The 10th Berbice Exposition and Trade Fair kicked off in grand style at the Albion Sports Complex on Friday 25th, 2014 .
It was the annual trade expo held at the Albion ground on 25th – 28th July, 2014.
This event was sponsored by the The Central Corentyne Chamber of Commerce (CCCC), and the Ministry of Tourism under the theme, “Exploiting Science and Technology for Economic Development”.
With a complimentary ticket in hand, courtesy of the Branch Manager of the Rose Hall branch of Demerara Bank Limited, I made my way to the Albion ground on Sunday 27th.
I was greeted by loud music from the ginormic speakers staked on high from one corner of the sports ground.
The Albion Sports Complex has gone through quite a bit of transformation from bygone days.
President Donald Ramotar recently commissioned a state-of-the-art lighting system costing close to $110M, thus upgrading the ground to modern standards.
With those six towers (floodlights) bathing the ground in absolute brightness, cricket crazed Berbicians now have a venue to enjoy their night matches and other sporting and community events.
They no longer have to be restricted to day events.
This was my first Berbice Expo, and I was eager to see what the exhibitors had to offer.
Below is a list of some of the vendors participating in the 10th Berbice Exposition and Trade Fair:
o Demerara Bank Limited...
They had some really gorgeous young ladies manning their booth. I was tempted to inquire more about their financial products and services, just for an excuse to chat a bit with these good-looking, stylishly-dressed folks, but for some reason or another, I was a bit shy (he he).
A popular booth with the young crowd.
Cellphones and youths are joined to the hips. These folks traverse the public road with heads bent.
Sometimes I wonder if they really see where they’re going.
Drivers on the road, please watch out for these creatures. Do your best to drive defensively.
…beats me what they are texting about that is so urgent and important.
o El dorado...
A booth I would visit a couple of times for, I guess, eer… ‘Medicinal’ reasons. It was important that I obeyed the doctor’s orders.
Can’t remember if this was Champion Baking Power, or Champion Curry Powder. In the grand scheme of things, who cares?
If you’re a person of the soil, this booth would interest you.
o Gizmos & Gadgets
o Smalta, and or course …
o Courts …with their tagline ‘The Best Seat in the House’, was also a visible presence at the 10th Berbice Exposition and Trade Fair.
Of course there were dozens of other participating vendors with their colorfully decorated booths and eager and excited staff all trying to promote their creative and innovative products and services.
Next I went to the Coney Island section with their rides and games.
kids and even young adults were having a blast as they try to reach the moon.
o Small Merry-go-around...
Parents were having the most fun it seems, snapping pictures and gleefully watching their petrified little ‘cupcakes’ go round and round and round!
I could almost hear these tiny ‘rug-rats’ inwardly screaming, ‘mommy, mommy, papa …get me the hell outta here!’
Folks of all ages jockeying for positions but actually going nowhere and passing no one.
What with these horses?
Some folks were even texting and taking ‘selfies’ while strapped in their saddles.
Now here’s a game I’ve never witnessed before (and you would think I’ve seen it all)! Pocket-sized kids trying to climb a 45degree, slightly twisted rope-ladder in order to snag a prized balloon at the end.
The most fun was in the attempt. Little tots getting tossed out after a few rungs on the ascent.
A lucky few with grit determination actually made it to the top, but were tossed out as they try to maintain their balance as they stretched to grab their prize stringed on a 45degree wire.
There were other typical fair-ground type games as participant try to snag prizes and revel in self-boast when successful!
I was already filled when I visited the expo, so the food did not interest me at all. But of course there were umpteen stalls with all kinds of Guyanese exotic dishes.
And of course there was the ever popular all-time Guyanese favorite: Curry Chicken and Roti!
So, I was having my fill and enjoying the carnival-type atmosphere. For a moment I kinda forget that there was music blasting in the background.
I was so caught up watching the folks revel in the rides.
But there was loud music.
Some songs I may have heard before but have no idea of their titles.
Here are a few, and from some of the words, you may recognize:
o ‘You can’t trust them gyal nowadays’
o ‘We have a truck on the road’
o ‘We ready for the road, we gonna party all night’
o And there was a song from the winning Soca Monarch for 2013 (have no idea what that was)
o Mystic – Coolie Bhai Dance (growing in popularity in Berbice)
o Black Eyes Peas – ‘Tonight’s gonna be a good night’
o Timika Marshall – ‘wining slow …wining down gal’, and a
o Duet from Priyanka Chopra – Bollywood Indian singer and actress and Black Eyes Peas Will.I.Am
At 8:30pm, the DJ and emcee came on the microphone and urged people to assemble around the band stage. Serious music was about to begin.
The reigning Monarch, Pooran, was in the house. I haven’t followed Guyanese music for a while, but I’m thinking I’ll soon be introduced to Pooran
The band for the evening was the Shakti Strings International.
Guest singer, Anand from America, was trying his best to whip Berbicians into action with his renditions.
Berbicians are not the easiest of crown to please. You have to either be magical to get them to dance and participate, or wait for the Eldorado or XM to kick in!
Pick your poison!
I know how you can get me to participate, but I ain’t tellin!
There was a rope barricade around the cricket pitch that was observed throughout most of the, but by now that was ignored as kids regularly breached the area to pick up their soccer balls and jostled with one another.
Hey, I was once a kid!
There were ample security guards around, but they didn’t have to quell any spats.
Berbicians are a peaceful lot.
They came out in large families and tried their best to have fun and make it worthwhile for their kids.
The carnival-type atmosphere prevailed way into the evening. The booths were still crowded, the rides were in full swing and the Eldorado was kicking in, and I was swaying to the song, ‘The rice can’t done’.
By 11 or so in the evening, the event was winding down. Two shots of Eldorado 5 Years Old and one shot of Vodka and I was good to go.
Recalling the song ‘We have a truck on the road’, well there was a car waiting for me on the road.
The 10th Berbice Exposition and Trade Fair was truly a memorable experience for me. It was fun and I had a good time.
As our car turned into the public road, I find myself humming this tune: ‘Yu can’t trust them gyal nowadays’ (hmmm! No wonder ‘The rice can’t done!)
Well it’s scary: If you can’t trust them gyals, be very much afraid, because the guys are no saints either.
I take that back. I’m a saint! One of the last few remaining!