Did you know that Guatemala once had both an English and Spanish-speaking Black community? The latter group, known as Garifuna, arrived from Nigeria by way of St. Vincent, where they blended with Carib Indians beginning in 1635 before migrating to Guatemala.
By contrast, the former group was brought to the country to work the fields only about a hundred years ago by the United Fruit Company, settling in an area called Colonia. These English-speaking Afro-Jamaicans, or Guiou, gradually disappeared over the intervening decades, but not before making a lasting impression upon their adopted homeland and elsewhere… source: Afro
That’s how it begins the overview of the book “Guiou: The Other Blacks” – The Afro-Jamaican Presence in Guatemala by Gloria J. Arnold, the author who undertook this challenge as a labor of love, given her Afro-Jamaican Guatemalan roots. Continue reading at Afro.
José and his 11-month old sister are true Panzas Verdes, green bellies, as we call antigüeños since they were born here from a Garifuna mother as far as I could tell. José tends a paca shop along with his mother. If you need a pair of inexpensive sunglasses, you know where to go now.
© 2014, Rudy Girón. All rights reserved.