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My name is Simone Pierre and I am a waitress at a restaurant in a luxury Tobago hotel.

I come from Cunupia, real countryside. Girl days was in Penal, the home of doubles, alloo pie, everything.

I moved from there to Cunupia. I actually went to Siparia Seventh Day Adventists Primary and then Palo Seco Secondary.

I’m a believer but I believe in God, not religion. I think religion is just to separate people.

I also would agree that religions were invented to keep women down.

For me, a woman is an extraordinary individual with the ability to multiply anything. You give her a sperm, she gives you a baby. You give her a house, she gives you a home.

Look, we had a female prime minister and now we have a female president and that makes me feel so awesome.

I respect the power of the female but I wouldn’t call myself a feminist. I believe in equality. Men have rights and women have rights and we should both respect each other.

I don’t have a family yet but it is something I want.

I don’t come from a big family myself. I have three sisters and a brother, the baby. I’m the youngest girl.

My parents are both still around and I thank God every day for them.

I like my belly. I remember, as a little girl, being excited to go to my grandmother’s house because, when I was there, whatever I say I feel to eat is what she was going to be cooking. For that alone, Granny’s house was my happy time.

I like roti generally and I LOVE a duck roti.

I have my six CXC passes but, honestly, I didn’t like school. I just went because my parents sent me.

We all focus on education all the time but we never focus on people who don’t have (academic) ability. We call them “slow” and all different names. Yes, education is very important, for sure – but I always like to focus on how important trade is. If people do their trade seriously, many times they make more money than those of us who spend ten, 15 years in school.

People shouldn’t consider people without university degrees as being dumb. Plenty plumbers make more money than plenty lawyers.

I did a short course at hotel school. Three people stood out for me: Mr John Luke-Atwell, Miss Ann Williams and Mr Jupiter – but Miss Williams stand out most for me. She explained life to me and taught me stuff that would help me a long way in life.

Even though I trust God, bad things will happen to me. But I always say even that bad thing will give me an experience and teach me how to move forward in life.

The thing about religion that makes me angry is that we always go with whatever the man says. And we don’t take the time to read and educate ourselves! If the pastor says, “God say you should take a bald head tomorrow,” we go and shave our head. And is not true.

One time, my boyfriend wasn’t feeling well and he went to a particular place and they told him his heart and various parts weren’t functioning properly. He began to believe he wasn't well.

Simone Pierre says her job is to make you feel like you’re on holiday, every day, all the time.

Then he went to another doctor and did over the same tests and everything was okay.

All this time he was believing something was wrong with him and his belief made him start to actually show the symptoms of something being wrong with him – and, all the while, nothing was wrong!

Your mind is very powerful.

I left Trinidad unexpectedly almost a year ago. I applied to the hotel, for my present job, but I didn’t expect to get through, so I went back to Trinidad. A while later, I went back to Tobago for a weekend on holiday and, the day I came back, I got a telephone call telling me I had an interview the next day!

So it was a good thing I came back – and so you see how things always work out!

I serve people food and drink but my job is also to be friendly and to make people feel relaxed and at home.

When you go on a vacation, you want to feel like you’re on vacation.

So my job isn’t just about taking orders and delivering meals. My job is to make you feel like you’re on holiday, every day, all the time.

The best part of the job is meeting new people. That’s always exciting. Honestly, I don’t think there is any bad side of the job. I’d really have to think hard about it for a while to come up with something.

I worry about Trinidad. It used to be a friendly, happy place where everybody helped everybody. Now, it’s a place where everybody is selfish, unforgiving and aggressive.

And I really think we should start thinking about each other. When you kill somebody’s family member, that’s a child without a father. What would happen to that fatherless child? Is like a cycle continuing.

I wish people could wake up and smell the coffee.

I love where I live in Tobago. It’s not on the beach.

But Tobago is so small that, basically, anywhere you are, you could walk and end up on the beach.

Tobago and Trinidad are basically the same but the two main differences between Tobago and Trinidad are, one, there is less crime. You could park your car anywhere and leave the keys inside and nobody would touch it. And, two, the prices. Tobagonians pay tourist prices! Tobagonians actually leave and go Trinidad to make groceries and come back and still save money.

A Trinbagonian is a lover of life. We are an amazing people.

TT means happiness, laughter and peace to me.

Read the full version of this feature on Wednesday at www.BCPires.com


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