Sir Stafford Sands, God rest the dead, took the ‘S’ like his name and took “Sea, Sand and Sun” to a different level called Bahamian Tourism. The tourism spilled off into smaller areas like “Eco-tourism, Religious Tourism, Medical Tourism, and Sports Tourism.
I am just back from a visit to Providencialis, Turks & Caicos where I wormed as a medical doctor 2004-2006 under Premier Michael Missick. Michael Missick grew up in Freeport, Bahamas and worked at the Holiday Inn Hotel. He took the concept of Freeport and Fish Fry to the 40 islands of the Turks & Caicos and the result is simply awesome.
Parrot Cay is now the home of persons like Bruce Willis and Tyra Banks who own their second homes in Turks & Caicos. The Blu Jet of Michael Jordan with its significant logo on the tail, flies in there regularly.
While attempting to come back, to The Bahamas on Inter-Caribbean Airways, I saw a continuous flow of large jets from Canada, Atlanta, Chicago, Florida etc. jamming the airport with high-end tourists from Canada, Europe, and the United States.
Fish Fry is a concept, an idea by Ma Flo of Smith’s Point Grand Bahama, to create livelihood mid-week when there was nothing for tourists and locals to do. Fish Fry in Providencialis is a fantastic, fun-filled evening with a live band and literally thousands of tourists buying fish, conch fritters, conch salad, and even conch lamps. It was a boon for every local Turks Islander to make lots of profit in the middle of the week when nothing else happened. A live band at one end, a sandy beach on the other, and a myriad of moneyed tourists enjoying the Bahamian music and the Bahamian food exemplifies the Bahamian concept in the Turks & Caicos.
Honourable Fred Mitchell was seen at the airport arriving at the same time we did. Surely, he was aware that when we returned to the very elegant Lynden Pindling Airport within only one Jet Blue on the ground, how ironic it was that the tourism product created in The Bahamas was now being enjoyed by Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica and of course Turks and Caicos.
May I remind persons that some years ago, there were more Turks islanders in Grand Bahama than in Turks and Caicos. Now, as I experienced, it was there where Bahamians who had gone for a job in Provo six or seven years ago. They don’t even come back to The Bahamas for vacation.
Conclusion: Jeremiah 31:29- “The fathers have eaten sour grapes and the children’s teeth and mouths have been set on edge.”
Jeremiah 16:16 states “The present generation are worse than their fathers.” This does not speak well for the future of the archipelago called the Commonwealth of The Bahamas. This should be a very sobering thought for all who are in this present political race. It is evident, unfortunately, that we have thrown out the baby with the bath water by our bad attitudes and visionless leaders who are not statesmen.
~ AMANRA. TMR.
Published Tuesday, March, 14, 2017