The bang of the dialect

So It Go

It’s the middle of the day. A quite sophisticated Georgetown lady is parked in her car on Church Street, waiting for a friend, with the doors locked and windows up.

Disagreement without rancour

So It Go

Visiting a country for short spells, no matter how frequently they occur, can leave you unsure if a social behaviour or condition in that society is entrenched or not.

Getting out of the crouch

So It Go

Given the fractured and dislocated conditions of our history in this region, Caribbean people have had a hard climb up the ladder of self-worth.

Uniquely Caribbean

So It Go

I hate souse.  I really don’t know how people enjoy that stuff. Before you start in on me, be assured that this is not a hasty conclusion. 

You’re supposed to know

So It Go

Early in my reacquaintance with driving in Guyana, I was introduced to a phrase, numbingly illogical, that will become very familiar very quickly to anyone coming to grips with the traffic rules in the country. 

A new disease

So It Go

Let me take you back about 10 years.  I was living in Grand Cayman, with my Pomeroon background, out in the country on a big piece of land, and I would often take a break from my fruit trees to watch West Indies cricket.

Ah wha gwan

So It Go

I love dialects. An Irishman in full cry, particularly under some drink, can be a pure joy, even though we may not understand half of what he’s saying; it’s a musical experience.

Pure bunkum

Some of the worst advice you can ever get in life often comes immediately after the expression, “Let me give you some advice.” Many of these pronouncements, frequently given with

Sweet discoveries

So It Go

One of the most substantial planks in the structure of life is that of blind discovery – that sudden encounter with something so delightful that almost always the consequent thought is “Why didn’t I know about this before?” These new awarenesses come to us like a gift, adding small enhancements or significant ones to the fabric of our lives.

Caribbean nutrition news

So It Go

When I was youngster I worked for about three years at Atkinson Field (now Timehri) which was originally an American base.

The elusive collective voice


When I first went to live in a big city in North America, my almost immediate impression was the astonishing level of order in the place.

How good we once were


I had completely forgotten that almost 15 years ago, living in Grand Cayman, I had sent my friend Colin Cholmondeley (then living in Jamaica) a short column from Wisden Cricket Monthly by BBC broadcaster and writer John Arlott on the West Indies cricket tour of England in 1950.

The absence of repose


When I returned to Guyana in 1968, after a gap of some 12 years, I was standing in my aunts’ shop at Hague Front, talking with a rice farmer from Hague Back who had known me from a boy.

Keeping us safe in the air

I am going to assume that you haven’t been living in a truli hut in the Amazon, and you know that since the terrorism upsurge the airlines have these restrictions designed to keep us safe in the air.

Relay the praise

In the song “Angels Wings”, dedicated to Caribbean mothers, I am actually singing about the life of my own mother, Zepherina Barcellos, who left many impressions on me. 

People in a grip

These columns I produce every week for Stabroek News are fun to write and fun, also, for the feedback they generate.

It’s not just us

Some days, in fact most days, the barrage of distressing news on the pages of our daily newspapers is enough to cause despair if not clinical depression.

Away and back

I love mutton curry. From the first time I sampled it at an Indian wedding on the East Coast donkey years ago, I was hooked; you can keep your chicken and even your hassar.

Our habits divide us

Ignore all the corny Confucius jokes in fractured English; this was really a man with a startlingly brilliant mind about the human condition. 

So It Go: Coming and Going

Recently I spent two days in Florida, two days in New Jersey and five days in Maine, mostly just travelling about, noticing Uncle Sam’s ways, reflecting on back home ways, eating some good food, checking out the fall colours in the leaves – in other words, essentially down time.