Classic pieces that will
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A survivor’s story + telltale
signs that it’s time to get out
gem in Baie
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 1
Influential Ms. Kardashian
A Treasure Trove in Baie Lazare
Juggling Motherhood & Career
Ex-Miss Seychelles, Jane Stravens
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This month, we are all once again reminded of the important role women
play in the world we live in. Commemorative days to me are like refresher
courses; there’s nothing new we learn but given that we are constantly
growing as individuals, our take on the situation changes and there’s
always a new angle we are able to explore. Personally, I have been
thinking about this day since we celebrated it last year. I couldn’t help
but feel that many of us took the opportunity to have a little dig at the
opposite sex, which is perhaps justified since the day is there to remind
men of how special we are, but is it really the opposite sex who needs to
be reminded? I beg to differ. More and more, I get the sense that women
in general do not appreciate other women. We are in some relentless
search of what it is that ‘she’ is lacking and once we find it, well, we can feel
like we’re on top of the world again. So, when exactly did women become
women’s worst enemy?
The world we live in at the moment is complicated, fast and tiring. Our
lives are exposed on facebook, instagram, twitter and magazines. Gone
are the days when what kind of mother, partner, friend or colleague we
are remained the business of only those they concerned. The world is now
able to formulate an opinion on who we are and naturally that places us
in a competitive place to be the best of everything. Since that is close to
impossible, being best is now also based on who we perceive to be ‘less’
than us; a mother who has a social life, a partner who has let herself ‘go’ a
little, a colleague who gets called into the boss’ office more frequently –
the list goes on. The sad thing about this is that we fail to see that there’s
no ‘just me’ bubble we can escape to and live in. We are all in whatever
we are in together. When I walk into the office in the morning and all my
colleagues are happy, we end up having a productive day which is good
for the general morale and also good for business – a win-win situation
as far as I see it. A colleagues’ unhappiness or anger does nothing good
for anyone in the office. Why don’t we choose to see things in a collective
manner? Allow me to use this metaphor as an example; we are all candles
burning our own light in a room. When the candle next to you fades or is
blown out, yes, your own light might shine brighter for a minute but what
happens to the light in the entire room? It dims. So the next time you get
the chance to share in someone’s happiness, go for it, don’t try to lessen
it. The same applies for someone’s grim moment; don’t rejoice in it but
rather extend your help or better still, your love. Your life and world would
be better because of it.
Women’s Day aside, March is also the month when awareness on Down
Syndrome is given some attention. We take a look at this condition
and meet a couple of families who live it everyday. Down Syndrome to
those of us who do not know is simply seen at face value. We recognise
the condition based on someone’s physical appearance but we remain
comfortably clueless as to what it entails to live with it or with someone
inflicted by it. We hope the feature enlightens you a bit more as it did us.
Another important issue which we address in this issue is domestic
violence, the silent ailment too many people, especially women and
children live with. A survivor shares her story with us and along with it,
gives us hope that there is no situation which can’t be improved or walked
away from if necessary. Our aim was to identify signs in relationships
which scream abuse but we are perhaps at the time too blind to see.
Again, we hope it helps those of you who find yourselves in this incredibly
sad situation or those of you who know someone who is.
The end of March would mark the end of the first quarter of the year. It’s
a good time to re-visit your 2015 resolutions; renew them, change them,
discard them or be proud that you remain on the track you set out to
follow for this year. It takes courage to grow and learn and to try to be
better. We wish you plenty of it.
For those of you visiting our beautiful islands this month, may you have a
memorable holiday and be blown away by the Seychellois hospitality.
1 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 2
1. Photographer: Marsha Dine
2. Concept & Make-Up: Joel Rose
Clothes, bag & shoes: Model’s own
Choker: Trendy Boutique
Location: Lazare Souvenir,
Museum and Gallery
3 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
Kempinski Seychelles Resort, Mahe Island
Hilton Seychelles Labriz Resort & Spa, Silhouette Island
Double Tree by Hilton Allamanda Resort & Spa
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 4
FIT AND FABULOUS
By Lynette Botha / Photographs Marsha Dine
5 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
Proof that no matter what life throws at you,
you’re stronger than you think….
At 24, Stephenie is a single, working mom whose life has
thrown her more than a few curveballs, but she’s not taking
it lying down. Literally. Stephenie, who used to weigh 108kg
and wear a size 18, now weighs 61kg and alters between a
size six and eight, thanks to willpower, sensible eating and
lots of training. As we all know, it’s not easy to “just lose
weight” – especially not with a full-time job and a young
child, but Stephenie was adamant about changing her life.
