Black Friday – By Ron Persaud

Black Friday  – By Ron Persaud

I am very sorry but I cannot think or feel about Black Friday in the same manner as most Americans do – inasmuch as I desire to assimilate the culture of the country I have adopted; or has it adopted me?

The reason is that the term Black Friday connotes images of destructive fires and even more destructive human (or do I mean inhuman?) behavior.

You see, I was born in British Guiana and had the blessings of a good and wholesome upbringing and a fine education. I was interested in everything … well … except in outdoor sports. I experienced the excitements and disappointments as the country approached Independence.   

I was given a foretaste of the pride and joy when my grandparents’ generation celebrated the Independence of India in 1947. I joined in the parade when the Gold Coast became Ghana in 1957. I envied Trinidadians in 1962 because they obtained their Independence before we did.

And in the process of growing up I dreaded the term Black Friday.

Friday Mar. 07th. 1913: Fire destroyed the Brickdam Cathedral.
” Feb. 23rd. 1945: The Great Fire.
” Nov. 30th. 1951: The Resaul Maraj Fire.
” Feb. 16th. 1962: Looting and burning.
” Apr. 05th. 1963: More of the same.

Do you wonder that I stay home on Black Friday?

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  • de castro compton  On 11/30/2013 at 5:50 pm

    Ron my brother….superstitution restricts your enjoyment….
    Friday 13th I was born 13th month of the year 1943.
    Does that restrict my enjoyment of another lease of life.
    Life is but a short visit on the planet so get out and enjoy it
    as if there was no tomorrow… may never be.!!
    Live live to the full ….tomorrow is but a dream.

  • Hylton Fernandes  On 11/30/2013 at 6:12 pm

    Ron, Your thoughts mirror mine, I was born in 1937 and have experienced lots of Black Fridays in Guyana, from fires to riots and even though Canada is my new home, Guyana will always be a part of me. My wife who is Canadian, is now in the U.S. for a Black Friday weekend! lol

  • Arnold Girdharry  On 11/30/2013 at 10:53 pm

    Face the real truth, Ron–Guyanese leave most of the shopping to the women. The one thing we men hate more than a Christmas morning hangover is to do Christmas shopping.

  • Ron. Persaud  On 12/01/2013 at 9:35 am

    Arnold, you are so right! I would even go so far as to say that the Christmas morning hangover is more bearable; because, although you have an empty wallet, you know that you did have a glorious time the night before. The shopping event leaves you with an empty and NO pleasant memories.
    Shopping with my wife always brings to mind the old adage, “An addle-pated beetlehead and his specie divaricate with startling prematurity”.
    Are you related to either Roy G. or Ronald R. Girdharry? Both were from the Corentyne. The former was a senior student at ECFI in Trinidad while the latter was a colleague at Albion estate.

  • dearly beloved  On 12/01/2013 at 11:15 am

    Oh yes !

  • Arnold Girdharry  On 12/01/2013 at 1:34 pm

    Ron–thanks for the re-enforcement.
    Ronald and I are first cousins–sons from two brothers. Ron is retired and lives in Toronto; I’m also retired and live in Florida.
    Familiar with Roy’s name but don’t think I know him personally.
    Are you related to Milton or Joe Persaud?

  • de castro  On 12/01/2013 at 3:28 pm

    That was me ….impostering your dearly beloved…wifey…ha ha !

    Oh yes !

    Be careful what u state publicly/privately in future….
    Ha ha

  • Sylvia Barrow  On 12/05/2013 at 11:17 pm

    Hi Ron,
    thanks for the remlnders of Guyanese Black Fridays!! Unfortunatey there are too many sad memories of Guyana and more are being created daily for those still living in Guyana. Anyway, the main reason for this reply is to ask you to contact me at so that we can reconnect. It’s been a long time since those days at LBI.


  • Nandini Hayes  On 07/29/2016 at 4:12 pm

    Can anyone tell me about the Resaul Maraj fire in 1951. I am his great granddaughter andi have lived in England since I was two so I know very little about my family in Guyana.


    • Stacey  On 09/08/2019 at 11:37 am

      So am I Nandani. I don’t know much either but have been meeting relatives here and there and have learned a lot since.


  • Leene Misir  On 05/31/2020 at 1:46 pm

    Hello Ron,
    I am pleased to see a glimpse of my ancestral genealogy. We do not know each other, and that is quite alright. However, when you mention your grandparents I am thinking of Radha ( his grandfather on his mother’s side is old Resaul Maraj) and Sati who lived in Bel Air. Old Resaul Lived at the corner [SW] of High and Barrack. We lived at 48 High street Kingston and our nani and nana Sumintra and Muni Persaud lived at 9 Barrack st., Kingston.
    Only two of Uncle Radha and Aunt Sati sons i could recall by name Chico and Amar i know there is more and a daughter Muni [these are calling names] I recall as a child growing up. Are you related to them?

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