Thursday, 25 February 2016

That's what friends are for

A friend of mine was robbed of most of his electrical items..   Even though he knows who it was that did the deed, the police have not been very helpful.  Eyewitnesses have come forward and still nothing can be done.....unbelievable.
I had extras knocking around so today I dropped them off for him.
It brings me so much JOY to see the happiness in people's faces when they receive an unexpected kindness.
Daughter dear hearing the sad story volunteered a radio belonging to her dad....have I raised her right or what!!!
My friend can watch a movie and listen to music tonight and I am happy.

Monday, 22 February 2016

Bloody Hell!

I really don't want to write about today's episode but it must be noted.
You see that innocent doggie face above?  Don't be fooled.
This morning I decided I would take Mr. Brownbie for a quick vet visit to have his glands checked.
Loaded him into Beast on the front passenger seat but in two minutes he promptly disappeared into the back of the vehicle to lie on the left car mat with his head tucked under the seat.  Strange I thought, but at least he was lying still.
Arriving at the vet's office, it was tricky getting him out from his hideaway position but it was achieved.
No sooner than we pushed the entrance door we were given our usual warm welcome.
I sat comfortably in a chair with Brownbie on my lap with other clients commenting how well behaved and how cute he was just sitting peacefully "leash-less" on my lap.....he really is a good dog.
Soon it was our turn.
It's always good to see the vet and today as usual he teased me about him wanting to be taken care of the same way I take good care of Mr. B.
The doc cleans Mr.B's glands and checks his ears with no problem.
Mr. Brownbie has a nail on his front right paw that seems to grow faster and longer than the others and I asked to have it trimmed.
I know that Brownie does not like to have his nails trimmed but I steady his head and hold him while the good doc starts to trim the nail.
Next thing I know Brownie has sprang up out of my grip and has delivered two bites on the doc's right hand...I see the blood falling and the exam table is soon covered with healthy drops of red.
I spy the nail clipping at the other end of the table.
Brownie is lying down again as if nothing has happened.
I am shocked and feeling really terrible as the doc rushes to the sink and washes his hand with copious amounts of antibacterial scrub....he continues to let the water wash over his hand for a little while.
"Oh Dr. Huey I'm so sorry!" I cried.  "Brownie  you naughty boy!"
The doc is nursing his hand and drying it with a paper towel.
He makes his notes on the card and says in that ever gentle voice, "Hey little one, what got into you today?" 
I am dying inside, so embarrassed and feeling really bad.
"Can I see your hand?" I ask him, and he extends it for me to see, and tells me not to worry.
I worry.
What I see are two bites across his outer palm where the veins are and I'm wondering how ever will he be able to finish his work today.
As I head outside with the naughty one, I tell the receptionist I will take him home and return to cover the bill.
I drive home with Mr.B. in the vehicle and I talk to him telling him how naughty he has been...you don't bite the hand that cares for you.
Back at home I find a card and write...
"So So Sorry....Forgive Me? Love Brownie" inside and head out to get a nice bottle of wine and the butter cookies that the doc loves...I place them in a gift box.
Back at the office I pay the bill and hurriedly leave the gift for the doc and some extra cookies for the staff...too ashamed to face him.
Later in the afternoon the best vet in the world calls me and thanks me and tell me not to worry that it happens sometimes and that he is okay.
He then quips "You'd better bring him back down to bite me some more if I'm going to get more of these lovely gifts!" to which I laughed.
I felt better....much much better.
Dr. Huey you are the best!

Saturday, 20 February 2016

Holetown Festival 2016

Well it serves me right...yes it serves me right for making the decision to go to the Holetown Festival a bit later than I usually do.
I had decided to drive to Speightstown first to run a few errands and go to the festival afterwards.
Who tell me to do that????
Leaving the north of the island and driving back to the west coast venue soon became a headache.
The traffic flow being regulated by the police was just awful and it meant that it took the greater part of an hour to circle the festival and find somewhere to park.
By that time I had missed the old vintage car parade and barely got there to see a teeny bit of the street fair parade....darn.
All was not lost however, I still was able to take a few photos of this cultural affair, so here goes.
 
 

 
 The Queens of the Festival

 
 The sun was hot... so I can understand the kid pannists having a "sit-down" until it was time to join the parade again.
 
Tuk Band
The tuk band musicians were mingling with the crowd playing their sweet music as they went merrily along.
I found a short Youtube video here to give you an idea of the music.
 
 Local handmade jewelry

 
 Local painters displaying their talents on canvas.

 

 Stalls as far as the eye could see.
 
 

  This guy was a bit fishy.

  Locally made grass/reed baskets.

Bags.....bags.........bags....and more bags.

 
 
 Gorgeous batik works adorned the front of this stall.

 Conch shells

 

 Wooden sculptures

 
 My girlfriends at their plant stall.
 

 Mr. Balloon Guy was clowning around as usual.
 

The Queens of the Festival mingling with their subjects.


Sea Urchin shells






Bajan Balmz
There was a menthol herbal salve that should have come home with me.

Herbal Soaps with a heavenly scent.
 

 My friend Ezra in his plant stall.
Will collect my plant from his home....too tired to walk with it today.

 
  YEAH!!! I was still able to see some of the vintage cars parked at the back of the festival and get a really close look.


The Holetown Festival is a yearly event that we all look forward to and therefore it is always crammed "choc a bloc" with visitors.
This year was no exception and the many happy patrons made it quite hard to walk around unhindered, and this lead to many "stop and stare" moments.
Despite this, I still enjoyed my wander around and meeting up with friends I have not seen in a while.

Time to head home and feed you know who.

Friday, 19 February 2016

Itching for a scratch

Now that daughter dear no longer lives here with me and Mr. Brownberts, it is always nice when she comes by to visit us.


Mr. B lines himself up just right by whichever chair she sits in and stares her down until she gives him copious head rubs and ear scritches.

It's like his personal massage.
He sits there with a VERY contented look on his face as he gets all the attention that he wants.

If daughter dear does not stop he would never move.
If she does stop before he's had enough, he paws her from the side of the chair to signal her to continue...it's such a funny sight to behold.
He has us both trained well.
There's no doubt who rules the roost at this homestead.

Thursday, 18 February 2016

Thunder in my ears

It's been quite a while since I had the time to attend a sunset concert.
Yes, it was time, so I took a little time for "me" yesterday evening.
My week had been choc a bloc with work and I needed an evening to relax for myself.
In the morning I arranged to collect the tickets as requested and hurried downtown to do so, but as usual there is never a parking spot to be found near the Frank Collymore Hall.
I asked the friendly parking attendant "to give me break" to park Beast for 5 minutes while I collected my tickets...he said yes and allowed me to park.
Since my girlfriend could no longer attend the show and I had requested two tickets I asked him if he would be interested in attending and he said yes.
Rushing inside to the office I collected my two prized tickets to "Taiko Masala - The Thunder Drummers."
Emerging in less than 5 minutes the attendant was all smiles as I handed him a ticket...I told him to enjoy the show....he smiled even more as he thanked me.  Sometimes you meet some really nice people.

I have attended a Japanese drummer concert before and enjoyed it.  I love to experience various cultures from around the world and I was therefore looking forward to the evening's performance.
The event was staged to celebrate the new Embassy of Japan in Barbados.
The Embassy of Japan was opened on January 1, 2016.
After the national anthems of both countries and the formal Opening Remarks by both the Ambassador to The Embassy of Japan, His Excellency Mitsuhiko Okada and The Honourable Stephen Lashley M.P. Minister of Culture, Sports & Youth, it was time for the show to begin.
 Image respectfully borrowed from Google images
Four performers came on to the stage and settled themselves by their drums, standing with feet apart and drumsticks in hand.
I can't begin to explain how the music of drums alone can be so soothing but it was.
Loud bangs and booms followed ...music so intoxicating it was almost hypnotic...reminded me of the many Kung Fu movies that I used to watch.
Oh yes there was a big gong and a flute included too.
The performers, Hiro Kurashima (Founder), Yoko Nakahashi, James Perry and Igor Omelchenko made the "Taiko" drumming come alive.
The large drums when sounded gave off  thundering booms.
With the players standing in a demi-pliƩ position and flexing their muscles to hit the drums I could see that all four of them were getting a very good workout.
I wish I could post a small video here but as is customary at these events no photos or videos are allowed.
"Taiko" is a style of drumming born in Japan.  The word "taiko" refers both to the drums and to the musical art form itself. 
The drums are made from hollowed out tree trunks with skins of leather.
The drums range from very large (car size)  to smaller versions like a beach ball.
The origins of 'taiko" can be traced back to ancient Japan where the drums were used as a form of communication.
Also performing on the programme was one of the local drumming groups "The Israel Lovell Foundation."  They also did a very good job with their musical arrangements.
The surprise finale was a collaboration of both groups and it was really good especially since they only practiced for an hour....wow.
Another wonderful evening...I hope I will get to enjoy many many more this year.