“I was so overweight for a very long time and I didn’t know
how to change. It made me feel depressed and unhappy
and I knew I had to do something to get my weight under
control, not only for me, but for my son too.”
“The struggle is real, it never
gets easier, but you get
stronger.” This was one of
the lines that Stephenie
repeated many times during
our interview. She meant it in
relation to fitness and getting
healthy, but it seems to allude
to the rest of her life too.”
Once Stephenie had her mind set on getting into shape to
lose all her excess weight, she did what most people do –
look for a quick fix. She started taking diet pills to curb her
appetite, but that solution was short-lived; the pills made
her really sick and caused gastric problems so she had
to stop. She then tried starving herself, and going hours
without eating anything, but again this was not sustainable
and left her weak, tired and even more depressed every
time she failed. “I would get on the scale, see that my weight
was the same, and cry and cry. It was depressing. It’s so
difficult when you’re in that place and you don’t see a way
out.” Eventually she realised the only way she was going
to be able to get in shape was with a realistic goal, lots of
exercise and a healthy eating plan. “Everyone is after instant
results, I was too, but there is no secret, it’s all about hard
work and discipline.” She says.
So, where did she start? “I signed up at the gym, got advice
from the trainers there and committed to going every
day. I did a bit of everything; aerobics, swimming, weight
lifting and jogging. With my eating, I started to cut out
carbs – bread, rice, pasta, as well as sugar and junk food. I
started preparing healthier meals like salads and fish with
vegetables. I also added a lot of protein to my diet.”
Changing your lifestyle so drastically is tough and often not
sustainable, but no matter how hard it was, Stephenie was
determined to keep going. “The difficult thing is that you
don’t see results straight away; it’s not like if you eat clean
Cooking up success
Steve Albert, 32, is an entrepreneur and a
pragmatic dreamer. When he started his company,
Golden Flavours, he was barely 22. Ten years on,
Golden Flavours is known for the quality of its
products on the local market, distributing his
brand of vinegar, tomato sauce and chill sauce
in supermarkets around Mahé, but also in hotels,
restaurants and fast foods.
“I remember being at the Polytechnic School, whenever
I wanted my parents to buy chili sauce or tomato sauce at
the supermarket, there was barely any choice, and it was
always expensive. That’s when I realised the market for these
condiments were very much open in Seychelles,” explains the
young man. After leaving the polytechnic school, he decides
to follow a course on entrepreneurship for small businesses
at the Guy Morel Institute, giving him access to small grant
to launch his business.
“Once I had registered my business and opened the account
with Barclays, the next step was to find suppliers for the raw
materials and spices. I went to Malaysia and South Africa,
looking for the right blend of spices at the right price because
I wanted my product to be affordable here. Today, I still get
most of the spices from these countries, but I also use local
vegetables for my production,” says Steve Albert. Once he
bought his first batch of spices, he started experimenting
with the mixture, trying to find the right balance of tastes
that would appeal to the public, and soon enough, the first
bottles of condiments were produced in his small factory at
Anse-aux-Pins. He also followed a course on food preparation
and spice mixtures in 2007 in South Africa. Never one to
rest on his laurels, as soon as the business started to move
forward, Steve tried to come up with new ideas and revenue
streams, always going to Barclays for help when he needed it.
I feel like more than just a customer
“The relationship with Barclays is a very good one. I have
always made sure that my payments were made in time and
they have helped me along the way. Now, I feel like more than
just a customer, they know me and I know them. I know I can
tell the Barclays team about the issues I am having with my
business, and they will give me advices and encouragements.
I have told them about my next project, and should soon be
presenting them my project document,” he states. For 2015,
Steve Albert has a slew of projects coming, with the biggest
one being the construction of a new factory at Anse-aux-
Pins. The new state of the art factory will not only enable
him to increase his production of bottled vinegar, chili and
tomato sauces, but also to start producing other products
and flavours. “At one point, we were doing 10 different
products, but when I noticed some worked better, I chose
to focus on them. Now, I want to diversify because this will
enable me to increase my profitability. By the end of 2015,
my goal is that Golden Flavours be manufacturing 15 to 20
different products, from condiments to sauces,” declares the
ambitious young man.
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and train for a whole week that you’ll step on the scale and see a massive
difference in your weight. It takes at least a month or two to see proper
results, and even then it’s not much. If you commit to getting in shape,
you have to work hard at it and be in it for the long haul, the results you
see eventually make it all worth it.” It took her nine months to lose 47kgs
and she couldn’t be happier with her results. “You have to work for it; it’s
the only way.”
