Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : September 9th 2013 Contents A12
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Monday, September 9, 2013
My name is Rhian Vialva and
I m the UNESCO Conference
coordinator of this year s
Trinidad & Tobago Film Festival.
Our father passed when we
were toddlers and our mother
migrated so my brother Reagan
and I grew up with our
(deceased) maternal grandmoth-
er. We couldn t have had a better
parent or better guidance.
I live in Diego Martin but I m
from La Brea, the best place to
grow up. Reagan and I had lots of
adventures with our neighbours
Karen, Jessy, Sarah, Isaac, Hannah,
Timothy, Adrian, Ezra and Dennison
Junior. We hunted for, dried and
roasted our own cashew nuts.
Bathed in the Pitch Lake during
July-August vacation. Pulled fish
nets with Dado, were attacked by
crabs and jelly fish, dug for chip-
chip and smelt like bush bugs.
We never ate mangoes from
our backyard. When you re from
La Brea, you can afford to buss
style on mangoes. I ate only
hand-picked starch and Julies. Cal-
abash and rose were for chow. My
grandmother liked mango vere and
Reagan ate anything that was edible.
I have a niece and nephew
who feel like mine and every-
thing I have will be theirs. I ve
never felt like I needed to decide if I
want a family myself.
We may have had one school
shirt, but classmates thought we
were rich when we opened our
lunch bags and there was always
sufficient to share.
As much as I love La Brea and
go there to re-group, I ve never
felt I truly fit in. But the same
applies to the city. It s probably
because I m awkward. However, I
feel free anywhere, if I m with the
people who know and love me.
I love food and I m always
munching. I get upset when
people look at me and think I
don t eat. Last year I stopped eat-
ing meat and don t miss it. I m not
vegetarian! I just stopped eating
I attended La Brea RC Primary
School, Point Fortin Jr Second-
ary and Fyzabad Composite. I
started studying accounting, and
was excelling, but then it dawned
on me that, once I d lost the thrill
of challenge of understanding these
formulas, I d be bored. And I want-
ed to be the Oprah of the Caribbean
and that s how I started studying
media. And haven t looked back.
With the exception of my first
job at a hardware, all my jobs
were all in the creative field. And
I thoroughly enjoyed them all.
My father was Roman Catholic
and insisted that we were chris-
tened there. My mother is Pen-
tecostal. My grandmother said
church people are hypocrites, and
every morning at 4 am she read her
Bible on a bench at the kitchen
door. I rarely go to church any
more, but I always pray.
I know of the story of Job:
sometimes we re tested. Some
have harder tests than others
but I always believe that joy
cometh in the morning.
I enjoy going to the cinema
and the audiences reactions, but
at times I enjoy curling up and
watching at home, particularly as I
enjoy European films and those
aren t shown at cinemas in Trinidad
outside of the European Film Festi-
val. I particularly like watching local
and Caribbean films at the cinema,
the conversations after are just as
intriguing as the films. Hopefully
one day that there would be more
options to view local and Caribbean
films outside of the film festival.
I remember my grandmother s
thoughts on horror movies:
"Why I must watch that? My
life have enough horrors as it
My favourite director is
Christopher Nolan. Even when his
subjects are caricatures, their
motives seem real and understand-
One time, in Barbados, silly
me walked into a shop and
asked for salt prunes. No one
knew what that was. After that I
don t leave Trini without salt
[My colleague] Azreena and I
are coordinating the UNESCO
Conference, which, this year, is a
part of the trinidad+tobago film
festival. It s very informative from
legal frameworks, communication
and archives [to] film commissions,
festivals and criticism. And it s all
The best part of the job is the
exchange of knowledge, policies
and cultures and everything that
happens during the conference.
The worst part of the job is that I
never see any films.
A Trini is rhythmic, fun-lov-
ing, flavourful, ingenious, cre-
ative and comical. And always
wants a bligh.
There are things I m displeased
about it but Trinidad & Tobago
is home and I love it.
Read a longer version of this fea-
ture at www.BCRaw.com
TRINI TO D BONE
As Told to BC Pires
Bussing style on mango
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