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Friday, August 17, 2012

How was your Caribana?

The best thing for me this year was absolutely my costume, I felt freakin fantastic in it. My favourite! heart-eyes.gif Not many gems popped off, and none of the big dangling crystals came off ! The gems used were high quality, including in the necklace. The wire on the collar did bruise me, it was difficult to wear comfortably. It could have used padding. But now I know what playing frontline is like, and I wouldn't rule it out again, perhaps a backpack or wings though, or maybe a collar designed differently.
We arrived at the CNE at 11:00, so Trini-in-Toronto got his big Caribana wish, incl his coveted $3 parking near the Go Station. http://www.fullfreestuff.com/FreePhotos/Clipart/Smilies/Emotions/Phew%20Smiley.gifWe were able to get pictures of Saldenah but very few of Nationz. As for the loop - I didn't really enjoy it. It would have served it's purpose if it was lined with more spectators. But there weren't that many spectators inside the loop, and so it felt rather pointless, and like it was taking up time. Photographers jumped in after the loop, and then once we got on the Lakeshore, some stormers. After judging, of course there were more stormers. But what we all should realize by now is the top big bands always have stormers. Likely even all the bands. Now I don't know about Mas Toronto (1) though. Anyone who played with them is certainly encouraged to comment on that. As well as what time they actually got going, because word is they didn't start until 12:00. How did the security rope work for Revellers after judging? What about the road experience for bands like Connections and TruDynasty who went down later?
Once again (3) bands didn't make it onto the parade, which is definitely an injustice. Penalties were said to be given this year for bands that held up the parade, which is the proper way to handle delays.
Tribal Knights water truck had plenty of bottles whenever I went, and the cool zone fans were a terrific, much used touch. The food distribution was an issue. One person was grilling chicken and masqueraders were in a very slow moving food line before the loop. When we had to assemble they closed down and stopped giving out food, and we tried twice more after judging to get food. The second try they ran out and said come back in an hour when the chicken was supposed to be done. The third time I was eventually given one box (of 4 drumsticks), but food for Trini-in-Toronto who was next to me also waiting, never came.
We had to leave the parade to find food @5:00, and I finally left and reached the car at 8:00 when it started to rain. There were sooo many black boxes of 1/2 eaten chow mein littered all over the route (was it CNz lunch?), so obviously at least another band had some sort of problem. Was it inedible, or just too big a serving of cold noodles?

Something I've noticed the past few years is many people also changed bands. What were your reasons for switching bands, the costumes, the parade? And how was the experience?
Another thing I took notice of this year was most masqueraders wore flats, sandals or sneakers. I saw some very well matched colourful flats on Skittlez girls. And while many sandals looked very cute, I couldn't do it, my feet need support when I'm on them for 9 hours! I barely saw boots, and they were on mostly frontliners.

Well, my Hamilton carnival tabanca hit for sure. And with no Barrie parade either, it's especially hard. 1crap.gifBarrie's Caribfest parade will hopefully be back next yearhttp://www.eyesskyward.com/forum/images/smilies/fingers_crossed.gif, and as for Hamilton's MardiGras????? Smiley saying “Please?!”
Until next time, take the very best of care everyone! huey.gif


Anonymous said...

CNz didn't have food in black boxes. I ate food from one truck and my boyfriend from another and the food was edible especially when your hungry and didn't want to go look for food. I think the food is and issue for all bands. Regardless, I didn't come to caribana to be an epicurian I came to play meh mas and that is exactly what I did despite the bad food!

Trudy said...

My group played w CNz. I didn't ask for food so I have no idea what or if any was given. That circle thing that they have now is so silly. I feel like a penned animal waiting for slaughter. We were in there for hours! Aztec was the last in the line-up so we took in the music from the truck in the next band (they were playing btter stuff). We crossed one set of judges, to PALANCE! WTF?! Seriously? Who made that decision? Finally we were out on LakeShore and were infiltrated by stormers. There was NO security on CNz, the ppl in the CNz tee shirts were looking for a wine. No barriers, nothing! I think we got to 2 underpasses (lol I have no clue, I dont live there) and then my group left. It would have been such a good time if security actually did their job. Never again TO, never again.

Anonymous said...