Stephenie is so grateful to her old friends who have supported and
encouraged her, her new friends from the gym, who have motivated
and pushed her, but she is especially thankful for her parents. “My mom
and dad are my everything, they are so supportive. My mom looks after
my son, Khelan, when I’m working and going to gym. My dad is always
Googling new workouts and healthy eating plans for me. They are so
encouraging and they help me so much – I would never have been able
to commit to getting in shape without them.” Stephenie, who still lives at
home, says that her father even went so far as to create a home gym at the
“Me getting healthy has been a good
thing for the whole family; even my son
eats more healthily now – he likes to
eat what I’m eating; he even steals my
plain yoghurt sometimes.”
house for her and he himself is into fitness too now. “Me getting healthy
has been a good thing for the whole family; even my son eats more
healthily now – he likes to eat what I’m eating; he even steals my plain
yoghurt sometimes.” She smiles.
“I would get on the scale, see that my
weight was the same, and cry and cry.
It was depressing. It’s so difficult when
you’re in that place and you don’t see
a way out.”
After a less than pleasant split from her ex, Stephenie is weary of rushing
into relationships, but that hasn’t stopped the attention she’s been getting
since she got her shape back. “I do get a lot more attention from men
nowadays; when I go out, I don’t even have to take my purse out of my
bag, people just want to buy me drinks!” On the other side of the scale,
there are those who are not so fond of her new look, “people are strange;
when I was overweight people would say ‘you’re obese’, now that I’m in
shape, people tell me I’m too skinny.” She’s slowly starting to realise that
she needs to ignore what others have to say and focus on herself, and how
she feels. She also doesn’t plan on losing any more weight – her goal is to
stay at 61kgs, but keep toning up and maintaining her healthy lifestyle.
Besides the gym, she loves to dance, attend zumba classes, workout with
her yoga DVDs and walk along the beach.
When I ask her for her advice to people in a similar situation as her, she
says “it is not easy at all. But never give up. Keep at it; get advice, get
people to support and encourage you. Remember to earn it and own it.
You have to go and sweat it out – even when you don’t feel like it, just get
up and get active. Soon it becomes a part of your lifestyle and you can’t
wait to get to the gym and you can’t wait to eat a healthy salad. It gets
easier the longer you do it, just believe in yourself.”
Young in age, but wise beyond her years – Stephenie is proof that the
harder you fall, the higher you bounce!
7 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
Musings of an Island Girl
They do not see you stand in the bathroom and gather your resolve every
morning. Splashing your face with water, staring in the mirror, sighing,
brushing your teeth (maybe), picking up that toddler, drifting into the
kitchen, pouring cereal in bowls, cleaning dishes, and making your cup of
tea or coffee with a yawn.
They do not see those of you who mother alone without much support.
They do not see the way you look at the bank account and try to figure
out how to make three meals with what is left in your pantry. They do not
see you walking into the principal’s office, doctor’s office, friend’s house
and defending your child. Alone.
STOP DOUBTING YOURSELF MOMS,
SAYS TINA HOUAREAU
Photographs: Joe Clothilde
You are enough
You give of yourself.
They do not see bandages placed on knees. Quiet kisses on foreheads at
night. Pillows pushed just the right way and blankets tucked to the perfect
demands. Laundry folded and folded and folded. Tears that sting your
eyes as you keep going. Dinners prepared with love. Times of laughter
over silly things. Hair brushed and pulled back into pony tails. Prayers over
little babes. Prayers over wandering teens. Nights spent asleep in a chair
holding a sick child. Days where the house is a wreck but you are reading
books. The courageous smile on your face when you are fatigued.
Those things matter.
Those things are the little things that add up and up and up. Second by
second, minute by minute until they add up to hours which add up to
create days which add up to create weeks which add up to create months
which add up to create years which add up to create a life. A beautiful life
filled with regular mommy moments.
I say those things are enough. I say you are enough.
Tina Houareau is a Seychellois living in the USA with her young son. She is an Instructional Designer for Capella University, where she recently completed her PhD in the same field.
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 8
My relationship with… my best friend
For Jeannine Gilbert-Finnigan and Marie-Michelle Joseph it’s always about picking up right where they left off.
By Jeannine Gilbert-Finnigan
No one wants to be at the mercy of life, standing alone, so every day
I give thanks to all my beautiful friends across the globe. I am truly
grateful for the people (old and new) who are bringing joy into my life,
but one special person is my best friend of 27 years Marie-Michelle. We
have known each other for 35 years but our special bond started in our
late teens, the moment in our lives when we became young adults and
understood the true value of friendship.
“WE LIVE THOUSANDS OF MILES
APART BUT WE SPEAK ALMOST
EVERY DAY ON THE PHONE OR
VIA SOCIAL MEDIA.”
