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I'd always loved the name, Windsor Park, but accept the change of it to Cutbert Peter's Park without questioning it. This grounds has been the main recreation ground for many years in St. John's, and is located near the Douglaston Estate, with a plain view of the Gouyave Cemetery.
Although the main recreation ground was there, with opened entry most of the time, a sort of a sporting activities, as a pastime for the young boys and girls were seen taking place almost daily, in one of the most unexpected places, The Bay, which was the main fishing area in Gouyave.
When one talked about The Bay in Gouyave, it was expected to be about fish, and fishermen, and fishing, whether deep sea, or just off the seashores of the Western Seas that ran outside the town of Gouyave. They didn't entertain the thoughts that much more than fishing and patching siene boat nets, and deep water fishing boats, which used sails and some with 60 horsepower engines, could've been carried out on The Bay. But, such sporting events on The Bay were an integral part of the Gouyave culture.
I am speaking of the days when the Flying Fish was the king of the diet in almost every home in Gouyave.
Just about every sporting event was held on The Bay in Gouyave. Mostly, the young boys from the town, and the rural and suburb areas, gathered on The Bay, to compete against one another for fun, in some kinds of sporting activities, especially the most interesting ones.
It was a most thrilling moment, with shirlling sounds from the onlookers of the entertainment, that the competition provided for them.
In a strange, but desirable way, almost no kind of sporting event escaped the curiously of the participants, to determine a clear winner in the categories of the sporting events that was held. Everyone was free to join in, without anyone rejecting their bid to participate at their free will. In fact, the more participants that entered the game was the better it went with laughter and applauds.
Some of the sporting events that was held were The Long Jump, the game of soccer, and Cricket; the the High jump, skipping with the jump rope, marble pitching, etcerra! Swimming races were help between the strong youngsters as well.
Mr. Malcolm Craig had claimed to be dominant in two major areas of the games that were held on The Bay. He was fabulous in the areas of the high and the long jumps sections of the sporting events that were carried out on The Bay. Other young boys like Akee, the son of Miss May, who lived directly on the bay, and Earnest, aka, "Blue-seas", and Julien, aka "Lambee", were the two main rivals that Malcolm Craig had, but their skills weren't sharp enough to take over anything of significance from Malcolm. His slender frame and height gave him the aadvantage he needed to keep the crown in the long and high jump fields.
Those were happy, happy days. One was satisfied with every minute of the competition. Although it was a free show for all, who was currently on The Bay, still, it didn't matter, because the spectators loved every minute of it.
One was expected a haul at anytime, from one of the siene boats, while these sporting events were taking place. Still, there were no interferences with one another, as the Siene.Boats had their own workers to pull its nets to shore. They did not need any outside help, to accomplish their job.
There were many 100m races ran on The Bay in Gouyave as well as swimming, as I'd mentioned above, in the Crystal Blue Waters by the young and the old. Even floating on the water, was a regular sight to see in the sea water For me, Mr. Bernadine, a popular proprietor was the master of floating on the sea water! Flamboyantly, he laid flat on his back in the water, while enjoying the clear, blue skies above. One hour was a small treat for him in his floating on the water position.
Out days in Gouyave were some of the best that the world has known. But only the folks from there can testify to it. Outsiders are like in Wonder Land, to the many different sporting activities that were held in Gouyave.
Gouyave hasn't been about its fishing ways. There were always a diversify movement, that was hidden from the general Grenadian population. Only a Gouyaveman knows the many things that occupied the pastimes of the sweet years gone by! It's memorable enough to be part of the history of theTown of Gouyave, because there's always something to remind us of the game, the bay,and the boys who made it happen.
Besides The Bay, sporting events, for merrment, was held on the grounds of The Anglican School Pasture, and The St. Rose Convent, now known as The St. Rose Modern Secondary School. The memories of these sporting events are precious to those who knew them.
Mr. Daniel Joseph....Thank you.
You brought back many fond memories of years gone by when I was still a boy.
