headermask image

sugar cane arrows

A Collection of Thoughts

I sit here in Barbados, poaching wireless internet from some poor soul we have dubbed our Unknown Benefactor, but I don’t have at hand the materials for what was planned as my next post. As the last of my ‘Id ul Adha recipes, Malaysian Beef Rendang by Chennette was to find its way onto the worldwideweb, and then, the inevitable comments from my reading circle which may start off completely on topic and then 2 dozen entries later, have no connection whatsoever, except in the most alternate of universes, with my original post. 😀 Some even dare to be critical. Even my mother (my mother!) has her shilling to contribute (2 cents is nothing…a “shilling” is one term for TT 25 cents, which is a little more than 2 p). But I don’t mind. Seriously.

I haven’t been blogging for very long and I had no clue what my blog would end up being. Or will end up being in the future. Or who it would attract. That it has the readership and commentary of those of my friends who know about my blog says more about the quality of my friends than that of my postings. (For abundance of clarity, that’s a GOOD thing; I am talking about your loyalty Hmmmm (and The Other Aberdonian, and I guess any day now the twins) and ewe_are_here.

I have met other members of the Trini blogging community that have a mission and are committed in spreading their word. I don’t have such a clear focus, but I admire the work that they have put in. Whether it be about food, food and more food like The Trini Gourmet, who manages to do a wonderfully comprehensive food blog with her fusion recipes and committed research to link to cool articles and videos – her site’s a great resource and she has a good sense of humour. What more do you want from a frequent commenter (even if she will persist in siding with the younger sister).

Or the way TriniFood raises questions and thoughts about our food culture that really make me think and want to know the answers. The development of our foods and tastes are so intrinsically linked to developments in our society, it’s a fascinating subject, even without the recipes. I know it may be her tricky way 😉 of getting a reading audience hooked for when she publishes that book, but all the better! And she gets down into the cooking part too. Not to mention backing me for the Nikon!!

The Manicou was one of the first people to happen upon my blog and although I don’t blog on current affairs, I have often been really grateful for his spotting something in T&T and bringing it to my attention via his posts. When you read your news in the online newspapers you miss things. Plus he’s a foodie. Through him I have encountered many more in the T&T and Caribbean blogosphere, whether posting from home or foreign, and it’s cool to be part of a community.

In case you were wondering, I am musing about these things, inspired in part by TriniGourmet’s Commenter Spotlight, but also because of recent criticism of a post (no, not you people). I guess I was a bit harsh about Guyanese cuisine in one of my first blog commentaries, and it’s probably because I never thought I’d have a blog that strangers read. If it encourages more people to post or write about their Caribbean food experience, then the more the merrier. Trinis and Jamaicans have had philosophical battles about “peas and rice” and “rice and peas” as long as whenever – as long as it tastes good and has coconut milk, serve it already. With some bun and cheese after. Barbadians have a national dish of coocoo and flying fish that they proudly present to Trinis, who also have coocoo, and as for the flying fish, well…;-) That doesn’t make it any less their national dish or any less tasty (and believe me, I have had a lot of the Bajan national dish). I feel an expository roti post in my future, where I don’t intend to claim Trini roti is better than Guyanese – just discuss the varieties of CARIBBEAN roti, as opposed to Indian, or Malay or whatever. I can’t wait to go back to Suriname and sample some more Javanese food, or Indonesian (especially since I can probably get halaal). Or try a real Kittian conch chowder (not the Marriott’s version).

I am glad I blog – along with my camera, it gives me a purpose when I am stuck on my own traveling and so, the last person I should link to is the person who is responsible for me being on WordPress.com and nagging me into blogging and now nagging me into purchasing a camera even though we have no viable way of getting it in our hands right this minute. Poor Lilandra is languishing after a camera so that she can take food photos now that she has more activity in the kitchen and more inspiration. I never see that much dedication when the camera was working! Well, actually, it started just before the manufacturer’s defect kicked in, albeit more than 2.5 years after the purchase. We don’t share a room anymore, or even the same jurisdiction, but we’re mighty close on this blogosphere.

As for my halt on recipe postings – I have been put to hard work and long hours here in my new temporary home. We figured out that dinner was the only time we really got to relax, because when we get in for the night, we work. So on our way from the office, we stop for dinner. Yay, Barbados. Tourist-oriented island. Lots of cool little restaurants. We plan on trying a different one every night. So far Brown Sugar and Il Tempio are definite recommendations. Asian Palm Thai wasn’t very Thai. Some pictures will be available soon.

And soon also, Lilandra and I will buy our Nikons. D50 definitely, and maybe maybe, I’ll get a D80…

If you liked my post, feel free to subscribe to my rss feeds

33 Comments so far (Add 1 more)

  1. aww what a sweet post you too kind 😀 :::hugzzzzzzzz:::
    i think your bloggie rulez 😀

    1. The TriniGourmet on January 11th, 2007 at 2:17 am
  2. I saw the comment that you’re referrring to (only because it happened to be on the page I bookmarked). I love Guyanese food and didn’t find your post offensive. It’s all a matter of personal taste and the fact that you’re a visitor definitely explains why we share a difference in opinion. My American husband does not eat any West Indian food because of a bad experience he had with it. I guess, “to each, his own”.

    2. Shelliza on January 11th, 2007 at 2:25 am
  3. This is my Chennette the one who always had a way with words that made sense from neigh high, Alhamdullilah.
    Please check our this though
    You would realise which is my review.
    Take care and see you soon Insha’allah

    3. mom on January 11th, 2007 at 8:08 am
  4. @ Trini Gourmet – thanks! :-)

    @ Shelliza – thanks again for that comment! I am glad it was read as a interesting commentary :-) And for the record, Cynthia who made the critique did back down somewhat and I look forward to her future posts.

    @ Mom – shukran :-) I read your review – wonder if Emeril does?

    4. chennette on January 11th, 2007 at 9:37 am
  5. Good quality friend here , who would like to add that she of course always sides with the older sister (well, middle technically, but still!). 😉

    5. ewe_are_here on January 11th, 2007 at 12:43 pm
  6. Hey! my *SNORT* disappeared after ‘here’! Hmmmmm.

    6. ewe_are_here on January 11th, 2007 at 12:43 pm
  7. well, see what I mean by loyalty :D?
    Wordpress didn’t like your SNORT? darn…

    7. chennette on January 11th, 2007 at 12:45 pm
  8. ah watchin all yuh 😀

    yeah i want that cynthia come back around… ah feel she lurkin 😛

    8. The TriniGourmet on January 11th, 2007 at 2:31 pm
  9. what -is- the lifespan of a chennette anyway 😀

    9. The TriniGourmet on January 11th, 2007 at 2:35 pm
  10. whey lilandra :(

    10. The TriniGourmet on January 11th, 2007 at 2:35 pm
  11. Lilandra is at work.
    Lilandra’s daddy…well for various reasons, I been sleeping in my old room and leaving laptop in my room and actually *trying* to go to sleep at night and the new term started this week and I dead beat!

    Lifespan – doesn’t she have her fruit fly quote anymore?

    Also, after this long hard endeavour, Lilandra got tired out I guess. You know I only bought my camera in beginning of 2004/end of 2003, and you know what happened in September 2004…so…HMPH

    I made you buy your first camera too…you would’ve bought it earlier if you listened to me.

    (shameless plug alert!)

    Wait til your dad or your niece starts posting here

    And ewe…hmph!

    11. Lilandra on January 11th, 2007 at 4:12 pm
  12. Oh, I forgot, if your camera is worth US$220 extra then…by all means…

    But you know on Flickr people haven’t taken such great pix with the d80 but it could be that there just aren’t alot of people with the d80…no point in upgrading from d70 or even the d50 if they have it already and they could be waiting for a price drop

    12. Lilandra on January 11th, 2007 at 4:15 pm
  13. I have a habit of putting my little snorts/sighs/aaaghs into the little triangle brackets:

    13. ewe_are_here on January 11th, 2007 at 7:22 pm
  14. ewe: well that’s the whole problem
    if you put it in angle brackets, the blog will think it’s html but it’ll be invalid html thus it won’t go!

    14. Lilandra on January 11th, 2007 at 11:08 pm
  15. no snorts go in ** **** they all go inside * * ** 😀

    15. The TriniGourmet on January 12th, 2007 at 2:10 am
  16. or i guess you could do this <snort>

    16. Lilandra on January 12th, 2007 at 5:19 am
  17. But hol’ on. Like I get big up! Well thanks Chennette. I have always enjoyed your blog except that it makes me hungry, which really doesn’t make much of a difference since I’m a guy and I’m always hungry.

    By the way, my sister sent me me an Indian cookbook for Christmas. (I hope she hasn’t been reading my blog).

    Also, if you want to get a good DSLR without having to spend too much money on one, I recommend you get a factory-refurbished one which is basically a used camera refurbished by the factory to look and operate like a new camera. If you have the means to, I suggest you use eBay to look for one. Ebay always has a lot of good stuff and stuff is always cheaper there. That’s my shilling to you :).

    17. Mani on January 12th, 2007 at 8:58 am
  18. MANI!
    Who you think we are?
    First you think we don’t know about trackbacks/pingbacks.
    Now you don’t think we know what factory-refurbished is…

    *tsk tsk*

    18. Lilandra on January 12th, 2007 at 11:35 am
  19. lol, sorry….i tend to over explain.

    19. Mani on January 12th, 2007 at 11:54 am
  20. Nice post, now i have to check you everyday…

    20. Jamaican Blogger on January 12th, 2007 at 12:31 pm
  21. Hey JB :) I’m half yardie :) Gonna peep your blog and add it to my links bar 😀 bigups 😛

    21. The TriniGourmet on January 12th, 2007 at 12:47 pm
  22. laughs @ Teacher Mani

    22. Lilandra on January 12th, 2007 at 1:31 pm
  23. No baby yet – not that I am in a hurry to have the baby or anything…not really. This is soo not relevant to this topic but I haven’t seen you online and I wanted to say hi.

    HI….from your poor pregnant friend…

    23. Hmmm on January 12th, 2007 at 7:50 pm
  24. Hmmm – your comment was caught in spam and I was without internet for the whole day today until about 10 tonight when I got home (T&T) – thanks for the update. You know from back in the days of waiting for twins, whenever I didn’t see you online I waited to be notified of a birth :-)

    Lilandra – Hey, Mani’s a documenter of life, he has to be able to explain! What did I say about chasing away my readers? 😉 But I know he can take the picong…he’s a Trini after all, and a much hunted one too, wildmeat and all…

    24. chennette on January 12th, 2007 at 11:33 pm
  25. mmmm

    I still waiting for TriniGourmet to find a good recipe!

    25. Lilandra on January 13th, 2007 at 12:44 am
  26. At least your ‘poor pregnant friend’ is going to be showing the baby the exit very soon. I have 8 more weeks of this!(Well, in theory. I’m going to start the campaign at 37 weeks….) aaaaaghhhh!


    Hi Hmmmmm! 😉

    26. ewe_are_here on January 13th, 2007 at 8:41 am
  27. Cookin’ Mani on d grill! 😀

    27. The TriniGourmet on January 13th, 2007 at 11:41 pm
  28. MMMM

    We were watching Boy Meets Grill before dropping Chennette off at her hotel.
    He was grilling halaal lamb…
    Do you think manicou tastes good coated and marinated in lebanese yoghurt and mint? then grilled?

