I woke up to the sound of a passing sun shower. I had written out my itinerary for the day in Antigua. I attended the White Fete the night before. The fete was amazing. Soca and reggae tunes played in this Caribbean style rave. Thousands of people attended the fete. Drinks were included in the ticket price. The event was a party animal’s dream come true! There were various wet bars serving top shelf spirits from Hennessy to Patron to Absolute.
Upon entering the venue, I was greeted with a champagne flute filled with Verdi. I stood in a quiet corner until I warmed up to the environment. I’m a people watcher. I spent much time admiring how well dressed everyone was in their upscale, all white attire. I was unprepared for the event, but I felt comfortable with myself and the outfit I scrambled to put together. I wore a white T-shirt with the words Money, Power, Respect written in shiny gold lettering. The shirt is a clear indication of who I am and what I represent. Party goers were aware that I wasn’t a local, but I made it clear that I had arrived. It was my first night on the island and I had no expectations of attending such a grand event, but everyone from my taxi driver to hotel staffers raved about this annual fete. I just had to see what the buzz was about.
When I felt comfortable enough, I made my way to the happenings. I found a good spot closer to the stage and planted myself there for a while. The bass from the speakers were so strong I could feel it in my chest. Colorful laser lights flashed interchangeably with black lights; I felt like I was in the opening scene of the movie Belly. A drone flew above the crowd recording bits of the evening. I could feel the air blowing from the drone’s propellers as it hovered above me. Every single moment of the night felt perfect. The drinks had taken over me and I felt free. I wasn’t drunk and belligerent. I was at ease; feeling like I was exactly where I belonged. I felt like I had found a significant piece of happiness that I had been missing for a very long while. I was all alone on this small island surrounded by thousands of strangers, yet I felt right at home. I danced to everything from Justin Beiber’s “Sorry” to a native soca band I grew up listening to, Burning Flames’ “Workey Workey”. I never experienced a party like this in my life.
After the fete, I made a stop for some jerk chicken at a food stand on a dark unpaved road. The chicken was fresh off the grill. Jerked and doused in BBQ sauce, it was exactly what I needed after a boozy filled evening. I went back to my hotel suite and sat on the balcony to enjoy my BBQ jerk chicken. I sat quietly reflecting on the fun night I just had. I ate my chicken while counting stars. My first night in Antigua gave me life and I realize now, instead of counting stars, I should have been counting my blessings.