RoguesInParadise is an open, honest, and funny book of quirky characters full of wit and humour set against a turbulent past
Turning Travel Literature Upside-down
Rogues in Paradise transcends travel literature going where no book of its kind has dared to tread. It is a celebration of the Afro-British Caribbean Culture of Barbados and its people and an examination of contemporary life in light of a troubled past.
Ian R. Clayton uses his 20 years of expertise creating the world’s first multimedia digital media Tourism Encyclopedia of Barbados, to author a one-of-a-kind book. It is about the extraordinary ordinary rogues and heroes of a renowned Caribbean island destination. He weaves their stories into the backdrop of history, confronting slavery and colonialism to paint a riveting picture of a remarkable people and the world’s most revisited Caribbean vacation island—Barbados.
Five-Star Review of Rogues
As Reedsys’ Savyajha says in the book’s first review:
“I’ve read several boring slice-of-life vignettes and travelogues, but this piece of writing was anything but boring. I can’t quite place the style, but I was able to get a hint of Roald Dahl’s writing in Boy and the first few chapters of Going Solo in the rhetorical flourishes applied to the characters; a bit of Ruskin Bond’s flow in the poems and rhythms applied left, right and centre.”
Savyajha adds, “Even the descriptions of places seem to have their own metre, the writing swaying in your head as it gently colours in an increasingly clear outline. The author complements these descriptions with some poetry here and there. I amused myself for a bit by reading the poems out loud, as I believe many others reading this book might do as well. At the end, though, one puts this book down with a smile on one’s face and a gasp upon the realisation that what one thought was five minutes was actually closer to an hour and a half. Reading this book is no effort; it is best described as a joy. It is uplifting, fun to read, and extremely engrossing. A must-read for sure!”
With its style, humour, and candid storytelling, Rogues in Paradise turns travel literature on its head! Readers get the
Humanity, Heritage & Culture
In the book, Ian explores humanity, heritage, and cultural responsibility with warmth and humour. He addresses the psychological question of character, tracing how after 300 years of slavery, the island’s people can be so self-assured and open. History is coupled with lucid storytelling to redefine what it means to be human despite all circumstances. To rise for one and as one in pursuit of the common good.
The Google Map is a unique adaption for a book. Readers can navigate the destination and read what the Rogues in Paradise chapters say about each location’s people, place, and history. The map shows how the series covers the entire islands, North, South, East, and West, and points in between. The editors proposed the structure as it adds meaning to the sequence of events. The new structure combines men, women, and places and classifies them by area, where practical. It adds to the flow of the stories and to the Rogues in Paradise book tours that will follow.
The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has approved a $20 Million US loan to help develop “Barbados Heritage & Culture Tourism”. The loan is timely following the UNESCO inclusion of Barbados in its World Heritage Tourism sites.
The UNESCO World Heritage designation applies to Barbados’ Bridgetown and Garrison Savannah Area. An area with iconic features such as renowned horse racing at the Savannah, mysterious underground tunnel build by the British military, the house that George Washington stayed in excellent heritage museums, to name just a few. Barbados Heritage & Culture Tourism is very distinctive and unlike any other Caribbean destination in its special blend of indigenous, British, Africa and creole culture, history and heritage.
TravelersInsights (TI) celebrated the award with a full feature Barbados World Heritage Magazine. Heritage and cultural Tourism is a “powerful way to bridge differences, share and contribute.” The TI article points out the heritage and culture understanding is healing. It “can change lives and change the world.”
IDB, is the leading source of long-term financing for economic, social and institutional development in Latin America and the Caribbean.
The full story is now on Travelers Insights World Heritage Tourism Magazine
Details Of Features & Benefits of the Enhancements
The Barbados Tourism Encyclopedia has created a documentary on the sites actually being enhanced. It explores the heritage & cultural sites that are part of this project, documenting their history and heritage with images and text. It also shows exactly how the sites are being upgraded and what benefits that will have for tourist.
For example the article provides a description of the history and work of the Old Town Hall in Bridgetown, Barbados. It concludes with an outline of how a new visitor center will provide visitors with “guests with fascinating information on the historical and architectural features of this location.”
The city walks and urban heritage tourist routes will be enlivened with animated Interpretation and featured point of interest. The work will allow “visitors to enjoy a more engaging, safer, and complete exploration of this magnificent treasure that blends the heritage of many peoples and reflects the ambition and fortitude of them all.”
The work will extend to the Museum and to Historic Ositins, where the Charter of Barbados was signed.
It goes with out saying that Barbados is a music center that has set an example to the world of how a tiny Caribbean island can produce arts and entertainer of top caliber. The Merrymen, Rihanna just to name two.
In 2019 Du-Wayne Niles was selected for the cast of Disney’s Lion King on Broadway. No wonder that the House and Techno Vujaday Festival selected Barbados as its partner to launch a unique festival Safari – See Barbados Blog for details
For decades, the Caribbean islands have promoted holidays of fun in the sea, sand and sun. We say it is a head in the sand attitude that has permeated al Caribbean Culture Tourism Marketing at the expense of its heritage. Its true heritage lies in its feet of clay, but it is seldom featured in its tourism marketing. In fact culture and heritage and cultural tourism has largely been ignored in favor of suntan vacations.
