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No Fun and Games: The Barbados Olympics 2021

Odd Cents - Lifestyle

Someone asked me what was going on because I haven’t posted anything to the blog or Instagram in a while. If you know me well, you know that I keep to myself and I am prone to absences from time to time. But this latest break from the interwebs was because of another reason.

I didn’t really want to brag, but I was competing at the Barbados Olympics.

Yes…. Not many people know that I have some skills that I had to put to good use over the last few months. The events were gruelling, but I when the last day of competition rolled around on August 8, 2021, I ended the championships with a few medals to my name.

Barbados Olympics 2021

As the years (really days, but it feels like years) go by, I find that training is becoming harder and harder. As soon as you get in shape to face one event, somebody adds a new qualifying standard to it. This means that you have to go back to training to ensure that you can meet the new standards.

Since COVID hit in 2020, I have been training for anything and everything under the sun. I was building my emergency fund, cutting back on spending, and keeping a close eye on my finances. I felt as though this was the best approach given what the world was facing at the time. There was so much uncertainty and we were all hoping for a positive change in 2021.

However, 2021 came and it seemed as though my training was inadequate. I was unprepared for some of the stuff that happened. There were increases in food prices, increases in gas prices; increases in building materials and I had to pay back income tax. Nevertheless, I put my head down and got to work preparing for my core events.

Core Events

Some of the events in the Barbados Olympics for 2021 that I took part in were:

1. Stretching my dollars and cents

I was stretching my last few dollars until July’s payday so I stayed home, cooked food, and it worked out.

2. Supporting small businesses and solepreneurs in Barbados

I visited a pop up shop to show some support for Plant Lyfe and bought ackees from the guys who sell at the side of the road

3. Working hard on my side hustles

I have been working hard on my side hustles and searching for new ones. This was very challenging because it’s extremely difficult to focus on one thing.

4. Trying out the milkshakes from @chillz

I was on a vacation and I decided that I deserved a treat for all of my hard work. I’m going to treat myself again with a mudslide sometime soon.

5. Setting a budget for the supermarket

It was brutal setting a budget and and sticking to it, especially when buying specialty items like goat cheese. I’m trying to lose weight, so I had to cut some things out of my budget.

6. Fulling up my gas tank

I spared a few minutes to full up my gas tank after a heads up from @itsjustolu and @sparkfoodsafety before the government of Barbados tightened the grip on my neck. Gas prices in Barbados are on an upward trend. It’s so high, that Barbados has the highest gas prices in the Caribbean. This is why I was never in favour of abolishing a fixed road tax for a variable gas tax)

7. Thinking about paying down debt

I’m trying to decide if I should pay off my line of credit and if I am disciplined enough to save that money. If I do pay it off it means that I will have to use my savings. But this means the line of credit will have to go forever.

8. Playing the vaccine waiting game

I’ve been waiting to see if the government is going to really force people to take the vaccine. Even though the Prime Minister says that the government is not moving to mandatory vaccines, some companies are mandating that staff be vaccinated or receive tests before their shifts. Anybody checking the gazette for changes to the legislation?

9. Who benefits if Barbados is a republic?

I’m still trying to understand the benefit of Barbados becoming a republic and trying to figure out who thought Nov 30 was a good idea (Like why?)

10. Making plans to close one of my bank accounts

I’m tired of bank charges and bank fees. $7.50 a month for what??? I’m tempted to close another account and one of my credit cards too.

11. Analysing the Central Bank’s latest figures about Barbados’ performance

Something about these figures and commentary does not feel right. I’m still looking for my UWI statistics books because I’m not convinced, and I have many questions.

12.  Working on my emergency fund

I decided that I need to get my emergency fund to three months’ expenses as soon as possible (The way that things are going these days, it makes sense to be prepared for anything. Making sure that my bills are covered for at least three months is a start.)

As you can see, it’s been a rough couple of weeks, and the events were not for the weak. Even though I am tired after all this action, the work does not stop here. I have to get in better shape to deal with whatever is coming for the rest of 2021 and 2022. Are you ready to train with me?

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