Friday, June 30, 2006


Things to get or do/things to remember to take to Diva launch on Sunday:
1. Cups
2. Herbal teas, water, juice
3. Edibles
4. Incense
5. Candles
6. Offering
7. Diva CDs x 2
8. Diva printouts
9. Singing bowl
10. Music
11. Call Sharon
Things to get or do in preparation for/remember to take to the Greenlight REvolution on Saturday:
1. Photocopies
2. Blanket for buskers
3. Collect water from O'Leo
4. Sidewalk chalk
5. Camera, tape, mike
6. Bring programme for Chanzo


Thursday, June 29, 2006

Maybe I'll write something later


Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Portal to Quest

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One of the film strips on the Diva lamp
Before you know it, it will be Sunday 2nd July, 2006 and an intimate group of about twenty to twenty-five honoured guests will be arriving at Quest, the venue for the launch of Diva. Unbeknownst to everyone, Diva has been undergoing minor transformations (fine-tuning) in preparation for the big day. I have not been documenting these on the blog because the launch will be the place where she is revealed in her entirety once and for all.
I like the fact that the launch is taking place at Quest, which is a fantastic bookstore, very warm and cosy and always smelling like incense and aromatherapy oils. It is run by Allison Holder, who welcomes every customer like a special guest or friend and lovingly wraps all purchases as if they are unique gifts.
The name Quest fits the spirit of Diva. It conjures up phrases/concepts like 'the the spiritual quest', the 'quest for knowledge', 'quest for deeper meaning', quest for the Holy Grail ... and so on. The word 'quest' is always applied to more intense searches and journeys, often of a personal and/or spiritual nature. One generally does not embark upon a quest for bread at the grocery.
Diva's launch will be simple and symbolic ... like Diva herself. Undoubtedly there will be something unique and special on many levels for each of us as we enter Quest ... not through the 'door', but through the portal (a word which, like 'quest' traditionally brings to mind the sense of a deeper, grander, more intense and powerful entrance and exit point).


Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Raining aliens

Interesting answers to yesterday's questions. I was awakened this morning by heavy rain, thunder, lightning and wind. These things always provide a different experience for me, for they themselves are never the same. Interesting that 11, Kaivalya and Simone all mentioned rain as one of their two favourite natural phenomena. It's one of mine as well (but 'rainbow' is close ... in fact it combines Kaivalya's two favourite phenomena - rain and sunshine).

It's interesting to note that, even as aliens, the tangible things we would take back from this planet have nothing to do with manmade products. They exist naturally. No-one mentioned taking back clothes, cars, houses, money, toiletries, etc. Simone mentioned food, but based on her other answers, I don't think she meant KFC and Pizza Hut. Most likely something healthy - whether cooked or raw, from Nature's produce. Kaivalya mentioned music and also mentioned wanting a new iPod, so I'm not sure if she meant she would take the iPod with music back to her alien planet. I feel she would simply want to take 'music', the thing, the ability, the collection of notes creating melodic harmony - as opposed to limiting the experience of 'music' by having it belong to or come from any one manmade thing (e.g. CDs, iPods, guitar, etc).

I like the fact that 11 would take back "the beach", whereas I chose to take back a 'vial' of sea water as a souvenir. 11 is thinking big. But who knows ... maybe on my planet there's the ability to plant small portions of earth matter and for those 'seeds' to grow anew, uncontaminated by mankind's pollutants.

I'm sure the aliens would be in awe of Mother Nature and consider her to be the ruler of our planet. They would wonder why humans are so abusive of and disrespectful to their Queen.

Monday, June 26, 2006


What would your answers be?
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1. Name (if any) two spots on your body that have markings that you were not physically born with.
2. Where were you living when you were two?
3. What are two things you have written in your daily planner/diary/list of things to do today?
4. What are two of your favourite natural phenomena?
5. What are two things you are looking forward to in the coming week?
6. What are two things you would buy/own now if money were not an issue?
7. You are an alien visiting earth. What are two things (one tangible, one intangible) you would take back to your planet as souvenirs (assuming that your planet has nothing that earth has)?
(My answers):

1. Scar from embedded fish hook on mid-segment of right hand ring finger; small tattoo (circle with central dot) on left Achille's Heel.