Sandals, the latest hotel to open in Barbados, promotes this with its “Unwind to the relaxed calypso beat, enjoy the sun & surf, and explore your luxurious suite designed with your utmost comfort in mind and featuring everything from ocean views, Butler Elite service…. “
Even the iconic Sandy Lane Hotel says it is “a perfect location in Barbados for a luxury Caribbean holiday, overlooking the Caribbean Sea on a tranquil coral sand beach, shaded by mature mahogany trees, the timeless and classic elegance of the Palladian buildings.”
And it goes on to say, “Mirrored in the spacious comfort of the 113 hotel rooms and suites, a stunning private villa, exceptional golf, gourmet dining, an outstanding spa, superb sports facilities and finally, an exceptional level of warm Barbadian hospitality.”
Great wording and certainly an appropriate message for many. But not for all.
Sun, Sand and Sea, is the recurring theme everywhere in Caribbean tourism marketing – by large and small hotels and resorts, for all forms of vacations and at all budgets. But the truth is the modern traveler is looking for something more than sand-swept island holidays. They are not all coming to lie on the sand and soak in the sea under the sun. Many want to discover and to explore the real Caribbean heritage and culture and learn and experience something new.
Caribbean Head in Sand Heritage & Cultural Tourism has feet of Clay
CC BY-NC by SeeMidTN.com (aka Brent)
Luckily, the islands are finding that they can take their ‘head out of the sand”, so to speak, and discover and promote their culture and heritage tourism to attract the new tourists.
From history to architecture and from industry to art, all islands excel at music, crafts, story telling, dance and the arts. There is theatre, nightlife, places to discover, architecture, artifacts, geology, anomalies and art made from nature – fish-scales, wood, coral, sand, stone, metal and even from mud.
The early Amerindian inhabitants choose islands because of their clay. They were the first potters, a trade that exists to this day. Pottery was an essential part of the community as water jugs and utensils were necessary to prepare, preserve and store food. Following in the footsteps of original settlers, island potters have preserved techniques from Africa, India, and Europe, showing fascinating aspects of Creole culture.
The Caribbean has a unique demographic mix of indigenous peoples, Europeans and their slaves. There are African slaves from many tribes as well as indentured workers from Ireland and India. More recent are the arrivals from China, Lebanon, Syria, and other countries around the globe.
A Rich Mixture of People and Cultures
Caribbean island nations are mysterious and spiritual, sensitive and open. Some are thoughtful and inclusive, others may be extroverted and adventure-loving while some are more introspective. The local population may be artists, craftsmen and women, dancers, actors, musicians, business people, entrepreneurs and farmers. But in all cases the Caribbean folk have a fascinating heritage & culture with people full of colour and vitality.
There are, of course, local traits. Trinis are the party-animals, the ‘New Yorkers’ of the Caribbean. With their own very distinctive Calyspo music from legendary stars like the Mighty Sparrow. Jamaicans are the ‘reggae men’ of the Caribbean and Barbadians are fun-loving in with gently mannered respect. Bob Marley and Rihanna respectively represent the Jamaica and Barbados cultures. In all the islands, art, dance and song play a huge part in island life.
Patricia J. Fay, Associate Professor of Art, Florida Gulf Coast University notes: “The merging and blending of influences from these diverse sources has created the dynamic Creole culture of the contemporary Caribbean. The work produced today by traditional Caribbean potters opens a window into a rich historical narrative of resistance, adaptation, and survival.”
Fay Singles out Barbados as the Little England Potters
“Barbados, dubbed ‘Little England’ early in its history for cultural fidelity to the home country, experienced three hundred and fifty years of uninterrupted colonial governance.”
Fay adds: “The combination of excellent natural resources (like its distinctive clays) and advanced production technologies led to development of the ceramics industry in Barbados, and today the island hosts a large and successful contemporary pottery community.”
Early Firing By African Bonfires Gives Way to Kiln
In the early days, clay was fired with rudimentary African-Caribbean bonfires. Later the kiln, or potter’s oven, was introduced by the British and it exists to this day in some form or other. Originally all were wood or coal-burning and many still are, but oil and gas ovens are also popular now. It’s spellbinding to watch these artists create their works of wonder from mud dug out of the earth just steps away on the nearby hills.
Barbados has been prized for its clays since it was first discovered. The clay soil in the East, particularly in the area around Chalky Mount, has been used to create the signature red terracotta pots and jugs. It is a very popular clay that owes it colour to mineral impurities and the method and firing and heat. Earthenware clays are some of the earliest clays used by potters and it is the most common type of clay found in Chalky Mount. It is very plastic and cohesive, which means it can hold together and maintain a shape.
You will see the finished works in the Chalk Mount potters shops and in the homes of locals and tourist who drop by Highland Potter or John Springer to get unique artworks of clay. This is the real heritage tourism that the Caribbean has beed sadle missing the boat on!