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Wednesday Morning Musings

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I TRY AS MUCH as possible to avoid going into Kingstown and do so only when I have something to do there. Quite often I run into persons who tell me they haven’t seen me for a long time. My answer is that I only come into Kingstown when I have business to do there.

Their answer inevitably is, that the same applies to them. Kingstown is not an alluring place. What does one do in Kingstown when not attending to personal business? You walk, trying to avoid the many vendors, some moving from one location to another; who are selling just about anything under the sun and feel you are obliged to buy from them.

Then there is the ever-present beggar with whom sometimes you have to battle. They feel offended if you say you have nothing to give. On Monday one watched me with anger in his face as if he could not believe what he was hearing. If you have two appointments in town and you are left with half an hour before the other one, what do you do, apart from going into a bar and having a drink?

Is there any where to sit, any greenery to enjoy? Any store you can go into and look around?

I divert from what I had intended writing to speak about matters relating to the heavy rains and thunder that we experienced in the early hours of this morning. Let me raise something about which there was some discussion on radio. First, the question posed by some callers was whether schools would be closed or opened. The official answer, given at some point, was that students were expected to go to school except those from the Grenadines and I believe from the northern most parts of the country. Special attention has naturally to be paid to students coming from those areas, but one other question raised was the reason for others to go to school, for the assumption was that with students from those areas absent, it would not be teaching as usual. Let us accept that when schools are closed while business continues as normal, some parents will experience problems having no one at home to stay with their children, especially the young ones.

In that case, the alternative is either to take them to work or to be absent from work. This must always be considered.

There is still a lot more that needs to be done to be adequately prepared for stormy days when rain and thunder are the order of the day. One thing we can always expect is that there will be flooding at the area of the old airport and C.K Greaves. This has been going on for too long. Is it possible to fix this, because even with the opening of the road through the old airport traffic becomes a nightmare in that area?

What is really the problem there? But to go beyond this, traffic continues to be a source of frustration and annoyance, especially on a rainy day. Most of the traffic police take cover, not being adequately equipped for such days.

There have been all sorts
of suggestions or views on how to solve the traffic problem, starting with the assumption that it has to do with the number of vehicles on the road. One thing that we somehow avoid discussing is the matter of traffic lights. Too often pedestrians disregard the police. Would they do the same when they see red at the traffic lights? It is my view that traffic lights are inevitable. What are the reasons for not addressing this and why are we not even discussing it?

● Dr Adrian Fraser is a social commentator and historian

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