God Bless Bim on Independence Day!
Hey guys. Today, we're going to switch it up and do Two for Tuesday. Because there are 2 big things on my calendar, every year on November 30th.
It's the Independence Day of my beautiful country, Barbados, nicknamed Bim, or Little England.
Who would imagine 166 square miles would go that far? Yes, 166 suqare miles. Probably smaller than your town.
Still, we've got an incredible list of accomplishments for an itty-bitty rock with no natural resources. (Okay, we have 2 ounces of oil. But just 2 ounces.)
We grafted the grapefruit. Say thank you.
We invented rum. Alcoholics the world over praise our existence.
We've produced a slew of international singers: Jaicko (Oh yeah), Livvi Franc (I'm That B*tch), Shontelle (The Americans among us might know her song, Battle Cry, which features clips of Obama speeches) and of course, Rihanna.
(Remember how I said it was small? I went to school with Shontelle and my brother went to school with Rihanna. Yeah, that kind of small.)
We're the '5th most literate' country in the world. (Although it's hard to judge because they automatically assign a rate of 99.0 to some countries which have good rates for a long time.)
We are a developed country, according to the World Bank. Even though there are lots of countries with outrank us for size, we are the most developed island in the Caribbean region.
Oh, and we're the 2009 World Champions of Segway Polo. (I wouldn't know it was a sport if we didn't win it.)
Recently the BBC did a feature on the only sport invented in Barbados, road tennis. It was hilarious. A tourist was learning how to play, and the teacher kept saying gems like:
"You're embarassing me as a teacher."
And when she asks advice, "Hit de ball!"
Watch the clip, hear the accent and see the Bajan charm, here. :)
I'll leave the topic before I really get into swing. Barbadians (Bajans) are rumoured to be arrogant by the rest of the Caribbean. But it's not really arrogance, it's just that BARBADOS ROCKS!
Of course, that's not the only fab on November 30th.
It's the last day of Nano, too.
I was way, way behind on Nano. I told myself on Thursday that I'd be good if I could squeeze out 5,000 words, because I know Fridays are pretty near impossible to do anything but exist on, and I was scheduled to travel on the weekend. I actually wrote about 2,000 words on Thursday, and maybe 1,000 all weekend.
Leaving me with almost 14,000 words to write on Monday and Tuesday.
If I wrote a single word on Monday. Which I didn't.
And I gave up. Around Week 3 of Nano you hear things like, 'it's great that you got this far,' and 'that's 20,000 words you didn't have before.' I believe it and agree.
But not for me. Not winning = fail.
Yet, when I was staring down the double barrel of the failure yesterday morning, and realising that Nano had slipped beyond my grasp, it occured to me that sometimes you fail, in order to win. Have you ever given up something now to have something better later? It's just like that. And I had a whole post planned.
And then I came to work. And it was test day. 8 hours of sitting at my desk, while the kids do tests in their classrooms. And I hadn't brought a book. And all the other teachers were using their internet cables. (I don't have dedicated internet at this school. I have to highjack one.)
8 hours of not being required to do anything but sit at my desk, with nothing but a computer with no internet.
If that's not a hint that I should be writing, I don't know what is.
So I wrote.
I knocked off a little over 8,000 words.
Then I went home, exhausted. Still contemplating giving up. And I found out I was a Critterpalooza winner. And you can't win a prize on a writers' site and then not write. So I knocked off 2.5 K. And then I went by my neighbour's house and watched an episode of Beverley Hillbillies and had a glass of red.
Came back at 10. 2 hours. 3,000 words.
I did it. Even though my story ran out at 48,988 words- the last 1000 words aren't pretty.
I finished. With 8 minutes to spare. 13,800 words in one day. Frankly, I'm surprised I'm capable of coherent thought. Or maybe I'm not. :)
Congratulations to all the other Wrimos out there.
And thank you to everyone here for believing in me. You are so fabulicious. Give yourselves a pat on the back. Unless you have athritis. Then you can pat the front. Or something.