Thursday 6 August, 2020

20 household items that scream ‘I raise up back in de day in Barbados’

Rediffusion (Internet image)

Rediffusion (Internet image)

Today’s children will never know the struggles that 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80s babies survived to enjoy today’s advancements.

Technology is moving at the speed of light now, but back in de day, oh how you didn’t even know to dream about indoor plumbing and then it arrived and you wondered if the past was all a nightmare.

Here are some items that you would know very well even if you were not fond of all. These things are from your childhood if you grew up in an old Bajan home.

1. Rediffusion

What slamming stations were hot? ONE! The only one. What was a CADRES poll of stations?

2. TV with the knobs

Me: Turn the top one to the U and the bottom one to 30, let me see if I can watch Smurfs scrambled this Saturday morning.

Mother: You can barely see in all that fuzz

Gran: They got nuff rain in de TV

Me: La la l-la la la, la l-la la laaa

3. Antenna on roofs

Remember when people were tossing a cord on roofs and ripping antennas off people houses? No? I do.

4. Larduh

It was a cupboard almost as tall as you and it had a lattice pattern on the doors. It held a whole host of dry goods and canned items.

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5. Ornaments on a whatnot stand

What’s a whatnot stand? It could have three or four shelves and was usually in the corner of the room. It had a lot of ceramic ducks, swans, birds, dogs and photos in frames on it. What was it best for? Catching dust and being the most hated chore on the ‘To clean’ list every Christmas.

6. De shedroof

Gran: Go in de shedroof.

Millennial baby: Where?

Gran: Go by de table where we does eat…

In the older houses, the shedroof is the second part of the house under the second roof. Look at the roof from outside.

7. A front house

Just as the name says, it’s the room at the front of the house, usually the living room. It's also the part under the front part of the roof.

8. A rattan and mahogany rocking chair

Back and forth, back and forth, until you dropped to sleep. Don’t be that excited kid who throws him or herself back in the chair with so much enthusiasm that you have the chair rocking all over the place and marking up the wooden floor. You may get hot licks like cocoa bix.

9. Enamel cups /bowls

Want to warm some barley? Just put some in the huge enamel cup and rest it on the stove to warm and eat straight. Como se dice microwave?

10. Matches

Strike one, strike two, *hissssss* Fiiiiiire!

11. Topsy/Potty

Full bladder at 1:00 am

Look under the bed and spots topsy - $15 from Barbados Hardware (Note you had no smartphone light to shine and guide you as you pulled out two shoes first)

Squats for relief: Priceless

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12. Enamel bathtub/Jucking board

Washing clothes was an all-day task. God bless the washing machine.

13. Rotary phone

Sticks a finger in the 4 slot and pull, *d-d-d-d* and to be honest you loved when a person’s number had in a lot of nines.

14. A wooden bench

Your granny sat on it to scale fish when they were 100 for $10; you sat on it while your gran baked in the kitchen; you flipped it over and made it your boat while playing; you took it outside to watch the children playing cricket and; when someone needed something from on top of the wardrobe, they sent you for it – the bench.

15. Cassette player

When you wanted to hear your favourite song later and there was no YouTube *gaaaasps* You recorded your song off the radio, prayed the announcer didn't talk during the recording and then you had it for later to rewind and fast forward as you like.

16. The Last Supper picture or the dogs playing poker cards

In many Bajan homes one of these were displayed, and in some fronthouses there were more than two of these sometimes. You know the Last Supper photo right?

17. Outhouse

This was the reason why a topsy/potty was a luxury in the eyes of some. Until you spot a white, albino cockroachin the pit, you don’t know the fears associated with a real, real outhouse.

18. Hot comb

Child: “Ouch!”

Mother: That is just steam and the grease melting

Child: *Flinches and moves*

Mother: I am parting with the plastic comb. Must you be so dramatic? YOU are making ME nervous.

Child: “Leff my hair hard and don’t even think about doing my choir boys at the back!”

19. A Danish cookies tin full of cottons and pins, or nuts and bolts

You know that blue tin with the Danish butter cookies that you love to see at Christmas? All the rest of the months of the year it’s a storage container that breaks hearts.

20. Mortar and pestle

Need breadcrumbs? Bring the biscuits and drop them in the mortar and grind them to dust with the pestle. In 2018, it’s a good stress reliever if you need one.

What item do you miss the most or which was your archenemy?

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