Saint Lucia-based Christian Volney took to her social media on Tuesday, March 28, 2023 share the travel history of her village in Saint Lucia and Dominica of early 1970; she also shared some glimpses of three windward islands of her town in Saint Lucia.
She shared that Liat aeroplanes, known as the Leeward Islands Air Transport, were built in 1974. It was a joy for her to stand in the yard in Bense of her home with other neighbours and wait for when she finally saw it flying up the Bense skies way to Melville Hall airport at 6:00 every evening as she cheered it on, waving and clapping. The way she cheered that plane, people would think they were the inventors, not the Wright brothers. She shared that the adults would say, one day, b would say, bachay that plane, ut seh.
Christian shared that Max and Joe’s gum were the names of chewing gum, and the rich people drank Milo and Ovaltine and ate fried fish in a lovely sauce with “Yam Jaune” while the rest of them ate our fish in a Braff, the view master was the perfect toy she wanted but couldn’t have.
She added, ” I always wanted to drink a whole Ju-c, but after a couple of sips, when the fizz passed in my nose, I couldn’t go any further; we called every toothpaste, Colgate and every laundry detergent Breeze! Flying fish was 10 for a dollar, and the name of the Syrian man who used to come to the village in his car to sell his goods was Michael.”
She further shared that the parents gave their kids a spoon of Cod liver oil every morning and gave them, Sennay tea to drink to clean up their inside. None of them was vaccinated as kids, so they all had long tapeworms inside them that they passed alive. Imagine passing long white tapeworms, and they start crawling alive. Sorry for the ones who didn’t survive due to worms. Parents gave them a shot of Antipar for the worms. When we got sick, we got two Caffenol, and the adults took physic when they were ill.
Also, There was no electricity in Bense. Hence, everyone had to light their kerosene lamps at night and buy them early because the shops didn’t sell kerosene, garlic and blue soap after 6:00 pm due to superstitious reasons.
Sunday was their day to go to the river to do our washing, and the villagers had their stones at the river! One stone belonged to Clairon Royer; one belonged to Cylma Joseph. She would see Binel Joseph passing by going to change his father’s Cows. She would see an eal we called “Jangle” passing, looking back like he said to her, this is his territory.
When they finally got electricity, that was the talk of the village. The rich could afford fluorescent lamps, and the poor could only afford light bulbs. Music grams could be heard playing songs from Tennessee. Ernie Fordshe adds, “I’ll fly away, oh glory! Marty Robbins, out in the west Texas town of El Passo, I fell in love with a Mexican girl. Charlie Pride, kiss an Angel good morning.”