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Lights out?

Carol Martindale

Lights out?

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Tough financial times have forced a blackout of Christmas lights at the Robinson residence in Warrens, St Thomas, this year.
It is the first time in ten years that the thousands of lights that have set the house aglow will be turned off for the holiday season.
Businessman Ronald Robinson, who owns the house, said a poor year in construction had forced him to pull the plug.
“This is the worst year in construction. I was trying to keep the company going. There is no way I can manage the lights on my own,” he said.
From inception, Robinson has been pulling his pocket to light up the house much to the delight of the thousands who stop to view the spectacle every year.
Traffic along that stretch of Highway 2A moves at snail’s pace from evening well into the night with many watching the lights from moving cars, while others stop and park to take in the sparkle and colour.
The businessman said he was still willing to take a shot at putting up the lights if he could get some assistance.
“Nobody has offered. I am not begging but if anyone offered to assist, I would take the challenge,” he said.
“I believe I can get the lights up by Christmas Eve if I have an offer by (today). I would go all out to make sure that there are lights up for Christmas. We would work night and day.”
Robinson conceded that times were indeed tough, adding that the expense of putting up the lights was not one he could handle on his own this time around.
He said that over the last couple years he spent between $25 000 and $30 000.
Robinson said some Barbadians were stopping him and sometimes “quarrelling” that there were no lights this year.
Robinson said he also felt bad when people said to him that it was not Christmas without the lights. He said he usually started planning his designs for the lights from early in the year.
“I start pulling out the plans and drawings to see what we will do and started this early,” he said.
He said he and his small team usually start putting up the lights each year from November 1.