In the Caribbean “lime” is not just a sour fruit; it’s also a verb which means “to go about doing nothing in particular with the express purpose of allowing oneself to find enjoyment while doing it”. Today the kids and I sought out the true experience of Caribbean liming. After I spent awhile in the morning writing my book “Amongst Artists in Antigua” we then started liming. We began with a visit to Taco Loco in downtown St. John’s. Taco Loco offers free refills of Orange Soda. The kids took this as a challenge, but it was a contest they could not endure. While liming in Taco Loco we talked about all the places where they had eaten burgers and pizza in Antigua. They rated those places. Knowing that the rating of things is a finer art of liming, I observed their progress with satisfaction.
We then walked around a little aimlessly, but with the vague intention of stopping in to say hello to our friends at the EAG. We got there after closing time. At this point I was certain that we were on track. Deciding a course of action at the last minute and then being too late seems to be a signature of liming so I didn’t fret. On the way to the car we stopped off to buy some DVDs. We then spent the afternoon liming around the house watching them. After the DVD player started acting up we moved to lying on the bed looking up at the spinning ceiling fan and taking picture after picture of it to explore the different flash modes of my son’s camera. The flash is an older model and not quite matched with the camera. At the concert we went to the night before he was having some issues with the flash. Now he was ready to tackle taking concert photos again. During the while we played with the flash we managed to avoid picking up the camera to take any pictures of us liming. I believe that as a photographer that might have been construed as work. When the experimentation with the flash became too studious we retreated to simply watching the fan while chatting about nothing in particular.
Finally sometime during the evening we discovered that we were hungry. Waiting until one is hungry to start thinking about preparing food is another signature of someone experienced in the art of liming. We drove the few short blocks to Chris on the Grill, one our favorite local restaurants. Given that it was carnival and given the ever present music some dancing had spilled out from the restaurant to the street outside. Having listened to 92.9 Vibes FM every time we went in the car we were familiar with many of the songs. The music caught us but for the most part we settled for bobbing our heads and swaying our shoulders without moving from our comfortable seats. After all it had been a long day.
On the way home we passed the mas camp for the Solid Mas Troupe. The mas camp is the place that the people in a carnival troupe go to make their costumes and coordinate their activities. We pass it dozens of times every day so it is inevitable that we stop in occasionally to say hello like we did tonight. My buddy there, whom I see all the time, asked me if I was just liming. If he as true Caribbean thought we were liming then we must indeed be good. Having taken to liming so quickly I wondered if we were either naturals, or whether we had been unknowingly doing it all along. Perhaps tomorrow if we don’t go to the beach we’ll see.