A once in a blue moon birthday for Kingfish.

There was a blue moon this weekend.  We saw it, from the balcony of our room where we spent the long weekend, in Grande Riviere, a small northern coastal town bordering the Grande Riviere river, which spills directly into the sea.  The lush green rainforest was in our backyard.  While the rest of Trinidad was celebrating the 50th year of independence,

we were in celebrating the 16th birthday of Kingfish.

Kingfish began his day with an early morning birthday serenade beneath a mountainside waterfall.

This waterfall only appears for one week per year.  And there it was, just in time for the blue moon and for Kingfish.

It was fitting that it was a blue moon on September 1st.  Once in a blue moon does a great guy like Kingfish come along.

helping the fishermen pull in the net.

It makes a lot of sense that the blue moon appeared on September 1st.  It came quietly and gradually without a lot of fanfare.  Then, all of the sudden there it was in the sky, shining bright and serene, knowing full well it had every right to be there,  casting a beautiful glow on whatever happened to be in its presence.

This baby turtle, along with about 200 of its friends and relatives, needed some help getting safely back into the water, just as the blue moon was rising.  It is difficult to fathom that just yesterday (or so it seems), we were holding our infant son this carefully.  Now, sixteen years later, here he is, cradling a new life just as lovingly and tenderly.

You might think that Kingfish looks a lot like Elias.  And you might be right.  We all got transformed during this weekend full of surprise, beauty, and wonder.  But maybe Kingfish more than any of the other in the group.  After all, you don’t turn sixteen every day.

Cocoa pod anyone?  We found these growing on trees, and learned that the cocoa beans can be eaten- they are each encased in an outer sweet tangy gel, and the inside is quite bitter, but apparently is a super food, and super good for you!

It seemed that everywhere we looked, there was joy and celebration, and we took it as a direct honoring of our Kingfish.

This regal couple were certainly dressed for the occasion!

And there seemed to be an extraordinary amount of jumping,


flying through the air

with abandon
and joy.

There was also quite a bit of smiling going on,



We were making so many delicious discoveries,

Nicole and her buddy discover passion fruit.

and generally soaking in the greatness and wonder of our Kingfish. 

Who is Kingfish you might be wondering?

Kingfish is the one who saw this fishing boat coming into the Grande Riviere River from the sea, bringing in the day’s catch, and knew that his greatest birthday wish was to be on that boat, out at sea, and maybe even catch himself a fish.

So we found two experienced and kind fishermen named Doggie and Runnie, who offered to take us all out on a sunset ride to try and catch a fish.

Off we went, to fulfill another sweet sixteen birthday wish.  On the ride, a dream came true.  Elias caught a fish.  Not just any fish, but a beautiful, iridescent Kingfish!  Doggie and Runnie were very impressed.  Now Doggie and Runnie are not their given names.  Like many people we met, they have nicknames, based on who they are, what they’ve done, or maybe simply a play on their given name.  We got to talking with our fishermen friends, and they were rather dismayed that Elias didn’t have a nickname.  So they gave him one.  “Happy Birthday, Kingfish!  You are now Kingfish!”   they said in their sing songy Trinidadian accents.

Kingfish with his catch.

The next step was to prepare it for dinner!

There’s the knife, time to get to work.

A little gutting advice from our friend, add olive oil, salt, shadow bennie, garlic, lime, black pepper, tomatoes, and…

voila!  A delicious dinner was had by all.

Followed by birthday cake, of course.

Happy Birthday Kingfish!

We love you!

18 thoughts on “A once in a blue moon birthday for Kingfish.

  1. Lovely, lovely celebration and memories. Beautiful country, wonderful people. I feel as though I were there! Happy Birthday, Elias (I think the name “Kingfish” is going to stick with you!!)

  2. What mystical magic you all have found in this new land, and, Elias Kingfish, happy 16th unforgettable blue moon/ catch the great fish/eat the fine cake birthday. Thank you for letting us all into your lives. Great joy!

  3. thank you for sharing your loving family, and this special day for elias AKA kingfish.
    it makes me smile with tears in my eyes. xo

  4. Who is that tall, handsome fella? I hardly recognize him! Happy, Happy Birthday, Elias !
    I am loving your writing and the photos, Ellen ! Beautiful does not begin to describe your surroundings.

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