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Emerald Island - Montserrat, West Indies

Sonyial Lee

HELEECUS ventures to the West Indies

March 2017

For two weeks our founder Sonyial Lee traded in city life in London for Island bliss in Montserrat, West Indies! Sonyial travelled to her birthplace: a small, volcanic island situated in the West Indies – measuring approximately 16 km long and 11 km wide, with approximately 40 km of coastline. This sounds like paradise right?

Montserrat’s culture is greatly influenced by its African descendants, as well as, its Irish ancestry. The national dish of Montserrat is “goat water” a traditional and meaty stew served with a bread roll (yummy). Montserrat is nicknamed The Emerald Isle of the Caribbean both for its resemblance to coastal Ireland and for the Irish ancestry of many of its inhabitants. Montserrat is the only Caribbean island to celebrate St Patrick’s Day due to Irish ancestry. This day is full of joy and laughter; where local people perform a local dance called “Masquerade” - a celebration of Montserrat’s ancestors (and their freedom from slavery).

During Sonyial’s visit home she explored Montserrat’s breathtaking, harmonious, sandy beaches, Botanical and Herbal garden (where the national flower Heliconia can be discovered) and The Soufrière Hills Volcano. Sonyial also attended an array of St Patrick’s Day Festival events with the locals: Miss St Patrick’s Cultural Pageant (Cultural Centre), National Awareness Day (attendees dressed in outfits created with the national Madras fabric), and Heritage Parade (HELEECUS exhibited). 

HELEECUS was welcomed warmly by the lovely locals and we're so grateful for all the support - thank you! :)