Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Trinidad and Tobago: A shortcut home
I want to write about my adventures based on the trips I had the opportunity in attending, the wonderful encounters I had with Trinidadians and other people from diverse Caribbean nations, and some of the cultural behavior and mannerisms in which I find delightful, shocking, humorous, and interesting all at once. I always wanted to study abroad ever since I started looking for colleges to attend back in high school days, but I never expected to travel to Trinidad. It was the luck I had Trinidad and Tobago in mind during my freshman year when I changed my majors to International Studies and Film Production. I met Milla Riggio my freshman year and reminiscence sitting in her office, gazing the amazing amount of Trinidadian artifacts, books, and ornaments in her room. For some reason, I also remember how often Milla suggested that I should go to Trinidad.
The field trips I had in Trinidad are perhaps the best experiences I have had in my life. I have not been to the beach for almost a decade, but I do not think I seen a waterfall in real life. I often filmed concerts when I was at Trinity, but the experience of becoming a photographer is far different. I never forget sneaking backstage of the International SOCA Monarch to take pictures with professional Trinidadians photographers of the competition, which is watched by millions of people around the world and tens of thousands of people in the crowd. I did not expect to witness a live crowd so large and filled with energy, as if I was watching a regular concert on TV. I never forget the look of my internship director’s face when I sat next to her after sneaking in the media area and offered her water I bought.
I also had a similar experience taking photography at Panorama Finals when I met up with the same Trinidadian photographers who were actually one of the friendliest professionals I have ever encountered. I believe it was a good thing that one of them was familiar with Milla and asked to see her again. I would always remember reuniting the two as the Trinity group was slightly puzzled of the person I brought from the Media area of Panorama. Not to mention, the lecturer for my editing class was working the event at that time and suggested that I should do my first video about the pictures I took in Trinidad. My editing class was surprised that my Trinity in Trinidad program gives me the opportunity to take pictures in stage for some of Trinidad’s most prominent events such as Kings and Queens Preliminaries.
I transform myself from a person that only does videography to both a videographer and photographer for my obligation to take photos at nearly every event scheduled for the Trinity group ended up with having at least 100 pictures to over 1,100 pictures at a given time. Ironically, I have not done photography before until I came to Trinidad. Luckily, I submitted my photographs at Trinity’s CUGS (Center for Urban and Global Studies) Photo Contest and I was placed in the top 20. Not bad for a beginner. I cannot express in detail of every event and field trip I have experienced with the Trinity group, but when you have the opportunity to look at my photo albums online, photography captures my expression by thousands of words.
If a picture is worth a thousand words and I have a few thousand pictures that means I have millions of words to write on my essay. Thank goodness I do not have the time to write a million-word essay. However, I do want to show my photographs online and perhaps in a power-point presentation of my memorable field trips. Moreover, I do want to talk about the interactions I had with the Trinidadians and other people from different Caribbean nations. I think these interactions are one of the most important scenarios I had in my time in Trinidad. It was also the reason for convincing me to return in Fall 2011.
Link to my favorite Trinidad Pics: