FLY GUY!

[ 0 ] May 18, 2015 |
Neil Gibbs

Neil Gibbs

I first met Neil about six years ago.   He was working on the south coast at a beautiful little restaurant named Cafe’ Luna.   Neil was, and always has been, a regular at South Point (one of the best surf spots in Barbados) so I would see him in the water all the time.   A natural regular footer, Neil always managed to slip into the nice little lefts at South Point effortlessly on his backside, grabbing rail in a shack or whacking the lip with power and grace.   For anyone that knows Neil, we know that his persona in the water is only half the story.

dropping into the green room

dropping into the green room

Fly Guy grounded in the shack

Fly Guy grounded in the shack

Outside of the ocean everyone knows Neil as Fly Guy.   The party starter, the life of the party, the expert social butterfly guy.   You can’t walk down the street with him and not hear a local or a tourist for that matter scream his name.   Over the years I have become very good friends with Fly, almost like a brother from another mother.   He is one of the first people I call when I land back on the rock, excited and pale I scream, “NEIL!   Where to tonight, where’s the party?” and of course he replies with all the right answers.   Fly is truly a man of the people.   He was put on this earth to bring people together and make them happy, like a gift of gab, he charms the tourists and brings them together with his local friends making them feel at home, if only for a moment, but that’s a moment these people never forget.

Fly Guy charming

Fly Guy charming

Shoot the breeze with Neil

Shoot the breeze with Neil

Currently Fly is working at the legendary south coast bar/restaurant Cafe’ Sol where he seamlessly blends his charm with his skills as a bartender.   I recently had the pleasure of pulling him aside for an interview exclusively for The Real Barbados.   Below is our short sit down.

TRB: So, Neil tell us a little about yourself, and thanks again for taking time out of mingling and charming 😉

NEIL: No problem Eric, thanks for thinking of me.   Where to begin?   Well, my name is Neil Andrew Gibbs and I love to surf.   I live on the South Coast of Barbados and work at Cafe’ Sol, one of the busiest bars/restaurants on the entire island!   I don’t get into the water as much as I should anymore, being a night owl may have something to do with that LOL!   I love bartending at Cafe’ Sol and I work for perhaps the best manager in Bim, Kris Whitton.   Cafe’ Sol is tough work because it’s so busy but I end up meeting practically every tourist that steps foot on the rock.   So I get to put my people skills to work every night.   I love when a new group of travelers come into the bar and it’s their first time in Barbados.   I like to see the look on their freshly burnt faces as they walk in and begin their night.   We have the most popular and best happy hour in Barbados so we get everyone starting their nights at Sol.   Two happy hours actually, the most popular being our 10-12am two-for-one happy hour!   After that everyone is tuned up and they go wherever the party takes them but it always starts at Cafe’ Sol.   Trust me, after a few of Sol’s special margaritas it really don’t matter where they end up, it’s going to be fun LOL!   Anyway, my real passion is surfing and Barbados surf culture is the best.   Barbados has loads of waves but my favorite breaks are Soup Bowl, Tropicana, South Point, & Brandons.   The best time of the year is September and October because there is a lot of hurricane activity in the Atlantic and Soup Bowl can get unbelievably epic!   Just ask our adopted son, Kelly Slater.   For me, there is no better feeling than paddling out at 6a.m. and seeing sheet glass barreling waves move in as the sun rises on the east, it’s pure bliss.   The south is very consistent from December to April and this year April was extremely good!   As the summer is beginning to settle in it can get pretty flat around here but also the wind dies a bit and you can find some pretty fun shacks at a few secret spots around the south east and east coast, plus up by Soup Bowl and that whole stretch of the east there is always a clean waves in the summer.   I’m looking forward to our quiet season and getting barreled actually.  

TRB: Thanks for the insight and the time brother.   Anything else you’d like the readers to know?

NEIL: Not really LOL!   Seriously though people think that life on a small island can get boring and at times I have felt this but overall I am thankful to be here in paradise.   I work at one of the coolest bars on earth, I’m healthy, I have surf at my fingertips and I get to meet people from all over the world every week.   One day soon I’m going to come stay with you though up in Jersey, get myself some rights! ULULULU!!!

work at Cafe Sol

work at Cafe Sol

Fly Guy rail-to-rail

Fly Guy rail-to-rail

Freedom

Freedom

Fly's Paradise

Fly’s Paradise

The Real Barbados would like to thank Neil Gibbs, Cafe’ Sol, and Barbados for their friendship and hospitality.   Barbados is truly an island paradise with no shortage of things to do.   Next time you’re in Bim, make sure to seek out Neil Gibbs either in the water or at Sol.   You will have a great time I assure you.   Thanks for reading and feel free to click on the images for an expanded look.   Stay tuned for our next article on Barbados Surf Icon Jonathan Reece!

Neil @ Soup Bowl

Neil @ Soup Bowl

TRB

TRB

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Category: Barbados Luxury, Island Lifestyle, Local Nightlife, Music & Film, Surf Culture

About the Author ()

I have forged strong relationships with many wonderful local Barbadians. The experiences I have had in Barbados have helped to shape me into the man I am today and I will take them with me forever. Barbados has had such a positive impact on my life, and now I would like to help other people experience The Real Barbados. Contact us at barbados@outlook.com

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