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Dey blew John horn

Dey blew John horn

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Dem girls didn’t just wake up last Fry-dey morning and decided dat dey were having ah 75th Birthday

Party foh dey Father de next day. Mek it better, Mummy was also celebrating her 75th around de same time.

Therein lies de challenge.

Mummy is a very private person, she not in dis “Horn fuh dem Dem!” She would prefer a quiet weekend wid blood-friends, some-way peaceful and quiet like de Grenadines, away from it all, sip ah glass ah wine, listen nice music and shake ah leg. She loves she dance, remember how she does carry-on while conducting Kingstown Choral concerts. But we talking bout real dance like “Dancing cheek to cheek”, or as Frank Sinatra sang: “I saw a man who danced with his wife in Chicago, my hometown!” Dats “Jan Fuh Dem!” Ah will say no more, she done scold me off, threatening to sue me.

About ah year ago, daughters Zhinga and Oneka gave me early warning dat their dad’s “Third Twenty-fifth birthday” was coming up, and dey were planning ah surprise something, and ah must avail myself foh dat Big Day. Ah heard no more until dey ‘Stormed’, as in attempted ‘Mutiny’, my home, armed wid video camera and tape, and instructed me to spill my guts. Dey ‘Stormed’ ah lot of John’s long-standing friends and colleagues as well, from Emperors and Kings to his faithful Grass Root friends. After looking at those short Videos on Sat-dey Night the consensus of everybody is/was dat “John was ah Johnny good Fellar!”

But John too was Stormed, and was invited to name ah few of de people whom he cherishes dearly and wanted to be with him at his Big Do. De list climbed from 150 to 500, as expected de majority ah dem were his former constituents from Rose Place, Edinboro, Block 2000, Largo Height, Lowmans, Montrose and Paul’s Lot! So whether yuh were Grass Roots or Royalty, Police or deputy, NDP or ULP, Starlift blasted it out – “Horn Foh Dem!”

De mood of de Party was clear: Blessings of course was taken care of by our beloved Schoolmate, Rev’d Fr Ulric Jones who, along wid Rev’d Fr Everton Weekes, will on August 7th, celebrate 40 years toiling in God’s Vineyard. Dey was music and it had to be Pan, Starlift! Ah marathon dinner performance by two youngsters, Darron and Reajhuan, Violinist and Panist, currently ‘Storming’ de region wid great music.

Two videos of John, going back in time as seen in de eyes of his friends and relatives. John paid tribute to good ole Penny Bread and salt butter, dat bonded him and his dad with love. Everybody thought de food was tasty and plenty, Kodos foh Joche Caterers.

Patrons heard some short powerful tributes by John’s niece, Rosy Dopwell; a message from his sister-in-law Earline, famous for her beautiful ‘Williams’ Voice. She was hoarse, but never-the-less sang ah verse of “Memories” ah duet wid me. Den dey was ah Harmonica Tribute by one of John’s treasured friends Ardon Bess, ah famous Vincentian Actor who has and is still doing big things on stage in Canada.

Emotions took centre stage when youngest daughter, Zinzi and eldest grand-daughter Maia rendered de song “Somewhere over the Rainbow.” Ah had to wipe my tears, especially when John ‘Stormed’ de stage to join dem and mek it ah Trio. And den de Five Sisters showered Thanks and Praises on Daddy. It was clear dat“Dey Blew His Horn!

Ah John Horne’s Birthday Party is not over until dem young grannies and gran-dads ‘Stormed’ de Stage to DJ Too Cool selections, blowing more ‘Horn Foh Dem’. Great party. And wid dat is gone ah gone again

One Love Bassy

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

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