2. #90 (or was it 9?) Baker St. Augustine, Trinidad

3. Pay my phonebill; go walking up Chancellor at 5 p.m. with a friend

4. Rainbows, Shooting stars

5. Meditating on early mornings when I wake up; the Greenlight REvolution

6. A simple but spacious rustic house with large open windows and a wrap around verandah on a secure and ample piece of land with large trees and other lush, cooling vegetation, a river (clean and clear) running through it; a four wheel drive vehicle

7. Tangible: (I can think of may natural things I would want to take back, but one would be): a vial with sea water in it (because I would probably be intrigued by the ocean, which would seem like a vast animal that moves and roars but is sometimes gentle and lapping). Intangible: Love.



Sunday, June 25, 2006



Saturday, June 24, 2006

Shadow Flag (video)

Yesterday afternoon, I noticed that my car with its Soca Warriors flag was casting an interesting shadow on walls and landscape ...
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Driving along McCarthy Street, St. Augustine, past the tennis courts, some residential walls, etc.

Length: 3o seconds
File size: 779KB
File type: wmv

Friday, June 23, 2006

Diva's new date: 2 July, 2006

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Diva's updated invitation was sent out last night to the intimate group of invitees and performers - along with the below information:
* Bring something comfortable to sit on (e.g. soft yoga mat, cushion, blanket)
* Your offering can be made, found in nature or purchased ($20 ceiling, so be creative)
* We will be fuelled with divine food and drink
* Creative expressions by:
- Angel Boy & Fairy Girl
- Nicola Cross
- Elspeth Duncan
- Liseli Fitzpatrick
- Carolyn Harnanan
- Tracy Hutchings (Poet of the Light)
- Sharon White

Our offerings will be laid at the feet of Diva for the duration of the performance and exchanged at the end of the event.
(N.B. Diva does not accept Trini time. Please be there in time for the 6 p.m. commencement)


Thursday, June 22, 2006

The Cultural Contingent strikes again

Every time I read about 'cultural contingents' meeting people at Piarco airport to celebrate them, I cringe and feel very sorry for the one(s) arriving. Tired after a long journey ... wanting to go to bed, go to your family or friends ... hungry ... wanting time alone ... But instead, having to smile politely and go through the motions as you are greeted by an overzealous 'cultural contingent': dancing moko jumbies, pan, tassa, large expensive banners and posters screaming WE LOVE YOU! (courtesy many previously uninvolved corporate sponsors), smiling politicians who had no time for you before suddenly hugging you, proclaiming pride, asking for autographs for themselves and family, posing for paparrazzi so they can star with you on the front page of the papers the next day ...

Well, it turns out that the Warriors will in fact be celebrated on Saturday 24th June, the day originally selected for Diva's launch. As a result, Diva, being the Goddess that she is and knowing that nothing happens before its time, has graciously stepped aside and loaned her spotlight to the Warriors.

Needless to say, the streets of Woodbrook will be a melee. Or, to be more precise, perhaps the streets of the entire nation will be a melee. How many people from Sando to Toco to Glencoe will be trying to squeeze themselves along Ariapita Avenue or into the stadium?

Today's newspaper gives hints as to what can be expected: a motorcade "complete with confetti" and speeches and performances in the stadium. More Cultural Contingentness. Is this what PM meant by a celebration "the likes of which this country has never seen before"? Perhaps there is more. The papers also report that the Warriors are sceptical about the PNM's promises of 'reward'. I don't blame them. They were promised 'a reward' after Bahrain and are still waiting for it. Prior to leaving for Germany they were told (about receipt of rewards): "We will see what happens after Germany." Yes, we will see.

With Jack Warner now saying that he will no longer be footing the bill for the Warriors (Beenhakker's salary, etc.), one wonders if (at the celebration "the likes of which this country has never seen before") the Government will annouce that they will now foot the bill.

