Caribs Forever.

Yesterday, I was going to share a Christmas memory, but when I heard the news that the Caribs Rugby Clubhouse had burned down, I changed my mind…

When I first moved to Trinidad, I was nearly eight months pregnant, my stepson had just started living with us and I was completely out of my element. I had a hard time acclimating to my new environment, which is unusual for me but there was a lot going on. I faced small daily challenges like the all consuming heat and onslaught of mosquitoes; and I dealt with the larger issues such as how to make this place home for me.

My daughter was born, my mom left to go back to New York, and the reality of my life in Trinidad started to sink in. With my optimistic outlook, I reached deep for my better self, reached out for support, and I knew (mostly) that somewhere along the way this world would become home too. (Spoiler alert: it did!) There were several things that made this transition possible… one was the Caribs rugby club.

I had never watched rugby before my husband, Blaine, and I started dating. I probably only knew the sport existed because of Ralph Lauren’s collection. Blaine played it, watched it, lived it. I love a good sport, so as I watched with him, I started to enjoy it as well. And when we moved to Trinidad, we spent a lot of time with the Caribs RFC members. We went to games, functions, or just a Friday evening lime at the clubhouse. Most of the time we brought the kids.

Now, before we moved here, I had met some of my husband’s friends already. They were all lovely and just like his family, accepted me with a warm welcome. Still, I was not prepared for the amount of people I would encounter. Island life: everyone knows each other and many are related – you learn as you go.  I didn’t know what to expect. Turns out, they were all incredibly nice and lots of fun!

They started out as Blaine’s friends. “It was a rugby thing.” But it didn’t take long to realize these “friends” were family. Soon I formed friendships of my own. Over time, the clubhouse became my new comfort zone. It was a safe environment for the kids and I was in my element, surrounded by people I could chat with, laugh with, lime with. It’s where I held Blaine’s 50th – and the boys were so accommodating and helpful with everything.

My friend Anne, often gives the story about her first trip to Trinidad – a family member picked her up from the airport and brought her directly to the rugby pitch to watch a rugby game. Afterwards, we went back to the clubhouse, with my three month old daughter sleeping in her stroller/car seat, and added another awesome night to our memory books. She received the same welcome I did. Everyone does. That’s what makes this place so special. (BTW, That was my FIRST Bruno Browne!)

While I only have seven years of memories at that clubhouse, most of the members have lifetimes of memories. It was a home away from home for so many. I was saddened to hear the news, to see the photos. So I can only imagine how others felt. I am so grateful for all the memories we shared there – our three kids running around the place, making new friends and letting grown ups dote on them. The laughs, the drinks together, the SONGS! Birthday limes, BBQ’s, Pig Roasts, Jouvert. The list goes on…

Thank you for making my transition into this new and exciting (and difficult and challenging) country easier and more enjoyable.

Caribs forever.

Adrienne

IMG_5085

Home.

Home is where the heart is.  When your heart is split in two (or more) you call more than one place home.

For me, home is Trinidad & Tobago, in this lovely house with my husband and kids.  It took a while to acclimate but it feels good to be here and I’m happy my heart has found a place in this beautiful country.

Home is also New York, where I grew up and where my mom still resides (picture below).  My first 28 years of life were spent in NY and it will forever hold a special place in my heart. Some of my best and dearest memories occurred In the city and suburbs, where my closest family & friends still live.

Mom's snowy backyard. "Home"

Aidan in my mom’s snowy backyard. “Home”

I moved out of NY at age 28, and have had the opportunity to live in L.A., the D.C. area, and Lima, Peru before ending up in Trinidad.  In all these places I met amazing people who became dear friends, some of which I am lucky to still keep in touch with – they made a world of difference.  I felt comfortable, happy, content even – but not grounded.  Home was still NY.

It was while living away that I took a trip with my uncle to Trinidad – where he was born and spent many years of his early life.  I had grown to know the invigorating feeling of touching down on the runway in NY or driving over the bridge headed home. Upon landing in Trinidad, I asked my uncle, “Is this coming home for you?” He replied simply, “Yes.”

And so it will always be.  We choose where to live and how to live.  But our hearts become attached with no regard for logic or sense.  Home is where the heart is.

Adrienne

Poetry – Let’s catch up.

Catching up on some of the ‘Writing 201: Poetry’ assignments… respectively, Day 7, Day 6, & Day 3.

Fingers

My fingers dial the numbers; more often they type the words. A thumb to swipe, all ten to type. Phone calls and text messages, my life lines to “back home.” Truths, quips, greetings.  Always to friends and family far away, so very far away.  Blessed though I am, nostalgic feelings cannot be replaced.  Call. Write. Email. Text. Brighten a day.

Fingers : Prose Poem : Assonance 

————-

Be Your Own Hero

Was it Wonder Woman,
with her invisible plane?
You looked up to her but then,
she left you waiting in vain.
Was it the other mother,
you saw in the mall?
Work, PTA, Supermom. That one,
she can’t do it all.
Was it the reflection you saw,
in the mirror today?
You can be your own hero,
no matter what they say.

Hero(ine) : Ballad : Anaphora/Epistrophe

—————————-

Mark the date,

A leap of faith.

Recite your vows, now.

Rejoice in one another.

I must trust to feel…

A love above all else.”

Groom and bride, together they grow;

Everlasting happiness, they will know.

Trust : Acrostic : Internal Rhyme

———————————-

Wishing everyone a super Tuesday & many poetic days to ahead. 😉

Adrienne