Finding a Man...grove - with Kathryn and Thais

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESLiving on a small island, it's so rare that you make a true discovery. Everyone, everywhere has always been there done that, knows more about it than you and yawns when you get excited about it. So it's truly exciting to go somewhere that people literally haven't put their hands all over and is truly new. 

That's how Thais and I felt the day we came across the mangrove forest at Point Petit Trou in Tobago one Saturday. Now obviously, we weren't the first people ever to see this place, (not trying to be a Columbus here) but it was a first for both of us.

Thais and I had been exploring a vacant villa complex in the Tobago Plantations (extremely creepy by the way. I kept waiting for the zombies to emerge if we made too much noise) when we noticed a very Blair Witchish entrance (or what I would assume a Blair Witchish entrance would look like, as I hate suspense and horror and have watched few horror movies in my life) to a series of interconnected bridges through the mangrove. The bridges originated from multiple different points and converged into one path that led to a small hut, and a wide jetty with a bench overlooking a lagoon.

Some of the best adventures are the ones where you're experiencing just a dash of trepidation, and yall know me, Nervous Nancy, can always serve up the trepidation. "How perfect this would be for murderers to leave bodies", I thought. "How perfect this bench would be for ritual sacrifice", I thought. But I continued on through. Even more of a surprise was that my companion, who can skew a little ... rigid...(love you UTT!) was completely up for the adventure and took on the impromptu but welcome role of photographer! In fact, the only truly scary moment of the adventure was when she spotted a snake in the box that housed the electricals for the lighting. I never get my ass out of some mangrove so fast...

We tried to surmise all the reasons that someone had created this hidden treasure. It seems made for wedding photos, and little limes. But if you guys have any insight definitely let me know.

One of my goals for this blog, is to focus on situating Trinidad as a destination in itself, even for the people who live here. If you're not careful, you can really start to focus on  leaving Trinidad & Tobago in order to get the true excitement of discovery and otherness that you get from foreign travel. I hope that Cities and Islands does some work in making people realize there is a lot to discover right here, if you just make the effort (and lets be real, we can be a bit lazy). Because not everyone can travel every weekend, every month, or even every year. Thankfully, I have been blessed to come from a family where traveling was almost a family value like generosity and forgiveness. But it inspires in me a wanderlust that is satiated when I'm home as well as when I get on a plane. I'm glad I get to share that with you through Cities and Islands.


Photography: Thais McGowan

Dress, La Maison de FiFi; Sandals, Zara; Sunglases, Michael Kors.

Thais is wearing her favourite silk caftan. Lol.

The A's Have It

I'm really excited to see young designers in Trinidad, stepping up and producing work and marketing material that's really on an international level. I really want to highlight two of these, Aisling Camps and Adrian Foster, who both released really impressive lookbooks last week of their recent collections. I think it's Aisling's engineering background that lends itself naturally to her focus, precision and technical skill when it comes to knitwear (if you don't believe me check out her behind the scenes pics of her graphs on her Facebook page. GRAPHS.). The result is an undeniably beautiful collection of knit dresses, tops and skirts in soft neutrals, that can be worn forever. Aisling's growing brand is attracting a lot of welcome attention.

Color blocked pullover, cotton polyester monofilament

Aisling's label

Double strap tank & pencil skirt 100% linen w polyester monofilament details

Cropped top w cutout detail Cotton, polyester monofilament

Double Strap Tank 100% linen

Open back tunic 60% viscose 40% Nylon

Price information available on the Aisling Facebook page. Photos courtesy Aisling. Photography: Donald Michael Chambers.

Just in time for Carnival, Adrian Foster, a graduate of the Caribbean Academy for Fashion and Design, just released the lookbook for his new collection Shadows. I'm in love with the monochromatic imagery, chic minimalist fashion (something that we don't easily achieve in the Caribbean generally) and most importantly, clear prices and ordering information!!


Black Linen Shirt Dress




More information available on the AF Adrian Foster Facebook Page. Pictures courtesy AF Adrian Foster. Photography: Marlon James.