Bajan butterflies

Whenever flowers bloom, butterflies come, dance and sing.

I didn’t plant anything in my backyard this spring, consequently I had no visits from butterflies during July and August.

Instead, for the most part, I followed the activities of organisations, attended the Diaspora Conference, and enjoyed Barbados, among other things. Indeed, though it was a full plate, I found stories for this column, and continue to stumble on things that are embedded in Bajan – our way of life.

Today, I share a few of the not so obvious pearls – love, words of wisdom, and celebration that like the butterflies are forgotten when the harvest is done.

Butterfly # 1

During the Barbados Fun day, Spouge king Lou Drayton reintroduced his wife with these words:

“This is the love of my life, my wife, I’m sure you know her.”

“Yes. We met last year at the cook out in Brooklyn,” she added.

Those were the kind of words that many females long to hear and poets and writers bleed to death. Words that make songs that rule the charts. Listen.

Love of my life, my friend, forever.

Love of my life. There will be no other,

Love of my life, I will strive to make it better.

Love of my life, gentle and soft as a feather.

Let your light shine, my heart has surrendered,

We’re together, my Sista, my flower, my love forever,

In every way, let your life …

Happy Wedding Anniversary Draytons!.

Butterfly # 2

At the retirement party of Annie Power, Simone Headley-Watson, a member of the Stacey Nurse clan from Carrington’s Village, St. Michael, brought her six-month-old baby to the Up-State ride. To my surprise, the baby never cried and posed for pictures like a professional. However, when I asked Simone, an Assistant Director in the Department of Child Psychiatry at a Harlem Hospital, for a key to her success, without hesitation, she shared a piece of advice she got from her father:

“Enjoy the strength in silence. Often it is better to play foolish and observe.”

Man wuh de ole people used to say?

It is better to keep yuh mouth closed and let people t’ink that you are a fool, that open yuh mouth and remove all doubt. Clearly MITT Rommey ain’t a Bajan…

Butterfly # 3

The birthday party of two-year-old Zari, daughter of Alana (medical practitioner), granddaughter of Hayden and Margaret Workman of Oxnards, St. Michael, brought to Harlem her aunt Tara, a practicing doctor in Oregon, her grand mother and great, great grandmother, and friends of her father Omar, for a simple and old fashioned get together.

Among the gathering was Andre, a UWI Graduate and practicing dentist in the Bahamas. who told me who he was in this way:

“I am a Clarke from Four Roads, St. Philip, not Four Roads in St. John. [Laugh] My great grandfather sold cotton. My grandfather was Byron Clarke known as “Hot Water” Clarke. He repaired bicycles in a shed that was next to Marshall’s shop and near a standpipe.”

Now I hope my notes are correct, if only because Andre went the extra mile – after speaking to me, he called Barbados and then made a correction.

What is interesting is a trend I am beginning to observe. Nick names were very popular years ago.

Butterfly # 4

At the recent Cawmere Global Reunion panel discussion on Education, Jerry Hall clearly came well prepared and even though he was a member of the panel, the moderator parcelled the limited time. He shared his prepared scripts with me. I share one of his views on the teaching of religious education in schools:

“To enable our young people to continue to function as useful citizens to the benefit of themselves and all society and in the sometimes absence of effective parenting, Religious Education must continue to be an influencing factor in how children learn to behave and act towards others and themselves throughout their lifespan.” TRUE DAT.

Butterfly #5

Barbadian, Earle Yearwood has been an assistant principal of East New Family Academy with responsibility for its Junior High School for more than twelve years. In June, Earle was seen smiling as he says farewell to yet another full house of 8th grade graduates. Earle believes that no one is better than one’s current results.

For the record, Bajan In New York is now one year old. As I enjoy this anniversary moment I must admit that I still get butterflies when writing a story. Thanks to all.

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