By Kerry Mc Donald. Many people are familiar with popular places in Trinidad, such as Port of Spain, Arima and San Fernando, to name a few, but what about Biche? I distinctly remembered when I mentioned Biche to my cousin, Kemisha, she looked at me in amazement. Her response: “The only Biche I know about is the one where you go to bathe in the sea. I know about that beach.”
For persons who may have visited Biche, I received the opportunity to visit this part of Trinidad to attend my friend, Mervyn aka Stoveman’s funeral.
As I embarked the maxi for Biche that day I was brimming with excitement. We wondered which would be the easiest route to Biche. There were two options via Tabaquite or Sangre Grande, so the latter option was chosen. Upon reaching Sangre Grande, everything came to a standstill, as we were not sure how best to proceed.
As fate would have it that day, we met a young lady by the name of Gloria who was awaiting transportation to Biche. Luckily, she knew Stoveman. Gloria was our map that day for approximately 90 minutes as we journeyed to Biche, Canque Village. Like a kid in a candy store, I was happy when I got the chance to sit next to Gloria in the maxi. She had my undivided attention as we had intermittent conversations about this highly anticipated village.
Sangre Grande, Plum Mitan, untouched forested areas, rich vegetation and more. I saw the full works. What captured my attention though were the forested areas, which appeared to be untouched – so clean, vivid, and inviting, like a cosy area of your home, warm and inviting to relax after a hard day’s work.
Upon arriving in Biche
Upon arriving in Biche, we met with Stoveman’s family who provided us with the rich history of the village. A usually agricultural area, this is where the infamous Mano Benjamin lived. He had enslaved and tortured two girls in the 1960s. The most widely means of transportation was the bus and the villagers was grateful for the police station, which was walking distance from the house of mourning (Stoveman’s sister).
Interesting too were the spiritual values of the villagers. Since the community was so closely-knit, less focus was placed on partying. Instead, many people preferred to visit their respective places of worship, the church, temple or mosque.
The cemetery was a “stone’s throw away” from the house of mourning too, so we decided to walk. We sang, clapped and danced to give Stoveman a glorious send-off. Finally, it was time to depart the village of Canque village for home. We received numerous directions, however, everything worked out in the end as everyone reached their respective homes safely.
I was thankful for this memorable occasion and look forward to visiting Biche again, next time with my cousin, Terry, and other friends and relatives interested in seeing this lovely part of Trinidad.
February 2015 – Issue 14 www.sweettntmagazine.com
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