One "True Soca Warriors fan" (as she put it) wrote a letter to the Editor today suggesting that if each working citizen put $5 a month into a fund, the citizens of TT would be able to pay Beenhakker's salary. What I liked about her letter was not so much the suggestion, but the fact that she is someone who is at least thinking of (and suggesting) simple ways in which we can make things happen as everyday people, without waiting on or blaming a Government and corporate sector who do nothing and care nothing for us.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Upcoming attractions

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As soon as details are confirmed (national and otherwise), this invitation will be officially sent out to the honourable Diva's Launch invitees and performers.
For a while there, Soca Warriors took centre stage on the blog. Meanwhile, behind the scenes, the Launch of Diva was being quietly planned, invitees confirmed and performers secured. It promises to be an enchanting (and enchanted) evening which we all are excited about being a part of ... but, in light of recent 'developments', I am wondering if the Soca Warriors will be returning to TT that day! If so, God alone knows what will take place on the streets of this country. Or, maybe Patrick M alone knows, since he announced on TV last night that there will be "celebrations the likes of which this country has never seen before" ... and that it would be forward of him to divluge anything further at this point.
Until the point that he 'divulges', it remains a mystery whether or not Diva will be launched on the chosen day (Saturday 24th June, 2006). It also remains a mystery whether or not my sister Vanessa, returning from holiday (Piarco) on Thursday will land amidst a sea of red and have to:
(a) camp in the airport
(b) hitch a ride home with Beenhakker
(c) stay put and make the most of the Piarco melee by celebrating with the welcome-home masses until its all over
(d) none of the above
I have a feeling she will choose (d) .


Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Trinidad & Tobago vs Paraguay

(9:07 a.m.) My sister just called me (whilst driving over Lady Young) to report her sighting of an interesting sign for today's game: a huge rainbow stretching from the National Stadium to the area by the harbour/('Soca Warriors') lighthouse. Unfortunately she didn't have a camera.
(6:23 p.m.) The aftermath ... I don't think I've ever seen the people and streets of Trinidad so quiet, especially on a weekday. I reached home from Cascade in record time - virtually no traffic on the road ... people driving quietly, some faces shocked, some glazed and one or two cars blowing horns, waving flags and flashing lights anyway. I feel quiet, somewhat hoarse and with a dull headache from screaming, a little disappointed, but in a way relieved that it's 'over'. Would have been good to move on further, but the fact is, the Warriors did what they could and made their history. According to Dwight, this was a boyhood dream of his ... as it must be a dream for any footballer. Congrats to the team for being an inspiration. Onwards, we all move.

Monday, June 19, 2006

The crying game

These days whenever I read the newspapers, I end up crying. Not out of sadness or horror, but just from being moved by the national and global shows of respect and solidarity for TT and the Soca Warriors.

A friend of mine was saying that when she encounters people who are not interested in seeing the Warriors playing, she tells them: "You don't have to be a football fan. This is not about football only. This is about Trinidad & Tobago." We discussed the way the energy of the country is lighter and more open, the people seem woven together by threads of hope and excitement ... etc. I'm hearing many people say that this is the first time they feel really proud to be a Trinbagonian. I myself normally just think of 'being from Trinidad & Tobago as a geographical fact, something stated on forms (passport, etc.).

The fact is, this sudden global love of and recognition for T & T was not inspired by Patrick Manning or any politicicans or by the Tourism Development Company and their cultural entourages and glossy publications. Whatever is happening now has been inspired by the people of T & T. The people of T & T are not interested in racial division and political gimmicks normally thrust upon us through the media. The truth of what we want is evident now (real unity and support for and pride in each other). Face it, PNM, UNC and all you other political hopefuls: until you can INSPIRE and MOVE the people of this country with humility, honesty and dedication, you are nothing. You are far from "Warriors".

I know many do not want to think about 'the other side of T & T' and spoil their euphoric football mood, but ... in the papers, there are letters to the Editor and articles which address other realities ... like two days in a row of cases of father-kills-self-and-other (other being either children or wife). For some people, the hundreds of national flags waving on cars in support of the Warriors is a massive boost to the national spirit. To others, the flags are useless plasters on a volcanic, festering national sore. Read Debbie Jacob in today's Guardian if you want to shake your head in sad, knowing disbelief.

One citizen, in a letter to the Editor, states that people who have flags on their cars should consider what that really means. The letter raises questions about why a car with a TT flag would throw rubbish out of the window ... why men with the flag painted on their faces or wearing the TT t-shirts would stand by the roadside and relieve themselves ... (I agree with the writer, but I would also add: flag or no flag, can't you wait until you get home to use the dustbin and or toilet?!)

Some sources will say: Win, lose or draw, the fact is, one day this national football-induced euphoria will die and the flags will come down. Then what?

In this heartfelt letter to the Editor (one that made me cry), the writer speaks about his personal experience of the outpouring of love, respect and admiration from people the world over (on and off the field) for T & T. He asks: "Why should it ever end?" And he's right. Why should it?

