Letters & Opinion, Sounding Off

Jounen Kweyol – My Worst Time of Year

I get the feeling that after this piece, I will lose quite a few readers because people might think that I’ve lost my mind and that I’m disrespectful, but hey, it’s my opinion and it’s just another one of those things that costs a dime a dozen.

Image: Some of Jounen Kweyol’s special delights.
Some of Jounen Kweyol’s special delights.

With that said, ROLL ON OCTOBER 31!

This is by far my worst time of year and the one thing I look forward to the most, is the day after, when all is said and done.

There are numerous reasons why I just can’t find myself getting fussy over this Snooze Fest but before I continue, let me just say that, hey, I’m not knocking anyone’s hype…if that’s your day then by all means, do your ting!

Firstly, the food; I actually hate the majority of it and with the exception of bakes, cocoa tea (and even that is only consumed once in a while because I hate the idea and the act of drinking milk…YUCK!), seafood (Crayfish, Crab, Lambi and Bwego) and sweet cassava bread.

I’m sorry but I’m not sorry for hating stinky saltfish and smoked herring that’s filled with bones and God knows what else. Then there’s the Dolphin… actual Dolphin, Turtle, Rabbit and all other exotic meats consumed…Yeah, I’m a bleeding heart for the cute and cuddly animals (except for chicken and turkey), I will not touch these meats even though you paid me.

Then there’s the fact that as a fruit lover, the only fruit I can find all over the place is Avocado, Paw Paw and Soursop (gag).

Going back to the meats, I don’t eat any form of red meat, so in other words, no animal that walks on four legs/no mammals (to you cheeky minds), so the sight of slaughtered pigs, goats, cows, sheep and all else leaves me feeling like I’m in a bad horror film.

And finally for me, all the oily foods like Accra…can someone say “Heart attack in foil?”

Ok, so now that I’ve vented on my petty dislikes, let me get to the real reason why I don’t like this time of year…it has lost its authenticity!

Like all other national events, this one has just become another washed out tradition turned business where the majority of people who spend big bucks to look the part, have no idea about what they are actually celebrating, and they really don’t even care to know.

It’s all about the lime and fete as well as a beating of the chest ritual over who looks best.

I have gone past the low tolerance for this kind of folly and have hopped straight on to having a downright allergy for it…it makes me sick to the core.

Now mind you, I’m not sitting on a high horse with my wealth of knowledge surrounding this cultural event because I am certainly no Hilary La Force, Robert Lee, Kennedy “Boots” Samuel or Margot Thomas who are sitting on the holy grail of St. Lucian history.

But at the same time, the few times that I do venture out on that special day, I do so with fascination and a hunger to learn even more about our culture.

I don’t go out there to see who is wearing what and who is walking with whom, and which fete is liveliest…no, that is so unimportant to me.

I just don’t know….people just have no respect for culture and tradition anymore.

Oh yeah and whilst we’re talking about watering down, what on earth has happened to the music? Since when did good ole Kweyol music turn to smut in patois?

Have you heard some of the songs out there being played on our airways? The demeaning and graphic content that people gleefully wine their waists to and follow all the instructions…what is going on? Poor Sesenne Descartes is probably turning in her grave right now.

Now I know all these people have the right to do as they please and they surely will, and although I know this will not affect anyone, I will happily choose to stay away from it all and look forward to the next day.

But with that said, I am heartbroken to see the way that St. Lucians have just joined the rest of the western ideologies and have purposely forgotten and even ignored our culture…it’s a shame!

Rochelle entered the Media fraternity in May 2011 as a fresh-faced young woman with a passion for the English language, a thirst for worldly knowledge and a longing to inform the world of what was happening around them, whether it was good or bad.

She began as part of a small news team at Choice Television, which falls under the MediaZone umbrella. She was hired as one of the original members of the newly created Choice News Now team...Read full bio...



  1. right after you disrespect the ENTIRE kweyol cuture, you say people have no respect for culture anymore. smh. some things are better left unsaid and i think this is one of those times. Especially at this time of year, your article could have remained unwritten, or alternatively, written strictly on the issue of the ‘watered down’ festival. Have a little respect for the people who actually hold this festival near and dear to their hearts like the older folk or the folks living abroad who travel each year just to partake in the local and hardly seen delicacies. come on man. sheesh!

    1. So we promulgate artery hardenig foods and vulgarity as neo CULTURAL ENLIGHTMENT to the young generations
      We do not IMPROVE THE PRODUCT AS I we develop.
      Hey might as well PROMOTE KFC
      MC DON A LDS
      AS. CULTURAL must haves
      Eat to your diabetic cholestrol hypertensive GLORY?

  2. Who cares how you feel Rochell? If you hate the culture so much, then stay at your house, don’t got out so your stomach won’t turn. If you dont like coco tea with milk, its even healthier without milk.

    I know you are carrying around some extra weight so may be these foods are not best for you, i understand. Maybe you should try some bouillion with dasheen leaf.

    Come to think of it just stay home and sip on some green tea.

  3. What a dumb, arrogant, cold, insensitive, insulting and stupid article. Gonzalez, is this an indigenous St-Lucian name? And by-the-way the word is “airwaves” not ‘airway’.

  4. Her commentary is her personal observation and summation. Let’s respect that. I believe that she failed to recognize that those foods were things of the past. We are consuming them to relive a bygone period. Her perspective on the corrupted music may be in fact valid. Articles like hers, should not be arbitrarily dismissed, instead, we can learn from them. I don’t live home, however, during the time I visited, I noticed things that were not genuine Creole things. The question is how can we fix things to make the occasion authentic?

  5. lol this is the saddest article ever; if you knew anything about your culture you would understand that the nature and content of the songs that are being played are in par with what was once on our “airways” lol, dont think your grandmother and great grandfather were so innocent and that being said there are still songs out there in patois talking about societal isues , you probably need to change your crowd or scene or open up your ears to hear them as well. and if you dont enjoy the food maybe a trip to KFC will probably do you good. This article is baloney keep your opinions to your self and try uplifting the culture and talking about solutions instead of belittling what we have and attempting to drag our culture through the mud because you dont enjoy it . grow up and eat some dasheen!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *