Posted by: nastylittletruths | June 29, 2008

Dead Tired, Not Dead

I know it’s a morbid joke to make in the killing fields of Trinidad but my body still have not got accustomed to being back in Trinidad – still in a different time zone… Before I proceed though, I must apologise for not putting up any warning that this blog may be slow in getting updates. I really thought I could have done it while on the road…

Left Trinidad just before weekend of Inshan’s rally of June 8th, I returned this week from the North American continent as tired as a dog. With 20 hour days filled with travelling, plenty walking and standing – and with a scant four hours to recuperate – I have to plead for some leniency when it came to writing on this blog. I actually did not have enough time to even try and log on! As soon as I saw a computer screen it was like a sleeping pill – instant snooze.

But it was a tough trip. I travelled nearly 4,000 miles on first world roads and highways and kept gnashing my teeth about the stupidity of our leaders and how they never took this fundamental to heart. The North Americans understand that development follows infrastructure. It is common sense that once you can move goods and services quickly and efficiently, development eventually follows. Roads were built, and continue to be built, to keep this well oiled machinery going. Day in day out, 24 hours seven days a week you see these trucks with their 53′ foot trailers getting goods from point A to point B.

Granted that they are huge country – it’s not difficult to traverse 500 mile in eight hours – every Trinidadian can only imagine what it would be like to drive to Point Fortin from Port of Spain in less than an hour, or from Chaguanas to Toco in similar time. We can do it, we just don’t have the political will to do it. Billions here and billions there to satisfy one clique and the rest of the nation stagnates. Can you just imagine it? My friends from Mayaro who would not come to visit once in a blue moon but any evening they may just feel like it? Driving to anywhere in Trinidad now is a pain. Bad roads, horrendous traffic and crazy drivers who want both lanes for themselves.

For this and just this alone every single Prime Minister of this country should hold his head in shame. That with all the money, materials, equipment and human resource this county has, we are not connected by a first class road network. When I see multiple overpasses at one intersection that looked like spaghetti, did I think we could not have the same because we lacked the skill? Of course not, I felt ashamed that we are building one, that’s right – one overpass, and we think that it will solve all the traffic problems in the island. 

So while we ponder on the thought processes of those we elect to lead us, whether it’s Bas and his airport or Patrick and his waterfront, let us look for a messiah to lead us out of this backward third world thinking. As I’ve said before on many occasions, there are a few fundamentals that once you get them life becomes a bit clearer. One fundamental is that a politician lies any time he opens his mouth. And no, just as Bas thought that his airport will “develop” Trinidad, Patrick’s waterfront won’t either. No matter what he says, it’s all about them and their ego.

Good to be back on WordPress doing my thing…

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Responses

  1. Granted planners didn’t have their heads on straight when they made some decisions about the road network, but most of the growth in Trinidad is… organic.

    Towns like Sando were fishing villages that grew into ‘proper’ villages, which grew into small towns, towns, then now, its a full-fledged city. All that was done from then to now was essentially a paving over of the original footpaths the original villagers used donkey years ago.

    With the current lack of decentralisation taking place, you know we’ll have a long way to go still. The water taxis should help a bit when its in service. though. Looking forward to that.

    Thanks for sharing.

  2. I agree that a substantial amount of our growth was organic. It’s disheartening – frightening really – to think that it can be like this to the end of my time and my children’s time. I see towns and cities in first world countries where the “old” parts are kept as historical districts and the new, planned part as vibrant city centres.
    One of my pet peeve is the old railway reserve from St. Augustine to Chaguanas that is almost entirely occupied by squatters. Real planners who were paying attention would not have let this happen since that route can be very important – and it certainly is now.
    Thanks for the comment.


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