I called when I lost my father. When my first long-term relationship
went pear-shaped I cried buckets on her shoulder and she helped me
pick up the pieces and I stood by her during her break-ups too. She was
maid-of-honour at my wedding and helped me plan my big day. She is
the godmother of my daughter and best of all we both feel like we are
part of each other’s families, which is an amazing feeling. We’ve had 27
years of great friendship and I am thankful for that. We live thousands
of miles apart but we speak almost every day by phone or via social
media and we see each other once or twice a year.
27 years on; our bond is still as strong as ever
Almost 12 years ago when I left Seychelles, one of my greatest fears was
losing my friends who have been in my life for so long. Some of them
had been in my life for as long as I can remember; as far back as primary
school and many came into my life by coincidence; Michelle was one
of them. Michelle and I have been friends since we were teenagers. We
met when we started our post-secondary studies; we just so happened
to be taking the same A-level subjects and we were both obsessed with
reading. Exchanging novels became a ritual and that was the start of a
beautiful friendship. Some people are quite surprised when they realise
how close we are because we have completely different personalities. I
am the quiet, reserved one with a discreet confidence where as my best
friend is perhaps the vocal one who doesn’t mince her words. I love her
because with her it’s always: what you see is what you get. We have
been there for each other during all the lows and the highs of our lives.
I was there for her when she lost her sister and she was the first person
“MY BEST FRIEND HAS BEEN A
BLESSING, SHE CHALLENGED ME
WHEN I DOUBTED MY ABILITY,
MOTIVATED ME WHEN I WAS
READY TO GIVE UP AND SHE
WAS THERE FOR ME WHEN LIFE
WAS NOT SO GOOD TO ME”.
Michelle and I on my wedding day
What puzzles people most is that I have never been in Michelle’s
friendship circle and she has never been in mine. When it comes to
other friends we both socialise in different circles. Our friendship is
about the two of us, and our family. We value the time spent together
but giving each other space to get on with other aspects of our lives is
important. We never judge each other and we rarely talk about friends
in our individual friendship circle. We simple accept each other for
who we are and we never try to change one another so that we can fit
in with our other friends. We are never jealous of each other because
we know that we will both drop everything to be at each other’s side
if need be. With Michelle and I, it is about picking up where we left
off, regardless of the time and distance that separates us. We are just
happy to be in each other’s company. We even have date nights, when
the two of us will go out for a meal and talk without interruptions.
It is a special kind of bond that perhaps some of our other friends
9 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
Michelle and her god-daughter (my daughter)
find intriguing. Some people even think we are related
because we are rarely in the same social circle but always
My best friend has been a blessing, she challenged me
when I doubted my ability, motivated me when I was
ready to give up and she was there for me when life was
not so good to me. She continues to do so even if we are
I hope that others have been blessed with amazing
friendships too and that they are grateful for those who
are still in their lives. Friendship is an important part of
life, so value your friends, treat them as you would like to
be treated and you will be rewarded with trust, openness,
support and never-ending friendship. I feel so blessed to
have a friend like Michelle.
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MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 10
Being born with Down Syndrome may give you a challenging start in life, but with the right help and the right
attitude anything is possible, as Mawess Mea Wirtz finds out
The definition of a person with Down Syndrome is simple – it is a person
who has either an extra full or partial copy of chromosome 21 resulting
in 47 instead of the normal 46 chromosomes. The English doctor, John
Langdon Down who first categorised it, did the usual and named the
syndrome after himself, but it was Dr. Jerome Lejeune who actually
discovered that it was a genetic disorder. Currently, the exact cause is
unknown but statistics show that the older the mother is when she falls
pregnant, the higher the chances that she would have a child born with
DS. Women aged 30 or less have less than 1 in 1,000 chance of have a DS
child, compared to 1 in 400 at age 35. Usually, women over the age of
35 are tested pre-birth for the condition through amniocentesis (testing
the amniotic fluid). Statistics also show that parents who already have a
Down Syndrome baby or have abnormalities in their own chromosome
21 are also high risk. But what is it like to have a Down Syndrome baby in
Seychelles? What is it like to raise the child? How does it affect the family?
What help is there for parents and children alike?
Amazing Grace… how sweet the child.
Grace Mondon is 8 years old; she is an affectionate child who loves music
and going to school. She is a very good student who perseveres in class
and does sports well. She likes playing with her best friend, her twelve
year old cousin Nashil and they share a passion for music. She loves to
sing and dance. She is picky about food. She has Down Syndrome.
Finding out the hard way.
