If you are from the Caribbean, this book of short stories, by Fred Thornhill, “The Crabs Were Running,” will resonate with you. If you are over 60, Fred’s exceptional memory will astound you. His vivid description of events, places, people and community will resurrect memories that you thought you had lost. If you have Canadian children, but were unable to effectively communicate your childhood to them, then this is the time to buy this book and let them experience some of your childhood through Fred’s words.
And if you were planning to take them to visit your homeland, then they will be in a position to decide if the Caribbean made significant “progress,” and be in a better position to appreciate your country, why you made the move to “foreign”, and why it is important that they educate themselves, learn a trade, and become a productive citizen of the country of their birth.
Thornhill takes you from the very rural Couva town to San Fernando, Trinidad, pitching marbles, and going to school barefooted. His first driving lesson at age seven with his two brothers, nine and five years old, and his father’s participation in this episode. The family visit to Tobago, and experience seeing the German U boats during WWII. His close friendship with his chickens, especially Big Red, the cock that ruled the roost. Fred describes the passing of his father at age 9 and the total uprooting of his childhood. Fred’s documenting of these events
would inform you that words are like video or camera pictures when well written.
This book has many other stories, but this a brief introduction to Thornhill’s extremely vivid mind, and proves that his dyslexia is a gift, a gift of an excellent memory and attention to detail. Get this book for Black History month or anytime, it will be a great addition to your black history library. https://www.amazon.com/CRABS-WERE-RUNNING-Fred-Thornhill