Several overseas-based Guyanese and other tourists were among the thousands who thoroughly enjoyed the Independence Day float parade today, which started at the Stabroek Market Square and ended at the Jubilee Park at D’Urban Backlands. Georgetown.
Scores of tourists and Guyanese living abroad who just wanted to be ‘home’ for the historic event, were seen dancing and gyrating to the different rhythms being played on various trucks throughout the day.
INews caught up with a few of the overseas guests who indicated they made a special effort to be in Guyana to witness and participate in the country’s Jubilee activities.
Sherene, a Jamaican national, recently flew into Guyana to spend quality time with her Guyana-born husband and his family, but ensured that her ticket was booked in time for the country’s Golden Jubilee celebrations.
She told INews that this was her first trip to Guyana experiencing an Independence Day celebration and that she truly enjoyed herself from the moment she “hit the streets” with her Guyanese loved ones.
“I think today and its activities mark a great achievement for you Guyanese and Guyana…my husband and I are going back to Jamaica on Tuesday but we came in for Jubilee…it truly is a fantastic event today,” Sherene stated.
Meanwhile, Nadja, a citizen from Holland posited that while this was not the first time she visited Guyana, it was the first occasion on which she witnessed a national event and celebration of this nature here.
“I came here before because my son works here and my husband and I are visiting him here again right now…we are celebrating with you Guyanese today too, we are enjoying it, it is great today…we definitely hope to come back sometime again to have celebrations like this here in Guyana,” Nadja said.
Another tourist, Sarah, who was born in New Zealand but spent most of her life in the United States of America (USA) told INews that she was temporarily deployed in Guyana by her office.
She explained that her three-month stint is over but she extended her stay in Guyana because she wanted to experience the “Guyanese” feeling with regards to celebrating the country’s 50th Independence this year.
“This is incredible, I think it is amazing, awesome, wonderful, absolutely fantastic what I am seeing and taking part of here today. I am so glad to have been here to see this…it is a great thing for your country, I went to the flag raising ceremony too and it was beautiful,” Sarah declared.
As for Charles, a U.S. citizen, he was sent to work in Guyana and has been in the country for less than one year. However, he ensured that he was in Guyana this month to celebrate with Guyanese for this historic achievement.
“I think it is great, it is really nice to see all Guyanese coming together for Independence, and everyone seems to take it very dearly. I feel independent here in Guyana too, I enjoy it here in Guyana…I had a great time I must say and I want to thank all of Guyana and you for the hospitality and making my stay here incredible,” Charles stated. (Kristen Macklingam)