Calypso Tribute to Swamp Heroism

Last night a
Shadow on my ceiling creep
There only to
disturb my sleep
From thin air
It appear
Just so, just
so
Out meh room
the warmth did flow!
It mumbling: Bong ga nak, ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
Shift yuh
carcass shift yuh carcass
Drink if
yuh drinking, dance if yuh dancing
Let me do
my thing, Let me do meh thing
I close meh eye
to shut it out
Trying hard not
to shout, Get Out
In cape and
gown
So unlike a
clown
Behind meh closed
eye, it hanging, Oh bother!
In big brimming
hat like a Midnight Robber!
Bong ga nak, ahhh
bon ga nak ahhh
I am not a bad
boy, but I cannot help it
I am not a bad
boy, but I cannot help it
It quips
Once black,
with mud, now filthy brown
Dripping slime
from toe to crown
A skeleton with
a
Stranger staring glance
‘Where you
from? The swamp? You goon!’
‘Yeah’ it
rejoin, ‘from Caroni lagoon!’
I say,
You looking like
a booboo but yet the people love you
Admit it is
Obeah, yuh woking Obeah
Bong ga nak, ahhh
bon ga nak ahhh
Startled I ask:
‘Marn, you have no decorum?
To come without
invite into a woman’s bedroom?
It crowing!
Why? I don’t know!
It adds, eyes
glazed, false teeth falling out he gum!
Bong ga nak, ahhh
bon ga nak ahhh
Cook Curry okroo,
Cook curry okroo
And bring me some babash in this fo-rum
It croons
‘Why you
quoting me
blog
I say to the
fog
You have a lot
of cheek
’Tis not yuh
style this doublespeak
‘Now I too
start to feel the feeling
To Make Music,
like the
Bassman symptoms catching!
Pom pom peedee
pom, pom, pom pom peedee pom,
Pom pom peedee
pom, pom, pom pom pom, pom pom pom
Hold
Strain
! ‘Tis you I
quote hee hee ,’
The Shadow says
to me in glee, Demkorissy
Welcome me to
yuh literarti!
Ent yuh Blog Demokrissy, singing to UWI all and sundry
Same symphony as
the Shadow:
‘What
Wrong With Me?
Bong ga nak, ahhh
bon ga nak ahhh
Am I ugly or
what? Bad lucky or what?
It asks, rhetorically.
‘So what wrong
with you?’ annoyed, I ask.
‘You think is
Carnival Dimanche Gras at the Queen’s Park?
When they say rag wave yuh rag,
When they say flag, wave yuh flag
Marn, you have
it all wrong —
Wait! What’s
dat? Is it ah ‘mergency horn?’
Somebody would
horn you, you better believe it
Somebody go horn
you, I hope you could take it partner
Bong ga nak, ahhh
bon ga nak ahhh
The Shadow steups like me, ‘You
looking for horn
?
What jammetry woman! You
know this place since you born!
They still
sleeping sound, and will be till late morn
From ODPM will
sound no disaster horn, Get On!’
‘On with yuh
story,’ then I say. ‘Why you really here?
Why you leave
the lagoon,
Janette couldn’t keep you warm dong there?

 

Out the window, watching the flood, he mutter
‘Flood! And still WASA pipes and Yuh Garden Want Water?
If ah cudda this/ And if yuh shudda, that
You wudda
this/And yuh wudda that
No commonsense in this nonsense if yuh ask me,
Doc, we not Stranger gyul, come meet meh family  
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
The garden want water, the garden want water
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
‘Doc the last time we meet, you so nicely me greet
And then offer to help with meh Story of Life to treat
Now instead of biography
You goin have to write meh obituary
‘In time’, I say then, ‘now Judgement
Day
come
And we have to change the chorus from Pom Pom Peedee Pom’
I ask, ‘What change the chorus, you say?
You prefer if we switch to Dingolay?
‘Dingolay, yea, write how I Make Music sweet
In honeyed tones that bees hum and birds tweet
Tuned to the calls of cicadas cocricos and kiskadees
The breezes, trees, seas, and the crapeaux melodies
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
Music fills the
world with happiness
Plenty
sweetness and togetherness
Music have no
friends or enemies.
Everybody,
Could Dingolay
‘So why you come by me for Shadow
Me and you eh no real pardner you know’
He say ‘Doc, I hear you, too, was planning to forget the media
To plant bhajee in Hard Bargain an’ rewrite the encyclopedia
Just like how I was going to leave Calypso
To go and plant peas in Tobago’
’Cause every night I lie down in meh bed
Ah hearing a Bassman in meh head
And Bong ga nak, ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
I say, ‘Yea boy, too much bobol, I couldn’t make the grade
I put on meh garden boots, bury the doctorate in shade!
Try as I might
It was a great fight
To get the lagoon bush outta meh head
But as you well know promises doh butter bread
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
I’ve got One
Life to Live
The most that I
can do Is the best that I can do
The rest is up
to you I am only passing through
‘I come in peace,’ the Shadow softly whispers
‘On meh way to get me Doctor of Letters
Imagine that! A Doc, me, this Les Coteaux Jumbie
I trusting this message to you, give to UWI dem fuh me.
Doctor K, you have a Doc too, give me some advice
What troubling me? I’ll be more precise!
I wonder what
they know ‘bout human rights
A human have a
right to live like a human
A wo/man have
right to work well
A wo/man have
right to be paid well
Remind them what I said, about When I am gorn
In Jump Judges Jump, how my name will live on
All who condemning, I speaking to you,
Keep on
condemning till your time come too
Be careful
don’t come down to hell
I go rip off
your gizzard, put it in a coconut shell
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
Hard head, like
yuh have stone in yuh brain
Or a bone in
yuh brain, hard head
‘Mr Shadow, you think I doh know you dead!
Run! ah warning
you,
Tan Tan
Take yuh own
advice, Run!
What use to you now really is this Doctorate?
Since you gone now to a much higher state!’
Sing boy sing, I remind him,
them was lyrics too
When you dead
the Government will bury you
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
He say, ‘Is dat self I asking mehself, gyul!
In this flood deluge I had plenty time to mull
About Donkey
Days
, days of the donkey cart and the bull
Now the joy riders with donkey coming to meh funeral
Doc, is this higher purpose that bring me to your gate
Pass bad boy St Peter’s, to give Directions to them clowns
of State!’
With so much
love and devotion we follow they direction
Go round so,
and come round so
And round the
bend and near the end
Then Turn Right
And Turn Left
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
‘What matters you state?’ I ask Shadow without guile,
And I could swear fuh true, you know, the thing smile
She say you would ask, that old lady, with who a mile I walk,
In flood, through cesspits, sewers, snakes slime, grime, the bilious
ole talk
Sings he: ‘Everybody is somebody and nobody is nobody
We all end up same, whether you born in luxury, or poverty
See two fishes fighting
for survival
The big one
swallow the small
Then up comes a
big shark from no where
He make a grab
and swallow the pair
Then up comes
this fisherman with his hook
He grabs the
shark and make a cook
Next he end up
in the cemetery
And worms start
eating he
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
Curiosity now get the better of me, so I say
‘Shadow boy, so how yuh get outta the swamp dey?’
Gyul, there appear two Kalpoo boys, they pull off they coat,
And tell me to jump quick, on they sanctuary soca boat
That is what keep me afloat.
I don’t want to gloat
I don’t want to
sink dat soca boat
Just don’t want
to sink dat soca boat
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
‘Down way?’ I ask, somewhat skeptically.
‘What you see? How you come? By which tributary?
From Kelly, Penal, Grande or Caroni; or down from Diego Valley?
And why you standing there, dripping swamp goo and so muddy!’
Says he, ‘Is a message I have from the great flood and beyond
That I come to give you, so you could pass it on’
Pirates in the Country/Pirates in the City
Pirates in the
basement/Pirates on the Pavement
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
The truth is gyul, them things not on my plate
But it must be because ah this new Doctorate
That I am now sent to tell, as you know too well,
So sing Gyul, sing the chorus with me, Poverty is hell!
‘Oh, don’t set up by La Horquetta, by Caroni no partition,’
Suddenly, humble, pleading, says the apparition
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
I come out to
play,
I come out to play
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh

 

‘What matters of State troubling you so?
Is this about the Sundar Popo-Stalin fiasco?
’Bout admin-police boots and bullets at UWI protest that morn
Or the bandits that take over tong, more killings each dawn
Or the chupidee plans like moving Columbus’ where he lie?
Or is it something about them Petrotrin files?
I told the Doc then, now I telling you Doc, Big Snakes in the country



Man they worst
than mappipire
When they
making they racket
They does dress
up in fine jacket
Some big fat
macajuel
Drink out the
oil well
I doh know how
they find the key
But they empty
the treasury
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
Snakes in the Balisier And they biting hard
Snake in the
Balisier Destroying Trinidad
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
 
Says he: The time come now, watch the naked hills say
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Whapp Cocoyea
Wadapp Cocoyea!
Whapp Cocoyea
Wadapp Cocoyea!
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
‘Yuh vex, that though forged from the love of liberty and
plenty, plenty
’Bout the Unwanted Chirren they chase
out ah here to become refugee?
When they use to hug up tight tight tight
Oh what a nation oh what a sight!
One love, red and
ready, falling and rising dying and birthing
Like the Galleon in the Bocas now with the sharks afloating
I would like to
see the day when love would come to stay
One Love, One
Love
It would be
happiness to see, such a unity
One Love, One
Love
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
‘Oh boy, Shadow, doh haunt meh nah, let me go back to rest
You know I want no part of that commess
Like you, I planning to leave the fight for fairness and justice
And go back to planting peas in Boug Mulatresse
Leave meh nah to retire quietly, pen meh legacy
Of days of yore and other fantasy.
The Shadow point to the rivers, filled
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Whapp Cocoyea
Wadapp Cocoyea!
Whapp Cocoyea
Wadapp Cocoyea!
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
Oh Les Coteau Jumbie Like yuh goin insane
Is the flood water or what? Are you right in yuh brain?
You working Obeah
Disturbing meh nirvana
‘Gyul, I am not a bad boy, but I cannot help it
Now Mother Nature say is time to Pay
the Devil
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Whapp Cocoyea
Wadapp Cocoyea!
Whapp Cocoyea
Wadapp Cocoyea!
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
You already sing how they building new flyover, then was Uriah,
now by Kay Donna
You sing, they building super highway straight to Maracas, now is
to Toco Bay
Boy, I expose plenty corruption, plenty politricks
I talk ahready about the parliament kicks
When they win
the election the poor man eh stand a chance
You say it before, same
amount ah corruption, is de Same Khaki Pants
The sugar and the oil belts say, tell
them,
Now is time to Pay the Devil
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Whapp Cocoyea
Wadapp Cocoyea!
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
Doctor Shadow I say. Doh mess with meh head
Is you tell me promises
cyar butter me bread
When I add meh own chorus, is then, just so, the Shadow
disappear
And yet I know that he still standing there, near
Hanging in the air
Signaling ‘all clear’
Yuh know he bring he own chorus, this Shadow on the wall.
The Spoiler, returned, with Walcott, Sundar, VS Nightfall and
departed souls all!
The Nobel Refrain,
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Whapp Cocoyea
Wadapp Cocoyea!
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
 
To my surprise
‘Twas not a disguise
The choir take over
Filling the atmosphere
To listen, I crossed my legs and sat
Under the brimming singing shadowy hat
Brass band strike up from nowhere
Horns, trumpets, rhythm section and grater
Drums and cymbal, shac shac and bells
And the air ring out: ‘Poverty is Hell’
Poverty is hell and the angels are in Paradise
Driving in their limousine where everything is nice
and clean
A poor man living in a teeny-weeny hut
The children hungry, nothing in the pot
He gone by the neighbour to beg for some rice
The neighbour under pressure, “Boy, things ent
nice.”
He gone in the big shot area to beg
A police put a bullet in his teeny-weeny leg
He gone in the courts and he lost the case
The prosecutor say he have a bandit face
Poverty is hell! Poverty is hell!
Bong ga nak, ahhh
bon ga nak ahhh
You sing that ah ready, I want to interrupt
But like they couldn’t hear, or they just wouldn’t stop:
Wake up in the morning and the baby cry
The sugar pan empty, the milk bottle dry
The little boy child on the mango tree
The mango green, hurting up his belly
The young girl bawling, she wouldn’t settle
She wipe she bumsie with stinging nettle
Toilet paper they never had
They used to tootoo in the gully by the old backyard
They rub she down and they put she to sleep
The rain come down and the house does leak
Poverty is hell! Poverty is hell!
Bong ga nak, ahhh
bon ga nak ahhh
 
Why you singing that now, the flood in yuh blood? I ask again,
But they already on to the next refrain:
A poor man always dream a lot of dream
He happy like a puppy when he dream another dream
He dream that he have a new roof on the hut
He dream that he have some good food in the pot
He dream that he have a rich friend name Frank
He dream that he have a lot of cash in the bank
He dream that he pay all his bills for the month
He dream that he have a new car in the front
He dream that he have to go to a fete
He dream that his pocket have a big, fat wallet
He wake up in the night and he rush for his pants
All he found in the pocket was a whole lot of ants
Poverty is hell! Poverty is hell!
I try one more time, ‘like (Sonny) Ladoo, the lagoon invade
allyuh brain?
With coral snake, scorpion, caiman, anaconda we try the swamp to
drain, in vain,
But the music my protest drown out
And they finish he calypso, almost in a shout!
Ten little children, four dumplings
Mummy got to slice them thin, thin, thin
A piece for a boy and a piece for a girl
A piece for the neighbour daughter Merle
The cat in the corner looking to beg
Little Jack Horner kick him in the leg
Go in the room and look for a rat
The rat in the roof, he know about cat
Now the cat see a chickichong (yeh-yeh!)
He rush for the chickichong
But the poor little chickichong
Flew away like a chickichong
Then cockroach gone in the condensed milk
Mama get vex for she condensed milk
Who leave the condensed milk open?
“Come here you picky head, good for nothing!”
Mama get vex and she blood get hot
She buss some lash in they you-know-what
Poverty is Hell! Poverty is Hell
So much pain in they voice, I sit up with respect
You shudda long time with Doctorate marn, be decked
Now what it is you want me to know?
You have my attention, Mighty Dr Shadow!
You looking like a boo boo and yet everybody love you
Tell me, what it is you want me to do?
 
The chorus gone quiet, listening, hexed?
All eager to know, what coming next!
Gyul, I come from the flood lagoon by Kelly
Dripping with filth and muddy
To let you pass on meh story
Of the pain and the glory
Of what I see when I went under the water
Of what wonders in this filth like Columbus, I discover
So what you see? Shadow. What you see, tell we, the Chorus
chants
With one voice and as if in a ganja trance!
I see plenty people crying and asking why?
Holding they head, bawling, looking up to the sky
We know God is a Trini
But like God abandon we
And now is ketch tail for we
In this the land of milk and honey.
The horror is there plain for all to see
And more so how much damage division causing all ah we
The chorus nod, we have to agree
‘Is so much Tension in T&T
Tension in we body
Tension in meh belly
They controlling we energy
So Mother Nature take charge and start singing with we
So it is Nature’s Plan, cause we get chupidee
Angry, greedy, too much thievery, no broughtupsy
To ease the Tension. Whapp Cocoyea, flood in Grande
Ease the Tension. Whaddap Cocoyea more flood in Caroni
The bickering didn’t stop so Whapp-Wadapp by UWI, the Croissee,
in Diego Valley
 
