Pier Park photos

A Beaconite believes that people should be encouraged to take photographs and videos in the Cyril B. Romney Tortola Pier Park. Such material, after all, often finds its way to social media and helps promote the territory as a tourist destination. Park officials themselves even recognised as much when they unveiled a new sculpture in the park recently, gushing about the new photo op for cruise ship visitors. For all these reasons, the Beaconite was surprised to notice a bizarre rule at the top of a sign posted in the park: “Recording, photographing and taping not permitted without pre-approval.” Besides the obvious fact that this rule is totally unenforceable in the age of smart phones, it discourages positive publicity and transmits a North Korea vibe. Pier park managers should revise the sign to remove the rule right away.

Community policing

A Beaconite recently reported on the East End Police Station’s efforts to build stronger connections within the community, and she gives officers credit for the initiative. Back in March, community members pushed for a crackdown on gun violence in the territory, and officials described the challenges of convincing witnesses to come forward in some unsolved cases. However, at the same time, some residents expressed concerns about confidentiality and trust when going to the police. Police Commissioner Mark Collins said it was down to him to ensure the public has enough confidence in the police service to communicate with them. That trust has understandably been shaken considering the recent arrests of police officers in connection with major drug busts and other allegations. It will take time to rebuild trust, but creating opportunities for police to meet residents on an informal basis when no crisis is at hand is certainly a step in the right direction. The relationships formed at such functions will surely pay dividends in the future.

Long live the King

When the news broke worldwide last Thursday that Queen Elizabeth II had died, a Beaconite immediately remembered her trip to his native Guyana back in 1994. Her flight landed at night, and most of her engagements were held under tight security. The experience was filled with excitement, and the Beaconite remembers studying newspaper photographs of the visit in detail to see who was there and what they wore — and thinking how lucky they were to be standing next to the Queen. It’s a new time now, when the internet offers live reports ushering in a new era under the British monarchy. But the Beaconite hopes that one day when King Charles III visits the Caribbean, he will be fortunate enough to be in those photos next to him.

Mom visit

A Beaconite had a great time showing her mom around the territory for the past few days. While her mother isn’t one for beaches or swimming, she thoroughly enjoyed all the territory has to offer when it comes to fruits and vegetables. She handpicked moringa from the trees, found some fresh and juicy guavas, and bought locally grown vegetables from the farmer’s market on Saturday. The tropical weather and vegetation reminded the reporter’s mother of her home country, Bangladesh.

28 and feeling great

Over the week weekend a Beaconite had the joy of celebrating her birthday with great friends, and she couldn’t be feeling more grateful. One aspect of being a journalist that she has always appreciated is how it gives a person so many opportunities to make new acquaintances and have unique experiences, and she was touched that friends from all over reached out with well wishes.