Her mother, Georgette, was 30 when she was born and her father, Clifford
was 33 years old. They had both been in good health and awaiting the
birth of their daughter impatiently. The day that Grace was born was the
HAPPIEST moment in their lives. Georgette had had multiple scans during
her pregnancy but no one noticed anything wrong with her child, the
first indication that something was amiss came AFTER Grace was born.
Mr Mondon remembers a nurse telling him that she thought that there
was something wrong with his baby, but to wait for the doctor. As new
parents, they were immediately filled with fear. The doctor came soon
after, accompanied by a class he was teaching and while the parents
waited fearfully, their child was passed around and examined, her
characteristics were discussed and it was only after class was dismissed
that the doctor informed them that Grace had Down Syndrome. Their
world was rocked. Could you imagine what such a moment feels like?
Where there is a will, there is a way
Mr Mondon remembers telling himself that everything happens for a
reason so he picked himself up, immediately started researching the
syndrome and how he could make a good life for his child. Luckily, among
the first sites, was a very uplifting one, it gave concrete advice and showed
grown up Down Syndrome people who were successful professionally.
11 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
He vowed that HIS daughter was going to get the most normal life he
could provide and that nothing was going to prevent her from being
everything she wanted to be.
A normal upbringing
And a normal upbringing is exactly what Grace has had. She is
reprimanded for doing wrong and she is praised for doing right. She
attended the Count and Read pre-school and despite some issues
she successfully completed her duration there. She then moved to
the Exceptional School and her parents have nothing but the greatest
admiration for the teachers and staff. They credit a lot of Grace’s
development to these amazing people’s commitment to her growth.
“HE VOWED THAT HIS DAUGHTER WAS
GOING TO GET THE MOST NORMAL
LIFE HE COULD PROVIDE AND THAT
NOTHING WAS GOING TO PREVENT
HER FROM BEING EVERYTHING SHE
WANTED TO BE”.
Surmounting the odds
From birth, Grace would constantly get sick but her parents would always
research the best way to care for her and would liaise with her doctors
to make sure that they were aware of exactly what was happening.
Her father has done this so much that friends have started seeing him
as an endless source of medical advice. Parents must be aware that
Down Syndrome predisposes one to certain medical conditions such
as congenital heart defects, sleep apnea, and Alzheimer’s disease.
There is also evidence of an increased risk of celiac disease, autism,
childhood leukemia and seizures. Endless, heartfelt gratitude goes to Dr
Athanasius who has followed Grace from birth to now. Early intervention
for babies with Down Syndrome is very important as appropriate physical
and speech therapies for the first five years can make a major difference
for that child’s physical and intellectual development.
At around six years old, her parents noticed that there was something
wrong with one of her eyes and sought medical assistance. Despite being
advised to leave it, her parents researched a hospital and raised funds
to send her to have the eye checked and treated, luckily it was a case
of, “good thing you trusted your gut feeling” because it turned out that
Grace was about to lose her eye. Her parents will be eternally grateful to
all the people they didn’t expect to help out, but who did. Thanks to them
Grace’s eye was saved.
Grace attends the Exceptional School and never has a school been so
aptly named. The staff that I have met are truly exceptional and the feats
that they have achieved even more so. The achievements of the children
despite their disabilities is the cherry on the cake. The school accepts
students of all disabilities in Seychelles. The students range from being
incapable of doing anything for themselves to those that have learnt to
do so. Along with Grace, the school has around nine Down Syndrome
children and I was surprised to find that they are not grouped together,
rather students at the school are classed according to how much they
With her favourite toys
With her mom
The curriculum changes according to the abilities of the child but the
minute that they show that they are capable the teachers will attempt to
get them to complete the National Curriculum used in all state schools.
Aside from academics, the school also has programs to help the students
socialise successfully, work on their motor skills, give them life skills and
other abilities that we take for granted. Students learn things like how to
dress themselves, table manners, and basic household chores. These get
continually challenging the more they master. The school was proud to
tell me that some of their students could now cook, sew and maintain
themselves effectively. Mr Mondon can vouch for the fact that Grace
dresses herself and is quite independent.
The communication skills for Down Syndrome children are provided at the
school by a speech therapist. This amazing woman works with improving
the speech from mild to severe cases of various disabilities. There are
students that start the school incapable of communicating effectively.
Where before her parents might have had trouble figuring out what Grace
wanted, she has learned gestures that allow her to communicate her
Down Syndrome children require physical therapy to strengthen their
muscles before they can fine tune their motor skills. The PE teacher
explained to me how the National Sports Council (NSC) provides this
service before the students are ready to learn sports just like Grace
does. Even then however, there needs to be continuous support and
reinforcement to get them to follow the rules of the sport. Grace recently
Having fun at the playground
Water play at school
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 12
competed in the Special Olympics National competition in the 50m walk and made
her parents proud to see her receive her medal from Minister Meriton.
