You can appreciate the size of the large bands; their equipment covers lots of land area. To the left of the car are two of the bass pan sections consisting of nine large pans each. Each large band will have 8 to 12 of these bass pan sections along with many more smaller instruments. I tried a couple of times to record a sound and video bite of different bands, but my equipment could not begin to capture the music. We were so easily caught up in the sound and rhythm of the orchestras that it was all but impossible not to dance and hum along with all the locals swaying to the music.
Everyone needs a break from the action, and this little guy is enjoying some deep fried chicken purchased from one of the vendors. His dad played in this band, and the entire family was along for the big day. The sun that day bore down hot with hardly a cloud in the sky, and the musicians were dripping with sweat after every performance. We were just standing around listening and dancing, and after a few hours, the heat really got to us as well. We managed to find some shade for lunchtime and a place to relax.
While we broke for lunch we came across one of the characters from the Old Yard, the original classic Carnival players from years past. Joy had her picture taken with one of the Fancy Masqueraders. You’ll see mine later.
The Pan Semi-finals take all day to judge, but we were completely worn out after about five hours, so we reluctantly threaded the crowds back to our maxi-taxi driven by Derek of “Members Only Maxi Taxi” service owned by Jesse James. Jesse and Derek took good care of us throughout all these events and served as our guides and teachers to help us understand all the traditions and events as they took place. There’s far more to Carnival than just the show and the music, and I encourage you to learn more.