"Flight crew prepare for landing," said the captain over the speakers.
The roaring of the engines changes slightly in pitch as the plane slows down to make its descent onto Mahé, the main island of Seychelles. Our bodies dip, the cabin shakes, the ride is getting bumpier. The winds are strong. Only the best pilots fly to Seychelles. If you start the descent too early, you might hit the water, if you start too late, you might hit the mountains and on top of it all you have the strong current of the wind pushing against the plane. This is one of those flights where you want to clap once the wheels touch and then clap again when you realize the pilot hit the breaks on time.
As we fly over Mahé, I can see the toll rooftops, the dense green jungle rich with wildlife, the waves crashing on the empty shores, the glistening of the tombstones, the small fishing boats making their way into (or out of) the mainland. I take it all in, the images, the view, and I realize that I'm actually landing in familiar territory.
I remember coming here at 17, 12 years after my first visit. What a strange world! Lizards in the house, dogs in cages and roaming homeless in the streets, unfriendly cats, weird smells, breadfruit, jackfruit, scaly fish, crabs crawling all over the beach. I was a foreigner in the country where I was born. But this time, I feel safe, comfortable, and aware. I enjoy the lizards, I like the cats being free and wild, I like breadfruit and jackfruit, I like watching the crabs sneak back into their sand tunnels, dogs are really friendly and adorable, and I get to see my family!
I'm pretty much digging this island life. Sipping my tea at 6 a.m. watching the sun as it rises over the Indian ocean, my view clouded by luscious green mountains and far away boats. I mean....Can't ask for much more.
I work at a small cafe called Chatter Box on Eden Island as a waitress using the time and opportunity to network and make connections. It's only been five days and I feel like I've been here weeks.
Taking this first week to test the waters and then who knows?
It's a world of possibility.