Month: May 2016

Upcoming Events

I always say it and I don’t know if you believe me or not but there’s always something to do in Jamaica. Obviously some weeks will have more events than others but I decided to drop some events that are happening this week in a […]

Expression Wednesdays

I have bad news everyone; with Jamaicans across the island pondering whether to roast or fry breadfruit, I fear we will soon come to an end, as a nation. The sun is so hot, persons are melting at a rapid pace, everyday. With hot heads […]

Expression Wednesdays

The Jamaican Owl, commonly known as a Patoo (for the sound of its ‘hoots’) is endemic to Jamaica. I learned that many years ago on Earth Day, when I skipped a day in high school to volunteer at Hope Zoo.

“Look at me as poor as I be, I’m free, happy like the birds in the trees, just watch my story unfold…”

Shot taken out by Chudleigh Pass in Manchester, Jamaica.

When Nicholi sent me that photo I knew I had to share it on my blog one day, and the day reach 🙂 I think owls are mystical, probably because I don’t see them as often as a next person but isn’t the one in the photo cute? I think it’s cute. I’m not gonna go on and on about owls but when I do see one I look in awe like a little kid.

Anyway I have a song I want you to listen while you’re here, it’s “My Story” by Blvk H3ro.

Image by Nicholi Stevens.

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Bacchanal Beach J'ouvert

Since 2016 is the year to ‘Get There’ or ‘Shoot Your Shot’ I had decided this was the year I was going to have my first Beach J’ouvert experience. I had heard so many good stories, I had to go, and that I did 🙂 […]

Expression Wednesdays

Hi everyone ☺️ Today I’m showing you the featured image, because I like it. I feel like I’m going through a weird stage in my life and in light of that I’d like to share this quote with you. “A certain darkness is needed to […]

Carnival

“Why do we celebrate Carnival? …Where did it originate?” Were a few thoughts that floated through my mind during Jamaica’s Carnival season; near naked bodies feting in the streets was just intriguing and I decided to look it up.

Carnival is an annual festival, celebrated typically during the week before Lent in Roman Catholic countries, involving processions, music, dancing, and the use of masquerade. The Carnival was used to enjoy meat, alcohol, and other foods that were forbidden during Lent. It was brought from Europe and the Americas to the Caribbean, where the slaves adapted it and changed it to suit their traditions. For African people, Carnival became a way to express their power as individuals, as well as their rich cultural traditions.

“Carnival was introduced to Trinidad around 1785, as the French settlers began to arrive. The tradition caught on quickly, and fancy balls were held where the wealthy planters put on masks, wigs, and beautiful dresses and danced long into the night. The use of masks had special meaning for the slaves, because for many African peoples, masking is widely used in their rituals for the dead. Obviously banned from the masked balls of the French, the slaves would hold their own little carnivals in their backyards — using their own rituals and folklore, but also imitating their masters’ behavior at the masked balls. For African people, carnival became a way to express their power as individuals, as well as their rich cultural traditions.”

History of Carnival

Now Carnival in Trinidad and Tobago is one of the most famous in the Caribbean, so I wanted to know more about how they currently celebrate it. Their Carnival season is from Boxing Day right up to the day before Lent begins, Ash Wednesday. The Carnival week (week leading up to Ash Wednesday) is packed with different parties every night leading up to the last events of the season, Dimanche Gras, J’ouvert (dirty mas,) Carnival Monday, and finally, Carnival Tuesday or [pretty] Mas (masquerade.)

Carnival in Jamaica is hosted by Bacchanal Jamaica, it was introduced to Jamaicans in 1989 by patrons who had participated in Trinidad and Tobago’s Carnival annually. The timing of Jamaica’s Carnival week was designed not to compete with Trinidad, and  it couldn’t be held during Lent so as to respect the religious significance of the period, so the carnival week was scheduled to begin on Easter Sunday and end on the following weekend. Our Carnival Season begins in January with Bacchanal New Year band launch which is followed by weekly reveling at Bacchanal Fridays starting a month later. Our season also has events such as bi-weekly Socacise classes, and Beach J’ouvert, it ends with Bacchanal J’ouvert (dirty mas) followed by the big Road March (pretty mas) the next day.

Sources:

http://www.allahwe.org/History.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carnival/

http://bacchanaljamaica.com/history/

http://www.gotrinidadandtobago.com/trinidad/carnival/

http://www.trinigourmet.com/index.php/trinidad-and-tobago-carnival-a-brief-overview/

Featured image from Sleek Jamaica

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