I spend a lot of time on the bay avoiding school, myself and a gang of boys would swim out to the boats holding with the nets that was always moored off sure, was a lot of fun jumping off they bows, and I paid dearly for my sins, what always gave me away was salt in my hair or sand still stuck to my body, unfortunately for me there was no fresh water on the beach to rinse-off.In those the days the sand was as black as tar; it was hard to walk on barefooted when the sun was hot. today the sand is bleached out worn with use to a sort of grey, and more dirty with foreign objects. I lived in Florida then, and some times I use to remain in Gouyave after school to buy flying-fish for my mother, the boats use to start come in just before sunset. these boats had no engines just sails, I use to help catch them off the waves as they land on the beach and for helping to pull them up to the spot where they kept them, the fishermen would give those who help a few flying-fish, that means I buy less then what I was suppose to buy and use the the money I save to buy something to to eat. I know this must have been true of many young men of my time. As I look back now I can truly say; those were the good old days. Wouldn't trade them for anything.
Our days gone by were some of the best days there were. For many of us, the link between then and now is missing. Because not many things we did and had in the past is there anymore;.It's a different world!
The world today is filled with too much busy people. There are Morning Rush, Evening Rush, Midday Rush, and even Midnight Rushes in some places. People stop having fun, for the sake of it. Everything is about the money now. People are in such a hurry, behind it.
So, there we have it. The change of time is easy to see.
What you said here about the "flying-fish" is something many adult today can relate to. Because of it, I could've hardly eat the dinner the Queen had prepared for the family. Fried flying fish, bread, butter, and cheese, with a RedSpot, or Holiday and, sometimes, a cold Fanta, came before dinner was ready to eat at home. Miss Ellie Peter's fried flying-fish were the best! The glass of juice she sold were always cold and had the right mix to it.
I don't remember the "black sand" days. But, you spoke the truth about it. However, jumping of the Siene Boats for a dive was more than a treat for us. Sometimes the owner or Captain of a Siene Boat threw stones at the boys to get them off the boat. It was only a grand-move, and nnothing serious was in it.
Nothing more can be said about out old golden days. Still, they're dearly misse, by those of us who'd lived through it.
HEY DNJ are true Bay man is if u living on the side of d bay,that is coming from TOWN the bay is on d left hand side when u get to GOUYAVE,(RIGHT OR WRONG,(MAN ONLY JOKING LOL)YES ZAFAR is right about staying in gouyave late from school waiting for the FLYING fish boats to come in,man sometimes some of d boats never arrive sometimes lata,late,late,no wind and they have to pull oars cause there was no engines at the time LOL, YES DNJ there was plenty,plenty activities going on d beach especially on sundays when nearly everybody took part in some sort of sporting feature,I do recall some of the names U mention in your Praise BOOK LOL, I did ALL my training in LONGJUMPING on d BEACH,i spent hours after school practicing as a school boy to compete for ST,JOHNS RC SCHOOL in the ISLAND WIDE sports day in QUEENS PARK,AND I remember on sports day I was the first competitor to JUMP and I achived 16ft.6ins on my first JUMP,NO body else did better,so I was declared d WINNER,that year ST,JOHNS RC SCHOOL was declared the winning SCHOOL ISLANDWIDE, I think my record JUMP was SURPASS a few years later,dont know by WHO, Would like to know thou (LOL) THOSE WERE GOOD GOOD young days never to be repeated AGAIN AS OLD AGE TAKE OVER NOW LOL LOL,
The nice thing was that no one was limited to be on the bay. Guys came from almost every part of Gouyave to hold a fresh in the sea. The Bay was another interesting place to have fun on any given day. But for most of us, the fun didn't begin till after school. The two or three hours spent playing on the bay were well spent. It was like everybody's gymnasium, without a cost to enter. Apart from the fishing boats coming back to shore late at night, some folks had to stay up to clean the flying-fish thatthey brought. The little llate hang outs were enjoyable too.
Unforgeful days they were indeed!
Zafar had a good memory of those days; he experienced them.