The Seychelles Special Olympics
The other organisation that helps out with the development of the young Down
Syndrome children focuses on sports. A short interview with the National Director
of the Seychelles Special Olympics, Ms Erica Celeste, cleared up what services they
provided. The organisation conducts training of the disabled at various sports every
Sunday but they do not have a bus, therefore the younger and more severe cases can
only train at the Exceptional School. The ages range from 8 to “as old as you are when
you stop” but the others are also registered to the association. Ms Celeste says that
the training of the Down Syndrome athletes requires repetition of the same concepts
every Sunday and endless patience. The performance of our athletes in the World
Olympics however, is worth it. She notes that with Down Syndrome, a high level of
positive reinforcement needs to be maintained. Usually she uses a plethora of high
fives and hugs to steer her charges to success. The organisation is also going to start
their young athletes programme and have a competition later in the year.
“THE STUDENTS RANGE FROM BEING
INCAPABLE OF DOING ANYTHING FOR
THEMSELVES TO THOSE WHO HAVE LEARNT
HOW TO DO THINGS ON THEIR OWN”.
How is she now?
Grace doesn’t really talk, but make no mistake, she communicates effectively, she
may not be able tell her parents something in sentences but through a combination
of words and gestures, she makes her point. In her studies, she has been working
diligently and is capable of doing a lot of small activities. Her teachers are proud of her
progress and admire her for always keeping everything tidy, cleaning up after each
activity all on her own. Cleanliness is definitely the next step to Godliness for Grace.
She is no longer sickly and she lives like any 8-year old, loving to have fun with no idea
that she is different.
Down Syndrome takes
centre-stage in 2015
A recent CNN.com article by David M Perry, highlighted
how the spotlight is on Down Syndrome this year; in the
article he wrote: “Down syndrome, with all its promise and
challenges, has never been more visible: Jamie Brewer, an
actress with Down Syndrome, just walked the catwalk at
New York Fashion Week. A video of a girl with Down Syndrome
singing a John Legend song went viral, receiving 6
million page views and counting. People were so moved
by the story of a father choosing his son with Down Syndrome
over his marriage that they donated over $500,000
to his care (although the father’s story has now been
called into question).” The writer himself is the father of a
Down Syndrome son, so he’s experienced to comment on
the condition and went on to say: “Thanks to the power of
the Internet and the commitment of activists, politicians
and experts of all sorts, access to these antidotes [information,
experts and community] has never been easier.”
And it’s true – you’re not alone.
Useful contact numbers and details:
Exceptional School Seychelles: Call (+248) 4283057 /
Further reading and advice:
International World Down Syndrome day is on 21 March
In the future….
The future looks bright because some research shows that people with Down
Syndrome who have certain heart defects or childhood leukemia are more likely
than their typical counterparts to recover or recover more quickly. It is also rare
for a person with Down Syndrome to have a solid tumor cancer or cardiovascular
disease, (including heart attack and stroke). Her father says that ideally he would like
to set her up with her own business because he is unsure about how she would be
treated in someone’s employment. And when I asked him about dating, he says he
thinks he is ok with it and he wants her to find someone, but I get the impression
that it will take one amazing man to marry the Mondon princess. Over-protective is
an understatement (and I mean this in the nicest way possible)! Research tells me
that today the lifespan of a person with Down Syndrome is around 60 years, unlike
as recently as 1983, when the average lifespan was 25 years. The average IQ has also
increased so Grace might well soon be the successful businesswoman her father
wants her to be.
One year old
Building for the future
Mr Mondon has invested in so many projects that help out the
disabled children. He set up the breakfast programme for the
Exceptional School and he wants to set up a Down Syndrome
club, where other parents can come together and work on
improving the facilities available for Down Syndrome children.
Down syndrome in the world
Although children and adults with Down Syndrome may
share some common features, they look more like their
immediate family members than like each other. Actors such
as Chris Burke, who played Corky in Life Goes On, and Lauren
Potter, who plays Becky Jackson on Glee, show us that there is
no barrier in being Down Syndrome, afterall, those two made it
in HOLLYWOOD! Something most of us can only dream about.