I found a video on Youtube which will give you an idea here.



Monday, 15 February 2016

A lovely Valentine's Day

Yesterday was Valentine's Day but it was also the first day of the Lenten season.
Amazingly daughter dear asked me if we could go to church together at another church...no problem.
We attended the morning 8am service at Christ the King church where a warm welcome was extended to us.
Christ The King Church  is the youngest church in the Diocese of Barbados.

Since Mums passed, I have been attending church all by myself, so it was really nice to be worshiping with my daughter once again. 
From the smiling ushers at the door who invited us to sign the guest book to the comfy chairs and breezy sanctuary I felt right at home spiritually.
The entire service was conducted with the use of electronic messaging on two large screens at the front of the church.
The priest, Father Johnson affectionately known as "Father J" preached a nice sermon and his words found a place in my heart.
The Altar could easily be seen since it was centered just a few steps away from the congregation seated in the first row.
I liked the fact that the Altar Servers were all ladies and that they were taking up prominent positions in the church.
Naturally, during the the reading of The Notices at the end of the service, each guest was invited to stand up and be welcomed...now I know why the guest book was there....I stood and waved to the congregation who smiled and said hello.
There was also a Rededication Call at the end of the service....I liked that very much....sometimes our faith needs that extra touch to stay strong....to redefine our Recommitment to Christ.
It was then that Father J said he wouldn't keep us any longer because he knew us ladies will be wanting to indulge in our cheesecake and ice cream for the special day.
After the service refreshments were served but we did not stay to partake.
Borrowed from Google images
Instead we headed off to lunch and what do you think I had for dessert.....yes a big slice of cherry cheesecake....thanks for the temptation Father J!!!
For Lent I had been thinking of giving up desserts.

Sunday, 14 February 2016

Chinese Fish & Dragon Festival 2016

It's been quite some time since I was out on a proper Saturday jaunt.
I've been so busy recently that my Saturday jaunts have been non-existent.
With the new year started, there are lots of projects on the "To Do" list in my head, and I have programmed myself to get them done by year end.
Thus I wasn't sure I would have been able to go jaunting yesterday, since when I'm in "work mode" it's very hard to stray away from my work goals, yet I knew it was time to take a break.
It was a done deal after daughter dear asked me if I was going to attend the festival and if she could go along with me....I was pleasantly shocked at this request, but happy nonetheless.

 

The outdoor festival was held at Church Village Green to celebrate the Chinese New Year.

This year 2016 is the Year of the Monkey according to the Chinese zodiac and it began on February 8, 2016 and will end on January 27, 2017.
The event included food, music, workshops and art exhibits, as well as live performances.
The air was alive with excitement as we waited for the performances to begin.
We decided to take a stroll to take everything in.





Happy Monkey New Year



Local wine stall





I couldn't help but stop and stare at this box of cute puppies.

In the Grand Salle of The Central Bank of Barbados next door were several displays and workshops.
As we entered there were a few youngsters from a local club showing off their skills at table tennis.



 A Chinese Diplomat was being interviewed by the local press.
There were several photos displayed and I have captured a few of my favourites below.
I wish I had used my camera for these shots instead of my phone but I didn't.

 Green Transport

 A Mud Football Game

 Expressway linking Mountain Villages

 Morning Jog
By this time it was almost lunch time and the lines at the Chinese Food Stall were beginning to form.


 The food was tasty and I had the best tasting won tons I've had in a long time.

 At first the band was playing right beside the food stall....
...but soon "the chef" came over and shouted "Too Much Noise!!!  I can't hear!!"
At least that's what I think he said in Chinese.
So the band moved over to the grassy area under the trees which was perfect.

The  Chinese New Year Lion Dance is performed for good luck to usher in the Chinese New Year

With beating drums and clashing cymbals, the lion came alive.

 
 
We did not stay for the evening's performances and I wish that we had because according to Facebook comments they were outstanding. 

Next year I will make sure that I attend these performances.

Happy Chinese New Year!!!




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