Lament for jungle driving
The sun gave its last breath, slooping beneath the horizon and sounding the alarm for last trick. The last kickflip was popped and with the cars loaded, headlights on, we left the spot, emerging from Chaguaramas’s depths and heading to the main road for the drive home. Skateboarders, tired, dirty, happy. At peace.
We joined the queue of cars at the Military Museum. Holiday traffic, of course! Comprised of the down-the-islanders, the Chagville beachers, the Macqueripians and, now, the skaters. No scene; we look fuh dat. Who tell we to come quite down here and look to leave in rush hour?
What we did not look for was the Trini-on-Trini crime that followed. It may not be fun, but sitting in traffic is a group activity, a hardship all face together, as one. We ride it out.
The lack of unity, of respect, that took place on the drive from Chaguaramas into Diego Martin was both saddening and frustrating. It was sad to see motorists speed up the wrong lane on our right, and on our left, over the grass—one lane becoming three.
It was sad to hug the bumper of the car ahead of us in an effort to disallow bad eggs back into the pack. It was sad to feel the negative energy that flooded my body.
Frustrating is the unwillingness of authorities to curb this recurring problem. An occurrence known to happen on public holidays and Sunday evenings.
Frustrating was witnessing a total of two police cars speeding up and down the free lane, like an ant without a colony. What to me makes sense would be to have several police cars (or CDA vehicles; there are about six after all), with their flashing lights on, stationed at points along the drive.
Prevention is better than cure, and I suspect the vast majority of would-be offenders would keep their foot on the brake instead of the gas. Without people jumping the line, traffic would flow as efficiently as possible and as fairly as possible. We would all get home a little quicker.
Basic policing, the basic upkeep of law and order is not a task beyond our means. Pay the police officers to work (at overtime rates, if appropriate) and save thousands of valuable man-hours. Enforce fairness and the “equal place” we call our home.