Tuesday, 27 November 2007

Toucan Inn

Months ago we went to the Toucan Inn for the VSO Forum. It’s on the way to Parika but you only have to face one short launch across the Demerara to get there. But!!!!!!!! The rainy season seems to be starting and so we risked our lives and went across the bridge by minibus. My word – twice in one week. When I had the Demerara sugar in my coffee in the 1970s, I never dreamed it would be such a regular occurrence to pass over it. It makes the Thames look like a piddling little stream and the Essequibo further down the west coast makes the Demerara look like a few raindrops running along the pavement. River Darwen, eat your heart out!!!!!!

To cut the story short, we decided we needed a break. We’ve been here 9 months at the day of writing this and, yes, we have been home, but we didn’t really consider that to be a holiday and we didn’t really go back rested for obvious reasons. In effect, we have only had 3 ½ days off since we came and it was beginning to show, especially as we are teachers and well, we all know what teachers are like – 9am till 2-30pm, lots of free time, 12 weeks holiday a year and well, we’ve all been to school, so anyone can do it. (John Rozek, that one was just for you, if you ever read it – if you do, I challenge you to make a comment on the Blog!). The fact is, we and our friends were mildly knackered! So we booked the Toucan Inn for ourselves – Mary, myself, Meg, her fiancé Bill and Mira (the everlasting VSO). It’s a great place – very Guyanese but run by a man who spent 21 years working for British Gas in England (God Help Him) and who is passionate about local history and human relationships (how to get on in a basically race driven society). He has collected the most amazing selection of artefacts about Guyanese Heritage (presumably all on the proceeds of British Gas – at least something good came of it) and his stories and links with the past were truly inspiring. And, we stayed in this environment for 3 days with his small pool, superb food and bonhommerie!

But all things good have to subside and this morning it was back to work with the Minister and the Education Officers et al for another week at the Guyanese Chalk Face. We love it!

Gary, the owner of the Toucan Inn and Heritage Museum with his wife.

Scenes around the Museum

Enjoying a game of cards and the odd rum or beer!