Day at the Races

The Grim Times led to my father's death and funeral and all of the chaos and confusion that surrounds these events. I did try to hop on a plane to get back to the UK a week earlier, but British Airways and I have a difference of opinion about the definition of 'amendable'. The travel agent and I will be having words upon my return.

In the meantime, I have been trying not to mope. My cousin to the rescue. He's just been fantastic. He's the one who has the boat and took me down the islands, where I ended up camping on a dock for the night. I will just say he's been very bad for my liver and lungs, but very, very good for my heart. While he's not on the oil rigs, he stays with his mother (my aunt) here in Trinidad. Basically, my cousin has been picking me up, taking me out, getting me (very) drunk and then I've crashed in his mother's spare room.

On Tuesday, Trinidad celebrated it's Independence Day. He decided he would by hook or crook, get us into the VIP stand at the Arima Racecourse, to watch the day's races. He told me I had to be smartly dressed: no jeans, t-shirts or flip flops. What a drag. So I dressed to impress. We had a blast.

We rocked up in time for the 3rd race. The stand was boiling hot, boy was I glad I wore a skimpy dress, any more cloth on my skin, I'd have melted. The balcony of the stand over-looked where the horses were walked before the race, and where they got the colours and jockeys. We tried to assess the horseflesh, look in the racing catalogue for the stats, the names and make our choices. I would go and place the bets and then, we'd make our way to the other side so we could watch the race. My cousin said he brought lots of cash with us, but in the end we bet $105.00 in total. We finished the day with $120.00, not bad for a couple of novices. It was fun. We ate, we drank, we smoked, we were merry.

One of my cousin's horses decided it didn't like the jockey and left him staring at the sky at the starting gates. Another spooked itself when the gate opened and threw a right girly strop, good thing neither of us parted with good cash for that one. The point is: my friend Gee used to work in a betting shop. She horrified me at the stories of men coming in with the Title Deeds to their houses. That's a mindset, I just don't get. To risk a huge amount of money, to risk your house on a four-legged temperamental creature, that might just be having a shitty day, I don't understand it. Actually, I don't want to understand it. I can cope with hard drinkin' and smokin' kind of men, but a man who could one day come home and say 'honey, pack up. We have to be out of here before 9 am tomorrow morning'. Nah. That's just a whole new level, I couldn't deal with.

I can't believe in a week's time I'll be back in the UK. The time here has gone so quickly. I'm going to miss my Trinidad adventures. Hopefully, there will be a few more before I leave next week.


  1. "a skimpy dress"

    Stop right there! Pix please!

  2. Good thing you didn't come home a week early. I'd have had you mixing mortar.

  3. Sounds like you will come back a few years older.

  4. xl ~ none available I'm afraid. Sorry. Damn you're good for my ego. :-)

    dave ~ you'd have tried, you mean.

    rog ~ yes, you're right. I do feel much older.

  5. The Kentucky Derby is decadent ... :)


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