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N Touch
Tuesday 12 December 2017
Commentary

Fifty five years have passed…

The sun “comes up” late at Brasso Mountain estate in the Paria River valley.

It has to rise over the ridge that runs down from Cerro del Aripo to the North Coast before it can shine into the valley.

But as the skies lighten in advance of the sun’s appearance, there is a sort of golden “gloaming” in the forest clearing where the little buildings sit. The surrounding forest brightens slowly, from almost black to varying shades of green. Flowers punctuate the brightening greens, waiting for the sun to top the distant hill so that they can sparkle their dew-filled petals in the new, clean sunlight.

The hummingbird flits in through the open door each morning as I sit in bed, faces off to me, says good morning and darts back out! He is a black silhouette, waiting, like the flowers outside, for the sun to reach over the hill so that he too could show off all his glitter and sparkle.

The birds have been singing and so too the little river below the little cottage as the day slowly brightens. And when the first sunlight peeps over the ridge, the newly sunlit flowers glitter like jewels on multi-tinted green fabric. And the avian choruses rise in acclamation of the sunshine flowing down into the valley!

I walk to the edge of the clearing, looking down the whole Paria River Valley to the Caribbean Sea beyond. Out to sea there is a sharp but strong shower passing. Small in area, it just fills the embrace of the Paria valley, a hill on each side of the high strong cloud.

It shines white in the morning sunlight, pouring grey water out of a flat cloud base. Lightning dances up and down in the tower, and thunder rumbles distantly. The shower slowly passes, staying out to sea, not coming ashore.

I contemplate my need to come here, a few days each month, to spend time without conversation, not even a radio to listen to the news—well especially not to listen to the news! But back there in Babylon, in “civilised” T&T, so much is so wrong, and so little—indeed almost nothing—is being done to correct our faults, our attitudes and deeds. Daily our now-clownish governance issues edicts of intended plans, proposals and commissions to review, examine, and make recommendations about the incompetence and corruption of themselves and previous governments stretching back into the murky mists of Lock Joint.

Following the public hearings of the Uff COE into the construction industry and the Coleman COE into CLICO, we can be pretty certain that all future inquiries will be held in secret. The publication of the UFF Report was enough to ensure that reports, like the currently secret CLICO Report, will not see the light of day.

How many sterile and impotent investigations are currently underway into the inter-island ferries fiascos? What is their collective purpose? Or maybe the question should be: what are their individual purposes? To obstruct each other to such an extent that all evidence becomes contaminated? And then the “collective purpose” is achieved– the whole issue disappears under the weight of incoming scandals?

A potential child stalker has been unearthed locally through the internet, one of the social media sites. A little child has been suggested as the target of this pervert’s evil. The police acknowledge that they have seen the posts. And that is the end of it! Yes, according to the female superintendent of Police, the Police Service cannot begin an investigation because “no one has come in to make a report on this matter”!

Are we serious? Our police, still being trained and ruled by Queen Victoria, cannot act upon clear knowledge of a possible criminal act—a threat of perversion upon one of our children?

One of the reasons our Health Service is in such disarray has been further clarified. Our prime ministers, and other senior ministers, travel overseas like our rich, for their medical tests and care. They know that our care, the care for which they bear responsibility, is not good enough for them. So it is just a matter of course to fly out and leave the minister of Health having to say nothing about the care we offer, because no one seems to ever ask if these prime ministerial care requirements are available locally?

We reach back into a stumbling past to bring back our original television programming. Why?

The official reason is that it was costing too much to run a Government station with paid imported content. We are going to save money by keeping local inspiration and culture as “save money viewing”? Fifty five years have passed. We wasted two oil booms. Of what can we be proud? How you feel?

Join me in the bush?

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