Web Skills for Guyana

Georgetown sounds

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It struck me this week that I’ve not really tried to properly describe Georgetown on this blog since I’ve been here.
It’s a hard place to pin down. It’s on the Caribbean coast but the sea is brown and the beach litter strewn. We’re in South America but the two main ethnic groups, Indo and Afro-Guyanese, both speak a Creolese flavoured English. It feels like an old colonial capital, yet with the myriad wooden houses on stilts and long wide streets there’s a real whiff of the Deep South about the place.
There are no shades of grey, however, in one aspect of Georgetown – the noise. It is an incredibly noisy city. In a good way.
From the constant beeping of minibuses and taxis, the thud of chutney and soca music, locals bantering in the street – and occasionally shouting ‘white man’ at me – there is rarely, nay never, a pause for calm. I love it. And when the sun goes down the clamour of the city doesn’t let up – the hum of crickets and yelping of stray dogs your sleeping soundtrack.
So, partly inspired by Chris’s guest blog on the Sounds of Guyana on the My Place Or Yours site and my love of sound clips (I also recently discovered a sound recording function on my camera) I decided to try to record a few memorable sounds and things that caught my ear. What follows is a six minute hotchpotch I’ve quickly spliced together in Audacity featuring, among other things, local radio in minibuses, Creole chatter, wildlife – i.e. stray dogs and kiskadees – and a quick introduction to dominoes.
Apologies for the odd sound pop – my recorder isn’t great – and Chris’s drunken musings during Haddaway (remember that one?!)… too good not to include.
Georgetown sounds mp3 (click to play / right to click save as).

CYEC sent a small team of volunteers to Guyana in Summer 2009 to equip young people with online skills.

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