>> Monday, July 12, 2010
I've never been too keen about sharing my personal life. In spite of my hobbies and vocations over the years that place me in the way of public scrutiny, I actually work very diligently to keep my life, my REAL life very private.
I live a life that is full, blessed, and challenging. I have a small circle of close friends, and a huge loving family who accept me in all my various reincarnations. This weekend, I spent hours and hours in the company of many of those relatives. People rushed in from England, Montserrat, Trinidad, The United States, and of course St. Vincent and the Grenadines to mark the occasion of my Grandfather's 90th Birthday.
I didn't go to Vincy Mas this year, and to be honest it kinda hurt. Yes, I love carnival but, as you know, I experience several carnivals in a given year. The greatest joy of returning to St. Vincent annually for carnival is the ability to celebrate my Grandfather's birthday with him, as it always falls smack dab in the middle of the action. When the usual sponsorship arrangement that enables a team from Toronto-Lime dot com (that includes me) to hit up Vincy Mas fell thru, the emotions were mixed. Truth be told, it's some of the best work you can get...going to the Caribbean to cover carnival, but I'm getting married this year. I'm busy...and skipping town weeks before the big day isnt' what I would call a wise decision. However, I really wanted to be there, this year more than ever as this year had it all worked out. My cousin "Slimmy" and I would have been their celebrate the 90th year of our maternal patriarch, the legendary hero of our family.
So I missed the actual day of his birth, but five days later, he was here in Toronto. He sat in a banquet hall filled with some 80 of his descendants and relatives, and he was honoured. So blessed am I to come from a family that unites for occasions like this. I met some folk for the first time. I got to catch up with a favourite uncle from my childhood, I got to eat, drink and dance with people who share with me one of life's most vital commodities .... blood.
I saw my family in a new light. I saw my brother as a confident master of ceremonies. I heard my mother deliver a heart-felt address. My auntie sang beautifully and humbly, and we all joined in. A beautiful hand painted work was unveiled by another grandchild. Slimmy wrote and read out a biography that made your heart want to leap out of your chest. I had the pleasure of composing and performing an original poem in Grandpa's honour. The younger ones ushered. One cousin made beautiful favours, so we would all have a keepsake of the occasion. An auntie baked and decorated one phenomenal black cake befitting of a first rate gala occasion. And I really could go on and on. I am so proud of my family. So proud, and I really couldn't help but share.
Below, is my brother's tribute video "Portrait of a man". It tells some of my grandfather's story...and it tells the story of the Canadian branch of "Dalys" through video and still photos. It shows our family home in St. Vincent, and people who we have embraced over the years as family by choice. It's just what we do.
If you've ever wondered who I really am, perhaps this will begin to answer your question.