Growing up in the good old days evoke many wonderful memories. My stepfather was a fisherman and a boat builder. He would spend months under the lingum vitae tree in our yard carving his boat with only manual tools. When it was finished he would stand back proud of his accomplishment and proclaim “She’s a thing of beauty”. The big challenge came when it was time to haul the boat down to the seaside, but once the word got out Maas Boney needed help, the men in the community sprang to action. They came from Calabash Bay, Sandy Bank, Bluntas, Billys Bay, all over the place. After a few beers they had that boat on rollers out the lane, down the road, through salt boiler lane hooting and hollering, guiding his precious cargo from all angles until that boat was safely on the beach. I was privileged to witness the generosity of the people not just with their time, but whatever they had they shared. My stepfather would fish and from his meager catch he would send me in the midday sun which I was not happy about then with fish for people he knew didn’t fish or was just in need. Talk about one hand washing the other, we would be blessed with gifts of green gongo, banabis, sweet cassava, mangoes, plum, sweet sop, you name it, it came. Our neighbour Aunt Tis would send over some hot delicious bammies, the ones you would make a funnel and fill with peas from your soup and enjoy. Yum yum! Than there was her fresh brew coffee with coconut milk it rivaled any expresso. I must also pay homage to the adults in our community, remember the ones who took it upon themselves to assist in our up bringing. The ones who if they saw you anywhere they deemed inappropriate or associating with anyone they though unsuitable, would question and scold you and send you on your way. Then of course your parents would be promptly notified informed resulting in you having hell to pay. I must confess I felt like strangling a few of them then, but now in hindsight I realize their hearts were in the right place. Believe me the saying is true, it takes a whole village to raise a child. So for what ever part there participation in my life played I am forever grateful. The actions and interactions of our strong, sharing, caring, supportive people make them to me, the treasure in the Treasure Beach.
I remembered so vividly Miss Ebanks (Miss Zane)at Sandy Bank Primary getting us ready for the christmas concert around this time of year. I would look forward for the concerts each year. This time of year gave us the opportunity to show off our skills. It was like a play and christmas carols were sung. Past students,parents, families and members of the surrounding districts were all in attendance.Outside you would see miss neta selling candies and all the goodies. Then it came to me is Sandy Bank Primary still taking part in these festivities. Bwoy those were some good ole days. Thank you Miss Ebanks and all the other teachers at SBP.
I remember Miss Ruby sitting under the tree while Maas Boney worked on his boat as I passed the lane on my way home from school. Those days were wonderful, people were thoughful, and kind to each other. I hope and pray this generation continues to do the same and keeps Treasure Beach the warm, caring community I remember and love.