Jolly Roger Pirate Cruise in Barbados
The Jolly Roger is an All-You-Can-Drink Booze Cruise that sails out of Bridgetown in Barbados. It’s a fake pirate ship, one in which the Captain has frosted the tips of his hair and speaks into a microphone like a strip club DJ. There are probably about 50 people on the boat, 40 of whom are college-aged partiers and the rest an eclectic scattering of the misinformed and optimistic.
The ocean is a colour of an unbelievable perfection.
The sun is shining and there is a clarifying breeze off the water.
Confident and pretty girls, each one with a naturally flirty smile, pose for photographs that will soon appear on Facebook. Other girls, with accents as sweet and naïve as a romance movie, have just arrived from England. These girls are so pale and young that they look vulnerable, as if they need somebody there to wrap a towel around their shoulders.
After about 20 minutes an announcement is made that the Captain has an urgent message for one of the passengers, Samara. Looking as if she knows she’s about to be crowned beauty queen, Samara, smiling back at her friends, coyly approaches. It’s her 21st birthday! She ‘s given a pink sash and has her photograph taken with her two giggling sisters, a picture of joy and beauty she will return to for the rest of her life.
The boat anchors for lunch and Jet Skis, like predators, circle the boat, the young men beckoning to the girls, “Let me take you for a ride, sister.” There is snorkeling and swimming on offer, and everybody, some swinging off a rope, other diving off a board, splash into the water. As if at the center of dance circle, each one is briefly the focus of all attention, and they are all so young and perfect that they’re practically emitting light.
A pretty German woman with a warm and sweet face has taken her mother on this cruise. The older woman is probably in her mid-70s, and it was clearly difficult for her to get in the water but she did. And when she arose into the throng of 20 year olds, all screaming and laughing and dancing, she, too, became young and luminous, and the look of shared joy, satisfaction and love that passed between daughter and mother stopped time right there in it’s beautiful tracks.