The Caribbean Days Experience

One day, I really hope that I get to go to Trinidad… for now, the closest I can get to it is the Caribbean Days Festival.

As I stated before, it has been a tradition to go every year we possibly can. My Poppy originally hailed from Trinidad and so my grandparents and I would always go. After they passed, the tradition was passed to my Sister and I.

This year, unfortunately our good friends couldn’t accompany us, but they did thankfully drop us off at the skytrain! And that’s where the story begins…

I have never seen so much security at the skytrain in my entire life. There were police making sure people had paid for their tickets, and before the train actually departed, they checked to make sure everyone had tickets. There were at least 5 police and security guards in our one car alone. I was raised incredibly honest, and I’ve never not paid, but I know that a lot of people used to not pay. It was just insane to see that.

The skytrain is always an interesting ride… I’m a people watcher, so i find it entertaining at times. To get to North Van, you ride the train all the way to the seabus, and take it over. I still remember riding the seabus as a little kid with my grandparents. I’d always look out the window and be like, “look, Nana! It’s a shark!” or “look, Poppy! It’s a giant squid!” Those are memories that stay with you.

When we got there, we immediately went to go eat. I’m a little upset, my sister didn’t want to eat the cultural food (mostly because of the line ups), but in a way I’m thankful because I forgot to wear my braces and walking around so much was a major pain… literally.

We then walked to the other side, looked through the stalls… they sell a lot of cool things. But after that, we finally got to go see some entertainment! I love that the music is so loud, you can hear it everywhere you go, but watching it is incredible. I wish I would have gotten better pictures, and actual videos, of the Kara Kata Afro Beat Group, because they were great! But I sadly didn’t… they sounded really good though… and they had saxophone!

We also got to see a woman called Sarah K. She actually had a really strong voice.

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We then got to see the AMED Dance Group; they do Middle Eastern stuff. They’re great dancers though.

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I’ll upload a video of their dancing after everything uploads… there’s quite a few videos to show you! 🙂

I needed to sit down a lot because I was in so much pain, so I unfortunately didn’t get many good pictures, but I thought I’d upload some anyway.

We decided to walk around for a bit and look at some more stuff. I got that awesome pineapple drink that I showed you in my previous post. I absolutely love pineapple, so having it was a real treat. I ended up buying a jerk chicken sauce which I’ve always wanted to try. I haven’t tried it yet, but I’ll let you know how it turns out. I know you’re only supposed to use a little bit… it’s flavourful and spicy. Plus, who are we kidding? Who doesn’t like chicken!?!?

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We went to sit back down and watch more of the show after looking around a bit. Usually there’s a lot of dancing, some people just didn’t though. I danced! Well, I sat-danced, it’s kinda what I do. We got to see these great girls from Diversity Performing Arts in Calgary. I know they were all younger, but I find it great that people want to dance… I never could. A lot of people find it wrong that young girls are dancing like they are because it’s “sexy”. The thing is… western culture has skewed everything. They deem everything as over sexualised when in reality, it isn’t. Dancing sexily isn’t a bad thing. In other cultures, it isn’t seen as “hey, I want sex, do me!” it just… is, and a lot of people don’t understand that. Western society has just made such a huge deal out of things.

Anyway, these girls were great for what they were doing. 🙂

We also got to see the Trinidad & Tobago Cultural Society Steelband. I love hearing steel drums, I’m not sure why, I just do.

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I do have video of this that I’ll also share when it uploads. 🙂

After looking around a bit more, we decided it was probably about that time to go home, so off we ventured. Again, there was security everywhere. We were walking to the seabus and we saw people in luchador masks, and the “leader” in a pig’s mask. We’ve seen people in the luchador masks out here too, but seeing a large group of them was interesting. One man asked them what they were doing and they said it was a secret. I do wonder what they’re up to…

If you’re in the Vancouver area and are interested in joining the fun, Caribbean Days is in North Vancouver every year at the end of July and is easily accessible. If you do go, try to donate! It’s put together by volunteers and people in the community. Keep the festival alive! You can find more information here: http://www.caribbeandays.ca/ 

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