13 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 14
In the heart of Baie Lazare, Lynette Botha
discovers an unsuspecting place that houses
a lot of history and a lot of heart
Joseph Larue is an anomaly. He doesn’t have an email address, he’s
not really interested in TV and he thinks social media is ruining
relationships. He longs for the old days, when life was simpler. He
recalls days gone by, when he was a young boy and his family would
take turns to tell stories in the evening because they had no television –
his grandfather, his mother and his father, all taking turns to share a tale
– and before he knew it, it was bedtime. He misses those days, when life
moved at a slower pace and people weren’t consumed by technology
It’s no surprise then to learn about his great and deep-seated love for
history. Joseph owns Lazare Souvenir, Museum and Gallery in Baie
Lazare – a treasure trove of trinkets from the past. And while it’s only
been open for around six months, the store was previously located in
Victoria, called Yves Souvenir Cachée, where it had been for 15 years.
There are fascinating things he has collected over the years – from old
spectacles, gramophones and typewriters to records, coins and even an
old electricity receipt dating decades back with a monthly total so little,
you’d choke comparing it to the bills of today.
When I ask him where the majority of his things come from, he says
“You won’t believe it, but most of these things I have picked up in
the junk yard; people just throw this stuff out. There is not much of a
culture of history and remembrance in Seychelles – people don’t seem
to treasure family heirlooms. If older members of their family pass on,
they tend to just throw their stuff out; they don’t hold on to it or restore
it.” But he’s not complaining – he’s picked up many amazing pieces from
the junkyard, including the prized bicycle with the “open” sign affixed
to it that stands proudly outside the store’s front door. “It’s like the old
adage goes, one man’s junk is another man’s treasure,” he says. Apart
from housing historical items of Seychelles’ past, the walls are adorned
with art for sale from local artists, many of whom Joseph is friends with.
Most of the work showcased is done by artists from the Baie Lazare area
and gets them a lot of exposure. “Yeh, the art sells well here – and as
soon as something is sold, I call them up and say ‘there’s a gap on the
wall, I need a replacement’.” He smiles as he tells me this. Joseph has an
extremely calm and warm nature, and shares his knowledge and stories
openly. Which is why I’m not surprised when he tells me that he often
has groups from schools who come by to visit, and he gives them a
guided tour of the place and answers their questions.
“IT’S LIKE THE OLD ADAGE
GOES, ONE MAN’S JUNK IS
ANOTHER MAN’S TREASURE,”
Every year since 2003, Joseph has visited the UK at least once; unlike
many locals who mainly travel abroad to shop and enjoy the finer
things in life, he loves to visit other places and experience their culture
and history. Of all the places he’s travelled to he says that the museums
and antique stores that he visited in the UK and South Africa have
had the biggest influence on how he curates things and have further
inspired him to keep hunting for souvenirs and artifacts to display.
There is no cover fee to visit the museum, and when I ask him if he’ll
ever charge one in the future, he responds, “never; I will never have a
fee to come in. I am grateful for any donations, of course, so that I can
carry on collecting and preserving history, but I will never charge for
viewing.” Do people often leave donations I ask? “Not all the time, but I
get a few, normally SR25 or SR50; the most I have received was SR100
from a local lady who was so impressed by the place.” Joseph has many
foreigners visit and says they are always impressed with what he has
done with the place and they ask a lot of questions; “they really love it;
you just need to read my guest book to see for yourself”.
THE UK AND SOUTH AFRICA
HAVE HAD THE BIGGEST
INFLUENCE ON HOW HE
CURATES THINGS AND HAVE
FURTHER INSPIRED HIM TO KEEP
HUNTING FOR SOUVENIRS AND
ARTIFACTS TO DISPLAY.
Mamma Mia (Pty) Ltd
t: 4 374 545 | e: email@example.com
When choosing the colourful outside of Joseph’s museum as the
backdrop for our cover shoot this month, we had no idea of the
amazing history that lay beneath nor the friendly, genuine man
responsible for it. As they say, everything happens for a reason. Do
yourself a favour and pay the place a visit – you won’t be sorry.
15 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
Joseph Larue in his favourite space, his museum
Seychelles & Wellbeing
holistic treatment by therapists who come to you
yoga I therapy I ayurveda I acupressure
www.seyllbeing.com I fb.com/seyllbeing I +248 258 42 36
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 16
Domestic violence is something very prevalent in our
country, but a subject that remains greatly taboo. This
month we look at a survivor’s tale as well as telltale
signs that it’s time to get out and how to ask for help….
