Rhythm Express – Day in May – featuring Maiko Watson – new release
Rhythm Express – Day in May – featuring Maiko Watson – new release
The girl rapping is Cardy Archer grand daughter – she has roots in Phoenix Leguan.
Several homes and farms are under almost 2 feet of water on the Essequibo Island of Leguan, following a major sea defence breach in the Phoenix area early Friday morning, residents confirmed.
According to member of the Neighborhood Democratic Council Inshan Ayube, the breach took place around 3 am.
He said that the area is under almost 2 feet of water as shops, houses and farms are all flooded and a significant amount of livestock threatened.
Ayube noted that the water will however recede with the tide as the NDC is using alternative draining as well to get the water off the land.
” But the problem is the tide will change just now and the water will come back, so what we need to do is to seal the breach temporarily, with some sand bags until Tuesday” Ayube told INews Guyana(www.inewsgy.com).
He said that the sea defence crew in the area is not at work and cannot be located.
Ayube said there are contractors on the island with excavators that are willing to assist and will be moving to the area to seal the breach temporarily.
Works minister Robeson Benn told INews Guyana (www.inewsgy.com) that there was no breach, but rather major over-topping, due to high tide.
Benn said sea defence engineers are in the area and are putting systems in place to prevent a recurrence.
He noted that the water has receded.
According to Benn, the tide was about 3.45 meters on Friday, which caused the over topping.
There are lots of Guyanese living in Canada and today most of them will be eating turkey in addition to all the other Guyanese side-dishes – curry, rice, chow mein and so on.
I remember Thanksgiving at St. Barnabas Church in Phoenix where I was confirmed in as a child, during Thanksgiving Sunday people brought offerings from their farm to offer to the Church – plantains, eddoes, yams, bananas, fruits and so on. This was then sold to the parishioners and the money went to the Church funds.
Today I thought of some of my old school friends and wondered if I would ever see or hear from them again. The internet is a great tool for connecting but you have to be connected – I thought of Rohan Tiwari, the Tiwaris lived over the bridge in a little house, Prahalad, Sheila, Tiny, Dyah (Diah) and all the people of Phoenix who lived close by or whom I went to school with.
I think we ought to plan a reunion of students from Success CM School – that would be fabulous for our little villages. We can have a big day feeding the children providing books, gifts and so while we all have a great time eating and drinking in the old village. How about that? Any takers who feel the same way. We have to start thinking of how to give back to our community that nurtured us as children. Let’s start the ball rolling. Let’s give thanks by sharing what we have with those who have not.
Joe’s grocery store and rum shop was located across from Cardigan’s house. I think Phyllis Blake owns that property today. Joe was a hardworking man with about four children. It was the place we ran to whenever mom ran out of cooking ingredients. I used to go for a quarter pound of saltfish, quarter pound of flour or what have you. One cent meant a lot and could buy a lot of things in the old days. For example one cent could buy you two sweet biscuits or one or two candies. Remember never-done candy with the rubber band that it was hung upon? Joe also had a rum shop attached to the grocery store and his house was on top. Joe two eldest sons staffed the grocery store. They were nice. When their dad wasn’t looking they would cut their friends some slack by now charging for the extra ounce or so on a pound of flour, sugar, salt-beef etc.
Phoenix had a lot of people (men) who liked to drink a lot. They visited the rum shop on a daily basis. My dad Cardy was one of those men. He used to get drunk a lot of times and he racked up debt as well. I remember one day Joe came and asked my mom to pay my father’s rum debt and my mom was so mad she told Joe she doesn’t drink and she will not spend a cent of her hard-earned money to pay rum debt. My dad was a strange guy he stopped drinking and smoking cold turkey – no counselling or therapy like many people do in North America. I don’t know how he did it. I suppose a lot of people owed Joe money. The family finally moved from Phoenix to Essequibo Coast. I don’t think I ever saw them again. I know one of his daughters and I were in the same class in school. I can’t even remember the names of any of them. Can anyone help me with the names of Joe’s family. The family provided an important service to the people of Phoenix for many years by providing a convenient place to get grocery and other knick knacks.
