TRAVEL | Uit Klaaskreek

24.8.12




Cool winds appear from the east, as I near the town of Klaaskreek. The dust has settled, and the road behind appears to have just begun. I've been traveling for a week now, and have found myself in the Brokopondo District. Immediately before, I was in an area called Abadokondre, east of the capital city, where I interviewed a host of Aukan Maroons.
In Brokopondo things were different. The water was larger, more still, and riddled in mystery. It differed from Abadokondre as there was an emphasis placed on industry--an industry that was meant to generate jobs for both men and women in this transmigration "town". This industry is ecotourism--fueled by the presence of a beach which was once haunted by ghosts of unknown origins, and is now charged my the influx of outsiders taking advantage of the serenity of Klaaskreek's Bena Strand (Beach) [started my Marlene Rantwyk of STOK].






 
During my interview with the local community manager, who was washing clothes throughout its entirety--her clothes, the neighbour's, her nephew's, her cousin's, and so forth--I spied a "pangi" or a Maroon traditional embroidered wrap, which I instantly fell in love with (she later presented it to me as a gift). We talked about her life in Brokopondo, her son, exes, biodiversity, ecotourism, and the likes. We had a great three hour interview/chat. I told her about the work I was doing for the UNDP, and my current life in transit. She was somewhat interested, but for the most part highly engrossed with her washing.
After that meeting I headed down to the beach to see who else I could interview, besides the tourists celebrating Eid-ul-Fitr (Islamic Holiday). There were a few. A man dressed in African garment, passed by. Blinged to the nine, I stopped him for a photo, asking if he would mind (in my non-existent Dutch). He smiled; more gold appeared. I didn't want to be too forward, so just took of his fingers instead. A ring on each one--a sign of the growing gold mining industry, both legal and illegal, that is plaguing the nation and putting pressure on the environment. He was fascinating. 
Later, I was greeted again by my first interviewee. She came with a bag of Pangies for me to buy. I was conflicted between two (see Twitter Feed), but finally settled on the final image you see above. Love it. 
The next morning, it was time to leave, but not before the little rubbish collectors came by as part of a waste management programme to take away the rubbish, which had previously formed large mounds of waste behind the inhabitants homes, bringing vermin and a cloud of flies.It was a pleasure to see such consciousness being expressed.

FIRST OUTFIT: Shirt from PEOPLETREE | Old Jeans from a male friend | Thongs/Slippers/Flip-Flops: HAVAIANAS [A gift from my friend in Brasil] | Head Wrap: A Birthday present made for me by Emma H. from left over material from her dress. 

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