A minha Lista de blogues

domingo, 30 de outubro de 2016

Welcome to Trinidad and Tobago

The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, consists of the two main islands, Trinidad and Tobago, just 11 kilometres off the coast of northeastern Venezuela.

View from the hotel room (Hyatt)

Christopher Columbus was sailing from Spain in 1498 on his third voyage of discovery. He had a vow that the first land he discovered he would name Blessed Trinity- the three persons in one God, according to the Roman Catholic faith. The word "Trinity" in Spanish is Trinidad, so it is said Columbus cried out "La Trinidad", when he saw a range of three mountains and claimed the island for Spain.

The island of Trinidad was a Spanish colony from the arrival of Columbus till the invasion of the British in 1797.

Port of Spain, the capital, is a mixture of cultures filled with the descendants of African, Ameridian, Indian, European and Latin American migrants. English is the official language, but you can find some people communicating in a local French creole- Patois-, a language that was brought to Trinidad in the 17th century:

Es ou vié apwann pale patwa? ( so you want to learn to speak some patois?)

You can feel the Indian influence in the island is quite important: we visited two Hindu Temples and were given full explanation of their Gods.

The Temple in Waterloo

Hanuman: God of all possible virtues 

My husband and I were invited to attend the celebration of Divali, on October 29th also known as the festival of lights, which represents good overcoming evil and light overcoming darkness, but we could not attend as we were already back “home” on that day.

Thousands of deyas (clay lamps) are lit with oil and a wick made of cotton. Houses are beautifully decorated with the lights

Steelpan is a musical instrument whose sound has become the symbolic musical heartbeat of Trinidad and Tobago´s  festivities. (Steel pan musicians are called pannists).

In the 1940´s when Trinidad and Tobago was still under British rule, and World War II continued to devastate the UK and the world, the British colonial government decided to ban the local Carnival celebrations and the rhythms of tamboo bamboo drums. Young people who refused to become silent continued to experiment different forms of percussion instruments, the predecessor of the modern steelpan. The first time the steelbands came out was on 8 May 1945 (V-E Day) when Churchill announced the German surrender.

Trinidad and Tobago gained its independence from the United Kingdom on 31 August 1962. In 1976, the country became a republic.

The President watches my husband sign the book of honour.

Trinidad and Tobago is the third richest country by GDP per capita in the Americas after the United States and Canada. The country's wealth is attributed to its large reserves and exploitation of oil and natural gas (unlike most of the English-speaking Caribbean, the country's economy is primarily industrial). The currency is the TT dollar and the minimum salary is around 900 Euros. 

Shops close very early around 3:30-4 pm and malls at 7. According to an entrepreneur we met, it is very difficult to find people to work longer hours.

I liked to visit a company owned by a Portuguese descendant named Ferreira, the Portuguese Honorary Consul. 

Port of Spain has the largest roundabout in the world (2,5 km), Queen´s Park Savannah. The surrounding buildings, some of them in colonial style are being restored like the house of the president.

The new Centre for the Perfoming Arts reminded me of the Sidney Opera House .

Talking about beautiful buildings, we were invited to have dinner at a newly restored and decorated house. It was really very nice, the kind of house you only see in magazines...

It has two entrances: by the sea (I am standing on the pier) or by the street. The hostess gathered a very nice group of friends and we had a very good time together.

I didn´t have the opportunity to go to the Botanical Gardens because you need to walk a lot and I was wearing high heels. We decided to go to one of the sights in the north of the island and from which I had already read about: Maracas Bay - a limitless horizon out to sea and breathtaking mountain ridges behind it.

Here I learned that shark meat is a delicacy. It seems to me that the island fishermen are not afraid of them. On the contrary, the shark should be afraid of the inhabitants of this island...

The national birds for Trinidad and Tobago are the scarlet ibis and the cocrico that can be seen in the coat of arms. The Scarlet Ibis is kept safe by the government by living in the Caroni Bird Sanctuary, which was set up by the government for their protection. 
I found the motto very inspiring: Together we aspire, Together we achieve.

Sem comentários:

Enviar um comentário