The power of Reporter’s Notebook?

About two months ago, a Beaconite wrote a Reporter’s Notebook item warning about dangerous new road markings in Fish Bay. He is happy to report that leaders clearly read his opinion and took it seriously enough to take action. Or was it just a coincidence? In any case, he wrote the following on Jan. 12: “A Beaconite is concerned that new road markings in Fish Bay will cause a head-on collision. Two sets of dotted yellow lines near the western entrance to the area’s warehouse complex create an ambiguous centre lane. It is unclear if this centre lane is for eastbound drivers, westbound drivers, or both. Because of the peculiar set-up, a driver coming from either direction could interpret the markings as an extra lane for traffic moving in their direction. If an oncoming driver simultaneously makes the same assumption, a head-on collision could result. The Beaconite calls on the Public Works Department or other authority to review the situation and consider adding new markings or signage that clarifies the rules in the centre lane. He hopes action comes soon.” Last week, the Beaconite was thrilled to notice that his advice had been followed. Arrows have been added in the centre lane to indicate that only east-bound vehicles are allowed to use it. The Beaconite thanks officials for taking this simple step to greatly improve safety — even if his recommendation had nothing to do with their decision. 

New businesses

A Beaconite patronised a newly opened restaurant over the weekend, and she now has a new go-to breakfast spot in town. She realised that quite a few new restaurants and shops have been popping up this year, and she wants to commend the business owners who have pulled together the resources to take the leap in realising their dreams despite the hardships of the past few years. In general, the Virgin Islands business community seems to be experiencing an upswing, and the reporter hopes this bodes well for the wider economy of the territory despite the worldwide influences on the cost of living.

Goodbye, HOA 4

This week marks the dissolution of the fourth House of Assembly, which a Beaconite has spent many, many hours covering since 2019. She has learned quite a bit about the legislative process as a record number of bills were passed, and about good-governance principles through the Commission of Inquiry’s investigations into decades of decision-making. It will certainly be interesting to see how the fifth House approaches the ongoing overhaul of government operations, which she hopes is done with earnest interest in enhancing the lives of the territory’s residents.

Grocery shopping

A Beaconite, who is familiarising himself with the supermarkets in Road Town, has developed a grocery shopping strategy. Across the Caribbean, shoppers have been complaining in recent months about the prices of goods, some of which have skyrocketed since the pandemic. The Beaconite has noticed plenty of increases in the Virgin Islands, and since he loves to cook he has devised a strategy of purchasing certain groceries at certain supermarkets. He realised, for instance, that the prices of particular meats, vegetables and canned goods sometimes varies widely at different supermarkets. As such, his list is divided into headings with his required items placed under each location, depending on the prices he has observed. The Beaconite is also very happy (well, happy might be the wrong word) that there aren’t any popular United States fast food chains in the territory as is the case in his native Guyana, where the choices are many. Had such options been available here, his grocery shopping strategy would have been under severe threat from the scent emanating from those eateries.