Is that a cliché blog title? I feel like it is.
The entire flight here didn’t feel real. The Calgary airport is so familiar to me that sitting at Starbucks waiting to board with Terry just felt like I was… on a fifteen minute break. It felt wrong being there in street clothes. Where was my garish red blazer and name tag?
Everything from that point on moved faster and faster. In fact, the last twenty days have felt like the universe has been propelling me forward and it’s all I can do to keep on my feet.
The flight was just under 5 hours long, which was better than expected. It was smooth, and around hour 4 we could see the ocean, bright and blue, and becoming more and more azure the further south we came. Terry had the window seat, but I managed to film our landing. Once we came down from the clouds I could see what I figured was Baha Mar, but we had our doubts at first that the behemoth taking over the skyline was in fact Terry’s new workplace – but sure enough. I’d done enough research on google maps that I knew the northwest edge of Nassau a little too well for someone who had never been there. Yes, Baha Mar is a giant, towering over the Meliá next door where we would be staying. I also saw the colourful Compass Pointe, a resort a few minute walk away from our soon-to-be apartment. This came along with the realisation that our new home will be directly under a flight path.
Cool for me – I love planes. But I’m a bit nervous how loud it’s going to be. I’m counting on the beach and the view to make up for it.
It took us about forty minutes to get through customs. Two long line-ups filled the stanchions, but the room was spacious, and I could see palm trees and birds outside. A little after 4pm. Sunny. Customs let us into baggage, but then they were hesitant to let us out.
“What’s that big box?”
“A computer. And a monitor, and keyboard.”
“When are you taking that back out?”
“Maybe two years, eventually-”
“What do you mean eventually?”
A few explanations and a brief admiration of Terry’s fish skeleton tattoo, and we were on our way. Our driver was an employee for Baha Mar named Ryan, who was kind enough to point out a variety of important locations during our ride to the resort. We stopped at a stand that supposedly has some of the best conch salad on the island, but then continued to the resort and he told us to call him in a couple hours so he could take us down to the Fish Fry. Talk about a good welcome!
After some snapper and conch fritters, Ryan was good enough to tour us around downtown Nassau briefly before bringing us back. Safe to say our first three hours were overwhelming. Not to mention, neither of us knew for sure that our stay in Meliá would be all-inclusive, but it was confirmed for us at check-in that this was the case, and we even had a few extra perks. Besides the whole “moving to Nassau” thing, the fact that I now had two weeks to myself at an all-inclusive was even more for me to wrap my head around. I haven’t been to a beach or a resort since I was five years old in Cuba. Just the idea of unlimited alcohol and coca-cola is enough to cheer me up.
The two of us spent our first day soaking up some sun, a little bit of swimming, and a lot of alcohol. …maybe too much. Then, we promptly fell asleep for a majority of the afternoon. My first day alone was less exciting – a mixture of tiredness and anxiety kept me in my room all day. Despite sleeping in until eleven, today was better, and I headed out to the beach for a couple hours, listening to some music and writing a messy entry in my bullet journal. Freckles that have been hiding for a couple years are starting to pop out again, but I have to be careful. A quick glance around the beach at any given time reminds me that I’m one of the palest people here. I can’t just sit in the sun for two hours like some of them can. Hopefully I’ll get there within a few months.
PS: The resort is home to at least ten stray cats, who I’m assuming live off of dropped food and mice. They’re pretty friendly but lose interest fast. I don’t know what some resort-stayers think of them, but for me, it’s a bonus.
And some videos for the cat lovers: