My deepest sympathy goes out to Mrs. Mara Thompson, her daughters and entire family.
I would like to hold onto my special memories of the late Prime Minister and recall one of our few exchanges.
Soon after his illness was announced, you could see the strain on his face, and in a simple attempt to bring a smile, I emailed him a YouTube extract of a BBC ‘Yes Prime Minister’ episode.
In his inimitable style, a few minutes later, a message came back, ‘Adrian, Thank you, it’s my favourite programme’. Continue reading
A sad travel article by Boston Globe journalist Patricia Borns
Two years ago Patricia Borns visited Barbados and wrote a wonderful travel article for the Boston Globe. In Measured by the foot, she said “Pure air, pristine beaches, and miles of byways make hiking eye-opening.”
During a hiking trip, Ms. Borns took some photos of Sam Lord’s Castle and wondered about the (non) preservation of our historical buildings and sites. She wrote of our old friend Richard Goddard telling her “Hike Barbados started not as a tourist attraction but as a way to connect our own people with their environment and heritage.”
It’s obvious from Ms. Borns’ articles that she loves Barbados, Bajans and appreciates the unique history of our island. So it is with a bit of sadness that she writes of the demise of Sam Lord’s Castle for her readers in Boston.
Reading her article and seeing the photos, I’m also reminded that we are losing our natural heritage as well as our historical buildings. If we allow our remaining fields and wetlands and forests to be sacrificed to “progress”, this place will be nothing but concrete in short order. It’s close enough to that already on the west and south west coasts…
“Anguish for a past that can never be reclaimed”
Orhan Pamuk wrote movingly of “the melanchololy of ruins.” Today the people of Barbados are melancholy as a priceless piece of their history went up in flames late last month.
Located on a coco palm-shaded strand of southeast coast beach, the iconic coral rock castle was the 1820 Regency trophy home of a true pirate of the Caribbean, Samuel Hall Lord. At one point in the mid-1900s it was owned by family of my friend Richard Goddard, a bulldog preservationist dubbed by Bajan media the country’s “most stubborn man.” Bostonians may remember the castle as a Marriott resort in more recent times…
… read the Boston Globe article & photos: At play in the fields of Sam Lord
Hurricane straps – I had them, Victor Holder didn’t.
More than a few Bajan homes lost large pieces or the whole roof in Hurricane Tomas, but I’d love to know how many severely damaged homes were equipped with hurricane straps and tabs. Not many, I’d wager.
My roof shook and I lost a window that didn’t have a board over it but the damage was minimal all things considered. Some of my neighbours didn’t fare so well – some through lack of preparation and others because their homes or additions are nothing more than slapped-together bits and pieces. I can’t fault a hardworking man who hasn’t money for a roof over his family other than pushing a couple of old chattel homes together. That’s life in Barbados for many folks, and whether we get a building code or not it’s not going to change the old homes. Not for decades anyway.
So please don’t take it as a criticism against Victor Holder when I mention that he didn’t have hurricane straps installed. Continue reading