Let me tell you all about how this supposed holiday "labor day" doesn't exist in my 'hood. It is a myth! A fable! A fairy tale! Here in Brooklyn we celebrate West Indian-American Day. Or Caribbean day! OR (as I prefer to call it) "WTF!? This is fucking awesome! I can't believe what I'm looking at. THIS IS NUTZ- day!"
This holiday starts at 2AM the night before. There was a crazy concert in the parking lot of the Brooklyn Museum. We were kinda the only white people around, but I think that's probably okay. Then starts Jouvert. I tried to stay up for it, but I just couldn't. I'm grabbing the description from this site-
What makes it so great? Bands who play steel pans, drums, bass, cymbals, and more instruments are accompanied by dozens of followers who dance, sing, grind and party on the streets of Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn like they have no worries in the world (They actually don't for one night). Some people are dripped in mud and even chocolate to emmulate the traditional meanings of carnival. (Which in part is a celebration of the abolishment of slavery and a tribute to the land back in the Islands, especially Trinidad where it orginates from.)
My neighbors said something about baby power being thrown around also. And for some reason the city of New York allows all this partying to go on, the police just come and hang out and watch everyone dance and get drunk.
Onto the next day! The day of the parade! Which goes on for HOURS. Literally, I have no idea when it ends. I took my time getting over there because I know it just goes on forever.
The parade is its own brand of crazinesss (video to follow) but the streets have just as much going on. There are kids who have made thier own carnivale esque outfits, ladies wearing not much of anything, and people draped in the colors of thier island. The street vendors (legal and not) have a feild day and air is filled with the scents of things like goat and "salt fish, whatever that is.Its aparently a family affair! I think there are many cultral differences going on. Its a bit hard for me to wholly understand what is going on, because I was taught that girls don't need to shake thier asses to get a man/feel good about themselves/be attractive and it was the activity of ladies with poor self esteem. Also definately not for children's eyes. But I think there were totally different ideas about that brand of activity here. It seemed to be a celebration of one's self. I'm not sure what my opinions on the matter are yet...
I can absolutely say all body types were well represented and celebrated for what they were, beautiful ladies!