For all them running off with we oil money
For all them plastics and more polluting we country
For killing we wildlife and we forestry
And splitting we up culturally
The criminals, the banditry and the jammetry
Ease the
Tension. Whapp Cocoyea, Pay de Devil, One Pong ah flood
Ease the
Tension. Whaddap Cocoyea Pay de Devil, 100 million Pong ah flood
Shadow sings: ‘So are we feeling the feelings baby?’
The Chorus join in: Yea we feeling the feelings
Shadow sings: ‘Are we getting the symptoms? ‘
The Chorus join in: ‘Yea, getting the symptoms’
‘Swing the thing, Whap Cocoyea
Swing the thing, Wadapp Cocoyea.
Ease the
Tension. Whapp Cocoyea, Pay de Devil, One Pong ah flood
Ease the
Tension. Whaddap Cocoyea Pay de Devil, more billions in flood
I face off with Shadow: ‘So Is Mother Nature telling we
To live in peace, love and harmony
That’s what you come back to tell we?
That is what why you disrupt meh sleepy?’
‘Is something else I want to leave with you,’ to appease me, he
say,
Of what I see and why; it was in the flood down they.
He wave he finger and I see more shadows coming
Creeping like janjee, mapepire, and coral snakes crawling
I begin to shiver, like Plummer I quiver, What is thees?
Are these the horsemen of the apocalypse?
A swamp full of skeletons, shadows emerging
Like this is it, now, the eruption, the crescendo ending!
All those
lofty bards treated with disdain
All who
voices been croaking in vain
The dingolay
band stretch from From Mayaro through Toco
Across to No
Man’s Land through Charlottville and Scarborough in Tobago
Old
people, young people, everybody
Since First
Trini wo/man, the dearly departed Banwari
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Whapp Cocoyea
Wadapp Cocoyea!
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
Ah see in
there some ah meh pardners too
Some who
was just collateral damage, Asami,
and Irmes, is
you
?
The Anthony’s:
Sabga,
ABoudain, with a pot
of pelau
and the ArchBishop
too
The civil
rights fighters like Sheila
and Dana,
who tried to keep
alive hope
All the lagahoo
spirits
turn up
And meh
own shadow self, drowned and resurrected from the lagoons of Chup
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Whapp Cocoyea
Wadapp Cocoyea!
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
Poets,
priests and prophets like Meh
Colligan Pa
, Anson,
Sir Vidia pelting picong at all the coochoor stored
in a Nightwatchman’s backpack  
Meh
Colligan Pa
, with he market gang, Mother Cornhusk, Papa Nisa a bois he
crack.
Skeletons
and bones from overgrown tombstones
neglected and vandalized
Pat
orchestrating the pan, some Caribbean Pirates
toting Columbus
lies.
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Whapp Cocoyea
Wadapp Cocoyea!
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
Poor Peter,
still trying to save he drowning legacy, Banwari,
Murdered like
clear Claire,
 buried in the cemetery for the dreamy
Though
they try to build a broad bridge, it sink
With The
Other Magnificent Seven
all left on the brink
Tears and
more tears for the hate-tees
aflowing from pains
The Noble Naparima
raped and scarred and drained of the oil in she veins
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac Pay De Devil!
Whapp Cocoyea
Wadapp Cocoyea!
Bong ga nak,
ahhh  bon ga nak ahhh
Is this
whole lagoon tribe take up position with he
In this
grand concert, the crapeaux and snakes symphony
Pac Pac Pac Pac
Pac Pac Pac
Bong ga nak, bon
ga nak ahhh
Take this and tell them, is the message from the swamp
What I see down there with meh costume all damp,
What Mother Nature say, why she send the flood,
Not to damage and destroy all, not to add to the flowing blood
You doing that yuhself, aheady; Is to remind you of what you
could be
If you stop being chupidee; To remind you that all ah we, ‘bago
too is Trini
Take that message for me to UWI
Shout it out from the Croisee to Caroni
Rio to Mayaro all the way to Toco and into Tobago
Across Grande, San Juan, dong Diego, the Creek and in the Bamboo
This is what Mother Nature send me back to say
Then just so, not shadow, but light fill up the air.
I look at the note
Surprise at what Shadow wrote
’Twas not a song of the Bassman
’Twas another’s anthem.
Of people reaching a hand to help one another
Realising they each other’s keeper
The Shadow
gone, is then like Selvon I hear thunder
 
As the great
big chorus retreat too back up yonder
I watch the note in meh hand from the Shadow
And the grand concert for relief to save Trinbago
In the note the chant Nature choose for all to render
To honour the people, little people, who became great big
saviours
Once
upon a time there was a magic island
Full of
magic people.
Let me
tell you a story
‘Bout
their pain and their glory, oh yeah.
Many
rivers flowed to this naked isle
Bringing
fear and pain
But
also a brand new style.
And of
all these rivers that shaped this land
Two
mighty ones move like a sculptors hand.
And
today those hands, across the land, man, they’re still landscaping.
And
there’s no doubt we go work it out, there is no escaping.
As the
river flows there are those who would change its passage.
But
every common man got to under-stand up and send a message.
So put
up your hand if you understand now.
Come.
See how
we moving, watch how we grooving
See how
we step in style.
One
lovely nation, under a groove
The
Ganges come meet the Nile.
Them
boys with the hidden agendas, and the mind-benders,
People
done take in front.
Various
smart men, and politicians can come along if they want.
Cus the
people got the power, and the glory.
See how
we float in style.
See how
we moving, watch how we grooving.
The
Ganges has met the Nile
Differences,
there will always be.
So let
you be you, and I’ll be me.
That’s
the damn ting self that makes it sweet.
Brother
bring your drum, leh we start to beat.
Don’t
mind them politcky politicky politicky politicky politicians.
And
with their politricky politricky politricky politricky situations.
We done
jamming and we jamming and we jamming and jam cus we know the story.
Let
them fight if they want in this land of a different glory. (i might have this
line wrong)
So put
up your hand if you understand now
Come.
See how
we moving, watch how we grooving
See how
we step in style.
One
lovely nation, under a groove
The
Ganges has met the Nile.
Them
boys with the hidden agendas, and the mind-benders,
They
will always do their do.
Various
smart men, and politicians, dem could come along too.
Cus we
moving with the power, and the glory.
See how
we float in style.
See how
we moving, watch how we grooving.
See how
we moving, watch how we grooving
See how
we float in style.
One
lovely nation, under a groove
The
Ganges come meet the Nile.
 
I look
into the water and see the Shadow, at peace at last
‘You
understand, now, why I had to by you pass?’
I look
at the Shadow, ‘But that is not your calypso!’
Smilingly,
he big brim hat bow, ‘yeah, that I know, I know
But ah passing the baton over
To we prophet bard David Rudder
‘From all o’ we creators and back, as you well know,
Nature, rivers, sun, seas, wind, all energies, as one, flow.
In tribute and memorium Winston Bailey, The
Mighty Shadow. Oct 4 1941 –Oct 23 2018
With Excerpts from his calypsoes and lyrics of
David Rudder’s Ganges and the Nile
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Disaster Reduction Risk Management

We have all been heartened by the spirit of community and concern from neighbours, friends and strangers that emerged from the rescue and response to the flooding of the last two days. 
Why don’t we build on that spirit and harness it to strengthen our national resolve and to take us forward. Key lesson from my classroom on Disaster Risk reduction and management is: We need to manage the risks, not just the disaster!!
It’s not over, and the clean up has begun and with continuation of the weather conditions that produced it forecasted to continue into the early week. Already with the ongoing rains the flood zones have expanded to north and west Trinidad, while the Friday-Saturday East-Central-Souh zones still remain in emergency mode. 

The North-Central-South highway has become partially operational and there is still limited traffic flow there and on the Southern Main Road and other roadways.

There are many persons and organisations who have been helping in the relief efforts.
to Keep Hope Alive, Leaves of Life with DEMOKRISSY will communicate pertinent information here and its other public social media channels. Keep checking as there will be updates. We do not hold copyrights to these images but sharing as a public service.

The immediate need in relation to various relief efforts, help centres and facilities for those in need. 

Feel free to add your initiative in the comments section.

 Leaves of Life/Demokrissy will try to post as many as possible and encourage you to post your relief efforts here in the comments or its allied social links.  See photos this page too for details of releif efforts.   


 

Hygiene and food security and  preparation after floods

 

 

Regional Corporation Hotlines
During and after a flood the homes of the animals around us are also affected. These animals include snakes, caimans, large birds and even sightings of river otters and capybaras.
Here are some safety tips if you encounter a strange animal:
· Leave it alone – Do not approach the animal because a cornered animal will defend itself. Take a picture if possible so we can identify the animal accurately.
· Contact your Municipal Corporation to coordinate a response or the Zoological Society of Trinidad and Tobago at 800-4ZOO and teams will get to the site once the area is accessible.
· Do not try to move the animal or get close to it without first identifying the animal with an expert and finding out if it is possible and safe to do.
· Most importantly, do not kill the animal. It does not want to be in your home as much as you do not want it to be there. All animals are essential to a sustainable bio-diverse environment that is already disturbed by the floods.
· Get rid of dead animals, according to local guidelines, as soon as you can.
The National Emergency Operations Centre (NEOC) continue to support the coordination of rescue operations, relief distribution, damage assessments and clean-up operations across Trinidad and Tobago. Citizens should continue to monitor the website and social media profiles of the Trinidad and Tobago Meteorological Service and the ODPM for updates. Visit www.metoffice.gov.tt or wwww.odpm.gov.tt.
Dr Kris Rampersad is an international sustainable development educator, facilitator

Related Links: Related Links:
 
Flood Disaster Trinidad: Plan your evacuation warnings issued https://goo.gl/PRpXhb
Rio Claro through the Krystal Bowl: visioning Sustainable Development in a small island  :
Keep Hope Alive 

 Power Failure Media Blackout Brets Muffled Threats and Ransoming Father: https://goo.gl/YjbBgx
Another Bret and Breathless Faith that God Is a Trini

Small only in Size UNESCO Executive Board told

Related Links:
Flood Disaster Trinidad: Plan your evacuation warnings issued https://goo.gl/PRpXhb
One moment in time: story of a storyteller extraordinaire: https://goo.gl/xn1XfC
The Walk of Excellence: a life in 60 seconds to receive the National Award for the Development of Women: https://goo.gl/wk4pBx
What My Mother told me: https://goo.gl/CxBJrr
Changing the Conversation on Gender and Leadership https://goo.gl/GM4XpY
Nobel Blogging: Demokrissy trends with global think tanks https://goo.gl/8cVB8g
The Funeral Scores. Sir Vidia Naipaul final farewell in a fanfare of Naipaulian fictive irony https://goo.gl/NQibgR
Year of LiTTributes to Laureattes  https://goo.gl/oW81Nm
Demokrissy trends with worlds leading think tanks https://goo.gl/ua3rXm
My Collision with Stephen Hawkins: https://goo.gl/Fx47Ak
Reflections on the Death of Nobel Laureate Sir Vidia Naipaul see link https://goo.gl/7eBP5a 
Authors Tete-aTete Dr Kris Rampersad and Sir VS Naipaul  https://goo.gl/gU11Jv 
Noble Tears of a Nobel Bard Death of Nobel Laureate Derek Walcott  https://goo.gl/WXbMpv
Sportscapes Cricket Games We Play LiTTours: https://goo.gl/ENum7X
TheMagic and Realism of gabrial Garcia Marquez RIP https://goo.gl/s7y2oc
Pat Bishop: The Killings, the curfew… https://goo.gl/DgFk9E
Lagahoo tribute to the independent spirits: https://goo.gl/C7kND1
Earth Quake Earthquake
LiTTscapes: Facebook: https://goo.gl/HBJsmM
Five Year Old Child Stars at LiTTribute: https://goo.gl/fn3oTR
One LiTTle bookshop: LiTTscapes and the Nobel Laureate https://goo.gl/cpvr2T
Launch LiTTribute: https://goo.gl/g1mmED
Through Novel lenses Youtube   https://youtu.be/_zWHPEQCqHA
LiTTscapes Child Star Tops SEA: https://goo.gl/iNqt32
Prophesy A.Bourdain and Aboud. Port of Spain and Lebanon :  https://goo.gl/zwtyWq
Devil’s WoodYard, Earthquake Aug 2018 https://goo.gl/myXCAQ
Migrants Motherlands Mothercultures https://goo.gl/MGrnPQ
Heritage a vehicle of understanding against extremism violence https://goo.gl/gpfGPp
Gender Bender Mia Mottley takes political helm in Barbados https://goo.gl/xL3DEd
In the News LiTTributes attract award winning newspaper https://goo.gl/n2GsG9
Bridging Cultural Gaps LiTTribute to ToronTTO. See link https://goo.gl/jLHTBE
Yo Ho Ho Piracy and Heritage: https://goo.gl/TvXOHU
A Diaspora Celebrates: LiTTribute to the Americas See link https://goo.gl/brUkjH
Join us or commission your own Creative Conversations: https://goo.gl/qPBzef
Arresting the Tears Hayti I’m Sorry https://goo.gl/6sy3y6
Towards State of the Art Museum: https://goo.gl/FfHfJL
Murder and the Museum: http//goo.gl/FHs3Fr
Celebrating Nationhood But Can new Save the Nation https://goo.gl/qSqJtT
my-discoverie-columbus-lost-and-found https://goo.gl/ixGu7y
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Them-red-house-bones
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Ah Drinking Babash https://goo.gl/GhMncz
Lagahoo-tribute-to-independent-spirits https://goo.gl/P6gP2Q
 Murder and the Museum  http//goo.gl/FHs3Fr
Woman in the mirror https://goo.gl/pvnX9d
The Triumph of Gollum in the Land of Shut Up Suicide of the Fellowship of Partnerships Book 11. A Sequel Futuring the Agenda Forward  https://goo.gl/HU3rp3
Celebrating Jamettry The Sacred and the Sacriligious
The Human face of constitutional reform https://goo.gl/6escjj
Yo Ho ho and a bottle of rumhttps://goo.gl/TvXOHU
 Demokrissy https://goo.gl/FHs3Fr
Changing the World with Ideas  goo.gl/Pa6jAk
https://ift.tt/2vv44gW
https://ift.tt/1vYaD4K /from-beirut-to-port-of-spain-how-west.html
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Exploring a World Through MultiCultural Lenses https://ift.tt/2veR3ei

