Many citizens are hoping that the dark clouds of 2019 may not hang over T&T in this New Year and there will be fewer murders, tragedies, road deaths, and natural disas­ters.

People are hoping that more workers will not lose their jobs and that citizens would see clearly now that “the rain has gone” as the economy comes out of the recession.
There is also hope that people all over the country will have a regular water supply.
Last year had the second-highest murder rate (534) in the country with the tourist resort of Tobago seeing a rise in violent crimes (nine murders). There was also carnage on the nation’s roads (some 117 died in road ac­cidents) three more than in 2018.
Tough-talking Police Commissioner Gary Griffith has assured that in 2020 he intends to take a heavy-handed approach to treat with criminal activity. He says that he is going to have a 2020 vision, lock and load with safety catches off- one shot one kill.
Motorists are hoping that the dilapidated roads in the country will be repaired. Householders are hoping that they will not have to en­dure disastrous flooding as in 2019. Many others are hop­ing that they will not have to constantly live behind closed doors for fear of criminals.
This year voters will be going to the polls to elect a new Government. Many are hoping that there will be no violence linked to the Gen­eral Election.
PM Dr Keith Rowley will be seeking a second term in office but some analysts say he will have a difficult time convincing the elector­ate that he has governed the country well over the past five years.
On the other hand, the Op­position UNC under Kamla Persad-Bissessar is hoping that her party can get back into government. There are signs from the local govern­ment election that she can edge out the PNM in the General Elections.
A lot of people are making predictions for the New Year that the PNM will lose the General Elections this year, that the spiraling murder rate will drop and the economy will grow.
N ow that Christmas is over, Carnival is in the air and it is going to be fete, af­ter fete for partygoers.
The rum posse of Ramsingh. Balkie, Dougla, and Rasta are still going for their usual drink up at Corky’s bar.

Ramsingh: “Barman, Christmas done ah see yuh still playing parang music. Ah want to hear dem new Chutney songs. Dougla say he start hearing some ah dem soca songs on d airwaves al­ready.”

Barman: “People does celebrate Christmas ah week after Christmas Day. It have some people who still have dey Christmas stock at home and dey go drink it out fuh Carnival.”

Dougla: “Barman, ah see somebody looking like yuh in Gary party. Ah see black owman, ah see Syrians, op­position politicians but ah didn’t see any ah dem min­isters. Like Rowley, Young and d AG blank he party. Dat party look like it cost ah lot ah money, boy. Dat was ah big shot party.”

Balkie: “Barman bring ah bottle ah puncheon and some beers. Ah see yuh have fry chicken and gizzard. Fix up something fuh d boys be­cause ah eh prepare to drink on ah empty stomach again. Me pardner say he friend dead from cirrhosis of d liver. Dey say is d puncheon rum he was drinking dat damage he liver bad. So ah easing up on drinking pun­cheon.”

Rasta: “Balkie do like me and smoke marijuana. Ent smoking weed is lawful now but you have to smoke it in yuh home and not in d public. Right now ah have ah ten-piece on meh and d police cyar hold me because it eh weighing over one ounce.”

Ramsingh: “As yuh talk bout smoking marijuana ah hear d Arrive ah Live ow­man Sharon say that d de­criminalization of ganja could result in road deaths. She want d police to bring d drugalyser test just like how d police does test drivers for alcohol. It have some drivers who does smoke marijuana but dey do get in any acci­dent because dey could hold dey head.”

Rasta: “It go have plenty people going to parties af­ter dey smoke dey weed at home. Ah even hear some drug pushers organizing Carnival drug parties in pri­vate houses but dey must not have more than one ounce in dey possession. Some par­tygoers does want dey head bad to play dey self”.

Dougla: “Yuh know dat Arrive Live owman say d government should move dem concrete light poles from near d road on d high­way. She say every time ah car run off d road it does crash on ah light pole. Yuh hear joke dat is joke. Is dem drivers who cyar drive and crashing dey car on d light post causing dem to dead.”

Balkie: “She come like d minister who build ah bridge whey eh have no river and after he build de bridge he move d river to run under d bridge. He say d government only paying him ah dollar for he land dat d bridge was build on.”

Barman: “Allyuh, hear dis one, it have West Indian tobacco making cigarettes and it have ah company name West Indian Cannabis Com­pany making clothing. Dat is ah smart businessman. He could be one ah dem farmers who d AG go give ah licence to plant marijuana. Ah hear d man is family to d AG. Yuh think he get ah tip off dat marijuana was going to be legalized, so he could line up to plant weed? Clothing eh have money again.”

Ramsingh: “Hear dis story, Meh pardner son Ra­mesh went to London to earn money. After six months he write home and tell he father he set up ah mattress busi­ness and he sold 40 ah dem and 5,000 panties. He made $15,000 pounds. His father tell him Ramesh close up shop and come back home because yuh wife made 30,000 pounds with one mattress and no panties. Dat is ah owman with brains and body.”

Until next week!