I played with Carnival Nationz. We did not have chow mein. Half of my crew ate from one truck and the other half of us ate from the other. They were both chicken options with rice (they did have a veggie option). One jerk and one stew or BBQ. I did NOT enjoy crossing to Palance. I was actually pissed. The STORMERS were my biggest problem. I wanted to leave as soon as we crossed the stage. Did nationz think just because they were #3 they ddin't need it? Although I will obviously be returning to play with Nationz. I just hope the speak with the DJ's and get some security.

TB said...

Food wasn't an issue with CNz before or after judging the food truck went down the road with us and the food was pre-packed in white styrofoam take out boxes (so that chow mein was definitely a different band) the food was rice n peas and jerk chicken and was catered (no chowmein). No waiting or reaonable wait. Only issue would be finding the food truck on the road but it was close to the drink truck (even though they had said they were only serving food before judging on the instruction sheet they kept it open on the road after judging so that was great). They did run out of water far down the road though (not good on such a hot day) but could have been because of the extreme heat people consumed more than usual in terms of how much they planned and stocked for the road So I can understand the shortage that late in the afternoon so one could also argue that as band #3 they should have been done by then (ie no water shortage) if it werent for the lengthy delays.

And i dont know which i prefer - the Fences or no fences... there are pros/cons to each. Because there were no fences somehow the 2friends I played with ended up walking too far up the road into saldenah and I couldnt find them for hours - maybe the fences would have prevented that. LOL

were there areas for improvement - yes there always will be. But all in all i had a great time on the road.


Anonymous said...

Get use to playing mas in Toronto.As for the black boxes/w food that was from saldenah,by the way who want to eat all this heavy food when most of them already drunk,i think a nice meat SANDWICH will be nice.chicken,beef,roast pork,fried fish,saltfish and veggie. What do you think? Bye the way NATIONZ!!!rules.

Karabana said...

Oh that's really too bad Tru, but I do hope you all will return for Caribana again.
Thanks for replying re the black boxes. I knew when asked, I'd get an answer quick. :-) Heh heh, I'm no foodie on de road either, I don't expect gourmet meals eh. I understand the logistical problems of providing bands food. With catering, it won't be piping hot. Cooking on the spot, it'll take too long.
I do feel cutters would be ideal - bake & saltfish, pholourie, aloo pies, sahina, patties, & yes, easy peasy sandwiches.
(The drumsticks btw were good. :))
Wow, ok, I'm getting hungry, time for lunch...

Lesley said...

I was with TR.....I found it weird that ppl in Cnz talk about so much stormers and you were #3. And we were after you guys. I found there were less stormers then last year, that just me though. Cuz of security issues and the violence in T.O., a few stay home will that good, better for us masqueraders.

During my trip down the road, I wasnt hardly pushed, shoved or my toes wasn't mashed (Mind you,I was wearing sandals). We had a rope before the stage and after I never saw it again and the securitiy in the red shirts either. I was annoyed when water ran out though, kmt! Even my costume survived this year but yet I didnt played frontline this year, after hearing no Hamilton and Barrie, Double kmt!

Glad Caribana turned out nice this year and they definelty need to make that loop shorter, too.

Carnivalcocoa said...

I played with D Regulars and we did not make it to Lakeshore. That totally sucked. We were the last band, #15. Caribana is too big a carnival to jam 15 bands in a 6 -hour timeframe to get on to Lakeshore. Time management was poor this year.

I watched Nationz and T.O Revellers cross the judging point Revellers took forever. Imagine Revellers was band #4 and they crossed judging around 1:30 or 2pm (in that time frame). So I was not surprised we got cut off. This happens after it took so long for bands to get out of Exhibition Place. Geez. Never me again.
I'll be playing in a big band from now on so I'm guaranteed to get a decent jump up on Lakeshore.

And you're right Kara, the loop was pointless. That loop I feel is part of the reason why bands took so long to get on to Lakeshore.

Anonymous said...

I loved this year. I went back to my Saldenah roots, got an amazing band leader, and I think I had the prettiest costume I've ever played in (which stayed together). As a vet, I had blinged out previous years boots. I was unprepared for the cardio this year, but it was WAY too hot for me. Everything slid off my face.

This is the first year I completely missed when we crossed the stage. We hit the crossover and wondered when the hell we passed the stage. I think it was some point during Palance, but I couldn't tell you for sure.