 Power Failure Media Blackout Brets Muffled Threats and Ransoming Father: https://goo.gl/YjbBgx
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Ask About LiTTscapes,
Murder She Wrote: Death Written in Stone in Dana Seetahal Assassination
Creating Centres of Peace in Trinidad and Tobago
The Price of Independence:#DanaSeetahalAssassinationConceive. Achieve. Believe
Demokrissy: Wave a flag for a party rag…Choosing the Emperor’s …
Oct 20, 2013 Choosing the Emperor’s New Troops. The dilemma of choice. Voting is supposed to be an exercise in thoughtful, studied choice. Local government is the foundation for good governance so even if one wants to reform the … http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Old Casked Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Demokrissy – Blogger
Apr 07, 2013 Old Casked Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T. So we’ve had the rounds of consultations on Constitutional Reform? Are we any wiser? Do we have a sense of direction that will drive …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Valuing Carnival The Emperor’s New Tools#2
Apr 30, 2013 Valuing Carnival The Emperor’s New Tools#2….http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
See Also:
Demokrissy: Winds of Political Change – Dawn of T&T’s Arab Spring
Jul 30, 2013 Wherever these breezes have passed, they have left in their wake wide ranging social and political changes: one the one hand toppling long time leaders with rising decibels from previously suppressed peoples demanding a …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Reform, Conform, Perform or None of the Above cross …
Oct 25, 2013 Some 50 percent did not vote. The local government elections results lends further proof of the discussion began in Clash of Political Cultures: Cultural Diversity and Minority Politics in Trinidad and Tobago in Through The …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Sounds of a party – a political party
Oct 14, 2013 They are announcing some political meeting or the other; and begging for my vote, and meh road still aint fix though I hear all parts getting box drains and thing, so I vex. So peeps, you know I am a sceptic so help me decide. http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian
Jun 15, 2010 T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian · T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian. Posted by Kris Rampersad at 8:20 AM · Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to Facebook …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Related:
Demokrissy: To vote, just how we party … Towards culturally …
Apr 30, 2010 ‘How we vote is not how we party.’ At ‘all inclusive’ fetes and other forums, we nod in inebriated wisdom to calypsonian David Rudder’s elucidation of the paradoxical political vs. social realities of Trinidad and Tobago. http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: DEADLOCK: Sign of things to come
Oct 29, 2013 An indication that unless we devise innovative ways to address representation of our diversity, we will find ourselves in various forms of deadlock at the polls that throw us into a spiral of political tug of war albeit with not just …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: The human face of constitutional reform
Oct 16, 2013 Sheilah was clearly and sharply articulating the deficiencies in governmesaw her: a tinymite elderly woman, gracefully wrinkled, deeply over with concerns about political and institutional stagnation but brimming over with … http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Trini politics is d best
Oct 21, 2013 Ain’t Trini politics d BEST! Nobody fighting because they lose. All parties claiming victory, all voting citizens won! That’s what make we Carnival d best street party in the world. Everyone are winners because we all like …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
New Media, New Civil Society, and Politics in a New Age – Demokrissy
Jan 09, 2012 New Media, New Civil Society, and Politics in a New Age | The Communication Initiative Network. New Media, New Civil Society, and Politics in a New Age | The Communication Initiative Network. Posted by Kris Rampersad …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: T&T politics: A new direction? – Caribbean360 Oct 01, 2010 http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Oct 20, 2013 Choosing the Emperor’s New Troops. The dilemma of choice. Voting is supposed to be an exercise in thoughtful, studied choice. Local government is the foundation for good governance so even if one wants to reform the … http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Old Casked Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Demokrissy – Blogger
Apr 07, 2013 Old Casked Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T. So we’ve had the rounds of consultations on Constitutional Reform? Are we any wiser? Do we have a sense of direction that will drive …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Valuing Carnival The Emperor’s New Tools#2
Apr 30, 2013 Valuing Carnival The Emperor’s New Tools#2….http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
See Also:
Demokrissy: Winds of Political Change – Dawn of T&T’s Arab Spring
Jul 30, 2013 Wherever these breezes have passed, they have left in their wake wide ranging social and political changes: one the one hand toppling long time leaders with rising decibels from previously suppressed peoples demanding a …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Reform, Conform, Perform or None of the Above cross …
Oct 25, 2013 Some 50 percent did not vote. The local government elections results lends further proof of the discussion began in Clash of Political Cultures: Cultural Diversity and Minority Politics in Trinidad and Tobago in Through The …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Sounds of a party – a political party
Oct 14, 2013 They are announcing some political meeting or the other; and begging for my vote, and meh road still aint fix though I hear all parts getting box drains and thing, so I vex. So peeps, you know I am a sceptic so help me decide. http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian
Jun 15, 2010 T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian · T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian. Posted by Kris Rampersad at 8:20 AM · Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to Facebook …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Related:
Demokrissy: To vote, just how we party … Towards culturally …
Apr 30, 2010 ‘How we vote is not how we party.’ At ‘all inclusive’ fetes and other forums, we nod in inebriated wisdom to calypsonian David Rudder’s elucidation of the paradoxical political vs. social realities of Trinidad and Tobago. http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: DEADLOCK: Sign of things to come
Oct 29, 2013 An indication that unless we devise innovative ways to address representation of our diversity, we will find ourselves in various forms of deadlock at the polls that throw us into a spiral of political tug of war albeit with not just …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: The human face of constitutional reform
Oct 16, 2013 Sheilah was clearly and sharply articulating the deficiencies in governmesaw her: a tinymite elderly woman, gracefully wrinkled, deeply over with concerns about political and institutional stagnation but brimming over with … http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Trini politics is d best
Oct 21, 2013 Ain’t Trini politics d BEST! Nobody fighting because they lose. All parties claiming victory, all voting citizens won! That’s what make we Carnival d best street party in the world. Everyone are winners because we all like …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
New Media, New Civil Society, and Politics in a New Age – Demokrissy
Jan 09, 2012 New Media, New Civil Society, and Politics in a New Age | The Communication Initiative Network. New Media, New Civil Society, and Politics in a New Age | The Communication Initiative Network. Posted by Kris Rampersad …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/Demokrissy: T&T politics: A new direction? – Caribbean360 Oct 01, 2010 http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Others: Demokrissy: Old Casked Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 …
Apr 07, 2013
Old Casked Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T. So we’ve had the rounds of consultations on Constitutional Reform? Are we any wiser? Do we have a sense of direction that will drive …
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Valuing Carnival The Emperor’s New Tools#2
Apr 30, 2013
Valuing Carnival The Emperor’s New Tools#2. 
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Wave a flag for a party rag…Choosing the Emperor’s New …
Oct 20, 2013
Choosing the Emperor’s New Troops. The dilemma of choice. Voting is supposed to be an … Old Casked Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T. Posted by Kris Rampersad at 10:36 AM …
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Carnivalising the Constitution People Power …
Feb 26, 2014
This Demokrissy series, The Emperor’s New Tools, continues and builds on the analysis of evolution in our governance, begun in the introduction to my book, Through the Political Glass Ceiling (2010): The Clash of Political …
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Envisioning outside-the-island-box … – Demokrissy – Blogger
Feb 10, 2014
This Demokrissy series, The Emperor’s New Tools, continues and builds on the analysis of evolution in our governance, begun in the introduction to my book, Through the Political Glass Ceiling (2010): The Clash of Political …
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Futuring the Post-2015 UNESCO Agenda
Apr 22, 2014
It is placing increasing pressure for erasure of barriers of geography, age, ethnicity, gender, cultures and other sectoral interests, and in utilising the tools placed at our disposal to access our accumulate knowledge and technologies towards eroding these superficial barriers. In this context, we believe that the work of UNESCO remains significant and relevant and that UNESCO is indeed the institution best positioned to consolidate the ….. The Emperor’s New Tools …
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Cutting edge journalism
Jun 15, 2010
The Emperor’s New Tools. Loading… AddThis. Bookmark and Share. Loading… Follow by Email. About Me. My Photo · Kris Rampersad. Media, Cultural and Literary Consultant, Facilitator, Educator and Practitioner. View my …
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Sanitising tips after the floos
Food Relief
 @BJP4India #BJP @Priyankachopra #PriyankaChopra#merkel @EmmanuelMacron #EmmanuelMcrona #JohnTrudeau @travelchannel @usatoday @BBCWorld @BBCWorldHaveYourSay @TEDtalks @TEDNews +britishcouncil@engageats.co.uk @britishmuseum, @britishcouncil, @britishlibrary, @Royal_Gov_UK, @justintrudeau, @helenclarkeUNDP, +Google for Nonprofits  @googleartsandculture, @econculture, @commonculture, @writersdigest, @nytimes, +PBS NewsHour +Breaking News +BBC News +news@news.ideastap.com +info@takingitglobal.org +Open Society Foundations @richardbranson, @billgates, @melaniegates, @gatesfoundation, +G Singh, @clintonfdn, @WJClibrary, @clintonglobal, @librarycongress @google, @googleresearch @yahoo, @yahoonews, @yahoomovies, @ABC, @CNN, @REUTERS, @ABC, +Kamla Persad-Bissessar , +Prakash Ramadhar+John van Tiggelen
Port Of Spain Drop Off Points
@FoxNews, @UKinCaribbean, @WBCaribbean, @TheEconomist, @wef, @economictimes, @business, @businessinsider, @wsjbusiness, @wsj womenshealth, @wsjmag, @people, @fortunemagazine, @ellemagazine, @oprah, @O_magazine,  @OWNTV, @oprahbooklist, @voguemagazine, @twitterwomen, @womenintheworld, @UN_Women, @womenatforbes, @womensmediacentre @womensenews,
School Shelters
Naparima College  San Fernando Collection

 

Food Preparation Kitchen

 

x

 

Bamboo, Caroni, Kelly, Munroe Food Kitchens

 


 

One Moment in Time Story of a Storyteller Extraordinaire

Her Excellency President of  T&T
 Her Excellecny Paula Mae Weeks
present the National Medal for the
 Development of Women,Gold
( Journalism/Development
 of Women) to Dt Kris Rampersad
Today would have been my Pa’s 104th birthday. He
passed on just after I began my first degree at the university. He might have been proud to see me receive the Medal for the Development of Women, gold, for Journalism and Development of Women through a career he delivered me onto; or my graduation with a bachelors, first class honours; or doctorate, and the acclaim as the first sitting journalist/editor to have done so, along with all else that is listed in my CV as accomplishments or accolades.
Or he may have simply reiterated as he often did, ‘commonsense comes before booksense’ and ‘help who you can, when you can,’ without any great show of emotion.    
Pa, who had brought me to Port of Spain for my first job interview, not only gave me the window on the bus on our four-hour journey there, but also provided the first window to the world outside the village in having me accompany him to sell the produce we grew at the San Fernando market. The amiable, affable, people, character and experiences of the market from when I was just over five years old, would mark on me what I believed to e the national character, and feed the first columns of the Discover Trinidad and Tobago series, that blossommed into the television series Cross Country and more recently, my third book, LiTTscapes – Landscapes of Ficton series which spotlights ‘MarketScapes” as one of the defining arenas of nationabuilding.
Pa remained seated in
the lobby of the Guardian, as I am whisked away. I
left him looking as if it was he who was to be interviewed, in his
characteristic guarabara shirt jack, holding his mark of style – his dark brown
Homburg felt hat, slightly indented at the top; its one and a half inch ribbon
running along its circumference near the brim; its inside lined with Satin that
felt cool on the head as I would find out when I sneaked try-ons. Pa wore it as
any stately leader might, though he may not have known that it was the style of
hat which the British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, often wore, made
famous by British King Edward VII, the son of Queen Victoria.
Nor would he have known, sitting there casually, that he was
handing me over to a new world, a new life, nor that it would earn him a one-paragraph
acknowledgement of his passing in the upper editorial pages five years later, Journalist Loses Dad.

I am not related to any of the already famed Rampersads who were then in public life, I would have to tell those who enquired. Rampersad was in fact his first name, which was a practice adopted in Trinidad by some families, rather than passing on last names. Born in the year of the first World War, he carved his own
path, giving dignity to every undertaking, whether it was as a market vendor, as
cash crop gardener or in his valiant attempts at carpentry and making odd
things around the house, with the saw and jackplane he bought himself, having
worked, too, as a forester that gave him the head cold that will claim him. And
he kept us grounded with his insistence that ‘commonsense comes before
booksense’ and never let us
President of Trinidad and Tobago Her Excellency
Paula-Mae Weekes with Recipient of the 2018
 Medal for the Development of Women, Gold
 Dr Kris Rampersad.Office of the President Photo
By the time he watched me disappear up through the doors and
up the stairs from the Guardian
lobby, he had already set the foundation. It was the glimpse of Trinidad and
its people to which he exposed me in those days as a preteen that I accompanied
him to the San Fernando market, that shaped my impression of who and what we
are as a people. He passed to me his ease among men, women and children of any
age, class, colour, ethnicity and religion. Their returned respect and camaraderie
with him, gave him the stature of what I envisioned any leader to be.
In his shirt jack and Homburg, he was ‘the Sheriff’ as his
friends and the villagers called him. At home in his merino he was storyteller extraordinaire.
Night after night we would huddle on Ma’s bed listening as he unraveled
fantastic tales pulled from his boundless and prolific imagination as I good find
no written, no oral recounts of them.
If Ma shaped my spirit; Pa shaped my social being. The
dedication in my first book read, To Ma
and Pa: Ma for the gift of Spiritedness; Pa for the legacy of his imagination
.
 There are many resonances to that
influence.
Our journey had begun in the wee hours of what he called
‘foreday morning’, through the territories of his stickfighting, sugar cane
planting, market gardening and vending, and then some  (More in upcoming biography, LIFE! Holeheartedly.
Remembering him, I share two earlier excerpts that captures
part of Pa’s, and others like his, unrecognized contribution to our times:
Jus Call Me Cooligan: Bois and Bacchanal in Meh Blood https://goo.gl/yTrR9q
My Discoverie- Columbus lost and found https://goo.gl/ixGu7y



See also:

The Walk of Excellence: a life in 60 seconds to receive the National Award for the Development of Women: https://goo.gl/wk4pBx
What My Mother told me: https://goo.gl/CxBJrr

More related links below

If by Rudyyard Kipling

If you can keep your head when all about you   
    Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,   
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
    But make allowance for their doubting too;   
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
    Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
    And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream, and not make dreams your master;   
    If you can think, and not make thoughts your aim;   
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
    And treat those two impostors just the same;   
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
    Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
    And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
    And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
    And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
    To serve your turn long after they are gone,   
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
    Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,   
    Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
    If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
    With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,   
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,   
    And,  which is more, you’ll be a Man, my son!
Related
Links:
The Walk of Excellence: a life in 60
seconds to receive the National Award for the Development of Women:
https://goo.gl/wk4pBx
What My Mother told me: https://goo.gl/CxBJrr
Nobel Blogging: Demokrissy trends with global
think tanks
https://goo.gl/8cVB8g
The Funeral Scores. Sir Vidia Naipaul
final farewell in a fanfare of Naipaulian fictive irony
https://goo.gl/NQibgR
Year of LiTTributes to Laureattes  https://goo.gl/oW81Nm
Demokrissy trends with worlds leading
think tanks
https://goo.gl/ua3rXm
My Collision with Stephen Hawkins: https://goo.gl/Fx47Ak
Reflections on the Death of Nobel
Laureate Sir Vidia Naipaul see link 
https://goo.gl/7eBP5a 
Authors
Tete-aTete Dr Kris Rampersad and Sir VS Naipaul  
https://goo.gl/gU11Jv 
Noble Tears of a Nobel Bard Death of Nobel Laureate Derek
Walcott 
https://goo.gl/WXbMpv
Sportscapes Cricket
Games We Play LiTTours:
https://goo.gl/ENum7X
TheMagic and Realism of gabrial
Garcia Marquez RIP
https://goo.gl/s7y2oc
Pat Bishop: The Killings, the curfew…
https://goo.gl/DgFk9E
Lagahoo tribute to the independent
spirits:
https://goo.gl/C7kND1
Earth Quake Earthquake
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The Price of Independence:#DanaSeetahalAssassination
Conceive. Achieve. Believe
Demokrissy: Wave a flag for a party
rag…Choosing the Emperor’s …

Oct 20, 2013 Choosing the Emperor’s New Troops. The dilemma
of choice. Voting is supposed to be an exercise in thoughtful, studied choice.
Local government is the foundation for good governance so even if one wants to
reform the … http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Old Casked Rum:
The Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Demokrissy – Blogger

Apr 07, 2013 Old Casked Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 –
Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T. So we’ve had the rounds of
consultations on Constitutional Reform? Are we any wiser? Do we have a sense of
direction that will drive …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Valuing Carnival
The Emperor’s New Tools#2

Apr 30, 2013 Valuing Carnival The Emperor’s New Tools#2….http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
See Also:
Demokrissy: Winds
of Political Change – Dawn of T&T’s Arab Spring

Jul 30, 2013 Wherever these breezes have passed, they have
left in their wake wide ranging social and political changes: one the one hand
toppling long time leaders with rising decibels from previously suppressed
peoples demanding a …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Reform, Conform,
Perform or None of the Above cross …

Oct 25, 2013 Some 50 percent did not vote. The local
government elections results lends further proof of the discussion began in
Clash of Political Cultures: Cultural Diversity and Minority Politics in
Trinidad and Tobago in Through The …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Sounds of a party –
a political party

Oct 14, 2013 They are announcing some political meeting or
the other; and begging for my vote, and meh road still aint fix though I hear
all parts getting box drains and thing, so I vex. So peeps, you know I am a
sceptic so help me decide. 
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy:
T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian

Jun 15, 2010 T&T Constitution the culprit | The
Trinidad Guardian · T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian.
Posted by Kris Rampersad at 8:20 AM · Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare
to Facebook …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Related:
Demokrissy: To vote, just how we
party … Towards culturally …

Apr 30, 2010 ‘How we vote is not how we party.’ At ‘all
inclusive’ fetes and other forums, we nod in inebriated wisdom to calypsonian
David Rudder’s elucidation of the paradoxical political vs. social realities of
Trinidad and Tobago. http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: DEADLOCK: Sign of
things to come

Oct 29, 2013 An indication that unless we devise innovative
ways to address representation of our diversity, we will find ourselves in
various forms of deadlock at the polls that throw us into a spiral of political
tug of war albeit with not just …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: The human face of
constitutional reform

Oct 16, 2013 Sheilah was clearly and sharply articulating
the deficiencies in governmesaw her: a tinymite elderly woman, gracefully
wrinkled, deeply over with concerns about political and institutional
stagnation but brimming over with … http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy:
Trini politics is d best

Oct 21, 2013 Ain’t Trini politics d BEST! Nobody fighting
because they lose. All parties claiming victory, all voting citizens won!
That’s what make we Carnival d best street party in the world. Everyone are
winners because we all like …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

New Media, New Civil Society,
and Politics in a New Age – Demokrissy

Jan 09, 2012 New Media, New Civil Society, and Politics in
a New Age | The Communication Initiative Network. New Media, New Civil Society,
and Politics in a New Age | The Communication Initiative Network. Posted by
Kris Rampersad …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: T&T politics:
A new direction? – Caribbean360
 Oct 01, 2010 http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Oct 20, 2013 Choosing the Emperor’s New Troops. The dilemma
of choice. Voting is supposed to be an exercise in thoughtful, studied choice.
Local government is the foundation for good governance so even if one wants to
reform the … http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

 

Old Casked Rum:
The Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Demokrissy – Blogger

Apr 07, 2013 Old Casked Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 –
Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T. So we’ve had the rounds of
consultations on Constitutional Reform? Are we any wiser? Do we have a sense of
direction that will drive …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Valuing Carnival
The Emperor’s New Tools#2

Apr 30, 2013 Valuing Carnival The Emperor’s New Tools#2….http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
See Also:
Demokrissy: Winds
of Political Change – Dawn of T&T’s Arab Spring

Jul 30, 2013 Wherever these breezes have passed, they have
left in their wake wide ranging social and political changes: one the one hand
toppling long time leaders with rising decibels from previously suppressed
peoples demanding a …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Reform, Conform,
Perform or None of the Above cross …

Oct 25, 2013 Some 50 percent did not vote. The local
government elections results lends further proof of the discussion began in
Clash of Political Cultures: Cultural Diversity and Minority Politics in
Trinidad and Tobago in Through The …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Sounds of a party –
a political party

Oct 14, 2013 They are announcing some political meeting or
the other; and begging for my vote, and meh road still aint fix though I hear
all parts getting box drains and thing, so I vex. So peeps, you know I am a
sceptic so help me decide. 
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy:
T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian

Jun 15, 2010 T&T Constitution the culprit | The
Trinidad Guardian · T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian.
Posted by Kris Rampersad at 8:20 AM · Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare
to Facebook …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Related:
Demokrissy: To vote, just how we
party … Towards culturally …

Apr 30, 2010 ‘How we vote is not how we party.’ At ‘all
inclusive’ fetes and other forums, we nod in inebriated wisdom to calypsonian
David Rudder’s elucidation of the paradoxical political vs. social realities of
Trinidad and Tobago. http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: DEADLOCK: Sign of
things to come

Oct 29, 2013 An indication that unless we devise innovative
ways to address representation of our diversity, we will find ourselves in
various forms of deadlock at the polls that throw us into a spiral of political
tug of war albeit with not just …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: The human face of
constitutional reform

Oct 16, 2013 Sheilah was clearly and sharply articulating
the deficiencies in governmesaw her: a tinymite elderly woman, gracefully
wrinkled, deeply over with concerns about political and institutional
stagnation but brimming over with … http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy:
Trini politics is d best

Oct 21, 2013 Ain’t Trini politics d BEST! Nobody fighting
because they lose. All parties claiming victory, all voting citizens won!
That’s what make we Carnival d best street party in the world. Everyone are
winners because we all like …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

New Media, New Civil Society,
and Politics in a New Age – Demokrissy

Jan 09, 2012 New Media, New Civil Society, and Politics in
a New Age | The Communication Initiative Network. New Media, New Civil Society,
and Politics in a New Age | The Communication Initiative Network. Posted by
Kris Rampersad …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: T&T politics:
A new direction? – Caribbean360
 Oct 01, 2010 http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Others: Demokrissy: Old Casked Rum:
The Emperor’s New Tools#1 …

Apr 07, 2013
Old Casked Rum: The
Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T. So we’ve had
the rounds of consultations on Constitutional Reform? Are we any wiser? Do we
have a sense of direction that will drive …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Valuing Carnival
The Emperor’s New Tools#2

Apr 30, 2013
Valuing Carnival The
Emperor’s New Tools#2. 

