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Wow! No Cray-fish dis year

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Ah want to lament de loss of our Cray-fish; and ah mean de real River Cray-fish and not de metaphorical Craw-fish dat Jomo and his twin Dr. Richard Cox fishing in de pull-it-tek-all river. Maybe Jomo should let Richard know dat there is ah vacancy foh ah ULP candidate in Central Kingstown, dat’s Sharpes his stomping ground; maybe it’s time foh Richie to do less writing and talking from out dey, pack up, come home and join ranks wid Gonsalves (as deputy leader) and keep dis progressive momentum going, put some intellectual caviar in de menu.{{more}}

Having said dat, ah bawling ah have no Cray-fish to go wid my Callaloo dis Good Friday. From ah child my Easter tradition started early on Holy Thursday morning wid de sound ah Miss Muriel’s voice, like ah trumpet, blasting thru de village wid ah basket ah Cross Buns pon she head calling out: “Hot Cross Bun, (large ones) one ah penny, (small ones) two ah penny, Hot Cross bun, if yuh don’t have ah daughter, den give it to yuh son”! Good Friday was like torture, ah long, boring day foh me . No out-door games, no playing whatsoever, no radio, no noise no nothing. Ah looked forward to lunch though, Callaloo and Cray-fish, and mackerel wid sweet potato and coconut dumplings. Before all dah food could digest, Granny would tug me along wid her to church reliving dah traditional three hours dah Jesus spent on de Cross dat lasted five hours sometimes.

So foh dis Good Friday ah promise de kids we going fishing in de river foh Cray-fish to cook on Friday. Mek it better, last Friday ah went up Congo Valley wid Freddy Olliverre and saw de peaceful streams just lying dey, waiting to be robbed of its treasures. What tun me on was when ah asked Freddy if dem streams got Cray-fish, he raised his eye-brows and said “nuff Cray-fish in dem rivers, Bassy”.

Well Tuesday was de date, de Miss-sis is from de Valley and sees herself as some kind ah expert in river fishing, man she M.T. her bamboo clothes-basket and pulled out ah plastic container dat could hold 20 lbs ah Cray-fish. Congo Valley hey we come. Now she’s de expert and led de way, de water was cool, de first dip in de water, good sign, she trapped one! De next Cray-fish came ten minutes after, and after two hours and about three hundred yards ah fishing upstream, we had fourteen Cray-fish in de container. De kids were excited but more dan tired and we realized dat at de rate we going, it will tek us two days to catch ah meal ah Cray-fish. When we stopped at Ms. Da Briel’s Gas station at Mount Young foh ah drink, she explained to us dat people had poisoned de River. Was dey and den ah remembered dat only two weeks ago, ah had seen Mr. Springer, de Forestry Officer on T.V. appealing to de people who fish in our Rivers, to desist from catching river fish by throwing poisonous substances in de water. As it stands, the Rivers in de Congo Valley that once flourished wid fish and Cray-fish have been depleted of its riches, and dis will be so foh ah very long time; thanks to our greedy citizens who literally rape our Forests and Rivers. When we are not setting bush fires we poisoning our Rivers; we burning de candle at both ends. And ah have no Cray-fish foh cook dis Good Friday.

AH FRAID DEM NUMBERS

Wow! Thirty-five thousand people at de ULP Ninth anniversary Celebration is huge. Ah usually have ah problem equally as huge as de numbers, calculating how do yuh more-bah-lies dem large numbers ah people dat both parties always claiming. Foh simplicity in my calculations, assuming it will tek five, twenty seater Vans to move one hundred people, dat will be fifty vans or trips to move one thousand people, and approximately one thousand seven hundred and fifty trips by van to move de thirty-five thousand people who attended de function at Rabbacca. But one might argue dat dey used forty seater vans instead, so den we will use less vans, dah would be approximately eighty hundred and seventy-five ah those forty seater vans. Wow! dat is ah lat ah Vans too. Lie-Za is not in de maths business, she says dat if ULP had 35,000 people at Rabacca on Sunday, dey would ah call elections de same night.

DEY COME FROM DE SLUM

Nuff respects foh de lads from Paul’s Lot, De Slum, famous foh drugs and criminal activities, one ah de most depressed community in de country. Well despite all de neglect, de Soccer Team Avenues United from de same Paul’s Lot won de national club championship and is now on de second leg of de CFU regional championship. Dey should be in Puerto Rico dis weekend representing SVG, bringing dignity to all Ghetto People. Ah didn’t watch any soccer games dis year, but ah saw de Avenues United team training and is ah bunch ah young fellars; what ah P.T. we did think of investing some ah dah four million “Vote Yes” money into dem youths, instead ah all de questionable channels dat smack ah serious corruption, dat we hearing bout now.

And wid dat ah want to wish everybody ah Happy Easter, mek ah kite and fly because is gone ah gone again.

One Love Bassy

Bassy Alexander is a land surveyor, folklorist and social commentator.

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