I had the opportunity to attend one of the Blackest yacht weeks in history. I’m not sure if I lucked out with timing or if Jesus LaDarius Christ himself chose to bless me, but whatever the reason, it was lit. Having a sea of friendly brown faces around while spending 7 days sailing was comforting.
This article is part 3 in my series of articles about the Yacht Week-Croatia. The first covers booking your yacht, the second covers planning/packing, and this one is about my experience.
You may be wondering why I’ve chosen to publish the 3rd part of the series prior to the second. While packing and planning are important, I feel it’s even more vital that I share my experience of Yacht Week-Croatia, as a Black woman, with my followers. Part 2 will be released within the next week. But for now, y’all gonna get this truth.
Prior to my trip I watched all the Yacht Week videos, viewed their hash tags on social media, and read articles by popular travel bloggers. None of these prepared me for what was undoubtedly one of the most interesting weeks I’ve ever experienced.
I had friends attend prior years and I wish they had given me some tips. So if you’re reading this article right now and you’re unapologetically, undoubtedly Black AF, take heed to my words in order to prepare for one of the whitest inventions since fluffernut sandwiches and green bean casserole.
1. Prepare to hear gentrified Rap and Hip-Hop. I heard a seasonless version of Ignition (Remix) that still haunts me to this day. I may or may not have shouted out, “What is this flaming hot garbage?” several times.
2. Practice your side eye and throwing shade in various languages and dialects. You will be tested. You will be tried. But if you learn to throw more shade than a forest of redwoods you will be able to see yourself through.
3. Wear a protective style. Don’t even think about packing a synthetic wig, sis. Salt water + Futura hair is a no. You’ll look raggedy. Crochet braids, box braids, or cornrows are all excellent choices.
4. Be ready for peak caucacity. Whites with locs,whites in sandals and socks, whites attempting to twerk on rocks.
5. You will either be the token Black in photos or not photographed at all. I’m sure it’s because the photographers don’t see color🙃.
6. You will learn the meaning of “We all we got.” ‘Nuf said.
7. If you don’t like EDM, don’t do it, reconsider, read some literature on the subject aka this entire article. One Dutch DJ did play “Bodak Yellow”, “Antidote”, and “Wild Thoughts” at the Riviera Chic party, however it’s pretty much all EDM all the time. I’m not entirely sure why this is the main genre played. Because whenever hip-hop came on the entire crowd got hype. But I digress.
8. Micro aggressions abound. Locals will stare, call you chocolate, make kissing noises, YT Yacht Weekers will attempt to leave trash on your table, or invite you to their parties solely to seem hip, etc… I’ve heard repeated comments from Black women that, “The men in Croatia love us.” My only response to that is there’s a difference between being fetishized and being admired respectably.
The constant staring by Croatian locals was extremely off putting. I’ve been to over 25 countries and I’ve never in my life felt so uncomfortable. My crew and I did have a positive experience with two Croatians that had adopted sisters from the Congo. Seeing the joy on the little girls’ faces because they were able to speak to people that looked like them made the entire trip worth it. However, I genuinely hope that they’re treated better in the country growing up than we were while on our trip.
9. If you want to explore Croatia, this is not the trip for you. My favorite day of the entire week was one we spent exploring the island of Vis. Outside of this day our schedules were packed with Yacht Week parties and sailing. This gave us little to no time to explore the various islands we traveled to.
10. If you attended a PWI, you’ve had at least 4 years of preparation for this week. Channel the patience you used to get through that experience for this trip. Remember how you felt getting dragged to that Phi Beta Mayo basement party freshmen year? Multiply that experience over 7 days.
The purpose of this article is not to dissuade any Black people from attending Yacht Week. And all of these opinions are mine alone. However I feel I have an obligation to deliver the real real to my readers.
If you’re still interested in attending I hope you have a great trip and are thoroughly prepared. May Black Jesus, Auntie Maxine, and the force be with you.
*This is the 3rd article of a 3 part series I did on The Yacht Week. I previously covered booking the yacht here, planning and preparation (flight, lodging, and budget) will be discussed next week, and finally this is my post trip recap.