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Wave a flag for a party
rag…Choosing the Emperor’s New …

Oct 20, 2013
Choosing the Emperor’s
New Troops. The dilemma of choice. Voting is supposed to be an … Old Casked
Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T.
Posted by Kris Rampersad at 10:36 AM …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Carnivalising the
Constitution People Power …

Feb 26, 2014
This Demokrissy
series, The Emperor’s New Tools, continues and builds on the analysis of
evolution in our governance, begun in the introduction to my book, Through the
Political Glass Ceiling (2010): The Clash of Political …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Envisioning
outside-the-island-box … – Demokrissy – Blogger

Feb 10, 2014
This Demokrissy
series, The Emperor’s New Tools, continues and builds on the analysis of
evolution in our governance, begun in the introduction to my book, Through the
Political Glass Ceiling (2010): The Clash of Political …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Futuring the Post-2015
UNESCO Agenda

Apr 22, 2014
It is placing
increasing pressure for erasure of barriers of geography, age, ethnicity,
gender, cultures and other sectoral interests, and in utilising the tools
placed at our disposal to access our accumulate knowledge and technologies
towards eroding these superficial barriers. In this context, we believe that
the work of UNESCO remains significant and relevant and that UNESCO is indeed
the institution best positioned to consolidate the ….. The Emperor’s New
Tools …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Cutting edge journalism
Jun 15, 2010
The Emperor’s New
Tools. Loading… AddThis. Bookmark and Share. Loading… Follow by Email.
About Me. My Photo · Kris Rampersad. Media, Cultural and Literary Consultant,
Facilitator, Educator and Practitioner. View my …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

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Women in Red or Ladies in Red?

Her Excellency Paula-Mae Weekes with recipient of the 2018 National Medal for the Development of Women Gold at the Awards ceremony National Performing Arts Academy on Republic Day see the event recap linked here  The Walk of Excellence: a life in 60 seconds to receive the National Award for the Development of Women: https://goo.gl/wk4pBx

from Instagram: https://ift.tt/2DJXACD

The Walk of Excellence

‘Excellent!’ That is the first direct word to me in my first enncouter with the first woman President of Trinidad and
Tobago, Her Excellency Paula-Mae Weekes, ORTT.
It is the night of the National Awards on the occasion of the 42nd Anniversary of our Republic status.
The citation is being read, ‘the MEDAL FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF
WOMEN (GOLD) is awarded For Outstanding Contribution to the Development of
Women’s Rights and Issues in Trinidad and Tobago….
She repeats, ‘the Medal For
Outstanding Contribution to Journalism/the Development of Women, and then adds my title Dr, then pronounces my full birth
name, Krishendaye Rampersad, which has been abbreviated for most of my career
as Kris Rampersad
The announcers begin reading a brief of my life’s work. Good
luck with that, I think, trying to condense a life that has filled many ungiving minutes with its full sixty seconds of distance run into the sixty-odd seconds it would take to collect the medal, shake hands, collect scroll and walk across the stage of the National Performing Arts Centre.

 

I am not too worried about what selections would be made
from my CV. The announcers are Sharon Pitt and Errol Fabien, two of my most
respected colleagues in media and whom I have known through my career. Sharon, in fact was one of the first journalists I met when I entered the field as a
freelancer in San Fernando. She worked for radio. I was only at the South
office for about a month before I am called for a staff position at the
headquarters of the Guardian in Port of Spain. The south journalists, and Richard Lord,
in particular, say at almost every encounter that it’s the fastest promotion
they had ever witnessed. There’s more to that story, but at another time.
Sharon called me a few years ago. I had been out of the formal newsroom for almost a decade expanded my journalism to accomodate new media and internationa outreach development, advocacy and revising agenda setting instruments and institutions at all levels. She has followed my
career, she says, inviting me to speak at her daughter’s school. Out of the
formal newsroom, but not out of journalism, my focus was on institutional
strengthening, legislative reform, education, and awareness building. These were weaknesses
I had identified and experienced across fields and spheres in many angements through studies and otherwise with various societies, the path to our development and
our place in the world, at the insection where local meets global; this while continuing to write copiously, film scripts, books, research papers, commentaries and blogs, books, some publshed, still many to be released.
“As one of the few women who have tried to make a living and
career from writing and as a role model for young women like her (daughter),” Sharon
says, explaining her request. I was touched. She was one of the few who had identified my work not just as journalism but in the broader sphere of ‘writer’. I would have loved to; indeed it
was no mean feat, trying to make ends meet, maintain one’s independence, and
function in a sphere that was nebulous to many. Navigating the incredulous
looks on bankers and other officials who would ask, ‘what is your real job,’
when I say ‘writer’ for instance, and then insist on tangible proof that that
is something people do for a living. But my travel schedule, international
engagements could not accommodate the date of the graduation as I would regrettably
be out of the country.

Tonight, I am comforted in the confidence I had in the readers of the bio profiles, Sharon and Errol; their delivery on the fifty other awardees who preceded me, impeccable, aticulate and flawless. Yet, their voices fade out as I turn the bend to come face to face with Her
Excellency. She is stately, elegant, immaculate in red lace, the same shade as my red
chiffon, and the curtains drawn on each side of the stage at the National
Academy for the Performing Arts!

Her voice is a concise balance of effusion, commendation and
warmth. She is handed my medal by Secretary to the President Gregory Serrette, who had walked me through the process a few days earlier. But the experience was altogether novel.
As she leans forward to hang it on the pin, the Order of Trinidad and Tobago, the country’s highest award, with which Her Excellency was presented by the Chief Justice last month, dangles around her neck. It had replaced the Trinity Cross a decade ago on recommendation for equity in consideration of the country’s. Change comes from challenges to the status quo!
“Excellent,” Her Excellency says to me.
Excellent is a word that has resonated through my career.
With some of my classmates with whom I formed an editorial committee, I had
resurrected my high school magazine that had gone defunct for a decade,
rebranded it, and gave it a new lease on life to chronicle the students the
rites of passage of students of St Stephen’s College. Dedicated to Excellence,
we called it. My school friend Kamla who would not follow us into A-Levels
would do a profile article on me for the Junior Express. The headline was Dedicated to Excellence.
Warned of the unfriendly state of the economy to new graduands, even before graduation I wrote applications to as many as I
could; I had forgotten to whom. When Ma handed me the small envelope that came
weeks later by snail mail with the logo of the red and white angel on the right
hand corner that appears on the daily newspapers, I felt it would be another that reads, ‘Sorry, we have no
vacancies at the moment. We would keep your application on file…’.
I was thrilled to see that it was an invitation to an
interview, in Port of Spain, signed by the then editor in chief, Lenn Chong
Sing. My father took a market day off to bring me to Port of Spain (Francis
Joseph has a legendary colourful version of that!) Pa waited in the Guardian
lobby as I am escorted up the stairs and past the desks with people half
hidden.
Clutching my O’ and A’ Level Certificates, references, and a
copy of my school magazine in an envelope, I am whisked into an office and is
greeted by a kindly matronly woman. Mrs Sombrano, she introduces herself, asks
if I would like something to drink which I declined. Soon she opened an
adjourning door and ushered me into what we would come to know as ‘the cold
room’. It is cold. Behind the desk is a Chinese man, head down, reading
something it seems. Bent, his head looks something like Pa’s.
I realise he is reading my application letter, scanning it
with his pen. You have any sample writings? You brought this school magazine? I
hand Dedicated
to Excellence
to him. He flips the pages. Inscrutable.
“Okay, can you start at the South office, as a freelancer,”
he says. “We will see how that goes, until something opens up on staff.”
My first interview, my first writing job!
Mrs Sombrano comes in to escort me out. It is only after I
would realise that Mr Chong Sing had brought me into journalism without making
eye contact. His shyness, I would learn, would never inhibit the dreaded
memos to the newsroom, from ‘the cold room’ for after a month in the ‘South’ –
the vast land mass of so dubbed by the north – covering all spheres from the
courts, local government, schools, I am summoned to the North, much to the displeasure of the South office’s manager, Mr Phillip, and editors, Goerge Alleyne and Mikey Mahabir. Journalism was in danger of losing me as  it was clear that I would have to redirect energies as my first paycheck of $120.00 for more than a month of traversing and covering the entire south, through floods (it was hurricane season); covering schools (it was graduatin season), farmers, local government councils, sports, and the first formal interview with Giselle La Ronde, just crowned in the national contest and about to go off to become Miss World.
Carl Jacobs, the then editor, would receive and introduce me the staff, then deliver me to the hands of John Babb. Sharon Pitt, Richard
Lord, Phoolo Danny and other journalists in various media houses with whom I
was developing fast friendships in South would next hear from me from Port of
Spain. it really all happened in a blink, and the beginning of events that swept me up like those Shakespearean  tides in the affairs of men and women.
The transition from rural to urban life would bring its own insights. I would learn that while friendships were seamless in the
south; in the north, it would be overshadowed and demarcated somewhat by
institutional affiliation in the competitive sphere of breaking news and
journalism. Its demarcations, I believe, I managed to avoid, maintaining my
friendships, with Kamla, Pitt and building others. North-South dichotomies and
the implications on development would become one of my areas of scrutiny,
through into international relationships and development as well.
Under the guidance of our news editor, John Babb, I covered every sphere of
news that the seasoned reporters were too busy to give attention – community
centres and organisations, health, education, city council, the scarvengers and
vagrants. In fact, I was so familiar with the city’s destitutes, that inside
the newsroom, I was referred to as ‘the vagrant reporter’ as I knew many of
them and their stories of misfortune, alienation from family and friends,
mental illness, or just sheer rejection of the society. I began, too, to write
the news behind  the news as well,
profiles, columns, on every theme, topic, beat, the piles of clippings that spill
out of my home office and into every room, that my family and friends often
threaten to throw out, is testimony to the range. Two of the earliest columns
were Discover Trinidad and Tobago and
Teenlife. At that year’s media
awards, the chief judge, retired Chief Justice Sir Isaaac Hyatali, would make mention of a young
reporter who was breathing fresh air into our understanding of Trinidad and
Tobago. I had not submitted any of my writings as the submission deadline was months before I even entered journalism. By the time of the next awards, Therese Mills, the Sunday Guardian
Editor whose office, if not shoes, I would one day occupy, asked me for some of
my articles to submit to the upcoming media awards. I complied and forgot about
it.
[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x2dhwDdK9Zk&w=320&h=266]I realised that one from the Discover Trinidad and Tobago series, ‘War of the Sexes Now Goes to
the Calypso Stage,’ was being named the winner of a BWIA Media Award for Excellence
in Journalism
 in the category for
social and economic commentary in which Therese herself was a nominee, when
Hazel Ward Redman, ‘Aunty Hazel’, sitting in front of me at the media awards
ceremony, jumped off her seat, turned around, beaming at me, applauding and
shouting, “Bravo, Bravo!” Stil la teenager, I felt as if I was on her teen talent show as such was her mode of commending the performances of nervous youngsters.
[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wZWK7A-Abd0&w=320&h=266]When I transitioned to AVM television shortly thereafter to
script the Cross Country series, which Dale Kolasingh, charmed by my Discover
series, wanted to replicate for television, and lured me on the notion of
expanding my media skills, much to Mr Chong Sing’s displeasure, I would learn. AVM
was indeed an incubator and many in the audio-visual sector today has had some
early exposure there. Cross Country became the first local programme ever to
hold the number one spot on local prime time television. Dale confessed one day
when we were celebrating some media awards for Excellence, won for Cross
Country and our current affairs investigations, that Lenn Chong Sing, the
editor in chief, had ‘called and cussed’ him for poaching on his staff when I
resigned from the Guardian. I could never reconcile his cheeky recount with the
Chong Sing I knew, the man who had never made eye contact with me. Though, in
the not too distant future, Lenn Chong Singh, then retired from the Guardian
and taken on as a consultant to recruit new staff for the television station in
formation -TV6 – would seek his revenge and attempt to recruit me for the
station. Still never making eye contact, after he had called and we agreed to
meet where I was attending a workshop at UWI. As tempting as it was to get into the action in the formation of the new television station, brought about by government policy for opening up the airwaves with issue of sevral TV licences, I politely declined. I had just began university that I had delayed for not one, as initially intended, but four years to explore print and elevision ournalism. I needed flexible time that starting up a television station would not have
allowed then. When I completed myfirst degree at UWI, John Babb and Therese Mills would ask me to join them in a new daily newspaper in the making, to be launched as a ‘good news’ paper, Newsday, which just celebrated its 25th year. I would have its first cover story, 5000 Lives Saved, win a Media Award for Excellence in Heath Reporting from the Pan American Health Organisation, and help it carve its space in the national landscape in coverage of a range of beats, culture, health, education, trade unions, politics… as well as profiles of many in the society, individuals and institutions, and initiate and populate its satirical column, Between the Lines, one of many subsequent satirical columns, that have occuied the editorial columns since, including commentaries on issuses of the Parliament of the day, I Beg To Move; In Gabilan, The Week That Was, The C Monologues, and others.
Those were my earliest years in media in what I regard as not a career, but a vocation, propelled by forces I sometimes over which I have felt I have had little real control, and impulses larger than life.  The dimensions of I have little would have many
compartments, as a freelancer, investigative reporter, columnist, editor,
scriptwriter,  From the newsrooms of the Trinidad Guardian to AVM Television to founding of Newsday, to editorship  director, producer, publisher, advocate, educator, trainer, agenda setter, and policymaker. To embrace new media as another form for communication and dissemination of information, start a blog in the embryonic days of blogging in T&T, that has won a readership of international think tanks and was named a winner in a policy blogging initiative for new media of the BBC and Communications Initiative. But even so, media as it is generally defined, remained only a form an medium of expression that is part of a larger cultural milieu of expressions in the written and spoken word, but also through art, music, dance, signs and symbols; forms that are natural to the human impulse to connect and communicate and share life experiences and interpretations with each other.  A vocation, it is, that covers many spheres and disciplines and gender equity and women’s issues
being one dimension of trying to encourage a level playing field and create
opportunities and carve paths for development for equity and inclusion in our
social, cultural, economic and political interactions. Journalism and media to me have been only tools, companion tools to other forms of communication articulated through various cultural expressions. The skills and understanding of media, communication, the use of
information, their forms and functions and inner and outer mechanics, social
and political contexts are only the frames towards moving our world closer to  those goals now being called Sustainable
Development. Most, conditioned in silos cannot see the links and I have often felt the disconnect and sometimes a tug of war and even command to choose one. To me, in all their variable dimensions, they are
seamless and indivisible. It was never about filling the unforgivng minute with sixty seconds worth of distance run; it was about how could I stretch and stretch some more the unforgiving minute to accomodate all the runs that must be made. So much to do and so little time to do it in, my friends would often hear me say. Little did I know how little.
“Excellent! Congratulations! Well done! Well deserved! Long
Overdue!” Her Excellency is emphasizing the sylable of each word as she pins on the medal.
It is her first word to me, ‘Excellent’, that resonates against
the applause coming from the auditorium hall as I turn to shake hands and
receive congratulations from first the Prime Minister, Dr Keith Rowley; then
the Chief Justice, Ivor Archie and to greet Mrs Archie, then to collect the
scroll and box in which would rest the Medal for the Development of Women,
Gold, for Journalism/ and Development of Women.
The word continues to echo independently
in the thousands of commendations and congratulations and hearty well-wishes
and thumbs up and likes, and hearts, and emotive emojis, that have since floated to me through public and private social media and calls and interactions tell me of the spheres that my work has
reached and touched: my family, relatives, siblings, nephews and nieces; villagers;
my early and later teachers, the educators and cultural and gender advocates
who were also awarded and guests that night who have followed my work; and to media
colleagues – many trapped in uncertainty of the current media climate; women
and men in many spheres.
That it means so much to so many, has enhanced its value to me. Thank You!

