At 5 hours and 10 minutes, the flight time from Toronto to Barbados is not inconsequential, but it is one that with my eyes closed and with knowing only the time that has elapsed, I can tell you exactly where we are. I love and anticipate every moment of this flight. For me it is the ritual of anticipation necessary before setting foot on my island in the sun.
Take-off, chatter, coffee and breakfast kill the beginning few hours as we head over New York City air space and then bank south over the Atlantic picking up the Caribbean beam. At 2 1/2 hours, nose pressed to the window, what I am waiting for is the first sighting of the ocean colour change from dark, menacing navy/grey to vibrant, welcoming turquoise blue and the appearance of little popcorn-like floating clouds. Like the sunshine and sparkling sea, my mood brightens.
I know that we are closer when Antigua and Barbuda come into view below. Small green and brown land masses rising from the sea, they are circled by white lines of waves and brilliant turquoise waters. Look closely enough and white sand beaches are even visible. Excitement!
Just a bit more flying time. If you are conscious of what is to come, you can feel the subtle beginnings of Air Canada’s approach, and then what I have been waiting for, the First Officer makes his announcement, Ladies and Gentlemen, we have begun our descent into Barbados. Please take your seats, place your seats and trays in the upright position and fasten your seatbelts. Yesssssss! Now my nose has become one with the window, eagerly waiting for Barbados’ north point to come into view.......and then there it is. I can’t help it; I know I am a sap, but my eyes well up with tears every time. Almost home.
Window seat, left (port) side of the plane. Remember? And now our seat selection pays off. The flight approach to Grantley Adams International Airport tracks down the Bajan west coast,
banks sharply at the Careenage allowing you to peer directly down into the sea 😲 and then levels out paralleling, our favourite, the south coast in.
Sit on the left and Barbados is laid out before you. Sit on the right and you are still looking at the sea. With mounting glee, I identify favourite locales along the coast. At Ostins, Air Canada crosses over land and descends to the airport.
Exiting the plane, sunny warmth and the smell of jet fuel hit you. Sounds crazy, but at that moment I love the pungent smell of jet fuel.
Step on the tarmac, head towards customs, hear the lilt of Bajan accents and smell the sweet salty breezes. Home at last! ❤️🌴🌞😎🇧🇧