Welcome! Tally ho!

Our B.V.I. Adventure is designed to give our family, friends and any other interested followers a look into the life of two expatriates making their way on the island of Tortola. Tortola is the largest island in the British Virgin Islands.

So, why did we move 2,000 miles away from our home in Knoxville, Tennessee? Michael accepted a position as the director of retail and international sales for a Caribbean clothing brand.



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Friday, July 30, 2010

Festival Time in the BVI

What an exciting week to be in the BVI!  "Festival" is upon us!

This annual festival is the "premier cultural showcase" in the BVI, with an array of activities including the Freedom March and Emancipation Service. 

{A little history lesson: The Slavery Abolition Act 1833 ended slavery in the British Empire on August 1, 1834 and now Emancipation Day is widely observed in the British West Indies during the first week of August.  This year the public holidays fall on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th.}

The week leading up to Emancipation Day is full of excitement. In fact, we started noticing colorful flags flying high above the streets a few weeks ago! There has been a carnival atmosphere in the Festival Village with food and drink vendors, rides like the Tilt-a-whirl, and live music each night.
This year's festival village is named in honor of a long standing Festival committee member, Corrine Brewley.  {That's her photo on the sign!}  Brewley is best know throughout the Virgin Islands for her active participation in BVI culture and her show-stopping festival troops.  These troops march and perform in the parade to be held on Monday.
We hadn't been to the village yet, so when Lorna and Dr. Smith (Leader of the Opposition and former BVI Premier) asked us to join them on Friday night, we couldn't refuse!  It was International Reggae Night and we were excited to hear Gregory Isaacs.  Check out a local review of Friday night's performances and here's a quick :30 video I shot...

While we ended up going home before Isaacs took the stage, we had a great time with the Smith's.  Dr. Smith is running for re-election so there were many hands to shake!  I didn't take too many photos, but did grab this shot of one of the rides...
A full recap of the parade is coming soon...