 

Next: Behind the Red Curtain of the National Awards Ceremony
and the Medal for Development of Women
Career Highlights Journalism and Development of Women, Dr Kris Rampersad
Dr Kris Rampersad work has spanned the arenas of Education; Literature, the Arts and Culture; Media Communications and Information; and Gender Equity, Empowerment and Advancement for access to opportunities from grassroots to high level agenda setting international arenas. This has enhanced the impact and ability to envision and advocate for meaningful gender and culture-sensitive approaches to sustainable development in ways that bridge and span gaps between and among fields and disciplines from agriculture, culture, industry, education, governance and ICTs for all ages and across gender divides.
She functions as an Independent educator, researcher, author, advocate, activist, advisor, mentor, facilitator and consultant.
?feature=player_embeddedHighlights of Media/Journalism Career: Spans print, television, education and advocacy across spheres of conventional and new media prnt and production 1988-2018.
v  Blog Demokrissy is a widely read by international think tanks, including the UN community. It won the BBC/UNESCO Communication Initiative policy development blogging for new media
v  Coordinated international media for Summit of the Americas and Commonwealth Heads of Government Meetings
v  First sitting journalist to complete doctorate. Inspired many journalist to pursue higher education.
v  Articles and columns have occupied and guided public opinion from editorial pages for some 30 years
v  Doctorate on process of literary development and influences of journalism on award winning writings considered seminal and ground breaking in its depth and scope that spans 100 years of socio-cultural-political evolution of Trinidad and Tobago. Published as Finding A Place
v  Wrote first book on the first female Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, Through the Political Glass Ceiling,  released on the eve of election of 2010 with prophetic insights into premiership of Kamla Persad Bissessar.
v  Third book  LiTTscapes – Landscapes of Fiction from Trinidad and Tobago represents almost everything written in fiction from Sir Walter Raleigh 1595 to the turn of the 21st century was commemorative publication of 50th Jubilee Anniversary of Independence;
Presented ground breaking research at first World Summit on Information Society in Tunisia on engendering ICT policy. Has helped develop media, information and communication policy as integrated into achievmeents of Millennium Development goals and Sustainable Development Goals at global levels of agenda setting and policy making of the UN Commonwealth and OAS agencies.
Pioneered research on  gender sensitive policy making in areas of Freedom of Information, Access to Information, and other spheres for hemispheric, commonwealth and UN bodies   
v  Served as Editor of Sunday Guardian and presided over the transition from broadsheet to tabloid.
v  Founding journalist of Newsday – wrote first lead story, ‘5000 Lives Saved, dubbed ‘the good news reporter’
v  Youngest journalist to win BWIA media award for excellence in journalism. Won in social and economic commentary category for gender bender article, War of the Sexes Goes to the Calypso Stage from Discover Trinidad and Tobago series

 

v  Won Pan American Health Organisation Award for Excellence in Health Reporting
v  Top student of diploma course in international journalism , Rajasthan Patrika Award from Indian Institute of Mass Communication (Scholarship).  
v  Research and Writer of programmes of Cross Country for AVM Television (as well as AVM Special Report, Survival (food programme) Booktalk among others. Cross Country became rated as the number one local programme that held prime time television spot for its duration and won several BWIA Media Awards.
v  Awarded Nuffield Foundation Fellowship to Wolfson College, Cambridge
v  Awarded fellowship by Foreign Press Centre of Japan
v  Commonwealth Professional Fellow
Highlights of Gender Actions
For almost three decades Dr Kris Rampersad has been devoted to leveling the playing field for women and girls in pursuit of:
•Gender equality in the work place
• The elimination of all forms of discrimination against women by the promotion of gender equity.
• Legislative and cultural reform to ensure gender equity.
• Institutional mechanisms for the advancements of women.
• Economic empowerment by: overcoming marginalization, oppressive social norms access and rights to resources;
• Incentive and awards based initiatives encouraging women to fulfill their potential and
• Education- based programs, initiatives or personal action that offer and afford women broader choices & enhanced opportunities
Highlights of Gender Actions & Achievements

 

Highlights of such achievements in pursuit of implementation of the CEDAW recommendations  for the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women and promotion of gender equity include:
1.       Research, preparation of the pioneering comprehensive national report and spearheaded follow up action in the InterAmerican system to encourage State bodies to implement the CEDAW convention provisions and recommendations that informed the Summit of the Americas, Commonwealth and UN processes.
2.       Her work in awareness raising and building capacities to understand gender sensitive policy and legislation to strengthen the capacity of institutions in addressing gender inequalities as for reform to the child marriage act, gender sensitive budgeting and engendered political processes.
3.        She coordinated the outreach and advocacy for the Commonwealth Foundation’s campaign for gender equality for Commonwealth Women Affairs Ministers Meetings. This fed into the Commonwealth Head of Government Meetings to build acceptance of the Commonwealth Campaign on the slogan, ‘Where’s the Money for Gender Equality.’ It spotlighted and propelled the movement of gender equity beyond rhetoric to actioning developmental programmes.
4.       Her impact on gender equality in the workplace has been not just in pursuing the rights of colleagues in the workplace but for across-the-board equity in treatment, equity in promotions and remunerations; representation of women at higher levels of administration and decision making.
5.        She has been a strong advocate to removal of discriminatory practices and revisiting entrenched notions of gender roles within social systems and cultural practices through her work with traditional and grass roots communities across the Caribbean.
6.       She has herself blazed a trail for women in the media and has filled several senior level positions as well as being the first sitting editor to have completed a PhD while in the demanding and high-stressed environment of the newsroom, as well as in her actions in supporting women journalists.
7.       From the inception of her career as a journalist Dr Rampersad supported the global mandate for equality of women that came out of the Beijing Platform for Women, and has a substantial portfolio of articles, columns as Woman to Woman, interviews, investigations, that tell women’s personal stories of trials and triumphs, revealing discrepancies and imbalances from data, highlighting the plight of the underprivileged, unearthing inequalities in national life, in the homes and in the work place, and the campaign against domestic violence.
8.       She has also been actively involved in supporting and encouraging women’s development from community to international policy arenas.
9.       Her writings, from profiles of achievements to policy critiques have encouraging women in public , civic and entrepreneurial arenas, utilizing all her roles to this end.
10.   She has initiated and developed a number of awards for women.
i.                    As editor she partnered with the United Nations, corporate community, NGOs and others to spearhead the Woman of the Year Award. S
ii.                  She conceptualized and piloted to national and international acceptance the Commonwealth Caribbean ‘Women Agents of Change’ Award, which was the forerunner to introduction of the Medals for Women in Trinidad and Tobago.
iii.                She identified women to be recognized among others for the Trinidad and Tobago Publishers’ and Broadcasting Association Awards for Media Excellence.
11.   She created & produced television documentary as the series That is Woman that features leading women figures in national life to showcase women’s achievements and have them tell their stories in their own words, and researched and scripted many other stories of women for radio, television and print.
12.   For the most part of the last fifteen years she has been the spokesperson on women’s issues and gender parity, shaping and supporting the work of local and international Networks for gender equity and the advancement of Women of Trinidad and Tobago.
13.   As an educator, she also trained women in gender sensitive approaches to policy making, understanding and engaging with media.
14.   Among organisations that have benefitted from her input are UN Women/UNIFEM; UNESCO dedicated programme actions on its priority focus on women,  the Caribbean Institute for Women and the Commonwealth Women’s Organisation; CIVICUS – World Assembly for People’s Participation.
15.   She was researcher and lead spokesperson for gender equality for the OAS Active Democracy Network in the build up to and through the Fifth Summit of the Americas and presented pioneering research on gender sensitive approaches to changing development policy agenda in areas of Freedom of Expression, Access to Information .
16.   At national level, she articulated to build awareness as the Outreach and International

Relations Director of the Network of NGOs for Women and articulated the vision around the Put A Woman Campaign of the Network of NGOs for the Advancement of Women, which drew from the UN resolutions for gender parity in national decision making. It included the slogan, A Woman’s Place is in the House – Of Parliament, that saw the .drive for fulfilment of the quota of women in Parliament along with women in the positions of Speaker of the House and President of the Senate. The same campaign also supported the ascension into office of the First Female Prime Minister and first Female President of Trinidad and Tobago in one decade.

17.   She wrote the pioneering book, Through the Political Glass Ceiling, that along with mapping the journey of the First Female Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago through her speeches also includes revisionary research, study and analysis of the national politics of the day through gender and cultural sensitive lenses that has become a text for gender studies and analyses. This has become an important global text in appreciating the challenges of women in ascension public office.
18.   These contributions spilled over to her functions in other arenas. As the Co-Chair of the UNESCO Executive Board’s Public and External Relations Commission responsible for programme actions she drove and supported international actions and motions to strengthen UNESCO’s priority focus on women and gender equality as well as in championing rights of journalists and others and for injecting gender sensitive approaches to decision making in culture, education, information and other spheres.
19.    She was herself acknowledged and featured in Hazel Ward Redman’s celebratory series as CentreStage and Woman of Substance and has been featured in articles as Express Woman, ‘Helping Dreamers Dream’ and Newsday Woman’s Weekly as Changing the World With Ideas.
20.   She has mentored many at national and international levels
Pioneering Work
Dr Kris Rampersad’s work is pioneering in relation to her research and fearless and courageous and selfless advocacy and actions in the face of tremendous odds and challenges of a small island society. She has enhanced the image of Trinidad and Tobago and women both in the national arena and abroad as a  flagbearer of national development interests through all her endeavours as journalist, editor, advocate, educator, development specialist.
Through her work and in networking with others she has actively created and improved the availability and accessibility of spaces for women in the public sphere and has helped spotlight challenges and streamline the focus on perceptions of their roles and functions in the private/domestic spheres.
Her groundbreaking research offer new insight into national phenomenon within local and international contexts to enlighten approaches to agenda setting, policy and decision making encompassing research, production, advocacy, institutional capacity building and enhancement through to face to face and hands on leadership and youth development initiatives in education and awareness and skills building for women and girls.
Her life and work putting service before self, often at little or no remuneration and at the expense of her health and a life threatening medical condition, she has given up many personal and professional comforts and security in her efforts at creating opportunities and advancement of women
Through her passion, energy, devotion, and commitment to actions for meaningful change, she has inspired women and girls of all ages and across national to international spectrums as an inspiration to women educators, women leaders, women in the media and in the sphere of arts and culture.
Awards/Recognitions & Service

 

Education
St Julien Presbyterian School New Grant Princes Town – Primary School:
St Stephen’s College, Princes Town – Secondary School:
PhD in Literatures in English University of the West Indies
BA Literatures in English, sociology, politics,  University of the West Indies
Diploma in Mass Communication – Indian Institute of Mass Communication, India and its highest award  Rajasthan Patrika Award;
Fellow, Wolfson College, University of Cambridge UK (globalisation);
Commonwealth Professional Fellowship
Participated and benefitted from numerous courses, lectures, workshops in  multimedia, information technologies, leadership, management, computing, managing diversity, and conservation and safeguarding of cultural heritage.
Scholarships and Fellowships:
Wolfson (Journalism) College, University of Cambridge UK;
Foreign Press Centre of Japan (journalism fellowship);
Association of Commonwealth Universities, Professional Fellowship;
UWI Post Graduate Scholarship;
Awards & Commendations:
Ø  Trinidad and Tobago Luminary Award 2015/2016
Ø  Winner Development Policy Blogs on New Media (BBC Trust/UNESCO Communication Initiative); 2011
Ø  Award for Excellence in Health Reporting 1994 (World Health Organisation/Pan American Health Organisation)
Ø  Award for Excellence in Journalism (BWIA) 1987;
Ø  Moms for Literacy Award for Literary Achievement
Ø  International Who’s Who in Cultural Policy Research (ConnectCP)
Ø  Award for Contribution to Literature and Culture; (Global Organisation of Peoples of Indian Origin)
Ø  Rajasthan Patrika Most Outstanding Student Award (Indian Institute of Mass Communication)
Ø  British High Commission Award for English Literature
Ø  UWI Award Student Awards.
Organisation Affiliations – International/National
Ø  Founding Adviser, International Institute for Gastronomy, Culture, Arts & Tourism
Ø  Founding Member, U40 Coalition on Promotion of Diversity of Cultural Expressions
Ø  Founding Member, Scientific Committee, International Culture University
 Served on numerous committees and boards, including  
Ø  UNESCO General Assembly, Chair Education Commission

 

Ø  UNESCO Executive Board, co-chair Programmes and External Relations Commission, member of Special Committee
Ø   Chair, National Museum and Art Gallery;
Ø  Chair, National Commission for UNESCO of Trinidad and Tobago 
Ø  Member Trinidad and Tobago Government Expert Panel on Arts and Culture Member, Trinidad and Tobago Registry of Cultural Workers Committee
Ø  Member, Trinidad and Tobago Heritage Tourism Committee
Ø  Founder,/Coordinator Awards for Agricultural Journalism
Ø   Founding member, Friends of Mr Biswas – St James House for Mr Biswas
Ø  Founder/Coordinator, Trinidad Theatre Workshop Fund for Literature, Drama, Film
Ø  Outreach & International Relations Director, Network of NGOs of Trinidad and Tobago for the Advancement of Women
Other Career Highlights
International Development Educator, Lecturer, Facilitator, Consultant: 21 years
MultiMediaMedia/Journalism: 30 years: editor, manager, investigative reporter, script and storyboard writer, producer/publisher in print, electronic and new media
Author: Finding A Place (Ian Randle Publishers, 2001); Through the Political Glass Ceiling; LiTTscapes – Landscapes of Fiction from Trinidad and Tobago
AudioVisual Producer/Director/Writer/Researcher:20 years
Academia – lecturing at tertiary level formal, non-formal and informal sectors, course design, development and evaluation – 22 years
Some 30 years’ experience in developing formal and informal education sectors as a researcher, writer, educator, outreach and communication specialist and analyst of culture, migration, rural and urban development, diversity, multiculturalism and related areas of cross sectoral sustainable development;
Holds a PhD in Literatures in English. Doctoral theses examined issues of globalization, migration processes of adaptation and society-formation drawing from global-local knowledge and experiences of media and literary development of a small island state.
Have written and published extensively on themes of identity, migration, adaptation, urbanisation, and rural development in contexts of youth, gender, trade, crime, ecology, education and other topics;
 Numerous peer reviewed articles and conference presentations, including three books that approach the issues of migration and social adaptations from various angles: journalism/information and communication (Finding a Place, Ian Randle Publications, 2002); gender appreciation (Through the Political Glass Ceiling – Race to Prime Ministership by Trinidad and Tobago’s First Female Kamla Persad Bissessar (2010) and popular culture (LiTTscapes – Landscapes of Fiction from Trinidad and Tobago (2012);
Educator/Train the Trainers & Capacity Building : 

