Caribbean, Story, Travel

Being Set Up During Our Honeymoon in Barbados

Honeymoon in Barbados in Barbados
We look like babies! Look at all that virgin skin!

For a country that has such a hard stance on drug possession and intent to sell, you would not believe the amount of times that Shaun and I were propositioned for a sale during our honeymoon in Barbados. Even going around a roundabout in our moke at 30mph we had people shouting at us through their car window trying deal to us while driving. While I wish it was because I was special, hot, scrumptious, [insert adjective here], it apparently is quite commonplace.

Honeymoon in Barbados
Our awesome little moke!

Our honeymoon had come to an end and we were dragging our luggage out of the taxi to the airport. Not 3 minutes had gone by when a man came up to us and slyly asked Shaun, “You good man?” as he lifted his fingers to his mouth in the oh so familiar joint fashion and Shaun, trying to play cool and not make a scene, looked at the man, slowly nodded and said, “Yeah man, we’re cool.”

We made our way through the chaos of the airport, complete with guards in camouflage with AK47s, to our gate to await our small plane back to Newark. [Tangent: We had a small double engine plane that was not even half full for the flight to Barbados and when we arrived we were greeted with a Virgin double-decker airbus from the UK spilling out people.] As this was our first experience of international travel, we were already bit freaked out needless to say.

A security guard came up to Shaun and I and politely asked us to wait in a certain line for the Barbados flight. For some reason it never crossed our mind how he knew we were even on that flight. It is then that our mystery dealer man magically appeared at the podium in a security guard/screening uniform and cracked an ugly smile at us. It was like I wanted to shout, “It was you Colonel Mustard! In the conservatory! With the candlestick!”

And then it hit us. Holy shit. This guy totally tried to set us up for failure. The pamphlets at the airport kept saying there was a 20 year prison sentence for possession and this guy wanted to see us rotting in a jail cell. It was absolutely surreal.

They spent the next 20 minutes searching through every piece of clothing and piece of tech gear we had.

Grabbing Shaun’s Nintendo SP from his hands, they carefully went over every nook and cranny to attempt to find our non-existent stash.

Knowing we were going to be okay I sat there bewildered that something like that would happen to us. Little did I know it was only the beginning to being profiled as a pothead for the rest of my travel days. 😛

Have you ever had a similar experience?

Honeymoon in Barbados
My fav place in the world – Bottom Bay

18 thoughts on “Being Set Up During Our Honeymoon in Barbados”

  1. Oh man that is awful! Can’t believe he tried to set you up! That is just wrong!
    I have def. Been stereotyped before as well and Randy gets it bad whenever his hair is long and we head to Mexico. One time in san Felipe he was actually grabbed by two cops as they attempted to put him in the back of the car. They literally saw us walking, pulled over the car and jumped out And snagged him. Luckily I knew enough Spanish and I grabbed him by his hoodie and literally played tug of war w the cops. I knew enough Spanish to yell at them and I refused to let him go. Finally they let him go. I was pissed! He has also been shaken down by police at the border. Luckily he has my dark hair and skin to help him out. Having dark skin has always been an asset for me in Mexico and central America. I bet you’ll find the same in SA too 😉

    1. @Bethany: I figured that having darker skin will save our skins one day. I’m already wary of the whole interracial relationship thing too. 😛 Do you know why they tried to take him away?

  2. Been there, done that 😉

    Well, haven’t actually been there (in Barbados) but have had very similar experiences in Costa Rica and Venezuela, nothing scary though, they usually assume young foreigners are automatically into something fishy so I’m used to being searched when travelling around Central and South America.

    The weirdest “search” I’ve had though was at London Gatwick airport, where police thought (for some reason beyond my comprehension) that I was travelling with more than 10.000 pounds on me, I think my first thought was “I wish I were” 😉

    Anyway thanks for sharing

    1. @Xixerone: “I wish I were.” LOL! That gave me a good chuckle. 😀 Hearing other people’s stories makes me feel a little more normal with what has happened to us.

      1. LOL, on second thought, having 10K GBP in my pocket would have probably broght more trouble upon me so I could settle for say 5.000 😛

        I think at airports nothing is weird anymore though. Here’s more material:

        In Margarita Island’s Airport I had an embarassing involving a pack of condoms in my bag and a guard asking about the “bubble gum I was carrying” … no comments.

        in Munich they had me take my camera out of its bag and make a picture with it to prove it’s an actual camera and not a super fancy bomb.

        In Bulgaria they passed my passport over to at least 5 guards who wanted to make sure I wasn’t a Bulgarian national with a fake EU passport trying to leave the country… I had to show them my library card and my gym member card.

        In London (again) they confiscated my little bottle of iodine because it “looked dangerous”…

        feel more normal now? xD

  3. I’ve never been set up but there are plenty of people in Central America that offered me drugs and once in Colombia I was stopped at night and searched. They thought I had come from the beach and would have drugs on me. Although if I had I think they would have just asked for a bribe.

  4. WOW…we were just in Barbados a couple weeks ago and granted, we were just there a day on a cruise, and it was the one port we weren’t offered drugs! LOL We loved it and have thought about coming back for a few days to do some more diving, but hearing the airport story makes me a bit wary.

    In general, we’ve been pretty lucky on our travels in regards to airport searches and stuff — the worst I’ve had was flying into Japan from Amsterdam. They went through everything in my luggage and she groped me in places only my husband does! I always noticed when I used to fly home from Amsterdam (my husband lived in Netherlands when we were first dating) the drug dogs were always around for those inbound flights. Not sure why or how, but my friend managed to get home some “souvenirs” from one of her trips with us — she’s so lucky she didn’t get busted and I’m just glad I wasn’t on her flight!

    1. @Erin: This was back in 2004 so things may have changed a bit. 😛 I would still go back in a heartbeat. I LOVE Barbados. As for your friend – she is SUPER lucky!

  5. Hi.

    I recently found and have started following your blog. I notice you are from Austin and we just pulled into town today. Any suggestions?

    Safe travels (and sorry about the pothead profiling!)

    Tally Ho!


    1. @M: Less infuriated and more freaked out. It was our first trip abroad. Good thing we got over it because I love to travel. It just sucks that if that was the first impression for most, it would have been their last.

  6. I have been there a lot, but mostly it was in America. Police officers in Grand Central Station NYC tried to get me and a friend killed by sending us into Harlem at 1am. Officers held my friend Paije and I hostage at a border-check while they tried to get us to tell them “where we hid the stuff” (there was nothing on us). Also, as a hitchhiker, I get routinely stopped whenever entering a small town and asked to show my ID and if they can search my bag. All. The. TIME! It really is out of hand at this point.

  7. hoooooo that is FUCKED!!! i’ve stood by for 10 years as francisco got “randomly selected” for everything while i breezed on by, but nothing like this ever happened. you told this SO well- way to play a plot twist- BAM! so glad you didn’t fall prey to that slime ball 🙂

    1. @Lorna: Yeah, it was really insane. I hadn’t even remembered this story until I was talking about my tattoos and how they can be a pain in the ass.

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