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Queen waves TT flag for Soca Warrior Champions

The first thing I thought as I woke up this morning is "Thank God I no longer drink (alcohol) and smoke!" Otherwise I would be a real wreck now! Last night I was invited (inveigled) to go along with friends to a 'rock concert' put on by some American 'tribute bands' (i.e. imitating the real thing). I've always found it strange that people would want to 'be someone else' or copy someone else as a career, but I guess it's a big business. The concert is not something I would have chosen to go to, but when asked I agreed to go just for a laugh. But ... by the end of the night I was doing anything but laughing. It went on tooooooooo long for me (Miss early to bed early to rise) ... I got home just a few minutes before 4 a.m.

The featured bands were 2U (imitating U2), No Duh (imitating No Doubt), Almost Queen (for Queen), Separate Ways (for Journey) and don't-know-their-name-because-thankfully-we-left-during-their-second-song (for AC/DC). 2U opened the show and I wasn't impressed. They didn't look or sounded like U2. I was also unimpressed for 'Journey'. During their (second-to-last) performance I sat on the ground amidst empty plastic rum/beercups and water bottles and slept.

Out of all the bands, I found 'No Duh' did a good job. At least the singer looked (somewhat), moved, dressed and sounded like Gwen Stefani - so at points it felt like looking at 'the real thing'. And they incorporated strong stage presence and humour into their act which made it at least more interesting to look at. I held my breath for 'Almost Queen' ... wondering if their Bulgarian lead singer would look like Freddie Mercury. He was somewhat shorter and not as angular, but managed to pull it off, getting the swarthy complexion, trademark sideburns & moustache, skinny legs, strut, the mannerisms and the pouting/open-mouth movements - but minus the famous buck teeth. He was also impressive on the keyboards. Breath was held again as they launched into the classic "Bohemian Rhapsody", which everyone must have been waiting to judge them on. Amazingly, they pulled it off, aaaaaaaaaaaalmost sounding like 'the real thing' and managing to turn a potentially sacriligeous opportunity into one worthy of cheers from the crowd.

However ... the real cheers came close to the end of 'Almost Queen's' set when 'Freddie' mentioned the match on Tuesday and announced that "This one is for the Soca Warriors!" The band (accompanied by screaming 'fans') broke into a thunderous "We will Rock You" immediately followed by a rousing version of WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS in which some TT flags in the crowd suddenly ceased to be headties and became wild, frenzied blurs. Much to everyone's delight, Freddie himself had a Trini flag on a stick and was waving it like a true patriot as the whole crowd screamed out the lyrics (at least the chorus, which most people seemed to know):

We are the champions - my friends
And we'll keep on fighting - till the end -
We are the champions - We are the champions
No time for losers
'Cause we are the champions - of the world -

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Crouch the Grouch should slouch (with shame)

By now everyone in TT (and some of the world) must have seen THIS VIDEO CLIP of England's egret-looking Crouch holding onto our Sancho's hair and pulling him viciously back in order to propel himself upwards so that he could score England's first goal. I received that video clip as well as still photo versions of the incident in quite a few e-mails yesterday.

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The Snowy Egret
Photo from this webpage
Photos Copyright ©2005 The Assateague Naturalist
No need to surmise whose victory it would have been had that not happened. But oh well ... the sad truth is, whilst TT played an honest game and left the field gracefully at the end of the match, one doesn't have to be psychic to predict that the English would not have accepted defeat from 'little Caribbean boys' with such elegance and humility. It would have been the height of embarassment for the 'Lions' ... and one does not have to stretch the imagination far to wonder whether their fans would have taken defeat with a quiet shrug or started a World War III scale riot. TT fans were warned, before the match that win or lose, they should wait until the stadium clears before they leave.


However, even in the face of photographic replay evidence, TT is not making a hulabaloo about this. Rather, we are acknowledging that it happened and focusing on what really matters now. We are moving on with quiet confidence to face Paraguay.

Today's Guardian features the FOUL PLAY on the front page and states the following:
T&T will not be lodging a complaint against England in connection with allegations by Soca Warrior Brent Sancho that England’s Peter Crouch pulled Sancho’s hair in scoring his goal in Thursday’s match, Fifa vice- president Jack Warner said yesterday.

