Tag Archives: drums

Saying Goodbye, Caribbean Style

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American University of the Caribbean knows how to say goodbye in style. Dr. Testa, the senior associate dean, is moving on to a new place and a new position. So, the school threw him a tropical party for the staff and students to enjoy!

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The funniest part of the celebration was the Dean Testa bobble-heads that faculty members auctioned off. The best part was the yummy food. There were so many things to taste! Fruit¬†juice, ice cream from Carousel, fresh fruit, coconuts… yes please!

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One of the tables was made to look like a traditional Caribbean dress, complete with someone wearing it.

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We managed to get one of the last coconuts from the coconut man.

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To top it off, a local youth drumming group came and played a few songs. It doesn’t get better than tropical fruit and steel drums! Happy trails, Dr. Testa.

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A Woman’s Heartbeat

Never before have I been brought to tears by a drum solo. I am brought to tears by newborn babies, adoption stories, and my sister’s piano pieces. Never by the banging of drums. But this day was different, and this drummer was different.

It was the kind of day where time slips away silently and unnoticed. I was at Sint Maarten’s annual Art in the Park trade show, surrounded by art and some of my favorite people. As at every public event, Youmay Dormoy brought his New Generation Drum Band to perform and collect donations for operating costs.  Cool, I like drums as much as anyone, and I was excited to see it. The kids and youth marched forward in their colorful, traditional island garb. Little shoulders supported big white drums, older boys placed expert fingers on trumpet keys; I even caught a glimpse of a musical conch shell in someone’s hand.

The drumming was great, all of it. It really was amazing to see twenty musicians keep themselves in step and in rhythm. I enjoyed it and took some photos. But nothing struck an emotional chord in me, until one young woman came forward to solo on the bass drum.

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There was something about her poise, her confidence, her posture that made me stop to stare. There was something about the resonating boom of her bass drum that complemented perfectly the delicacy of her lace hem. She was a picture of feminine strength and beauty. I felt tears well up behind my eyelashes.

Is it sunscreen in my eyes, I wondered? No, it was this woman, this living embodiment of beauty and strength. In the twenty seconds of spotlight she had, she became an icon to me.

If we are honest, every women wants to be strong and beautiful. In the deepest cores of our feminine hearts, we want to awe the world with deep strength and captivating beauty. It is innate in our souls.

I wonder how often we unknowingly bring others to tears with a show of the strong and beautiful. I wonder how many times we unconsciously step into our twenty seconds to play to the beat of our hearts. I wonder how many of us walk through life believing we are nothing, yet capturing the eyes of others with a life of inspiring womanhood.

Don’t despair, beautiful friend. You are strong. You are beautiful. You were created that way, and you will show the world in your way, in your time.