Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by this author are their own and do not represent the official position of the Barbados Today.
by Jade Gibbons
Andy drove on to the main road. The sun light reflected off the hood of a silver car and into his eyes.
He pulled down the visor.
A line of cars was backed up all the way to the stop lights and the dip in the road showed that further ahead it was even worse. Syri rummaged through her bag and pulled down the car mirror.
“Do you need to collect Josh?”
“No, my mum has already done it.” Syri pulled out her lipstick. Unscrewing it, she began to apply the deep rose colour to her lips.
“Today was her day off.”
“So why didn’t she just keep him?”
Wiping the corners of her mouth, Syri dropped the lipstick back into her bag.
“Because it’s her day off. Don’t give me that look…”
She smacked her lips and pushed up the car mirror.
“She’s already keeping him for me on Saturday. I didn’t want to push my luck.”
MY GREAT GREAT GRANMUDDA PASS IT DOWN…
She flicks her wrist out, turning her palms up and extends her fingers.
…MY GREAT GRANMUDDA PASS IT DOWN…
She turns her wrist inwards and repeats this motion.
…MY MUDDA GET IT FROM MY GRANNIE; AND MUMMY GIVE IT TO ME.
She turns her wrist inwards flexing her fingers towards her. Shoulders shaking, her body bounces in time to the rhythm.
As the tempo picks up, she begins to move her waist in that winding fashion, ebbing and flowing with the highs and lows of the beat. Moving her head from side to side, she is chipping. Blue and gold streaks of paint run down her exposed thigh.
They match with the fluorescent pink and blue high-waist bottom she is wearing. Together with a white halter cropped top, it covers the part of her body she is most insecure about. An arm extends itself around her waist and floppy, loose curls brush against the side of her face.
Syri places her arm around Andy’s shoulder and puts the weight of her body on him. Placing her head on his shoulder, she stretches her other hand across his torso and takes his cup from him.
The cup touches her lips and the sweet acidic liquid glides down her throat. The burn, that she has forgotten, hits her chest before moving on to her stomach. Andy takes her arm from over him and moves her in front of him. He wraps his arms around her, hugging her waist.
“So, wah gine on with you and Andy?” asked Anna.
Syri hit her chest and coughed as she tried to dislodge the piece of meat roll that had somehow gone down the wrong pipe.
“Pardon,” she said as she gasped for air.
“What’s going on with you and Andy? I’ve seen the way the two of you get on.”
Syri looked Anna up and down. She’d met her two weeks ago when she was working at the marking centre as a clerical.
Anna had been her supplementary clerk, which meant she had been her superior.
Her laid-back yet blunt and focussed nature meant that they had gotten on well.
“Like what? We’re just friends.”
“Really? You don’t treat me like that and neither does he. And I’ve known him way longer than you.”
“Yeah, but I’m cooler than you, duh.”
Anna rolled her eyes and sucked her teeth, “Please, as if you could ever be.”
Syri looked away from Anna. Over the fence lines of breadfruit trees dotted the horizon. Behind them the sun light glistened like jewels as it reflected off the clear blue Atlantic.
“He’s just good to me, that’s all.”
“Uh huh, and?”
“And you like him.”
“Nah, it’s not like that. He’s just my really good friend.”
“A really good friend who cares so much about your child?”
“Well, he’s Josh’s godfather so he should.”
“I swear you guys haven’t known each other that long. How is it that he is Josh godfather, again?”
Syri looked at her watch and glanced through the glass doors that made the entrance to the building.
“Basically, you know about my child father right…?”
“You mean the psycho who push you head through glass when you told him you were pregnant?”
Jade Gibbons is an arts and business graduate with a keen interest in social issues and film-making. See https://www.jadegibbons246.com