Crouch’s goal had been the first out of two for England, relieving the English side which had suffered 83 anxious minutes of fight from the Soca Warriors.

Crouch received the ball from a David Beckham kick, tussling with Sancho before heading it into the net between Sancho and T&T goalie Shaka Hislop.

Yesterday, Warner said:

“It wouldn’t make any sense at this point because it seems the Japanese referee was overawed by the fact that he was supervising a game in which the English players were worth close to $1 billion pounds as opposed to the TT side worth about $20 million (US).”

“But we are all happy that all of T&T and the world saw what happened and saw that Sancho played fairly because that is the way he knows how and others followed their own standards. The football world now knows that T&T cannot be taken for granted.”

Warner said he and the team were looking forward to Tuesday’s match against Paraguay and “that the victory that was stolen from us by England will be recovered,” he said.

Today I'll put some tags: , , , ,

Friday, June 16, 2006

Standing Tall

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I know some people like the way they painted the old Port-of-Spain lighthouse over earlier this year as a tribute to the Soca Warriors ... but I had preferred it in the original plain white and was mortified the first time I encountered this new design and what I found to be garishly-put-together colours.

But yesterday after the match, as I drove home, the lighthouse suddenly didn't look so unsightly. In fact it was a proud national monument, standing tall, strong and confident in spite of heavy, dark, English-looking clouds.



Thursday, June 15, 2006

World Cup Prediction

T & T vs. England match:

2-1 (Trinidad's favour).

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Warming up for Thursday

On Monday when I went to collect (part of) a long overdue cheque from a client, I was casually told that business was very slow and meetings were being cancelled because "everyone watching football."

If (when) TT beats England on Thursday, the country will most likely grind to a halt (in terms of work) as people party and celebrate ... and Patrick Manning will perhaps emerge to say that his prayers have been answered, the boys have done us proud yet again and declare the national gift of a public holiday on either Friday (the day after) or Tuesday (day after the public holiday on Monday, so that the nation can stay home and watch the TT vs Portugal match).

It is fortunate that the two matches so far (TT vs Sweden and TT vs England) took place/will take place on public holidays. The TT vs Paraguay (thanks Anonymous - in my haste I got my P's mixed up) match is on Tuesday, the day after a public holiday (Labour Day) and, according to my sister, whether Tuesday was a holiday or not most Trinidadians would make it one ... by either calling in sick or unabashedly staying home.

Tomorrow we will be going to my friend Charlotte's house. She is having a lime with about 15 people, a projector so that we can watch the match on the wall, massive flags hanging off the upper balcony and everyone bringing a pizza. Our vocal chords are sharpened and ready for maximum use.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Please stand ... for something (video)

Watch the video
Please be patient while the video loads (buffering).
It may take a while depending on your connection.
This video was created from footage I shot of various protests taking place in Trinidad between late 2005 and early 2006. It represents the collective voice of the people at a time when the republic of Trinidad & Tobago is going through crisis and experiencing transformation on many levels. The statements (written in bold) below are from placards held and t-shirts worn within the video. The first few opening bars of music in the video are the first few bars of the national anthem of Trinidad & Tobago, for which it is always requested of us: "Ladies and gentlemen, please stand." The video takes this request a step further and calls for each of us, once and for all, to stand for something.
(Rest of music - Elspeth Duncan, from the CD Manzanilla)

Gun = Death, not life
Stop the Violence
No to smelta plants
Enough is enough
Once Race ... Human Race
We want back our unity
Remember when it was safe to give someone a lift?
Remember when panyards were safe?
My son Ashmead Baksh was kidnapped and murdered
Sheldon Douglas murder victim #233. How many more must die?
Save T & T
More unites us than divides us
Remember when you could lime in St. james?
Our leaders have failed
Stop the hate
Every creed and race should find an equal place
Remember when children could be children?
T & T where is the love?
Smelter in park impossible
Don't stop the fight for wildlife
Patrick listen to the voice of the people
No methanol plant in the southwestern peninsula
Fresh air, clean water = no smelter
let us save our patrimony
ALCOA - Another Lie Count On Alcoa
Pollution - No!
People power makes change
Together we can build hope

Monday, June 12, 2006

Diva's launch and your invitation

The long awaited time is here. Diva is ready to be launched and, in the process, handed over to her owner, who will be seeing the finished product for the first time. In fact everyone will be seeing the completed Diva for the first time.

