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MAVIS BECKLES: Summer, sun, sea and Sargassum


MAVIS BECKLES: Summer, sun, sea and Sargassum

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WELL, LOOK AT THIS: summer is here again and we know how all the school people all cross the island must be looking forward tuh getting outta the schools, waking up late, trying tuh eat down the house, doing absolutely nothing and going tuh the beach.

All o’ this is true. This is what the summer vacation is all about and this is how I remembered it. But ya see this thing ’bout eating down the house and going tuh the beach? Dem might be a li’l challenging fuh the school people now.

Ya asking why Mavis would say something like this, right?

Well, lemmuh tell ya something: you evah notice how when ya ain’t got nothing tuh do how hungry ya does get?

You evah notice how sitting down watching TV, movies, videos or wha’evah ya choose tuh call dem fuh any length o’ time, how ya does want tuh eat non-stop? No matter what it is, from the time you sit down in front o’ the TV fuh any length o’ time, ya does want tuh be nibbling pon something and drinking something and we know how much the li’l people like this sort o’ thing. It even worse now ’cause duh does walk ’bout wid the TV attached tuh dem – the tablet, the iPad and all the other gadgets dat duh cahn seem tuh put down. So duh does want something tuh eat all the time.

It ain’t like being at school in dat structured environment where ya would be eating lunch by a certain time and some kinda snack at break. In between dat ya does be in a class room studying till it is time when dat bell ring fuh home. But being home now pon vacation, duh bored all the time and the only thing is tuh eat.

I ain’t know how some poor parents gine be able tuh handle this lot o’ eating thing – it hard as France now and food real, real expensive.

The other challenge is dat actually all the beaches wash way wid the Sargassum sea moss. We know how evah body does flock tuh the beaches in the summer time. Duh does be enjoying the nice white sand. We know how people like tuh play beach tennis, beach volleyball, beach cricket, football and a host o’ other activities pon the beach. We know how people like tuh bring out duh picnic baskets and hang out pon the beach. We know how people like tuh take a stroll or run up and down pon the clean, white sand. We know how we like tuh swim, dive and frolic in the nice, clear water wid only the occasional rock under ya foot tuh think ’bout. We know how on some days when the sun out shining bright and the sky clear and blue; the water does be so clear, ya could see the very sand.

But because of all o’ the Sargassum sea weed, all o’ what I talk ’bout just now, it gine be impossible fuh some people tuh really enjoy the beaches this summer.

Look, I went tuh Bath Beach the other Sunday and was in shock. We know how beautiful dat picnic spot is. The place was full o’ families, young and old enjoying duh Sunday outing. Evah single table was taken up and laden down wid all sorts o’ food and drink containers. Duh had chairs, tables and umbrellas all ovah the place and people look like duh was really having a good time.

Then I decided tuh take a stroll pon the beach and could not believe my eyes. Uh mean Bath Beach is not one o’ the places where I like tuh swim but ya couldn’t even walk pon the beach properly – the Sargassum seaweed had the entire beach covered up. In some places ya couldn’t even see the sand far less get in the water, which was full o’ the seaweed fuh miles out.

Tuh be honest, I would like tuh know where this Sargassum thing come from all of a sudden. Where it was all this time? All I could tell ya is dat it got the whole place in a mess. If it get clean up today, by the next morning when ya guh back, it does be there heap up like somebody bring it and dump it there. So if wunna want tuh spend most o’ the summer vacation lazing around pon the beach, I gine tell ya, wunna gine have tuh endure and share the beach wid the Sargassum sea moss, ’cause it ain’t look like it gine nuh way in a hurry.

• Mavis Beckles was born and raised in The Orleans. She has an opinion on everything.