October was a busy month, the clocks went back an hour in the UK which means the UK gained one extra hour in bed and a bit more daylight. Cuba celebrated 120 years of independence from Spain on the 10th of October, and St. Vincent & the Grenadines, the last of the Winward Islands to gain their freedom from British rule, celebrated 43 years of independence on the 27th of October.
Out goes October, the month of Black History, and here we are in November, the month of remembrance, which incidentally also encompasses Black History.
November is the time that we in the UK think of War Veterans and wear a red poppy.
Here at Totes Towers, we will be rocking the Black Poppy Rose which not only supports the legacy of the red poppy, but highlights the contribution of African, Caribbean, West Indian and Pacific Island communities to world history.
This year, Remembrance Sunday falls on Sunday 13th November.
As one of the smallest countries in the world at just 14 miles long and just 11 miles wide, Antigua celebrates its independence from British rule on November 1st. The country, which can fit in the area of London three-and-a-half times, and is actually made up of 3 main islands, Antigua, Barbuda and an uninhabited island called Redonda, will celebrate 41 years of freedom this year.
The Eastern Caribbean island which sits with Guadeloupe to the North and Martinique to the South, will celebrate its 44th independence day on November 3rd. Dominica, whose name comes from the Latin term for 'Sunday', sees independence Day as an opportunity to celebrate the unique heritage and Creole culture of the island.
Later in the month on 25th November, Suriname, the only country outside Europe where Dutch is spoken by a majority of the population, celebrates the 47th anniversary of finally being granted independence from the Netherlands in 1975.
On November 30, Barbados celebrates the 56th anniversary of its independence from British rule. Birthplace to both Bajans and rum, BIM can also proudly boast of being the World's newest Republic. The 1st anniversary of the removal of Queen Elizabeth II as head of state is also celebrated on Nov 30th.
November is also the month where our American family and friends celebrate Thanksgiving, and whilst the history of the day is pretty dark, many choose to use the day to honour their loved ones and give thanks for their blessings. Thanksgiving is celebrated on 24th November this year.
On a more charitable note, this month is when the menfolk of the world let those handlebars grow freely. Movember is an annual event involving the growing of moustaches during the month of November to raise awareness of men's health issues, such as prostate cancer, testicular cancer, and men's suicide.
I might just join in and let my own mustache grow this year!
But tell me, do you remember having to sell poppies at Primary School? Will you be taking part in Movember? Let me know in the comments
Until next time,
Keep it Totes Caribbean,
Simone, Chief Designer at Totes Caribbean
Whilst you’re here, you should shop the large BLACK CARIBBEAN tote bag featuring the word 'BLACK' surrounded by the names of the Caribbean islands. This Caribbean-inspired tote bag is a visual representation of the collection of countries and communities which are reduced to a single check-box on diversity forms: Black-Caribbean
To find out more about Totes Caribbean, click the link here.