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Diva in the early days

I had a discussion the other day with Gab (Diva's owner-to-be) and she is in agreement that Diva deserves nothing less than a launch, complete with guests, refreshments, performances and offerings.

This launch is carded to take place on Saturday 24th June, 2006 from 6 p.m. at Quest Bookstore in Woodbrook. It will be an intimate affair, with about 20 specially invited guests.
I am extending an invitation to those of you who read this blog, who are in Trinidad and who would like to attend. Maximum: five of you are invited to grace us with your presence. If interested in attending, please contact me by the end of this week for the latest. But hurry in case the masses contact me before you do!

More information on the launch will be disseminated as plans unvold.


Sunday, June 11, 2006

Trinidad & Tobago World Cup snippets

I always find the reports of people's comments and behaviour after a TT-style victory amusing. These snippets from today's Newsday made me chuckle:
Headline (pg 3): Warriors tame Swedish Tiger
Headline on page 4: Yorke's mom too nervous to watch
(Piece of first paragraph): "My heart weak; I have to go and lie down," said Grace Yorke, as the Soca Warriors, led by her son Dwight, began to do battle with Sweden ..."
Headline: Shaka's dad home alone for game. "I was relieved"
(Last bit of article): He said he was expecting a call from his wife in Germany "as soon as she gets her breath back." He told Newsday he did not travel because he preferred to stay at home and watch the games on television.
Headline: Football frenzy in Tobago
(Bit of article): Horns blared and lights blinked as vehicles with their flag-waving occupants took to the streets of Scarborough immeditely following the match. "We win. I don't care what they say about no draw, in my book we win. They said all kinda thing about we, let them take that!" an exhuberant Warriors fan shouted.
Headline: Lawrence's mother expects win over England
(End of article): "Everyone will be glued to the TV and we're looking forward to a victory," she said.
Headline (back page): We 'SHAKEed' the world
I'm sure the Guardian and Express will have equally chuckle-worthy reports in them. Yesterday, after the match (which I spent screaming and prancing with my sister and nephew at their house), as I drove down to a friend's house to lime (they had a projector, refreshments, massive flags hanging from the balcony, etc.), the streets were full of flags waving from cars, people in red t-shirts, road-side houses with groups of friends/family drinking, blasting music and screaming out to passing traffic. Every time I passed a truck load of people in red, they would blow their horn and I would blow back and they would scream ... then they would do the same for the next car. Lorries hurtled by with lights on and horns blaring. Vibrating music thumped from taxis.

How often does something of this historic, nationwide, even international magnitude come along? This is the kind of salve currently required for the wounds of the nation. It's at times like this that most Trinbagonians stop complaining (or rather, completely forget) about T & T's problems: crime, pollution, inflation, corruption, politics, etc. ... and suddenly (again) it's the most wonderful place on earth and who would want to live anywhere else?

Saturday, June 10, 2006

T&T vs Sweden today

Guten tag. I wish I had my dictaphone on me a while ago as I took my usual walk down the road to buy papers. The newspaper stand looked like a sea of red, with a whole set of men gathered around it, discussing World Cup and today's match: Trinidad & Tobago vs Sweden. Unfortunately I only recall three snippets from the barrage of excited conversation:
1. ... an' de coach was in teeeeeeeeeeears, yuh know! (from a man by the stand, probably talking about another team that had lost their match)
2. Allyuh, TT go surprise you wit a cup!! You feel dey cyah win World Cup! (said with conviction from the newspaper lady)
3. Even if dey draw self dere go be tears! (stated confidently by one of two men who were walking up the road in front of me discussing the match)
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One of the many cars with a TT flags, parked on Lady Young Lookout
From about midday the streets of Trinidad & Tobago will be dead as everyone sits glued to their TVs ... whether in homes or bars, liming with friends or family. We'll see what happens. Win or lose will determine whether the streets after the match will be a sea of screaming red or empty silence.
Do your best, Warriors.

Friday, June 09, 2006

A Good Life.

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This photo originally uploaded here.

In memory of Auntie May (my grandmother's sister) who passed away early yesterday morning, aged 94. Thank you for your smiling face, gentleness and kindness, for always asking for me, being interested in me, following up on me, being proud of me and knowing about me in whatever ways you did. Thank you for the special gift you gave me some years ago, which I still have and will always have.

