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May 17, 2006

Comments

antoine cherenfant

Nicolette Bethel is naughty. She is also an idiot.
The cherenfant family is composed of Lawyers ,Doctors, Pastors, Nurses, Ingineers etc etc in USA , Haiti, France, Honduras.Tell her to check the Internet and she will regret to mention a member of this family.Bahamas should be proud of us .....

antoine cherenfant

ENGINEERS , NOT Ingineers

typing error

nicob

Thanks for dropping by, and for the information.

However, I think you missed the point.

Steve Mirsky

Do you know of any books or articles which cover the history of generation land in the Bahamas?

Thanks

helper

A great book available only at the Library or certain Lawyers office written By previous Supreme Court Justice Leonard Knowles.

keva

Good job on article. Thanks for information.

Keep it up

nicob

Received in response:

7/22/2007

Dear Nicolette:

I enjoyed your article tremendously! I found myself exclaiming, "Amen!" at end. I was born in the Bahamas and raised in the US since 7 years old. As of December 2006, I am 42 years old.

I do not have grand dreams of prosperity or position. My dreams are of a simple life, a better quality of life, and of purging myself of Western learning embedded in my mind and manifested in my current lifestyle resulting in work, work, work, no land ownership, no homestead, and no home. My immediate family is here (2 children, my mother, my siblings born here, and other siblings born in the Bahamas). I have numerous uncles and aunts here and in the Bahamas as well.

In recent years, 7 or so ago, I found myself tired of the complexities of the Western lifestyle and unable to find my place in this world. I have felt lost and homeless. My heritage and culture beckons to me, but I have been afraid. I find that I have lived my entire life in fear of one thing or another. That’s a different story as fear is a stifling experience.

More and more everyday, I want to go home to a land in Andros from whence memories of the happiest time in my life were generated, a memory which haunts me daily and calls out to me, "Come home."

I shared my concern with my aunts of that retreat-like land being sold, going away, and my American born children never realizing its existence or the value of it thus never being privy to its beauty. It is unbearable to me to note mentally that my un-thought of unborn grandchildren will never have such a perceived plain yet incredibly poinient and happily embedded experience to recall. My heart breaks at the possibility of such a loss to future generations.

Because of my Andros experience as a child, today there is a place reserved in my mind as a happy retreat and I go there often. I speak of it out loud to who ever will listen. This place in my mind is untainted. My mind does not recall a single hardship there. Maybe it is the view of the world from a child’s eyes, but I clearly remember hardships and pain from my childhood. None of those occurrences took place in Andros. My memories of Andros are filled with beauty, happiness, adventure, and freedom.

When I told my mother and her sisters that I am afraid of Granddad's land where I played as a child going away (knowing what I know of Western and human greed) or becoming spoiled, they said, "That will not happen because the land is ours." I did not understand. It frustrated me and made no sense. I asked of deeds, some legally binding document showing my family’s legal ownership of this land. They said all you have to do is stake your land and build on it.

How could that make sense to me a Western raised Bahamian? It was not until I attempted to narrow the distance between my family in different states and in the Bahamas by creating a family web site that I spoke with a cousin in the Bahamas who made reference to Crown Property in conversation. I replied, "As opposed to what?" He replied, "Generational Property." My eyes felt somewhat opened!

For me personally, there is much research to do. An aggressive plan will be devised to live far under my means by spending less and saving much more. I intend to live in as extreme poverty as I can bear for the next 2-3 years because Nicolette, I fully intend to go home!

For the poverty bestowed upon my family in the US, I feel refreshed to know that I have an option such as generation land. What makes that even more exciting and sensible to me is that my family truly was blessed to have birth right to a land and a sea rich with provisional rations. Jesus fed a multitude from the sea and the land.

I wholeheartedly agree with you Nicolette, "I am rich." Your article has strengthened my resolve, empowered me, and has offered me a solid foundation on which to PLAN to go home. The sheer knowledge is enough encouragement and has generated excitement in me.

I have no unrealistic expectations of a rosy transition from Western lifestyle to the out island lifestyle of Andros. I imagine I will definitely feel the differences and will have some instinctive resistance based upon the lifestyle I have become accustomed to in the US with systems of comfort in place such as the highway systems, domestic dwelling developments, water and sewage systems, power and energy systems, a viewed as failed, yet readily available healthcare system, etc. I have lived the better part of my existence in a developed society (depending on one’s view of which stages of a human life is the better part, in this instance, “better part” means half of my life if I shall live another 40 or so years). Its conveniences have been costly to me in many ways.

Rather, I see myself cultivating the land I stake and build on, but no more than necessary for comfort, yet preserving its natural ecological state. I will work like everyone else once there. I have time, as I execute my plan to live under my means and work and save, to research the nuances of and options for integrating into the settlement culture of Andros with respect to lifestyle and work.

But I tell you Nicollete, I smile as I recall the journey of walking to school in the morning when I was a child in Andros clearly remembering the wonder and adventure of it. I want my grandchildren to experience that unspoiled land and all its natural resources and beauty. And, I look forward to going ahead of them and preparing and preserving their heritage. This I will do not only for them Nicolette, but for me. I feel I owe it to myself to seek out my heritage and live the other half of my life in my country in which I have so much pride. My mother often says of me, “She loves her country.”

My commonwealth beckons me. I do not know what the future holds. I can only plan for my departure from this country and re-integration into my own as much as possible, but I do feel an overwhelming sense that it is to my benefit and the benefit of future generations of my family that I return home to the Bahamas. I must seek out that which beckons me, my homestead in Andros. It beckons me in no uncertain terms. It calls out to me as the answer to my head spinning and uncertainty. It tells me I do not have to continue to suffer. It tells me that I am not poor Nicolette. Andros has called out to me in a loud resounding voice, to “Come home!”

I thank you from the bottom of my heart for your well-written article in reference to a statement made just in passing over 10 years ago by Mr. Eris Moncur during his lecture at the College of the Bahamas.

I thank you further for realizing the magnitude of that passing statement, writing this article in reference, submitting this article for publication bringing me the fortune of having it reach me many miles away over the internet, and for your educational statement within your article of true value not being monetary in nature. I am in full agreement. I understand that value is a very personal perception in this case. I relish in the knowledge that I am a cash-poor, land-rich Bahamian and embrace my fortune.

Thank you, Nicolette.

Respectfully,

Monique Mason

PS. I enjoy the Bahamian connections this publication brings to me many, many, miles away from home. I have felt isolated from my country.

Thank you, Bahama Pundit!

Dwayne Deveaux

Madam, your article was very informative and on point, continude the great work, and Monique we await your arrival, your loving cousin.

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