a: UNESCO: Training of Caribbean Stakeholders in diversity appreciation, activating Cultural Heritage and Creative Sectors: Belize, Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, Antigua and Barbuda, Guyana, Grenada, St Kitts/Nevis. UNESCO..
b. Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI). Training of Caribbean Agriculturalists in Outreach, Education and Development of Academic Journals and Publications:
c. National Institute of Higher Education Research, Science and Technology (NIHERST): Development of Outreach Initiatives for Science Popularisation:
d. Caribbean Institute of Women in Leadership: Develop Course Materials and Train Caribbean Women Leaders in Gender Sensitivity, Diversity Appreciation, Engagement & Outreach:  Guyana, Antigua, Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago, Grenada
e. The College of Science, Technology and Applied Arts of Trinidad and Tobago (COSTAATT):  Development and Delivery of Journalism and Literature Courses
f. Part Time Lecturer: Literatures in English; Foundational Courses; Literature and Caribbean Society: University of the West Indies.
g. External Supervisor, MSc Thesis Cultural Diversity Management: Institutional Reform
h. External Thesis Editor/Publication Adviser
i. Guest Lecturer: Literature, Culture, Media, Civic Empowerment for Sustainable Development, University of Catalona, Barcelona, Spain
Career Highlights: Education & Culture:
Educational Policy Development: Formal and Informal Education, Literature, Media Outreach, Lifelong Learning and Global Citizenship Education:
a. Capacity development for cultural and civil society communities across the Americas Successful trained stakeholders of all three Caribbean Small Island Developing States which achieved World Heritage status over the last five years (Antigua and Barbuda, 2016; Jamaica, 2015, Barbados, 2011 prior to this last inscription was in 1998).
b.       Pioneered several international level policies through UNESCO/other international agencies for relevant actions for integrated and transboundary approaches to positively impact the Sustainable Development Agenda and integrate culture in development, promote global citizenship, rationally explore issues of migration and adaptation.
c.        Devised models for multisectoral media and cultural outreach including one adopted from a model developed for the Caribbean for ACP-EU Seminar on Media and Agriculture, Brussels;
d. Development of the blue print of the action plan being used English speaking Caribbean countries for implementation of UNESCO Conventions; culling appreciation and development of incentive and award schemes; integrating developmental approaches across sectors and national boundaries and developing transboundary connections.
e.       More than 15 years’ hands on experience in development and implementing policy programmes and actions in the global to local cultural heritage and creative industries spheres in UN agencies, UNESCO, OAS, ACP-EU, Commonwealth and civil society glocal organisations;
f.       Keenly committed to working on realization of the sustainable development agenda, even beyond its stated goals to proactive engagement of culture-centred development for equity and fairness in all spheres and have participated in its development globally & locally;
g.         Lifelong experiences of NGO work and community level experience in cultural development and have both culled international policy and worked on implementing such areas as Creative Cities, World Heritage, Intangible Heritage, Diversity of Cultural Expressions, Creative Industries, Copyrights, Trade and Development;  Slave, Silk and Indentured Indian Immigrant Routes, Memory of the World, Rural and Urban cultural development, policy and legislative reform, civil society, youth and gender participation, empowerment and equity
Career Highlights: Journalism, Media, Information and Communication
j.         More than 30 years as a communicator and journalist and about a decade as producer and publisher in multimedia forms exploring comparative cross-cultural and issues;
k.          Extensive experience in research,  writing for multimedia forms and presentation of messages on  migration, diversity, inclusion for sustainable development, with intimate knowledge of most of international policy instruments in these regards and devising, developing, implementing and evaluating policies and strategies, advice and technical support, managing the process and content, transactions and operations in these areas and combined experiences in Management, having been a staff manager of a major media house before an independent career in cultural project management and policy development in the cultural and allied spheres of education and communications
l.     Extensive experience in networking and collaborations both internally and externally, across boundaries, sectors, stakeholder interests, institutions and agencies with considerable successes in devising and developing networks around cultural matters, working with the diplomatic community, embassies, intergovernmental agencies, regional and international organizations, the European Commission and the European Council, Organisation of American States, Commonwealth Secretariat and commonwealth Foundation, InterAmerican Institutions and other organisations of  the UN system, and Africa, Caribbean and Pacific Regions.
Find Dr Kris Rampersad on Social Media as:
KrisRampersad: LinkedIn/Instagram/YouTube/PInterest/
KrisRampersad1: Facebook; @krisramp – Twitter;
Blog Demokrissy – https://ift.tt/2pwwUvl

 

Republic Day National Awards 2018 Ready to collect National Medal

Republic Day National Awards 2018 Ready to collect National Medal for Development of Women for Journalism Education Development of Women see my source of inspiration… What my mother told me.  See https://wp.me/p2hqtD-hi.
 
Visit My Store. Now on Sale, Through the Political Glass Ceiling 

What my mother told me. Wealth Is …

What constitutes wealth and where do we get it? I received this momento of wisdom from my mother that is worthy of introspection and reflection by all this Mothers’ Day….
Tribute to Mothers
Surprised by ABC teacher while speaking on Mothers Motherlands and Mother Cultures at ZATTIC Mothers’ Day tribute in Toronto, Canada.
The National Award for Development of Women/Journalism to me represents an acknowledgment of the sometimes nameless and voiceless women and others I have tried to represent; whose stories I have written, and whose views I have tried to articulate variously as a journalist, as an advocate and activist, as an author, educator and media practitioner in the quest for equity and inclusion, to open up spaces for women and advance a level playing field for all.
We who are given opportunities have a responsibility to give back and to leave our sphere better for those who come after. The wind beneath my wings has always been my now octogenarian mother who had little such opportunity as what she tried to provide for my siblings and I, who inspires with her humility and abundant love; who gives and asks for little in return and who instilled in me that my wealth is my mind. It is to her courage and resilience and quick wit that strengthens my resolve in substituting the pursuit of material wealth for the pursuit of knowledge. 
Sharing some highlights below and some brief brief preview bits of Ma, from my upcoming autobiography, Life! HoleHeartedly!
Want to Order in Advance?  Send Request in Contact Us Form on this site.

 

Ma and me

Ma surprises me one day, although I thought the battle was fought and won. It is no mean feat to de-condition centuries of tradition of the notion that marriage is not the ultimate goal for a woman’s self-fulfillment. Yet, I believe I had convinced Ma. I wasn’t in anyway averse to the notion. But life gets in the way. So much to do and so little time to do it in.
The hints and suggestions of appropriate life partners were becoming less frequent.  It was a long time since I heard her speak of it. Perhaps she has resigned herself, I think.
Then Ma surprises me. We are talking now about my career. It is difficult to explain. I do not have a career. I do not really have what
people consider a real job. The demands of the NGOs had escalated. It left little time to visit, to talk. The schedule was getting hectic, one international NGO meeting after the other. I was beginning to feel the strain. There was little time to earn a living
and there were bills to pay…. Then Ma surprised me, by saying this…

Between Saving The World and MaRepresenting Trinidad and Tobago at UNESCO

…One December, I was invited to a meeting to design
international policy for Information and Communication Technology at the United Nations in Geneva – a follow-up meeting to the first World Summit on Information Society meeting held in Tunisia some years earlier, to assess the distance traveled in ICTs and the way forward. I had presented on the need for gender-sensitive ICT policy, with a critique of gender blindness in ICT policy. Rewind! FastForward, it was entitled. Fastforward was the name of the national ICT policy.
Inside the Glass Ceiling
Exciting moments in breaking Through The Political Glass Ceiling. Now Available in Our Store Shop Now!
…My friend Gail arrives to take me to the airport, yet again., but she instead finds me sitting, half-dressed, my winter boots next to me, pensive.
“Come on. You are going to be late!” She sits me down and pulls my boots on.
“I don’t think I should go,” I tell her. “Ma’s not feeling well.” Ma had just turned 80….
When I went to tell her I was leaving again, I could tell that she was beginning to feel that this could be the
last time we would see each other. …
 

When A Mother Forgets A Birthday

 
There were many family occasions missed too. I felt that my
nephews and nieces knew of me from what they read of and by me. For many years my birthday went uncelebrated or in other lands. In Uganda, coordinating the outreach for the Women’s Affairs Minister’s Meeting, the women came together because Hazel Brown insisted that my birthday be recognised with a cake.
Then, Ma too, still remembered my birthday, though I was far away. I did not imaging that a day would come when she would not, and then one day that day came… 
 

Mothers’ Day Missed

…In the weeks that I tried to pull together my second book, Through
the Political Glass Ceiling
so it could be out before the general
elections. I felt a launch before the elections was crucial, because there were some prophetic elements therein, I felt. prophetic, guided by my original research that generally departs from and challenges the thinking of the day or long held notions – mostly guided by skewed research. I try to review and revise some of those about the political culture in this book’s introduction, The Clash of Political Cultures: Cultural Diversity and Minority Politics in a Small Island. I focused on the intangibles of political ideology that has often been overlooked in political and socio-cultural analyses. The world is only now awakening that to the reality that these overlooked elements are indeed central and core to democratic failures, and only now recognising how focusing primarily on overt factors can skew analyses. And that made it seem as if I had a Krystal ball – that is, prophetic. It was around these insights that I wrapped career the woman who was in line – or destined -to shatter the political glass ceiling as the first woman Prime Minister.
…When my family gathered for Mother’s Day, that May, I had to beg leave. The book had to get to the press; the launch was in a few days. And a few days after that the elections. Ma understood. She encouraged me to get it done. I took comfort that she would be at the launch. How much we take our mothers for granted.
 

And then she said…

It was after the launch of Through the Political Glass
Ceiling.
We are sitting. I had just finished giving her a massage, with coconut oil, as she liked.
 “When you going settle down, girl?”
Oh dear. That talk..again! I think in dismay.
“But I am settled Ma.”
“But who you going to leave your wealth to?”
It was not the question I expected from Ma. We were generally never a family whose prime impulse or focus was on material wealth. I should have known.
“What wealth Ma? I asked. Startled. I explained to her that I generally worked for just stipends to cover daily allowances, and when time permits, a few contracts that would have to cover the expenses of the months not formerly working.
“I am doing what I am called to do,” I tell her.
That’s when Ma surprised me.
“Your wealth is your mind. Who you going to pass that on
to?” Ma says.
 
And a little something extra in honour of Mothers’ Day – extracted from upcoming Autobiography, Life HoleHeartedly

At the grinding stone

‘Everytime I passing
gyul you peesaying masala….’
I discover the world in Ma’s kitchen: the crossroads of new
and ancient Asian, Arabian, African, American European culinary delights. The
scents in Ma’s kitchen are like the convergence of global force winds and
waters at the crosscurrents of the world.
Ma is humming, ‘Everytime I passing gyul you peesaying masala’ as she presses out ancient family
culinary secrets from the mystical Orient beyond the Middle Passage through
Pacific-Atlantic Spice Routes, rerouted and rerooted. Like tantalising tall
tales of the Arabian Nights they tease my senses out of my comfort zones of
fairytales through Tunisia and Turkey, Venice and Manhattan to discoveries that
will overturn histories and empires and turn pages, heads and square, oval and
round tables of global diplomacy…..
Everytime I passing
gyul you peesaying masala,
Ma hums.
From the bowls of spices surrounding her, ancient unrecorded
lore transfers an exotic and erotic past from the perfumed gardens of the
ancient new world. Silken curtains swish against each other sinuously and in
sensual whispers seduces me to board closely guarded camel-drawn caravans laden
with dhania, pippali, nutmeg, cloves, maithi, nigella, cinnamon, cardamom,
mace, turmeric, across the deserts from Dravidian civilisations; aboard Persian
carpets of Iran and Iraq; pausing for refueling at the intersection of shipping
ports via the Arabian Sea into the Egypt’s Nile and the courts of Ramses; then
onward through to Mediterranean parts, Turkey, swashbuckling with the Ottomans
to enter Greece, to join Marco Polo through Rome, Venice; and Vasco De Gama
then Magellan in Portugal, and onto Spanish, French, Dutch Europe, and to the
British Empire.And yes, Letter’s To Lizzie is to be reincarnated! stay Tuned….
 
And Now a Little Something Extra. From UpComing  AutoBiography, LIFE! HoleHoleHeartedly! 
To Support or Partner or prebook this, please indicate in comment page below.
 
Clan-destine
confessions
I am a bastard. The name I carry is not the one I was born with. And I do not refer
only to the truncated byline that accompanies this article.
(That was the Guardian’s doing. Days into what would turn out to be a career, not many moons ago, a dashing sub-editor faced me with the ultimatum of truncating my name or run the risk of not being
credited for my articles.)
For years I harboured clandestine thoughts that I was a bastard. In times when I wanted
to disown my family, I convinced myself I was orphaned; on better days I
savoured my secret – that I was a love child!
While I combed her hair, made wavy from decades of plaiting, or massaged her back, I
would smilingly indulge in this little secret I shared with my Ma. She groaned
approvingly every time I massaged an ache out. I dread to think what her real
reaction would have been had I voiced my thoughts…
But it was not just my imagination running wild. My bastardisation was the doing of
the State. 
It began when…….
 
….Five generations later, Moneah now lives: In the faces and the mannerisms and quirks of character of the some
3,000 women who can trace a bloodline to her.
From what
I know of some of those women in her lineage, …
…. She would mourn him properly in the traditionally defined ways, and two years later
consort with ..
[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xm7r7-8amRs&w=320&h=266]
… 
A solid bridge now stretches seven generations – each step boldly
labelled – towards. Because we know her name.
 

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Tuned to thinktanks

The blog that’s tuned to thinktanks #Demokrissy see more and ask about customised LiTTributes LiTTours inspired by LiTTscapes and a lifetime of readings and writings see The Funeral Scores. Sir Vidia Naipaul final farewell in a fanfare of Naipaulian fictive irony https://goo.gl/NQibgR

Nobel Blogging Demokrissy trends with world’s leading think tank


Now, if only their was a Nobel Prize for Blogging and/or the cannon of commentary on the modern age of which it is a part. Demokrissy leads world opinion where it matters. Demokrissy’s trending at the UN, it seems. In the days that saw the mortal exit of two Nobel Laureates of 2001 in one week, with the death of former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan who received the Nobel Peace Prize and Sir Vidia Naipaul who received the Nobel Prize for Literature in the same year, attention was turned on and tuned to Demokrissy’s assessment and presentation of the impact of Nobel Laureate Sir Vidia S. Naipaul on our world. In fact, the – uhh- post mortem – on Sir Vidia’s funeral has been trending at the United Nations and to UN readers.  Now who needs likes and thumbs up from Facebook, Twitter, Intagram, LinkedIn etc when the reach is more targeted, dire
ct and to the point, eh.

Kidding aside, how humbled I feel to have been within the ambit of some of the world’s leading minds of our time.
Lets us tailor your legacy.
Find out how you can collaborate, partner and/or become a sponsor in our Reading Revolution and global LiTTributes to the LaureaTTes: Legacies of Learning of Two Worlds, modeled on our LiTTribute to the Republic in Trinidad and Tobago,, LiTTribute to the Mainland in Guyana/South America; LiTTribute to the Antilles in Antigua that evoked Nobel Laureate Derek Walcotts Nobel Lecture, The Antilles: Fragments of Epic Memory; LiTTribute to LondonTTown: Literature, Culture, the Arts and Sustainable Development; LiTTribute to the Americas: Of Roots and Routes; LiTTribute to ToronTTo, Canada: Imbibing Multiculturalism the Culinary Arts…
And just a little note: we appreciate that imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but a little acknowledgement of source when using any of our material can’t hurt, eh. Let’s celebrate not by hailing those who whittled away our resources but by acknowleding those who added to our cultural capital, our quintessential patriots! Happy Independence!


You can read the contributions on Sir Vidia and other Nobel encounters through these links:
Reflections on the Death of Nobel Laureate Sir Vidia Naipaul see link https://goo.gl/7eBP5a 
One LiTTle bookshop: LiTTscapes and the Nobel Laureate https://goo.gl/cpvr2T     
Related Links:
Noble Tears of a Nobel Bard Death of Nobel Laureate Derek Walcott , the evening Epic Banquet  https://goo.gl/WXbMpv


The Magic and Realism of Gabrial Garcia Marquez RIP https://goo.gl/s7y2oc
My Collision with Stephen Hawkins: https://goo.gl/Fx47Ak
Authors Tete-aTete Dr Kris Rampersad and Sir VS Naipaul  https://goo.gl/gU11Jv 
LiTTscapes: Facebook: https://goo.gl/HBJsmM
Five Year Old Child Stars at LiTTribute: https://goo.gl/fn3oTR

Nationhood in contestation with globalisation: http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/2017/08/nationhood-in-contestation-with.html    https://goo.gl/KWdUtx
Exploring a World Through MultiCultural Lenses
https://ift.tt/2veR3ei

LiTTscapes for Littribute to the
Antilles 

A LiTTribute at UNESCO 
Inscription by UNESCO of Poems
Small only in Size UNESCO Executive
Board told

World in a Fishbowl
A Musical Heritage walk UNESCO
Creative Cities

Creating Centres of Peace in
Trinidad and Tobago

The Price of Independence:#DanaSeetahalAssassination
Conceive. Achieve. Believe
Demokrissy: Wave a flag for a party
rag…Choosing the Emperor’s …

Oct 20, 2013 Choosing the Emperor’s New Troops. The dilemma
of choice. Voting is supposed to be an exercise in thoughtful, studied choice.
Local government is the foundation for good governance so even if one wants to
reform the … http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Old Casked Rum:
The Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Demokrissy – Blogger

Apr 07, 2013 Old Casked Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 –
Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T. So we’ve had the rounds of
consultations on Constitutional Reform? Are we any wiser? Do we have a sense of
direction that will drive …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Valuing Carnival
The Emperor’s New Tools#2

Apr 30, 2013 Valuing Carnival The Emperor’s New Tools#2….http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
See Also:
Demokrissy: Winds
of Political Change – Dawn of T&T’s Arab Spring

Jul 30, 2013 Wherever these breezes have passed, they have
left in their wake wide ranging social and political changes: one the one hand
toppling long time leaders with rising decibels from previously suppressed
peoples demanding a …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Reform, Conform,
Perform or None of the Above cross …

Oct 25, 2013 Some 50 percent did not vote. The local
government elections results lends further proof of the discussion began in
Clash of Political Cultures: Cultural Diversity and Minority Politics in
Trinidad and Tobago in Through The …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Sounds of a party –
a political party