I went home last year man and I took the big steamer to Leguan. I am afraid of dem lil ting de call speed boat. De go too fas fuh me and I kiant swim yuh know. Anyway, when I lan pun de Island me taxi was waiting fuh me. I tink he is one of Silas sons, yuh know Silas the Black man dat had a little night club (grocery store and rum shop) in Louisiana near papa Austin and Mrs. Barka, he was dere waiting fuh me. He only came because me cousin, James Garden son, Claudie, sen him. It was a flying visit because when we touch down, the ship captain or somebody dere announced dat the steamer will be going back in two and a half hours time which did not give me much time fuh visit but betta little dan non at all. I wuz going to see me sick uncle James. Dere were a few changes along de way like de Island now gat electric lights and de roads a little betta. Wen I get to Phoenix and passing me old School – Success CM School – it was just a shell of its farmer self. Dey really need a new school dere. It wuz depressing to look at. Memories of happy times flood over me like a big wave from the sea it overlooked. I had good times. De school was new, the yard well kept. We played rounders and all kinds of games in dat yard.
I rememba teach Vira who used to teach Std II downstairs and the licks she’d put on you if you misbehave but she loved us – all of us kids she loved. We didn’t mind getting de lickin sometimes.
As I passed her yard, I remember how as kids we used to call out to her “Goodaftanoon teach Vira” and she would say something sweet like, “goodafternoon sweetie” or goodaftanoon deerie” and such nice words. We na accustom to nobady taking like dat to us so we sucked it up a lat. I rememba we kids used to compare what words sheh used for us.
Anyway, Phoenix was just the same. Kids were going to school in dere brown uniform and everyting. De only ting dat changed is de people, I didn’t know many ah de young people. I could only connect dem wid through de modda or grandmodda something like dat. I felt good being dere. I felt at home. De peace and quiet, good people, boy you kian buy dat. De only school mate of sorts dat I connected wid was Desiree Nedd. Sheh still in Phoenix in her cousin Rinty House. Rinty and her Bajan husband left to go to Barbados now dat Barbados is considered a “developed country”. Good fuh dem.
Ah saw Uncle James, me cousin ardered up some bad fried rice from fram a caterer next door – cousin Mary Data she had a broad named Frankie Nedd (ah tink is he girlfriend) – delicious. Good Guyanese cooking wid fresh ingredients. We washed dat down wid some coconut wata he pick from back yard and dessert was fresh sweet mango. Yuh don’t find dat kind of smooth sweetness here in Canada. Most a de mangoes you spend big bucks on are forced ripe. We hurried down de food and de taxi was ready to tek us back to La Bagatelle to catch de steamer.
I felt sad leaving but even dough I liked de place it’s nat de same witout de friens I grew up wid. You kiant really go back, you just got to move along wid yuh memories. What made Phoenix great fuh me was nat only de landscape but more importantly is de friends and de family dat were part of my life growing up.
Have your ever heard how Leguan got its name? I heard it is because the Island was the home of the iguanas in Guyana and thus it was given the name. I know when I was growing up in Phoenix iguanas were plentiful. That was our green chicken. Hunting iguanas was like a rite of passage for boys especially black boys. Catching and bringing home the iguana was the mark of a warrior hunter unlike the boys of the Maasai tribe who have to kill a tiger to gain the title of warrior and elevate to manhood, for our boys it was the iguana (lol).
The iguana is one of the sweetest meat I have tasted and the iguana eggs are to die for. I loved the eggs most of all. Sometimes quite accidentally while we kids were playing on the sand bank behind our yard, we would encounter iguana eggs buried in the sand. Iguanas are found mostly in trees and they are like chameleon, they change their skin to disguise themselves in the bush, but they can’t fool a good hunting dog. The boys usually go hunting with their dogs. If the boys caught two or three big Iguana that’s enough to feed the village. We had iguana nites that brought communities together – black and east Indian families in Phoenix would make big curries and neighbours will come over for a taste of the meat or take home a litte, it was the thing people did. Iguana meat was special and to be shared for some reason. Like everything else the poor animals were over hunted and I do not think there are many iguanas left in Leguan these days. Who would like a revitalization project to get iguanas back to the Island? I think that would be a good thing. These days people in Florida are having iguanas as pets. As soon as that becomes popular then it will spell the end of this delicacy as food because who wants to eat a pet?