December 15, 2004

Barbados (Tuesday)

Though the folks from the Ribits choir (Revelation in Barbados in the Sun - a 'pick n mix' of people from various Revelation choirs in the UK) were staying in the same hotel as us, we hadn't been able to meet up till Monday night after the reception. Today - Tuesday - again we suddenly had a busier schedule than expected visiting two schools, but it was well worth it!

In the first school we sang a few songs in a huge open air hall during the morning gathering. The kids were a bit reserved but seemed to open up as soon as Jon (Finnis) started his solo for 'Lean on me' – we got a fanclub going on there I think! Although personally I'm a bit tired of singing that song, apparently it is a crowd pleaser as with the next school we visited again the kids started to cheer up as soon as they heard the first chords of this tune.

As soon as we got off the bus, we were greated by the students of the second school (Harrison College, I believe) who wanted to invite us to their afternoon prayer. Unfortunately, we couldn't stick i) around that long, but it already showed the enthusiasm these kids had for a bunch of weird English (generalisation, I know) people singing at their school. I kind of forgot what we did exactly at this school, but I think we first sang a few songs for some students, then waited for an hour chilling in their (not so much open air) hall singing and rehearsing our songs, and finally sang some more songs for some more students and actually teaching them the parts to one of our songs! The workshop (teaching the song) was great – it was hard to get the students to actually join in, but as soon as you got a few enthusiastic kids, the rest joined in as well! Seeing them groove to 'My Redeemer Lives' really puts a smile on your face!

Before everyone'd pass out we were treated on some well fried chicken wings with BBQ sauce and cold water. I was planning to go and see some green Bajan (from Barbados) monkeys but was a bit too tired by now and more up for a swim and meeting the Ribits folks. Which is basically what I did, chilling in the afternoon on the porch listening to them rehearse their songs. As they are from different choirs, they hadn't had time to rehearse any of the songs before they came to Barbados, and even though they'd already had two concerts, they wanted to do well in the final (supposedly big) concert with us. It was a great way to spend the afternoon and really got me into the relaxed-man Bajan mood!

The relaxed-man Bajan mood was soon over however, as we were told that not all of us could go sing on telly for Good Morning Barbados! Luckily I was allowed to go as I knew the song (a lush version of 'While Shepherds Washed') but had to gamble my place and lost, as for some obscure reason I thought 1 was the luckiest number in 1,2, and 3 (I know – whoever picks 1?!). Was a bit down for the rest of the night, and to make it worse I felt like everyone gave me the evil eye for the rest of the night and the next morning (it's hard to keep this angst-free sorry!). Even the most beautiful sunset in the world couldn't do anything about it, though it gave me something to do for 30 minutes.

I tried to get over myself and listen to the selected people rehearse for the TV show. Didn't really help but took some more pictures. Had a great dinner – pot-bellied flying fish, fried, so basically fish and chips – and some good drinks, plus a night on the beach and swimming in the sea to close off the day. Since drunk swimming at night isn't the brightest idea ever, I decided that no one was allowed any further in the sea than me, though Mar'yn nicely observed that everyone had to be at least to metres on shore as that was where I was standing making the statement… Ah well, at least chasing the crabs on the beach was fun!

i) Literally stick, as it was some 30-odd degrees and we were inside. Obviously windows could open but the draft changed direction every other minute so it was hard to remain cool.

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