So, here we are in the final moments of National Heroes Day 2011. Two of the blogs we follow in our sidebar here on the Mullins Bay Blog (Barbados Free Press and My Barbados Blog) carried posts in celebration of this important Barbados holiday so we didn't want our readers to feel left out, or to forget the fact that at least one of our National Heroes had a very strong connection to Road View/Mullins - specifically to the beach here that has recently borne the brunt of poor coastal management in the Mullins Bay area. Of course, that National Hero is Excellency Rt Hon Errol Walton Barrow who actually for many years in the 1960s owned or leased a beach house in Road View at what is now called Kings Beach adjoining the infamous groynes at what is now called St. Peter's Bay.
Our regular readers already know of this little known fact about Barbados' "Father of Independence" since it has been mentioned here several times over the years. However, we have never asked what Mr. Barrow himself would have thought about the man-made destruction of the beach to which he loved to resort, where most likely most of the transformational ideas were nurtured, if not birthed; ideas that have placed Barbados in the enviable position it enjoys today among the top three in social and economic development in the Americas.
How would he have graded his heirs and successors, some within his own party, who sat idly by and did nothing as the sand disappeared and coconut trees were unearthed and toppled at Kings Beach - accelerated by the groynes next door? What would he have thought about the "professionals" in the government agencies who, thanks to his "free education for all" initiatives, now sport PhDs and MScs, and who, depending on the day of the week and/or what adult beverage they may have had with breakfast, come up with different explanations for the rapidly accelerating erosion in the Mullins Bay area - except any for which they may be responsible?
One thing for sure - he could be silent. No, not the Errol Barrow who loved the coasts of Barbados and the ocean so much that his ashes are scattered there. His bones could have been in some mausoleum anywhere on Barbados, but even in death he chose to remind us about our stewardship of the ocean and our coastal areas. We honour him when we care for our coastal areas - starting with correcting our mistakes on his beloved beach in Mullins Bay.