– “Happy birthday.”
– “Thanks for coming.”
So began the conversation between two mature men at Kool Breeze bar on Saut D’eau Road, Paramin, on March 19th, 2015. Interestingly, it was neither of their birthdays.
‘Peppy’ Romany, the more lively and vocal of the two, went on to explain that they, and their other close friends, greet each other in exactly this way each time they enter this bar. “Every day above the ground is a happy birthday!” he explained, pointing to a sign above which echoed his sentiments. At seventy years of age, Peppy was born in 1944 during World War II, and was raised and lived all his Life in Paramin, working the land for almost all of that time. He switched careers just two years prior to manage a cemetery and dig graves in Maraval. Many may find this feat remarkable for someone in his age.
Though he’s just about a decade younger, Peppy’s friend, the jubilant, one-eyed man known as ‘Pirate’, is also outstandingly robust. Pirate explained that seeing the well-known, Trinidadian marathoner, Granny Luces, has kept him inspired to run all his Life. Most years Pirate has run the annual Trinidad and Tobago International Marathon, in-between taking part in regular 5K, 10K and 15K events, and hikes with the Island Hikers group.