Oct 14, 2013 They are announcing some political meeting or
the other; and begging for my vote, and meh road still aint fix though I hear
all parts getting box drains and thing, so I vex. So peeps, you know I am a
sceptic so help me decide. 
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy:
T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian

Jun 15, 2010 T&T Constitution the culprit | The
Trinidad Guardian · T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian.
Posted by Kris Rampersad at 8:20 AM · Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare
to Facebook …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Related:
Demokrissy: To vote, just how we
party … Towards culturally …

Apr 30, 2010 ‘How we vote is not how we party.’ At ‘all
inclusive’ fetes and other forums, we nod in inebriated wisdom to calypsonian
David Rudder’s elucidation of the paradoxical political vs. social realities of
Trinidad and Tobago. http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: DEADLOCK: Sign of
things to come

Oct 29, 2013 An indication that unless we devise innovative
ways to address representation of our diversity, we will find ourselves in
various forms of deadlock at the polls that throw us into a spiral of political
tug of war albeit with not just …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: The human face of
constitutional reform

Oct 16, 2013 Sheilah was clearly and sharply articulating
the deficiencies in governmesaw her: a tinymite elderly woman, gracefully
wrinkled, deeply over with concerns about political and institutional
stagnation but brimming over with … http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy:
Trini politics is d best

Oct 21, 2013 Ain’t Trini politics d BEST! Nobody fighting
because they lose. All parties claiming victory, all voting citizens won!
That’s what make we Carnival d best street party in the world. Everyone are
winners because we all like …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

New Media, New Civil Society,
and Politics in a New Age – Demokrissy

Jan 09, 2012 New Media, New Civil Society, and Politics in
a New Age | The Communication Initiative Network. New Media, New Civil Society,
and Politics in a New Age | The Communication Initiative Network. Posted by
Kris Rampersad …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: T&T politics:
A new direction? – Caribbean360
 Oct 01, 2010 http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Oct 20, 2013 Choosing the Emperor’s New Troops. The dilemma
of choice. Voting is supposed to be an exercise in thoughtful, studied choice.
Local government is the foundation for good governance so even if one wants to
reform the … http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Old Casked Rum:
The Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Demokrissy – Blogger

Apr 07, 2013 Old Casked Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 –
Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T. So we’ve had the rounds of
consultations on Constitutional Reform? Are we any wiser? Do we have a sense of
direction that will drive …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Valuing Carnival
The Emperor’s New Tools#2

Apr 30, 2013 Valuing Carnival The Emperor’s New Tools#2….http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
See Also:


Demokrissy: Winds
of Political Change – Dawn of T&T’s Arab Spring

Jul 30, 2013 Wherever these breezes have passed, they have
left in their wake wide ranging social and political changes: one the one hand
toppling long time leaders with rising decibels from previously suppressed
peoples demanding a …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Reform, Conform,
Perform or None of the Above cross …

Oct 25, 2013 Some 50 percent did not vote. The local
government elections results lends further proof of the discussion began in
Clash of Political Cultures: Cultural Diversity and Minority Politics in
Trinidad and Tobago in Through The …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Sounds of a party –
a political party

Oct 14, 2013 They are announcing some political meeting or
the other; and begging for my vote, and meh road still aint fix though I hear
all parts getting box drains and thing, so I vex. So peeps, you know I am a
sceptic so help me decide. 
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy:
T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian

Jun 15, 2010 T&T Constitution the culprit | The
Trinidad Guardian · T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian.
Posted by Kris Rampersad at 8:20 AM · Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare
to Facebook …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Related:
Demokrissy: To vote, just how we
party … Towards culturally …

Apr 30, 2010 ‘How we vote is not how we party.’ At ‘all
inclusive’ fetes and other forums, we nod in inebriated wisdom to calypsonian
David Rudder’s elucidation of the paradoxical political vs. social realities of
Trinidad and Tobago. http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: DEADLOCK: Sign of
things to come

Oct 29, 2013 An indication that unless we devise innovative
ways to address representation of our diversity, we will find ourselves in
various forms of deadlock at the polls that throw us into a spiral of political
tug of war albeit with not just …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: The human face of
constitutional reform

Oct 16, 2013 Sheilah was clearly and sharply articulating
the deficiencies in governmesaw her: a tinymite elderly woman, gracefully
wrinkled, deeply over with concerns about political and institutional
stagnation but brimming over with … http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy:
Trini politics is d best

Oct 21, 2013 Ain’t Trini politics d BEST! Nobody fighting
because they lose. All parties claiming victory, all voting citizens won!
That’s what make we Carnival d best street party in the world. Everyone are
winners because we all like …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

New Media, New Civil Society,
and Politics in a New Age – Demokrissy

Jan 09, 2012 New Media, New Civil Society, and Politics in
a New Age | The Communication Initiative Network. New Media, New Civil Society,
and Politics in a New Age | The Communication Initiative Network. Posted by
Kris Rampersad …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: T&T politics:
A new direction? – Caribbean360
 Oct 01, 2010 http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Others: Demokrissy: Old Casked Rum:
The Emperor’s New Tools#1 …

Apr 07, 2013
Old Casked Rum: The
Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T. So we’ve had
the rounds of consultations on Constitutional Reform? Are we any wiser? Do we
have a sense of direction that will drive …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Valuing Carnival
The Emperor’s New Tools#2


Apr 30, 2013
Valuing Carnival The
Emperor’s New Tools#2. 

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Wave a flag for a party
rag…Choosing the Emperor’s New …

Oct 20, 2013
Choosing the Emperor’s
New Troops. The dilemma of choice. Voting is supposed to be an … Old Casked
Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T.
Posted by Kris Rampersad at 10:36 AM …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Carnivalising the
Constitution People Power …

Feb 26, 2014
This Demokrissy
series, The Emperor’s New Tools, continues and builds on the analysis of
evolution in our governance, begun in the introduction to my book, Through the
Political Glass Ceiling (2010): The Clash of Political …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Envisioning
outside-the-island-box … – Demokrissy – Blogger

Feb 10, 2014
This Demokrissy
series, The Emperor’s New Tools, continues and builds on the analysis of
evolution in our governance, begun in the introduction to my book, Through the
Political Glass Ceiling (2010): The Clash of Political …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Futuring the Post-2015
UNESCO Agenda

Apr 22, 2014
It is placing
increasing pressure for erasure of barriers of geography, age, ethnicity,
gender, cultures and other sectoral interests, and in utilising the tools
placed at our disposal to access our accumulate knowledge and technologies
towards eroding these superficial barriers. In this context, we believe that
the work of UNESCO remains significant and relevant and that UNESCO is indeed
the institution best positioned to consolidate the ….. The Emperor’s New
Tools …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Cutting edge journalism
Jun 15, 2010
The Emperor’s New
Tools. Loading… AddThis. Bookmark and Share. Loading… Follow by Email.
About Me. My Photo · Kris Rampersad. Media, Cultural and Literary Consultant,
Facilitator, Educator and Practitioner. View my …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Kidding aside, ow humbled I feel to have been within the ambit of some of the world’s leading minds of our time. 
Find out how you can collaborate, partner and/or become a sponsor in our global LiTTributes to the LaureaTTes: Two Worlds, modeled on our LiTTribute to the Republic in Trinidad and Tobago,, LiTTribute to the Mainland in Guyana/South America; LiTTribute to the Antilles in Antigua that evoked Nobel Laureate Derek Walcotts Nobel Lecture, The Antilles: Fragments of Epic Memory; LiTTribute to LondonTTown: Literature, Culture, the Arts and Sustainable Development; LiTTribute to the Americas: Of Roots and Routes; LiTTribute to ToronTTo, Canada: Imbibing Multiculturalism the Culinary Arts…

The Funeral Scores. Sir Vidia Naipaul final farewell in a fanfare of fine Naipaulian fictive irony  https://goo.gl/NQibgR
 Year of LiTTributes to Laureattes  https://goo.gl/oW81Nm
Related
Links:
The Funeral Scores. Sir Vidia Naipaul
final farewell in a fanfare of Naipaulian fictive irony
https://goo.gl/NQibgR
Year of LiTTributes to Laureattes  https://goo.gl/oW81Nm
My Collision with Stephen Hawkins: https://goo.gl/Fx47Ak
[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8TgWZPuEkE&w=320&h=266]
Reflections on the Death of Nobel
Laureate Sir Vidia Naipaul see link 
https://goo.gl/7eBP5a 
Authors
Tete-aTete Dr Kris Rampersad and Sir VS Naipaul  
https://goo.gl/gU11Jv 
Noble Tears of a Nobel Bard Death of Nobel Laureate Derek
Walcott 
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TheMagic and Realism of gabrial
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One LiTTle bookshop:
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https://goo.gl/cpvr2T
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Through Novel lenses Youtube   https://youtu.be/_zWHPEQCqHA
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[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wZWK7A-Abd0&w=320&h=266]
A Diaspora Celebrates: LiTTribute to the Americas See link https://goo.gl/brUkjH
Join us or commission your own Creative Conversations: https://goo.gl/qPBzef
Arresting the Tears Hayti I’m Sorry https://goo.gl/6sy3y6
Towards State of the Art Museum: https://goo.gl/FfHfJL
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The Funeral Scores, musical and otherwise of Sir Vidia S. Naipaul. A final farewell with a fanfare of Naipaulian-flavoured fictive irony

‘No other papers
carried the news.’

 It is almost like poetic prophesy, that this line, written
about the funeral of his classic small island anti-hero, Mr Biswas, of the classic
A House
for Mr Bisw
as published in 1961, could also read as ironic truth of Sir
Vidia Naipaul’s own funeral.

The funeral of the 2001 Nobel Laureate, Sir Vidia S. Naipaul
(Aug 17 1932 to August 11 2018) took place on Wednesday August 22, 2018, in a
largely unnoted ceremony, noted by this blog, Demokrissy in understanding of the value of chronicling as the
world he left torn asunder more on the demerits of the man than on the merits
of his writings.

‘No other papers,’ it seems, ‘carried the news’ of his
funeral, except one far-off Indian newspaper which tells of a reportedly
private invitation-only ceremony in London, although there have been a
continuous outpouring of tributes and assessments of his life and works since
the announcement of his death on August 11, 2018, six days short of his 86th
birthday. In these parts, media houses wait with accustomed unbated breath to
receive news from the once-Empire to feed it into news feeds.
A Year of LiTTributes to the Laureate. Be a part of our Reading Revolution
Long set to rest have been the ‘amazing scenes’ of national
reporting meant to excite the imagination that hallmarked the journalistic
tradition captured by his father Seepersad Naipaul (1906 to 1953) chronicles of
Gurudeva, that echo through scenes of Sir Vidia’s biographical epic, A
House of Mr Biswas,
in ways that are yet to be fully articulated. It
found interpretation in Sir Vidia’s own grandiose brand of journalism-hardly-disguised-as-fiction
that I have set in the contexts of its century-plus years of gestation from the
soils of his birth in Finding a Place and which matured in
his literary canon of 33 books. That style became the antidote to otherliterary legacies including what is known in literary circles as magic realism,
a genre developed by his near-contemporaries as Gabriel Garcia Marquez (March 1927 – 17 April 2014) and Salman
Rushdie (June 19, 1947-).  Rushdie, incidentally,
who has been centerstage of one of the media-driven literary-feuds, tweeted on
news of Naipaul’s death, ‘We disagreed
all our lives about politics, about literature, and I feel as sad as if I just
los a beloved older brother. RIP Vidia #VS Naipaul.’
Needless to say, his
brief tribute was received with a battery of insults.
A crosssection of writingabout Sir Vidia S Naipauln the world of the writer 
The description of Sir Vidia’s funeral, to which his
immediate family in Trinidad and Tobago is said to have not been privy, indeed
conjures up an ‘amazing scene’. Oh how I would have loved to read of it from
the pen of Sir Vidia himself, or his journalist father: of a handful of some
100 from the US and UK identified as friends, literary associates including his
agent Andrew Wylie and ‘a few close relatives including Lady
Nadira,’ wife of Sir Vidia.
Instead, the report of what unfolded is laid out by a
reporter that could almost be molded on the erstwhile ‘NightWatchman’ of what
remains to me one of Naipaul’s most humorous pieces of dry comic satire, except
that, unlike that ‘Nightwatchman,’ the reporter fills in sparseness of detail with
some commentary jabs that have the effect of skimming stones on water. From the
snipet, the gathering and events in the idyllc garden crematorium at London’s Kensal
Green, reeks of Naipaulian comic irony. Naipaul, if he instructed this final
farewell, couldn’t have set a better stage for his send off.
The Indian-born reporter singles out among the guests, Alexander
Waugh, gradnson of author Evelyn Waugh, and Sonny Mehta, publishing mogul and editor-in-chief
of the Random House imprint Alfred A Knopf for more than quarter a century. With
the select guests, they reportedly listened to few lines from the Bhagavat
Gita,
part of the epic Mahabharata snuck in by his friend
of some twenty years, Geordie Greig, who is soon to take over the editorship of
the Daily Mail, reputedly Britain’s
second largest tabloid. While there was no indication what those lines from the
Gita
might have been, I would hazard a guess that it is likely be classic
instruction of Krishna to Arjuna on the nature of the soul, immutable,
unchanging and indestructible while we change bodies as we change worn out clothes
(Gita,
Chap 2).
Greig had also been at Sir Vidia’s deathbed at his home, reporting, “He
drifted off and it was peaceful and very, very sad but what a life, what an
achievement, what a legacy…” He sent him off with a reading of a poem, Crossing the Bar, “which had great
resonance and meaning to him and I just turned on my phone and found it and we
read it.” It seems too apt choice to be a random selection and was perhaps
requested by Naipaul himself, I discerned, in the same way he must have planted
the notion of picong in Patrick French’s biography as a clue to deciphering the
misunderstanding that has shrouded reception of his work. Crossing the Bar by Britain’s poet laureate of the Victorian age,
Alfred Lord Tennyson, is an elegy on the soul’s return to its beginnings, When that which drew from out the boundless
deep/Turns again home.
Sunset and evening star
And one clear call for me!
And may there be no moaning of the bar
When I put out to sea,
But such a tide as moving seems asleep,
Too full for sound and foam,
When that which drew from out the boundless deep
Turns again home.
Twilight and evening bell,
And after that the dark!
And may there be no sadness of farewell,
When I embark;
For tho’ from out our bourne of Time and Place
The flood may bear me far,
I hope to see my Pilot face to face
When I have crost the bar.
Alfred Lord Tennyson, Crossing
the Bar
In the rustic serenity of the Kendal Green Cemetery, the
mourners were also treated to a reading from Naipaul’s 1987 book, The
Enigma of Arrival
. As the exact passage was not identified, I searched
my memory of the book, thinking of the final chapter, The Ceremony of Farewell, where he identified, “it was only out of
this new awareness of death that I began at last to write. Death was a motif…” If
it was, how ironic that would be, given the absence of his sisters at his
funeral, as that chapter also details the traditional Hindu funeral with all
its ritualistic oddities, described through his experience of his return to
Trinidad for the funeral of his youngest sister who had died of a brain
haemorrage!
Perhaps, the reading was from the Enigma’s first chapter, Jack’s Garden with its pathos in his
speculation of death with its echoes of the philosophy of the lines from the Bhagavad
Gita
: of inevitability: ‘people die, people grow old, people change
houses;’ and of immortality, discerned in walking through Stonehenge that fed,
‘my sense of antiquity, my feeling for the age of the earth, and the oldness of
man’s possession of it,’ or of his reflection on his own life:
That
idea of ruin, of dereliction, of out-of-placeness, was something I felt about
myself, attached to myself,: a man from another hemisphere, another background,
coming to rest in middle life in the cottage of a half neglected estate….
Those lines remind me of his antithesis to that haunting
philosophy articulated in A Bend In the River (1979). It gave
Patrick French the title of his 2008 authorised biography of Naipaul, ‘the
world is what it is, men who are nothing, who allow themselves to become
nothing, have no place in it.’ It was his early realization, penned in the passionate
– yes passion is an adjective that can be attributed to Naipaul – pronouncement
on the life of his father in A House for Mr Biswas,
How
terrible it would have been…to die…to have lived without even attempting to lay
claim to one’s portion of the earth; to have lived and died as one had been
born, unnecessary and unaccommodated.
To me, reflected in this funeral to the end, the ultimate
Naipaulian irony has been in how Naipaul created and sustained his own myth of
himself. Knowing the world for what it is, he baited it, gleefully ruffled
feathers, choocking fire, as would have been the expression in his birth
community, the family, the community, the society and the country that gave his
imagination flight. He laid out his truths, personal truths that became
universal truths, knowing the world would instead largely go after the coochoor. Seeking artistic truth as he
was, by resurrecting his own demons, tapping into his self-hatred so succinctly
that language and metaphor and literary masking were as potent as the characters
he created; that others saw themselves mirrored therein, and many, unable to
bear its starkness, could only reflect the self-hate. Nobel Laureate, Derek Walcott,
poet and dramatist, often presented, like Rushdie, as justification for hating
Naipaul, mused that Naipaul is “our finest writer of the English sentence.” See Link Nobel Tears for and Of a Nobel Bard

The processes, the tradition, the society, the global events
and movements that set the stage for all of this is, whether we want to accept that
with pride or heap on scorn, are embedded in my home soil, the truth that I had
set out to unearth and is among the myths I believe I was able to somewhat
explode in some of the published in Finding a Place which stimulated his
interest, voiced as containing ‘things about my father that I did not know.’
But Finding
a Place
and the skeletons it resurrects as I hope the illustrated graphic
edition will make clearer, was not, and never, solely about VS Naipaul,
although it has been one of the elements that other critics have isolated to
help them in their process of understanding, if not unravelling the enigma of
Naipaul. It is about conscience creation, of society-making, the minute in the
contexts of larger world; the piecing together of disparate elements, of
social, cultural, economic, political fragments that shaped themselves into processes
that made little villages and towns and a society and culture and beliefs and
practices and women, and men like Naipaul. It defined the place to which he would
return again and again and again to fed his creative genius, and that, whether
he was writing about India or Africa or the Islamic Front or the American
South. So what was seen as an omission in his Nobel remarks, was no less than a
deliberate act of chooking fire. But we have always been a society and a people
who celebrate the inebriety that rhetoric masking and illusion affords, weaving
it into our lifestyles that to attempt to tear it off would be like pulling off
bits of our flesh, and sense of being.

Even the attempts to hold up the antithesis of that, the
celebration of self, as LiTTscapes does, without glossing
over but placing in context the nihilism, the violence and criminality that are
entrenched in the raison d etre of the place, meets with the same blinders.
Despite the outward rhetoric, as noted above, there was no
sparing the ritualism of death as a final rite at the funeral of this so-called
agnostic (another myth I have explored and exploded), as he is set to sea on
the British greens. Apart from the disguised ritual of last rites, there was no
small measure of sentimentality, too, and I am tempted to speculate that that
too was by choice. Though Sir Vidia has so often been painted as impatient of
the sentimental, but which my account of our encounter, and from some of the testimonies
of other encounters I have read by others in tribute on his death, suggest
otherwise.
The
funeral service reportedly heard two pieces of music: The quintessential
sentimental last wish made popular by Doris Day, Dream A Little
Dream of Me
sounds incongruous and like a jarring note of the portrait that
has emerged of Naipaul’s way in the world, or is it? The reporter now
folded
into the comic irony of the event conveys becomes part of the heightened
Naipaulian ironic humour, quoting the concluding whimsical notes of the song, Sweet dreams till sunbeams find you/Sweet
dreams that leave all worries far behind you/But in your dreams whatever they
be/Dream a little dream of me.
To unravel that enigma one may need to go
beyond the lyric.
[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8TgWZPuEkE&w=320&h=266]The other
musical rendition was The Lark Ascending by Ralph Vaughan Williams. I
link a rendition by the London Philharmonic here (The musical score
by Williams is still not public-domain material in some jurisdictions.) This is
a musical interpretation of the George Meredith 1881 paean/lyrical poem. It is
easy to see why this choice, as much of what is said of the sound of the skylark
which the poem engages, He drops the
silver chain of sound/Of many links without a break
, could be said of
Naipaul’s art, technique and aspirations and achievements as a writer as well: Where ripple ripple overcurls/And eddy into
eddy whirls;/A press of hurried notes that run/So fleet they scarce are more
than one
:
(See image this page, the scores on Naipaul )
THE LARK ASCENDING
By George Meredith
He rises
and begins to round,
He drops
the silver chain of sound
Of many
links without a break,
In
chirrup, whistle, slur and shake,
All
intervolved and spreading wide,
Like
water-dimples down a tide
Where
ripple ripple overcurls
And eddy
into eddy whirls;
A press
of hurried notes that run
So fleet
they scarce are more than one,
Yet
changeingly the trills repeat
And
linger ringing while they fleet,
Sweet to
the quick o’ the ear, and dear
To her
beyond the handmaid ear,
Who sits
beside our inner springs,
Too often
dry for this he brings,
Which
seems the very jet of earth
At sight
of sun, her music’s mirth,
As up he
wings the spiral stair,
A song of
light, and pierces air
With
fountain ardour, fountain play,
To reach
the shining tops of day,
And drink
in everything discerned
An
ecstasy to music turned,
Impelled
by what his happy bill
Disperses;
drinking, showering still,
Unthinking
save that he may give
His voice
the outlet, there to live
Renewed
in endless notes of glee,
So
thirsty of his voice is he,
For all
to hear and all to know
That he
is joy, awake, aglow,
The
tumult of the heart to hear
Through
pureness filtered crystal-clear,
And know
the pleasure sprinkled bright
By simple
singing of delight,
Shrill,
irreflective, unrestrained,
Rapt,
ringing, on the jet sustained
Without a
break, without a fall,
Sweet-silvery,
sheer lyrical,
Perennial,
quavering up the chord
Like
myriad dews of sunny sward
That
trembling into fulness shine,
And
sparkle dropping argentine;
Such
wooing as the ear receives
From
zephyr caught in choric leaves
Of aspens
when their chattering net
Is
flushed to white with shivers wet;
And such
the water-spirit’s chime
On
mountain heights in morning’s prime,
Too
freshly sweet to seem excess,
Too
animate to need a stress;
But wider
over many heads
The
starry voice ascending spreads,
Awakening,
as it waxes thin,
The best
in us to him akin;
And every
face to watch him raised,
Puts on
the light of children praised,
So rich
our human pleasure ripes
When
sweetness on sincereness pipes,
Though
nought be promised from the seas,
But only
a soft-ruffling breeze
Sweep
glittering on a still content,
Serenity
in ravishment.
 
For
singing till his heaven fills,

‘Tis love
of earth that he instils,
And ever
winging up and up,
Our
valley is his golden cup,
And he
the wine which overflows
To lift
us with him as he goes:
The woods
and brooks, the sheep and kine
He is,
the hills, the human line,
The
meadows green, the fallows brown,
The
dreams of labour in the town;
He sings
the sap, the quickened veins,
The
wedding song of sun and rains
He is,
the dance of children, thanks
Of
sowers, shout of primrose-banks,
And eye
of violets while they breathe;
All these
the circling song will wreathe,
And you
shall hear the herb and tree,
The
better heart of men shall see,
Shall
feel celestially, as long
As you
crave nothing save the song.
 
Was never
voice of ours could say
[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wZWK7A-Abd0&w=320&h=266]Our
inmost in the sweetest way,
Like
yonder voice aloft, and link
All
hearers in the song they drink:
Our
wisdom speaks from failing blood,
Our
passion is too full in flood,
We want
the key of his wild note
Of
truthful in a tuneful throat,
The song
seraphically free
Of taint
of personality,
So pure
that it salutes the suns
The voice
of one for millions,
In whom
the millions rejoice
For
giving their one spirit voice.
Yet men
have we, whom we revere,
Now
names, and men still housing here,
Whose
lives, by many a battle-dint
Defaced,
and grinding wheels on flint,
Yield
substance, though they sing not, sweet
For song
our highest heaven to greet:
Whom
heavenly singing gives us new,
Enspheres
them brilliant in our blue,
From
firmest base to farthest leap,
Because
their love of Earth is deep,
And they
are warriors in accord
With life
to serve and pass reward,
So
touching purest and so heard
In the
brain’s reflex of yon bird:
Wherefore
their soul in me, or mine,
Through
self-forgetfulness divine,
In them,
that song aloft maintains,
To fill
the sky and thrill the plains
With
showerings drawn from human stores,
As he to
silence nearer soars,
Extends
the world at wings and dome,
More
spacious making more our home,
Till lost
on his aerial rings
In light,
and then the fancy sings.
A LiTTribute to the Republic.
Dr Kris Rampersad with First Lady 
If he was returned to the place where his
umbilical cord was buried – as would have been perhaps the wishes of his blood
family here, who complained of being in the dark about his funeral arrangements
– a traditional funeral in his home island would have been something of what he
described of the last rites of his sister contained in The Enigma of Arrival.
The alternative, more traditional version of that that is the described funeral
of Mr Biswas’ ill-fated father, Raghu, whose death by drowning was owed to
actions of his cursed son, ‘six-fingered, and born in the wrong way,’ and
destined to ‘eat up his own mother and father,’  testimony to the cruel pronouncements of fate
which are assigned to being born in inauspicious circumstances. To a grieving
family reflecting on a brother that time and circumstance might have estranged,
the similarities may not be immediately evident.
Had he died in and or was to be sent off in his birth island, Sir Vidia might
have been dressed in his ‘finest dhoti, jacket and turban’ even – his
description of Raghu’s attire. As I have argued, Naipaul’s absorption of his
ritualistic upbringing, is reflected and nuanced subtly in the texture of his
work, disguised and masked by the rhetoric, when the rhetoric itself is
embedded in the ritualism and traditions, but that has been given less than superficial
attention and largely, it seems, only when it could feed the fury and the
furore about his histrionic rejections.
Much of that became clear when I considered his work in the
contexts of the literary and oral traditions and the socio-cultural and
political milieu from which he emerged when even those were still only in
embryonic form in the island of his birth. The umbilical link, ritualistically
distended in his attempts to distance himself from connections, from
sentimentality, were never altogether severed, and are in fact, I believe, smack
core and centre to the man and his writings.
That he has so often duped many into accepting otherwise was
only part of his very successful mythmaking, using truth to turn it on itself,
and so too remodel himself in the image of the mythical self to which he
aspired. That he himself understood that in all its irony, I believe, prompted
his acknowledgement of the value of Finding A Place to himself, as it
unearthed and exposed some truths, one of which he identified as in its ‘
discovering much more about (my) father than I knew.’ But that in itself is
only a part truth. While that is the value he identified in it, it is a value
that is true of the entire society on which that study focused. It might have
been about the traditional base of his father but only because it was about the
ancestral people as Finding A Place was not a book about him, Naipaul, nor about
his father, Seepersad, but about the social, political and cultural processes
that shape the writer, the journalist, the thinkers of our place and time.
In his movements forward, the pull of India, Africa, the
American South, the Islamic journeys, every turn to the North, South, East and
West, and every way in the world, were all the pull and tug of the umbilical cord
buried in the village upbringing in a small island for which there is ample
evidence.
That the world has bought hook, line and sinker, the myth of
the man, created by himself, is the final irony, the mock chuckle, the picong
pelted up from his grave, the last laugh of a world that didn’t quite get that
the joke’s on us.
Now past the sound and the fury that he has stirred in
whirling whillying winds in more than two thirds of a century of poking public
conscience, the closed
funeral, in some respects may seem a disservice to the man who had been trying to
flee the ignominy of his birth, and for the most part succeeded. Like the lark,
Our wisdom speaks from failing blood,,/Our
passion is too full in flood,/We want the key of his wild note/Of truthful in a
tuneful throat,/The song seraphically free/Of taint of personality,
Having claimed his portion of the earth, now cros’t the bar and Put out to sea, drawn from out the boundless deep, Sir Vidia S. Naipaul Turns again home.
PostNote: These scores from Sir Vidia S. Naipaul’s funeral would
unfold through various forms as we explore the global connections in this
declared Year of LiTTributes to the LaureaTTes. Join, collaborate, partner, subscribe
and stay tuned. Next, an extract from my upcoming autobiography, Life! HoleHeartedly!
“I first
met VS Naipaul when I was just about four years old, though I didn’t know I
had. My sister brought him home to me, though she didn’t know she did…” 

Dr Kris Rampersad is a researcher, wrter and promoter of interculturality, literacy, and literary, author and other creative endeavours. See more
  Ask about how you can partner and collaborate in our Year of LiTTributes tot he Laureate or other stimulating creative endeavour and about LiTtours, LiTTeas, LiTTevents, LiTTributes and LiTTscapes.

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reform the … http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Old Casked Rum:
The Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Demokrissy – Blogger

Apr 07, 2013 Old Casked Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 –
Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T. So we’ve had the rounds of
consultations on Constitutional Reform? Are we any wiser? Do we have a sense of
direction that will drive …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Valuing Carnival
The Emperor’s New Tools#2

Apr 30, 2013 Valuing Carnival The Emperor’s New Tools#2….http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
See Also:
Demokrissy: Winds
of Political Change – Dawn of T&T’s Arab Spring

Jul 30, 2013 Wherever these breezes have passed, they have
left in their wake wide ranging social and political changes: one the one hand
toppling long time leaders with rising decibels from previously suppressed
peoples demanding a …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Reform, Conform,
Perform or None of the Above cross …

Oct 25, 2013 Some 50 percent did not vote. The local
government elections results lends further proof of the discussion began in
Clash of Political Cultures: Cultural Diversity and Minority Politics in
Trinidad and Tobago in Through The …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: Sounds of a party –
a political party

Oct 14, 2013 They are announcing some political meeting or
the other; and begging for my vote, and meh road still aint fix though I hear
all parts getting box drains and thing, so I vex. So peeps, you know I am a
sceptic so help me decide. 
http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy:
T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian

Jun 15, 2010 T&T Constitution the culprit | The
Trinidad Guardian · T&T Constitution the culprit | The Trinidad Guardian.
Posted by Kris Rampersad at 8:20 AM · Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare
to Facebook …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Related:
Demokrissy: To vote, just how we
party … Towards culturally …

Apr 30, 2010 ‘How we vote is not how we party.’ At ‘all
inclusive’ fetes and other forums, we nod in inebriated wisdom to calypsonian
David Rudder’s elucidation of the paradoxical political vs. social realities of
Trinidad and Tobago. http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: DEADLOCK: Sign of
things to come

Oct 29, 2013 An indication that unless we devise innovative
ways to address representation of our diversity, we will find ourselves in
various forms of deadlock at the polls that throw us into a spiral of political
tug of war albeit with not just …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy: The human face of
constitutional reform

Oct 16, 2013 Sheilah was clearly and sharply articulating
the deficiencies in governmesaw her: a tinymite elderly woman, gracefully
wrinkled, deeply over with concerns about political and institutional
stagnation but brimming over with … http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

Demokrissy:
Trini politics is d best

Oct 21, 2013 Ain’t Trini politics d BEST! Nobody fighting
because they lose. All parties claiming victory, all voting citizens won!
That’s what make we Carnival d best street party in the world. Everyone are
winners because we all like …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/

New Media, New Civil Society,
and Politics in a New Age – Demokrissy

Jan 09, 2012 New Media, New Civil Society, and Politics in
a New Age | The Communication Initiative Network. New Media, New Civil Society,
and Politics in a New Age | The Communication Initiative Network. Posted by
Kris Rampersad …http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: T&T politics:
A new direction? – Caribbean360
 Oct 01, 2010 http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Others: Demokrissy: Old Casked Rum:
The Emperor’s New Tools#1 …

Apr 07, 2013
Old Casked Rum: The
Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T. So we’ve had
the rounds of consultations on Constitutional Reform? Are we any wiser? Do we
have a sense of direction that will drive …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Valuing Carnival
The Emperor’s New Tools#2

Apr 30, 2013
Valuing Carnival The
Emperor’s New Tools#2. 

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Wave a flag for a party
rag…Choosing the Emperor’s New …

Oct 20, 2013
Choosing the Emperor’s
New Troops. The dilemma of choice. Voting is supposed to be an … Old Casked
Rum: The Emperor’s New Tools#1 – Towards Constitutional Reform in T&T.
Posted by Kris Rampersad at 10:36 AM …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Carnivalising the
Constitution People Power …

Feb 26, 2014
This Demokrissy
series, The Emperor’s New Tools, continues and builds on the analysis of
evolution in our governance, begun in the introduction to my book, Through the
Political Glass Ceiling (2010): The Clash of Political …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Envisioning
outside-the-island-box … – Demokrissy – Blogger

Feb 10, 2014
This Demokrissy
series, The Emperor’s New Tools, continues and builds on the analysis of
evolution in our governance, begun in the introduction to my book, Through the
Political Glass Ceiling (2010): The Clash of Political …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Futuring the Post-2015
UNESCO Agenda

Apr 22, 2014
It is placing
increasing pressure for erasure of barriers of geography, age, ethnicity,
gender, cultures and other sectoral interests, and in utilising the tools
placed at our disposal to access our accumulate knowledge and technologies
towards eroding these superficial barriers. In this context, we believe that
the work of UNESCO remains significant and relevant and that UNESCO is indeed
the institution best positioned to consolidate the ….. The Emperor’s New
Tools …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
Demokrissy: Cutting edge journalism
Jun 15, 2010
The Emperor’s New
Tools. Loading… AddThis. Bookmark and Share. Loading… Follow by Email.
About Me. My Photo · Kris Rampersad. Media, Cultural and Literary Consultant,
Facilitator, Educator and Practitioner. View my …

http://kris-rampersad.blogspot.com/
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