We woke up the following day to Pancake day or Mari Gras as is celebrated in St Barth. From the balcony I noticed that the sea was incredibly choppy with waves crashing from all directions. There were parts were two waves would charge towards each other before colliding. I had never seen waves act in that way with currents pushing from multiple directions.
After spending the previous day relaxing on a beach belonging to the luxury Isle de France hotel, we decided to spend today doing something a little different.
Mardi Gras is a big deal in St Barth and a carnival will parade through the capital of Gustavia. We decided to drive down to Gustavia and see the carnival. We weren't sure what to expect at all.
The roads through the capital were closed so we had to park outside it and walk. The walk was pretty scenic with the ocean to our right and a cactus-covered mountain to our left. I could hear the waves crashing against the rocks beside us as we walked into Gustavia.
We arrived at the carnival. It was mayhem. I had never been to anything like this in my life and the atmosphere was buzzing. There were people everywhere in crazy and extravagant costumes. People were dressed as pirates, cowboys, babies, the statue of liberty, clowns, bees... I could go on! The most interesting for me however was a man on a motorbike with a puppy on his lap and a dog in a basket on the side.
It was a fun day. I felt like I saw a different side to the island that I hadn't witnessed before. St Barth had always seemed a quiet, sophisticated island but the Mari Gras festival showed that the locals sure know how to party and have some fun, dressing in some really crazy costumes. Busy events like this aren't normally my scene but I actually embraced it and had a great time.
When we arrived back at the villa, the heavens opened up and a torrential downpour took hold of the island. A thick fog clouded our view, concealing the rough ocean from us. The choppy waters from this morning had clearly been a sign that the weather was about to turn. There's something quite magical about the downpours in the Caribbean.