Good Friday is a quiet day in St. Kitts. Many go to the various church services that commemorate Christ’s Crucifiction . At home, there are hot cross buns for breakfast while lunch consists of cooked saltfish, mackerel, or fresh fish served with a mixture of starchy foods (potatoes, sweet potatoes, breadfruit, green figs, yams, cassava, dasheen, edoes) and greens. In St. Kitts, Good Friday and the rest of the Easter weekend is also the time for conkie.
For the young and the young at heart, the meals are there to provide the energy to fly kites. Kids will look for a place in their community where they can let their kite catch the breeze d soar. Families sometimes make a picnic of the traditional lunch and go find an open pasture or field where the children will have the space to raise their kites away from electrical wires and out of the line of incoming airplanes.
In the past men would help children build them from scratch, using very light wooden frames, newspaper and old clothes. Later, coloured tissue paper replaced the newspapers and the kites became prettier. The tail of the kite continued to be made out of old clothes or strips of sheets that had seen better days. A good tail was essential to help the kite fly well.
Then it was all a matter of finding a spot to catch the breeze that will take it as high as the string would permit. Some kids try the neighbouring streets. With electrical wires around they rick losing it very quickly. The best places are open pastures away from the airport. If the wind is good, a kite could fly for a long time with little need to mind it. That would be the time to start a friendly game of cricket. But you must always be careful that there isn’t somebody else with a kite that is ready to fight yours!!!!