Easter "B​AZ-are" / by Alan Strathman

The second school term ended on Thursday.   Two-thirds of my first school year is behind me and I feel pretty good about that. The third term ends July 8!  Yes, July 8!  I don't think I have had school past about May 15 for the last 25 years. When we return from this break we will have three solid months of school until the end.  I am not sure if that sounds grueling to you but it does to me.

Speaking of this break I should mention that here the school break this time of year is not known as Spring Break, but rather as Easter Break. And that's why school ended on Thursday, because Friday was Good Friday. This is a four-day weekend, but Friday, Sunday, and Monday are national religious holidays and every place of business on the island is closed.  Remember, as I have I have written in the past, in St. Lucia there is no separation of church and state.  In fact, many Lucians feel sorry for Americans because they have to live with church-state separation. Of course, there is much more religious pluralism in the U.S. About 10% of the population in St. Lucia are Seventh Day Adventists, and then Pentecostals, Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses, and Evangelicals together make up another 10%. The remaining balance of the population is Catholic.  Of course, these are all Christian denominations. Jews and Muslims together make up about 0% of the population.

Today Laborie held the annual Easter Bazaar (pronounced BAZ-are). (The a sound in BAZ is the same as in bath, not as in ball).  When I was a kid I remember, vaguely, going to the annual Hadassah Bazaar but the Easter Bazaar today was not like that. At all.  At. All. As an aside, it was at the Hadassah Bazaar in 1967 that my modeling career began

Today Laborie held the annual Easter Bazaar (pronounced BAZ-are). (The a sound in BAZ is the same as in bath, not as in ball).  When I was a kid I remember, vaguely, going to the annual Hadassah Bazaar but the Easter Bazaar today was not like that. At all.  At. All. As an aside, it was at the Hadassah Bazaar in 1967 that my modeling career began. 

I'm gonna get a suit like this made to wear here.

I'm gonna get a suit like this made to wear here.

For the bazaar today people just set up tables, a few had tents, and sold things. Food, candy, clothes. Steel pan had a tent and offered face painting, sold ice cream, and ran a game with a peg board with over 850 holes (I counted) and each hole had a small piece of paper rolled up in it.  Contestants paid $1EC ($0.37US) for the chance to pick out a slip of paper. Some slip had numbers which corresponded to prizes so if one picked a paper with the number 69, she received the prize numbered 69. There were just over 80 prizes so contestants had a 1 in 10 chance of winning.

Those odds were considerable better than the odds at the ring toss, which I ran. In the entire time I was there only one person (out of at least 50 who attempted, and each person was given two rings to toss) tossed the ring over the bottle. It was a money-maker for steel pan.  You can see how difficult it was in this picture.  I was standing where contestants had to stand.  Two more pictures of the event follow.

Tomorrow I fly to Tampa to visit for 9 days.  I can tell you I will cause major shortages of Mexican food and sushi in that area. If you are planning to visit the Tampa area, including St. Pete and Clearwater, even as far perhaps as Orlando, I would wait until a week or so after April 6 when the restaurants will have been able to replenish their depleted stocks and the waitstaffs will have had a day off.  Sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.