I found the numbers this year really low, but I enjoyed the calm of it.

I think the amount of police on the road was a bit much and made it feel like I was at the Cuban airport.

I did appreciate the extra potty's on the road and in the parking lots.

Anonymous said...

The LOOP is fine that's not the problem is the larger bands taking to dam long on stage.This isn't Trinidad,we have less than 10hrs to do our thing on the road (Play mas)so come on all band leaders and let's make this thing work for everyone.I think a CAP on the large bands will help the smaller bands make some money.What do you think?

Trini-in-Toronto said...

As a masquerader, I don't care for the loop because it just feels like a really long line up to get to the judging point. I want to get judging over with early and quickly so I can start to party, and the dj can shut up with his get in your section chant. I'm not sure a cap on large band numbers will encourage masqueraders to play in a small band. I could play in a small band if they had an earlier spot in the parade, many people have suggested having the first band be a big band and the second one be a small band and so on....
I don't imagine the TMBA will entertain a cap or a change to the order of the bands selection. Trying to squeeze 15 bands into 7 hours is way too tight to allow gaps between the bands, or delays crossing the stage. Any band that didn't make it onto the road this year should be opening the parade next year as compensation. Any band that exceeds their time limit at judging needs to be put in the back of the parade next year, also any band who falls more than 25 minutes behind the band in front of them at judging, needs to be put in the back for the following year.

Anonymous said...

2nd yr in a row played with cnz and ws nt happy with the food situation, last yr we did nt get any food told us it ws finished this yr we got something tht ws really gross we had to throw it away meanwhile looking on at some other cnz masqueraders' food tht looked great nt sure wht ws up with the discrepancy..some people got good food others got bad..costume pick up though compared to last year ws excellent as for next year since we r coming from the states we will make our decision on band selection based on price, we might try saldenah or tribal knights or fantazia and the list goes on so many to choose from so nationz better be careful on pricing next yr since 20 of us plan to jump ship which i know incl many others tht choose to remain silent, overall caribana this year to me ws great we had a great time on the road and i agree tht the organizers do need to make changes to allow all bands a fair chance on the road..penalize whoever if u have to..but everyone needs to have fun..love T.O. now onto Labour Day..

Karabana said...

Palance, really? Wow, 2 year old soca. #djfail.

Mike said...

I love your costume it's so pretty.

Anonymous said...

Mas Toronto had stormers from Saldenah's band who were directly behind us! We had great music, food and had a ball as band number one on the road! The shame though, is that it is not spectator's sport at all after you pass judging. Everything seems to disintegrate...

Karabana said...

So what time did Mas Toronto start?

Anonymous said...

My Caribana was OK. I was with Nationz Rio section frontline with big wings, and I gotta tell you, tryin to get into your proper position in the loop was a real pain in the butt since my costume was so wide. We were all huddled together tightly and I was told to get in front, but I couldn't without the risk of blinding people cause we were so jam packed on the loop. I managed to get there five minutes before judging though. Food an water was a battle after we got on the lakeshore and my make up melted mid parade due to the heat lol. I ended up hanging out near a steel pan truck for a while then caught up with other bands. It was good after the loop. Got some compliments and pictures taken despite my disaster make up lol.

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Mass#1fan said...

Wow, it's interesting to hear all that happened this year. I missed bana this year for first time in 10 years .
I guys by now everyone knows that bandit has left Nationz to do his own thing. "Carnival Angelz" , Kara what do you think about that.?

Wonder if that will have an affect on Nationz numbers this year. I am I the rested to see what his costumes will look like hopefully it will be like that stuff you see on the Victoria Secret Fashion show . :-)

Mass#1fan said...

Wow, it's interesting to hear all that happened this year. I missed bana this year for first time in 10 years .
I guys by now everyone knows that bandit has left Nationz to do his own thing. "Carnival Angelz" , Kara what do you think about that.?

Wonder if that will have an affect on Nationz numbers this year. I am I the rested to see what his costumes will look like hopefully it will be like that stuff you see on the Victoria Secret Fashion show . :-)

Karabana said...

Many designers/section leaders go from band to band. Bigger news is TruDynasty having a section in Carnival Nationz this year! Curious what their Reef section will be.
Interested in seeing his Angelz too, always nice costumes. Every year the VS fashion show looks more & more like mas.

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