Chester Francis-Jackson, Contributor
Dears, following on the joint sitting of both the Lower and Upper houses two Tuesdays ago in honour of Jamaica's longest-serving prime minister (PM), traiblazer P.J. Patterson, friends of the internationally esteemed jurist and parliamentarian hosted a cocktail reception in his honour at the poolside of the très chic Terra Nova All Suite Hotel over there in New Kingston, and precious angels, we are talking a simply flawless social outing here, and then some!
Dears, it was a reception fit for a PM who retired at the very top of his game, and without the spectre of scandal and/or disgrace.
Dears, if y'all missed this one, then y'all missed the power outing of the season, and one punctuated by unequalled style and flawlessly muted elegance, as not only was the affair a power gaggle of the finest order, it was one of those rare events that saw party politics and the attendant egos associated with such posturing checked at the cavernous entrance to the poolside, made fabulously so by superb gardening, as present and former parliamentarians from the political divide, partying, as it were, sans souci, and it made for a beautiful statement of political maturity.
And not only were parliamentarians out in celebratory numbers, but so too were leading members of every strain of the Jamaican society, whether it be the social, cultural, diplomatic and/or political uberclass, with a smattering of the political underclass, and it made for a simply fabulous do.
Oh, my word, whomever it was that once said a king has no honour in his own country would have been made a liar by the august society out in full and resplendent celebratory mood in honour of the Most Hon P.J. Patterson, as my dears, this was not only as good as it gets, this was as fabulous as fabulous gets and, dears, aam-a-telling-y'-all, this was Jamaicans of all walks and stripes saying this is our beloved son in whom we are well pleased and pumpkins, it made for a simply magnificent social statement and then some!
And it got better too, as, indeed, there were no speeches to dampen spirits as is the wont on occasions such as these, merely an acknowledgement of those in attendance by Dr Vin Lawrence followed by the offering of prayer, and then the officialdom was over and done with it!
And dears, with premium libations flowing, a simply marvellously tasting and oh-so-scrumptious fare being served up, you know, we are talking a fab fest here and then some. And luvs, believe you moi, as indeed this was an event slated for three hours, but it was such a fine outing, it lasted way into the night and beyond, with nary a soul wanting to take leave of the society of each other.
And talk about the world and his wife being in attendance! My dears, it was that and more, with among those out sharing in the post-sitting fabness of a reception included Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller; House Speaker Dean Peart; Finance Minister Dr Peter Phillips and wife, Sandra Minott Phillips, QC; Security Minister Peter Bunting; Education Minister Rev Ronald Thwaites; Minister of Science, Mining, Energy and Technology Phillip Paulwell; Minister of Youth and Culture Lisa Hanna; Information Minister Senator Sandrea Falconer; Mayor of Kingston Senator Angela Brown Burke; State Minister Tourism and Entertainment Damion Crawford; State Minister of Sports Natalie Neita-Headley; Mikael Phillips; Member of Parliament Dr Lynvale Bloomfield; Senator K.D. Knight; Dr D.K. Duncan and wife, Beverley Anderson-Duncan; Opposition leader and former Prime Minister Andrew Holness; Derrick and Carlene Smith and son, Councillor Duane Smith; Pearnel Charles; Member of Parliament James Robertson; Daryl Vaz; Chief of Defence Staff Major General Antony Anderson; Deputy Chief of Defence Staff Brigadier Rocky Meade; Archbishop of Kingston, The Most Rev Charles Dufour; former Governor General Sir Kenneth and Lady Hall; The Most Hon Edward and Carla Seaga; former Chief Justice Lensley Wolfe; former PNP members of parliament Arnold Scree and Clare Bertram; Desmond Leaky; John and Erla Junor; Maxine Henry-Wilson; Colin Campbell; Vernon Robinson; former JLP MP Douglas Vaz; Ernie Smith; legal luminary Frank Phipps, QC; the esteemed Christopher Bovell; Mrs Norma Clarke; Son Richard Patterson.
American Ambassador Pamela Bridgewater; Her Excellency, head of the EU delegation, Ambassador Paola Amadei; High Commissioner of South Africa, Her Excellency, Mathu Joyini; Her Excellency, High Commissioner of Trinidad and Tobago, Dr Eva Gloudon; ambassador of St Kitts and Nevis, Dr Cedric Harper, and a very long list of others.