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Welcome to Bacchanal

Monday, February 12, 2018

If you’re picking up this paper as you make your way home covered in mud and paint…or in the highly unlikely event you are unable to walk straight, the rhythm of bottle and spoon, music trucks and pan must still be beating in your head as you return from the bacchanal that is J’Ouvert 2018.

Even if you were trying to sleep through the noise, on the beach with your family or in the chaotic crowds attempting to flee to Tobago, we welcome you officially to Carnival Monday in Trinidad & Tobago.

A world where chaos is created with glee, some of it enjoyed legally for a few days, where long weekends are still used by some for rest and a place where in spite of the economic doom some project, our people remember there is always good reason to forget whatever reality we face.

Regardless of faith or what you personally believe about Carnival, this melting pot we live in should be an example of what we should still represent.

The watchwords of our country are discipline, tolerance and production. Let’s be honest, we’re not that great at two out of the three, but when it comes to tolerance, we are still able to demonstrate something special during Carnival.

Whether we are ever able to monetise it properly or document it effectively, is another story altogether.

But for today and tomorrow, Guardian Media wishes you a safe, enjoyable Carnival 2018 weekend.

The Rosalind Gabriel Standard

Special thanks to the woman tough as nails, defiant as the most determined warrior and creative enough to fight to keep the spirit of Kiddies Carnival alive with an intentional focus on local design.

Rosalind Gabriel is no Jane-come-lately. She is neither perfect nor a pushover, but she is the person who for decades, fought for people to understand why the tradition of Kiddies Carnival needs to be kept alive, budget cuts, bad blood, misunderstandings or not.

What she and ALL of her colleague bandleaders did yesterday in the face of what police believe were credible threats of terrorism, was a lesson to our children not just in creativity, but in how to develop a spine of steel…and have a good time while doing so.

Panorama and Soca Magic

Congratulations to Duvone Stewart, arranger who led the bpTT Renegades to its tenth large band category victory. Year of Love by Aaron “Voice” St Louis’, was a treat few could forget.

St Louis himself was announced the 2018 International Soca Monarch. St Louis’ team, like many others who have made it to the top say it’s about hard work. It also has to be about enjoying what you do, and being good at it.


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