Yesterday, driving home from somewhere, the thought came to me: "She lived a good life." Then when Aunty J & Uncle A came in last night from Tobago, Uncle A said the same words: "She lived a good life."

Will that be said that about me (you) when I (you) die? Can it be said about me (you) now that I (you) am (are) alive? What does it really mean to 'live a good life'? Am I? Are you? Are we?

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Lightwork (video)

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File size: 685KB
Length: 26 seconds
File type: wmv
Recipe for something I made on Monday.

100 opaque cups
100 tea candles
A large box of matches
A tin of red spray paint
Lightly spray one or two puffs of red spray paint into each cup to give it a misty red hue
Lay out the 100 cups in the desired shape (see video), preferably somewhere not too windy
Place a tea candle into each cup
Light each candle
Others will come along who want to light as well.
Serves All
This video file is not too large, so should download fairly quickly even if you have dial-up.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Sometimes I confuse myself (video)

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File size: 1.47MB
Length: 57 sec
File type: wmv
Driving my car in St. Augustine with Love Bee - my digital camera (Canon A620 powershot) - in my lap, trying to make up my mind about something. Can you figure out what? I recorded my thinking aloud then chopped up the footage and rearranged the pieces so that the order of what I'm saying is all mixed up. The audio recording facility on the camera is good for a small digital camera, but not of the quality of my larger video camera, so it makes me sound like I have a slight metallic 'lithp' ... but that's okay. It's definitely a conveniently sized way of recording quick little videos and I like it for that.
N.B. Video might take a little while to download if you have a dial up connection. But be patient and it will happen.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Eye Wander About ...

(P.S./N.B.: 11 June, 2006 - I have since removed the blog described below and put Now is Wow TV in its place. So when you click on the Eye Wander link, you will not get through to any site).
Yesterday I added a new arm onto Now is Wow ... another blog called Eye Wander About Trinidad. (See link in right hand side bar).

I thought about the concept the other day as I was driving home and trying to see Trinidad as if I was seeing it for the first time. I thought about it again when I was using the video function on 'Love' Bee' (Canon A620 Digital Camera) on the rainy drive to Balandra.

Since I don't really use that function, I had forgotten about it until I did this little video. I find the quality is good and the camera is quick, convenient and with me once I'm out, unlike my video camera which is too bulky to carry everywhere.

Eye Wander will not be updated daily (as is Now is Wow), but I'll let you know here whenever I do update it. It will consist of short video 'glimpses'/clips (all within 1 minute) taken as I 'wander about' ... whatever stands out in this place and captures my eye as being 'interesting' ... an intriguing moment ... a quick glance at life here ... (along with supporting writing). I see it as a kind of "videoblogging tourism" (although not typical TT touristy). Sometimes the simplest thing can say the most about a place.

Like I said, I set it up yesterday, so it's a very young work in progress and I still have a lot of things to tweak (like the intro under the title, etc.). Nothing is 'up' yet (other than an initial introductory post). But, just as Now is Wow did, it will evolve in time.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Driving Rain (video) & Magic Corners

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Click here to see video.
File size: 547KB
Length: 21 sec
File type: wmv

I took this short clip with my digital camera from the passenger seat of a friend's car as we drove to Balandra yesterday morning to collect something. For those who have never been to Trinidad, this clip gives a little idea of the basic scenery on a drive along that coastal road to Salybia/Balandra/Toco. I find it one of the most pleasing routes, especially when it has rained and everything is green and lush. During dry season when everything is brown and dusty, it's not as appealing vegetation-wise, but the frequent glimpses of the ocean are striking.

There's a part of the road along that drive which I have recently started to refer to as "Magic Corner". Within the past two days, whenever we drove around that forested bend (4 times in the past week), little powder-puff-type seeds were floating down from the trees which flank both sides of the road. They floated so slowly and in such abundance that it looked and felt as though we were in a spaceship moving through a galaxy of stars.

There was another corner along that route (also green and forested) that I have always referred to as a "Magic Corner". Somehow it always made me slow down whenever I was passing through it and inevitably, I and whoever was with me at the time, would sigh and say something like: "Wowwwwwwwwww ... magical!" It was a combination of the cooling green light filtering through the leaves and the mystical essence and appearance of that spot which, had it been in a child's storybook, would have had fairies and elves running around and sitting on toadstools.

But ... that special Nature magic has since been tampered with ... replaced by thatched roof huts, hand painted signs about keeping the place clean, painted CPEP rocks ...

Saturday, June 03, 2006

A long awaited phonecall

Yesterday evening I received a call on my cellular phone from SK of KC. My voice could not contain its excitement ... to the extent that I think she may have been surprised by the effusive "Helloooooooooooooo!" that flew at her. We chatted briefly and I explained my mission (to find out the story behind the minty messages and see where the whole thing could lead). She was very pleasant, sounded genuinely interested and told me that she would discuss it with the CEO and get back to me.

In the meantime ... the following KC interview (transcribed from dictaphone) took place recently on the edges of the ravaged 1,000 acres of Union Village which were cleared for the proposed aluminium smelter. The interviewee, David, is a fellow Trini who does not support the construction of aluminium smelters on our island.
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David holds up the wrapper of the KC mint he selected from the bag
Elspeth: What memories do you get from these mints?
David: Mints? Well ... pleasant and soothing effect.
Elspeth: Not the mint itself, but the messages. Do you ever look at the messages you get on the thing?
D: Yeah ... romantic, passionate, affectionate .. in terms of good relations with yourself and people. Mannerliness. These are the messages I get.
E: What's the message you got there?
D: It pertains to me. Stay sweet and kind. I love you. Very simple, very powerful in terms of ... I try to be gentle, simple ... and I mean, I'm very loving. So I enjoy reading this and in between of course I'm sucking the mint.
E: Do you give those messages to people or did you ever get one from anybody?
D: Well when this now came out with the messages on the mints ... before, it wasn't so ... yes I used to for the fun of it give somebody and you hope you get something, you know ... strong or real and truthful ... about yourself or about the person.
E: And do you find that they are real ... or what's your impression of it? I know you said it was simple, but ...
D: Yeah, it's real. A lot of people aspire to have some affection. They aspire to be called loving or ... and as well as to be called sweet ... the niceties of good relations with people. So it's real.
E: Who do you think wrote those messages? You ever thought about that?
D: Well I don't think it came from any one particular person as such. Anybody can make up these things. And as I said ... all these messages are within us. All of us may not always be able to expres it, but it's simple, as I said ... and you can express it by actions more so than by words sometimes.
E: If you had the opportunity to put a message on one of those wrappers what would it be?
D: It would be so much ... but ... what can I say ... ahmmm ... in a nutshell, you could simply say ... mmmmm (sucking mint as he thinks) ... I could simply say Keep on sucking for all the pleasantries ... or something. I could think of other things, but I'm on the spot now so you'll have to check me back on that.
E: So that's it! Thanks.


Friday, June 02, 2006


Today's message in stone: In a split second you will know that you are to take a leap of faith. Leap without fear, knowing that you are supported by the Unseen. Where you land will not disappoint you. In fact, you will be pleased. The circumstances are fertile and you have it in you to make the most of the opportunity.
N.B. Don't think too hard about any rock reading or try to figure out how it applies to you. Let the words rest in your subconscious like seeds which will grow and bear fruit when it is time.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Messages in stone

Something I do every now and then is 'read rocks'. Just like reading cards or reading palms, only each rock that is chosen has a message which is written by the oracle of Nature. See example here. Sometimes aspects of the answers may seem very clear, sometimes they may come across as 'cryptic', but they sink in gradually and make sense in ways that are not always logical. They offer guidance.
Today's reading
(from a rock in my new batch collected over the weekend at Balandra):
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You are being called in a particular direction. Don't look with your two eyes. See with your one Eye and you will be able to rise above and beyond the surface of that which you are currently trying to understand or put into logical terms. Be aware of a particular structure/building along a straight, wide road - near to water (small or large - e.g. river, fountain, pond, noticeable birdbath, large drain/canal, ocean, etc.). This place will stand out for you on account of its entrance ... something about the steps and/or the kind of pathway that leads up to it will be very striking. Energy-wise, it is a healing place. How can something so 'heavy' be so 'light'? (How did Jesus walk on water?) You will be drawn inwards - something is in there for you. Go in. Words in association: grounding, imagination, native, visionary, Mary, water.
P.S. I have not forgotten about the mint messages. I will attempt to get the story within the next week or so and will post it when I do.