So if you come to stay in Jamaica, at least in the North Coast areas, be cautious about letting persons know when your birthday (Earthday) is. In my area this is a treacherous and messy tradition. So what is to fear about your birthday, spankings? Loud Singing? Pinching? Nope, being floured! Yup they surround you and they take a heap of flour and toss it on you! Remember this is a humid and hot place so that flour pretty much makes a dough on your skin!
Last week one of my Environment Club members had a birthday. We had already planned on taking kids to the library that day, as part of the read-a-thon competition to ensure children have access to books. I would love to see someone continue to take the children to the library throughout the summer next year and the following years. Back to Michael’s birthday. We carried the children to the library and they all got books. Instead of dropping them off at their homes on the way back we took them back to my supervisors shop where all the girls got a handful of flour and as he came to the other side of the truck he got bombed with flour! His mother had given permission since she would be the one to wash the child up when he got back home.
This is a fun but messy tradition and I have managed to escape it both years I was here. I am grateful that I missed this tradition but also happy to have seen it done. Birthday cake after the flour shower makes everything better in the end. All children love sweets so they will endure a great deal with a good outlook if a sweet is provided after the fact.