    28. Lilandra on January 14th, 2007 at 2:22 am
  29. No baby yet…tentative name for a boy (although the meaning isn’t very exciting). When will you be online again? You need to blog again, I’m bored…just sitting and waiting…and eating ugghhhhh…

    Do you think this baby might DARE to be late???? I am a very patient person and I am so happy for it to stay in as long as it needs to…but that does not extend to one mintue past 40 weeks. Oh and we’re sooo quickly approaching 40 weeks, I was reading that they don’t induce until after 41 weeks!!!!!!

    So if any of your readers know what I can do to get this thing started – I would appreciate it. Other than getting on really bad trini style outside their maternity hospital …

    Got an idea for your blog, how to stop other people from using your comments area as a place where they can ramble on about irrelevant stuff….

    Oh the other Aberdonian (who is perhaps under a bit of pressure since he is the only person around to endure my mood) – said I could discuss all the food I have been eating, which would make it sorta relevant to your blog…sorta. Except cos of my super-sensitivity I am kinda wondering if he is making a wise -crack about my eating….huh

    Okay maybe I can ask you questions and then your readers can get to know you better –

    1) Do you prefer hot dogs and hambugers…and why and what do you like on them?

    2) What’s the most adventurous food you have ever had and where and why?

    3) Which food do you hate the most?

    4) If you were stranded on a deserted island and had only a three course meal – what would it be and why?

    5) For your wedding what would you serve…and why?

    6) If you were on a diet, what would be the hardest thing to give up?

    7) Do you eat when you’re depressed…if yes, what’s best?

    8) What’s your favourite drink…I should know tihs?

    9) Does your Dad cook, does he have one ‘great’ dish – what is it?

    My dad liked to make black-eyed peas cookup with fresh mango chutney. So whenever he was left with us for the day he would make it – he would have to go buy the peas though, since Mum never really cooks them.

    The Other Aberdonian used to have his pelau, until I bastardised it and the kids reject his but eat loads of mine – and one of my good friends called it a guyanese cookup – which I am sure was meant as a compliment in case any of your lurkers goes on the offensive again….smile.

    10) What kid of chow do you like and what do you put in it? And are you like ALL trinis who feel that their chow is the BEST because of….whatever it is that they add?

    11) What is your favourite fruit?

    12) Favorite kind of mango and why?

    13) Favourite kind of banana and why?

    14) What’s your Mum’s favourite dish to cook?

    15) Can Lilandra cook?….smile just kidding?

    16) Can brother cook?

    Alrightee, no need to anwer any of the questions….but if any of your readers wanna answer as well….feel free to…please.

    Take pity on a massive past 39 week pregnant 30 year old with 16 month old toddlers – in a foreign land ….sorry can’t think of anything else …

    Chennette feel free ‘cuss’ me about this comment….Lilandra encourage all to comment….

    29. Hmmm on January 14th, 2007 at 7:34 pm
  30. ah like all dem questionz 😀 dey hurted my head 😀
    my father only has 2 things he can make :)

    30. The TriniGourmet on January 14th, 2007 at 8:38 pm
  31. Madam doesn’t eat hotdogs!!! I will leave the rest for her to answer.

    Or maybe we should answer for ourselves?

    31. Lilandra on January 14th, 2007 at 10:43 pm
  32. Just read the rest.

    Lilandra cannot cook thus no Trini muslim will ever marry her!

    Of course brother can cook. He can make pizza and roti. What else does a trini male need? Tho he married someone who couldn’t cook. I hear she is learning now so as not to be bored.

    32. Lilandra on January 14th, 2007 at 10:44 pm
  33. Lilandra can cook. It maybe limited to the dishes she likes but then isn’t that what it is all about initially. She was great with the pastelle making last evening.

    33. trinimom on January 15th, 2007 at 5:49 am

One Trackback

  1. By Jamaican Blogger Speedlinking - 19 January 2007 on January 20, 2007 at 1:35 am

    […] writes a post titled A Collection of Thoughts – Realized that strangers do read her Blog and finally admitting been harsh about Guyanese cuisine […]

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *