OAS/GNT Sustainable Heritage Endorsement Programme


What do you see here? (Addressed to the whole group)

A wrecked plane    –     Wire fence

Coconut trees     –     Brown grass

A meager, black cow     –     Electrical poles

Clouds (thick & scattered)     –     Buildings (several)

Bus (orange, red, & yellow)     –     Asphalt (gray)

Blue sky     –     Soil

Broken glass     –     Shrubs

Why did you take this photo? (Addressed to the photographer)

To give travelers another flight option for entering and exiting Grenada from the now defunct Pearls Airport in Pearls, St. Andrew’s that need to be re-established to complement the usual flights at the fully operational Maurice Bishop International Airport at Point Salines, St. George’s. Reopening the Pearls Airport will do away with the monopoly of only using the Maurice Bishop International Airport. Having another choice is better than having only one way in and out of Grenada.

What is really happening here? (Addressed to the whole group—alternatively what does the photograph represent?)

Underlying the “Pilots On the Rise” photograph is an unrelenting undercurrent or magnetic interplay between Grenada’s economic and social waltz, a tropical ballet that continually circles back to the cradle of culture. At the onset, the dry, hardened soil and the sea of brown grass that lies at the imaginary feet of the wrecked airplane signify not just the dry season, but they also suggest that that part of Grenada is economically, socially, and culturally wounded or bankrupt. On the other hand, brown infers stability and endurance that bespeaks Grenada’s longsuffering mentality. Figuratively and literally, Grenada is not too old to reenergize itself and it is never too late for the island to regenerate economic stimulation in the Pearls, St. Andrew’s area, by renovating the Pearls Airport. The sight of the ruined airplane insinuates that Grenada is intoxicated with inertia like a sitting duck enjoying itself in a tiny bubble, or an addict waiting patiently for its next fix. So this call-to- action by way of the “Pilots On The Rise” picture will signal the growth of local as well as regional economics, because more travelers will be coming in and out of Grenada’s northern region, which will, in turn, create more job opportunities for service personnel and support staff to counterbalance Grenada’s high unemployment crisis. Additionally, the move to refurbish Pearls Airport will signify a cultural take-off, because there is a dire need for a cultural resurrection from the Pearl’s crash site. What Grenada has not taken to heart is that a wreck does not have to remain a wreckage for too long. Having to deal with collisions is a natural part of life. With that being said, Grenada, in the form of the injured airplane, needs to get up, dust itself off, and get back in the game. Moreover, the “Pilot on the Rise” photo serves as a wake-up call or as an economic alarm for Grenada. To some degree, resting too long in the lap of ruin implies that time (certainly) does not heal all wounds. This wounded “Pilots On the Rise” image, then, hints that Grenada has become much too complacent with accepting life as-is without taking the initiative to rise above its ashes like a phoenix in an upward motion. Moving forward, the wire fence near the plane’s left wing connotes a sense of boundary (as in a boundary line), which carries with it a positive connotation of ownership. However, that same wire fence can also be viewed as a barrier (as in an obstacle), which is associated with experiencing difficulty or having to overcome hurdles. More so, the meager black cow that is walking away from the airplane wreckage reveals that Grenada, too, can walk away from the rubble to nourish its body to live to tell its story, thereby becoming a model for other Caribbean islands to emulate. In contrast to the widespread inactivity on the ground, the baby blue sky with its drifting clouds bespeaks a newfound sense of hope in that the refurbished Pearls Airport will be a dream-come- true for local, regional, and international pilots to realize their aviation potential. What this new sense of hope for knowledge does for Grenada is that it will create more opportunities, and, by extension, Grenada will receive increased attention from pilots in the Caribbean and elsewhere.

PHOTO Title: Pilot on the Rise

Photograph Location: Pearls, St. Andrew’s

Photographer: Iva Williams