Mind Your Manners, Bahama Mama

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Hit-the-ground running. Think outside the box. Off the beaten track. Go real or go home.

Map depicting New Providence Island which is c...

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Bahamas. 3 days. Dead of winter. Great escape. Airport smells like the opposite of a tropical paradise.

Atlantis? Seriously? Unexpected surprise but I’ll take it. Few martini’s can’t hurt. Food is garbage. Getting urge to venture off campus, outside the gated community.

Look like a tourist. Hate it but can’t help it. Feeling brave. Scared too. Unknown lands. Grab a cab, cross the bridge. They drive on the left? 10pm. Nassau. Ever play Grand Theft Auto? I see my life flash before my eyes, twice at least. 5 minute ride turns into 40. $10 dollar ride turns into $50. Expected. Challenge the ruling? Not in your life! $10 left. Enough to eat? Enough to get back?

Drops us off in front of the “best Fish Fry in Nassau.” Bay Street. His recommendation. Host welcomes us. Grab a table. Wait. No service. We’re the only tourists in the room. Locals look irritated. Lethal looks. Get up, grab a menu. No service. Wait. Leave after 5 minutes. See the same Host. Says, “Wasn’t that the best Fish Fry you’ve ever had?.” We nod in disbelief.

Go next door. Prices are high. Need a bank. Girlfriend with me. Leave her alone not knowing where to go, how long I’ll be. Need help, advice. See a police officer. Humble approach. “Excuse me officer, could you…” Cuts me off. He’s angry. Stop in my tracks. Am I on Royal Bahamian Police ground without permission? Did I break the law? Am I trespassing?

“In Nassau, we say good evening first young man.” Kidding? Frantic. He is of no help. Unsympathetic, condescending asshole. I run. 3 miles. Flip-flops. Find a bank. Insert bank card upside down and backwards? Lucky to find bank employee, confirms it’s the correct way. Bank card close to being chewed up. Run back. 3 miles. Barefoot. Out of breath, sweating I sit down for real Fish Fry.

Worth it. Recommended. Nothing like local grub, made by locals. Describe the meal? Details? Can’t. Remember more the work it took to enjoy it. Sorry.

Cab it back? No. Walked. 3 hours. Across the bridge. Should have done this coming in. Glad I didn’t. Risk you take by going out of the reservation. Without it, there is no experience to remember, share.

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