This year I played mas with a Vancouver non-profit society called Carnival Sensations Caribbean Society. If you don’t know what playing mas is, take a look at their website. I can describe it to you though. Taking it to the very basics, it is dancing in a parade-like environment in costume. I’m chuckling right now. Considering that I wrote my Master’s project on Junkanoo and the carnival character I can’t believe that I just summed up my 6,000 words into one sentence.
In the weeks leading up to the Caribbean Days Festival I hit the gym hard to work on my legs. You see, the parade is 2km. I had been cycling quite a bit but I was still unsure that my endurance would be high enough to get me through the 2 hours of dancing so I had to rely on my legs. I know, I know. It sounds funny but I was a little bit worried that I would be able to dance, in the heat, for 2 hours. I armed myself with a natural energy drink, water and my Bahamian flag. Not only did I survive but I loved every minute of it. The flash mob choreography by Socacize Vancity was amazing and helped to secure the Band of the Year and Best Masquerade Band awards.
Let’s get a little more into what Playing Mas was for me. Soca music. Dancing. Laughing. Exercise. Playing. Community. Here’s a picture of some of my Purple Skies Family.
There were four sections of at least 100 people, the kids had their own section too, and we were all jamming on the streets of North Vancouver. Carnival Sensations will have more pictures posted up on their website soon to show off how The Band of the Year mashes up di road. In the mean time, I’m going to keep up the healthy living by surrounding myself with great people like the CS Crew and dancing up a storm; after all, dancing is one of the best workouts ever!