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Bracing for challenging 2012

rhondathompson, [email protected]

Bracing for challenging 2012

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IT’S OUT WITH THE OLD and in with the new.
Scores of Barbadians are expected to stay true to tradition and ring in 2012 in fine style over the next 12 to 24 hours.
Across the country, several house parties are planned as indeed are larger, more commercial fetes at the major entertainment spots around the island, which have been eagerly anticipating what is arguably the biggest party day of the entire year.
Church pews will also be brimming with attendees – some of whom have not graced the door of any religious establishment for the entire year but are now eager to start the year off on the right foot.
Then there are those of us who will simply opt to remain at home and quietly usher in the New Year.
Fuss or no fuss, most are happy to see the back of 2011, which has undoubtedly been a tough year economically.
Both domestically and internationally, the same old familiar tune has been played over and over in our ears for much of the year, and it sounds a lot like Ray Charles’ Busted:
“My bills are all due and the baby needs shoes and I’m busted
Cotton is down to a quarter a pound, but I’m busted
I got a cow that went dry and a hen that won’t lay
A big stack of bills that gets bigger each day
The county’s gonna haul my belongings away ’cause I’m busted.
I went to my brother to ask for a loan ’cause I was busted
I hate to beg like a dog without his bone, but I’m busted
My brother said there ain’t a thing I can do,
My wife and my kids are all down with the flu,
And I was just thinking about calling on you ’cause I’m busted.
From Wall Street to Canary Wharf, businesses have also been singing the blues over the dampened state of financial activity while our tourism sector has been made to feel the pain of decision-making in leading metropolises, which have themselves not been spared the worst of the global economic downturn.
But perhaps nowhere has the economic torment been more visible than in countries such as Greece and Portugal, which for most of the year were tottering dangerously close to the edge.
Here in Barbados we have been more fortunate, even though domestic decision-making has also had the stern effect of raping pockets and leaving cupboards bare. Even some spendthrifts are approaching 2012 with a high degree of anxiety since the rainy day they were always told to save up for is currently with us and they do not have enough set aside in case another brisk shower comes in the near future.
All indications are that 2012 will therefore be quite challenging.
While we need not approach it with despair, we need individually to arm ourselves with enough resolve to ensure that we can overcome the challenges.