Sundays in my city

Sundays in My City – Macqueripe Bay

Sundays in My City – Macqueripe Bay

Mother’s Day at the water’s edge…

Chaguaramas Boardwalk Sign

The Chaguaramas Boardwalk – A lovely place to spend a morning close to the water

Morning Sky

The sky promises a beautiful day

Chaguaramas Boardwalk

The Boardwalk

Dragon Boat Race Training

Dragon Boat Racers In Training

Macqueripe Sign

Macqueripe Bay

Macqueripe View from Up High

View overlooking Macqueripe Bay

Beach Alive

Families enjoying the waves and sand

VIDEO: Silk Cotton floats down to the waves on Macqueripe Bay.
The silk cotton barely shows up in the video, but I’m leaving it up for the sound of the waves. :)
It was such a magical feeling floating in the waves and having the silk cotton sprays float down everywhere around you. Half expected to see fairies hitching a ride!

Let’s travel the world together!

Unknown Mami

Sundays in my City – Aripo Cottage

Sundays in my City – Aripo Cottage

This is part two of the family’s trip to the Heights of Aripo earlier this month.

If you’re ever in Trinidad, I definitely recommend a visit to The Aripo Cottage Eco Resort!

Let’s travel the world together!

Unknown Mami

Sundays in my City – Heights of Aripo Pt 1

Sundays in my City – Heights of Aripo Pt 1

Today we travelled to the hills of Aripo in Trinidad’s Northern Range and

spent the day at The Aripo Cottage.

It was a great end to the long vacation for the children.

I feel blessed to have spent such a beautiful day with family and friends, in such

a gorgeous setting.

More photos of our visit next week!

Sundays in My City – Hills Afire

Sundays in My City – Hills Afire

It’s been an extremely hot dry season and we just haven’t been seeing the rains we’re accustomed to. Water restrictions are in effect, and the hills… the hills everywhere are burning.

Yesterday I spent the day with some friends at their house on a hill, and you could see the evidence of bush fires all around.
The hill behind their house shows a definite line of burnt vegetation next to green. They tell us this was a particularly scary fire. I can imagine that watching a fireline this wide creep closer to your house is indeed a scary thing. 
The hills a few miles away are similarly burnt, but it’s so hard to see because of the haze of lingering smoke.
And the haze isn’t just over the hills. It’s over the entire city. In this view you can’t see the horizon, and you can barely make out two of the islands offshore.
It didn’t affect the festivities whatsoever, though. A good time was had by all into the night.
Way into the night.
This is part of Unknown Mami’Sundays in My City. Go visit her and travel the world to visit Sundays in other cities!

Unknown Mami

Sundays in My City – Chaguaramas Military Museum

Sundays in My City – Chaguaramas Military Museum

It’s been a while since my last SIMC post, but I’m back in a big way (I think!)

There’s so much history around us that we Trinis take for granted, myself included. It’s often not that we’re not interested in finding out more about our history and culture, but that it takes time to find the places to go and the people who know the stories to tell.

That’s part of the reason I joined Macaroni Kid, and I have been trying to highlight interesting family-friendly sights and sites here in Trinidad & Tobago. This week I was invited to tour the Chaguaramas Military Museum and had the honour of being accompanied by their resident Researcher Mr. Jerome Lee.

Museum in Chaguaramas Bay

You know, we do the required history classes in school, but I never realized how significant our contribution to military affairs on a global scale have been. We are a small island nation with deep harbours (or deep-enough at any rate) as well as shallow bays, complete with tropical jungle and the native wildlife that make their home there. Rich with oil, pitch and safe harbour just south of the hurricanes that largely spare this region 10 degrees north of the Equator.

No wonder the empires of Europe and 19th century America had such interest in us.

Replica of European Castle entrance,
complete with drawbridge, parapet and “kill holes”
where boiling oil was poured on would-be invaders

Back when the Conquest for the New World raged between the empires of Europe, the seas were ruled by these…

The first fascinating thing I learnt was that, despite our textbooks, Columbus didn’t sail into our harbours on the “Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria”. That was his first trip. We were “discovered” on his third. Different trip, different ships. Don’t ask me the names!

I also didn’t know that we had real live famous pirates here! Like Blackbeard. This far south they raided mostly for supplies. Not gold and spices like elsewhere on the Spanish Main. Anne Bonny did spend some time here. She would look out from the hill at Fort George, overlooking the harbour of Port of Spain (now the capital).

Chain shot like this would likely have brought down many a cargo-laden ship. These cannon-balls were discovered right here in our waters. They were meant to bring down a ship’s mast, without which it couldn’t steer, and couldn’t position itself to return fire. Dead in the water.

Chain shot – cannonballs chained together 
flew apart after being shot out of a cannon
and would wrap around a ship’s mast, crippling it 

There were exhibits dedicated to the World Wars I & II and the local servicemen who enlisted and were deployed both in the Caribbean and throughout Europe – trenches (with sound effects) demonstrating how these brave men lived and died.

There really is so much to talk about that it would take several posts, but there was one thing that made me particularly proud.

The Macqueripe Missile Tracking Station

During the height of the Cold War, tensions were high between the USA and Russia. The threat of catastrophic Inter-Continental Ballistic Missiles was very real, and the USA’s main strategy for defense was Mutually Assured Destruction. The rationale was that if the Russians hit the US, that they’d be hit in exchange, and that essentially it would be suicidal for Russia to attack first.

Enter the need for the Ballistic Missile Early Warning System. Major major technological advancement for the time. To test the technology, the US used land that they had leased from the Trinidad and Tobago government (displacing my family, and many others, but that’s another chapter in local history). The tests were successful and the radar network became operational in the 1960s.

On August 8th, 1960, another first.

The first intercontinental voice message relayed via satellite was transmitted from the Missile Tracking Station at Macqueripe, Trinidad and received at Floyd Air Force base, New York.

The very first.

The pre-cursor technology that led to cell phones, the internet, satellite radio, GPS. It all started right here, in Trinidad.

This is part of Unknown Mami’Sundays in My City. Go visit her and travel the world to visit Sundays in other cities!

Unknown Mami

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