I can’t be upset with others. They have their finances and so if something comes up, a promise to go to Turks and Caicos or wherever is not number one priority for them. When they cancel I feel the burn. Which is what happened. Five people cancelled on me for Turks and Caicos. I don’t think it’s safe for a young woman to travel solo but best believe this woman with a feline inside of her will be travelling solo in 2014 if she has to. We are sick and tired of waiting for people. Get your finances in order, make sure your passport isn’t expired. Let me back up, make sure you OWN a passport! If you are a green card holder stop the madness and get your citizenship. It’s a great investment. Get this American passport people!
March was my last vacation and December is around the corner. She’s impatient and I feel her walking back and forth in her cage, pacing, waiting to pounce, and ever so often giving me a human eyebrow raised look. Eyes penetrating mines, engulfing me with flames of desire, wants and needs. I’ve been saying maybe I’ll do a quick trip upstate and she’ll twitch her tail and give me a look that translates to: you can’t be serious! No, I’ve disappointed her and it’s been almost a year since my last vacation so a 1.5hr away trip is only a 8oz water to my fiery flames. The only thing that has slowed her pace somewhat is that I promised we will go away for spring break. That’s close enough. I’ve told her my financial plan and she just gave me a bored look. I know what that means. That means: I don’t care what human means it takes for us to get there just get us there or else…
I’ve told a few friends of my plans for spring break. I was thinking of Barbados but then Nattydread and I ended up looking up the Dominican Republic and it’s a helluve a lot cheaper and just as beautiful so the plan for now is to go there in April. I’ve told a few folks but in January I will send an official invite out to everyone. Who can make it make it. If it’s no one so be it. I shall put my big girl panties on and travel upon the wings of angels (for those who wondered what escaflowne means that what it means. Upon the wings of angels. An ex boyfriend gave me that name. It’s also a Japanese anime. If you have never seen escaflowne in association with me then disregard). So Stay tuned.
Truly love ya. Stay Blessed!
PS. Thank you so much for all the love and support. I love it when I get a text, phone call or a verbal confrontation of whether or not I posted anything new. It warms my heart. I shall resume writing my book in December or early next year.
Whatever animal you have within you, learn how to tame it. It may not be a beast. Maybe it’s something you are passionate about but think it’s silly and others will laugh. Don’t mind that. I assure you it is not. If you enjoy painting then paint. Cooking, then cook. Ballet then take a few classes. No one is saying to quit your day job and do this. Maybe eventually you will but until then, don’t stifle your beast ahem, I mean inner passion.
Quick story. I was taken to Namaste book store by two of my favorite buddies, Juan and Alicie and we met a guy that works there. He can read auras. He told me that the top half of me is blue (means intuitive) and the bottom half orange (which means creative). He asked me my sign and he was so shocked! He then said: “wow you really learned control.” I didn’t understand at first then I got it. I’m a fire sign and here I am blue and orange. No sign of red. Then I had a flashback of my past and I responded “Yes. Yes I have.”