By Marie-France Watson and Lynette Botha
A survivor’s tale
One woman shares her story of living with and loving
an abusive partner – and how she finally got out
Cecile’s love story with Mark started when she was just 16 years old. He
was her first love. Coming from a home that was struggling with certain
social issues including mental illness, Mark’s presence in her life was
comforting. His possessiveness, which she now she realises was an early
sign of things to come, was at the time reassuring for her. He loved her
and wanted to protect her. Despite advice that the relationship would not
work from family and close friends, Cecile could not wait to marry Mark
at 22. Her excitement at the prospect of building a life with the man she
loved caused her to turn a blind eye to the occasional slaps, which had
started to surface. She dismissed them as irrelevant and was certain they
would stop when she became his wife.
She was wrong. While the physical abuse was not a daily occurrence, in
fact she recalls only two or three serious incidents in each year of their
marriage, the psychological ones were more frequent. In fits of rage he
would break things in the house, throw her out of the car they owned
(and often in places where she would be left stranded and far away from
home) and also threaten to kick her out of the house they owned. Looking
back, Cecile realises that it was all part of his need to control her. Instilling
fear in her was his way of reminding her who was the boss. While she
refuses to be labeled a victim, Cecile admits that psychologically he broke
her. After each incident he would cry and ask for forgiveness, but in the
same breath he would blame her for it; if only she had listened to him
or not answered back, he would have never raised his hand to her. She
would believe him for many reasons, one of which was she always wanted
her marriage to work out.
17 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
“If you feel like you have to
walk on eggshells around your
what you say and do in order
to avoid a blow-up—chances
are your relationship is
unhealthy and abusive. Other
signs that you may be in an
abusive relationship include
a partner who belittles you or
tries to control you, and feelings
of self-loathing, helplessness,
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IN THE HOME
The most recent statistics for domestic violence cases in Seychelles are
from 2013. Where figures show that domestic violence in the home grew
considerably from 472 cases in 2010, 589 in 2011, 670 in 2012 to 617 cases
in 2013. Bearing in mind these are cases that are reported – more often
than not, domestic violence is tolerated in the home for years and years,
before it is (if ever) reported. Also to note, is that these cases all included
physical harm – domestic abuse may include emotional or psychological
damage, but domestic violence indicates that the victim was physically
How to recognise abuse
Domestic abuse often starts out as verbal and emotional abuse;
arguments start, name-calling and blaming is thrown in, foul language
and threats may arise. This tends to escalate over weeks, months and
years. While physically, bodily violence seems the most dangerous, it’s
generally the emotional and psychological element that causes the most
damage over time. Emotionally abusive relationships lower your selfworth,
lead to anxiety and depression, and make you feel helpless and
alone. Domestic abuse knows no bounds – it affects women, men and
children, whether in a partnership or married, no matter race or religion –
and it is extremely damaging to all involved.
Signs of an abusive relationship
Knowing how to identify the signs of an abusive relationship is the first
step in getting help, and removing yourself from this toxic situation.
The arrival of their son, Myles, did not change Mark’s anger with the
world. While she can’t confirm whether Myles ever witnessed a physical
incident she knows he heard them. In fact, his reaction to a particular fight
was the moment she decided she had to leave Mark. Myles stood in the
corridor outside their bedroom in the middle of an intense verbal fight
and shouted, ’stop making me pee in my pants’. Cecile there and then
realised that she had not managed to keep her marital problems separate
from her child. At four, he was already consumed with fear. This was day
one in the countdown to her divorce.
The process would take two years. Cecile explained that she has never
been a person who made rushed decisions. To leave Mark she had to
be independent. They shared a home, a car and he was privy to all her
financials. She had to change all that. During those two years, life went
on and the abuse went on. At times she felt hopeful that things could
change. Afterall, she had a home, an extended family and a status. Was
it worth giving all this up? And there was another important factor
to consider as well; shame. How would her family react? What would
everyone think? Aside from a bloody nose once, her bruises had always
been hidden from the world. No one knew of her torment.
Turning 30 was a turning point in her life. In January that year she laid
the cards on the table to Mark – no more cheating and no more hitting.
He agreed and kept his promise for just over a month. An incident where
she stayed at an event for one hour longer than she had promised
resulted in an assault while she slept and a broken arm when she reacted.
The morning after that incident, Cecile walked out.
It’s been over a decade now since that day. For the most part Cecile feels
that she has moved on. She can talk about it without crying and is able
to analyse the entire 14 years with Mark from both perspectives. Mark’s
mother had been openly unfaithful to his father causing him to have a
low opinion of women in general. According to her, a man who ‘hates’ his
mother or sister has issues which need to be addressed. Also, she reckons
that Mark could never truly accept the woman she grew into over the
years. At 16, she was a child and as she matured she changed and he lost
his control over her. Academically, she was also a step ahead of him. She
never thought that would have anything to do with anything, but she
does recall conversations with polytechnic friends many years ago where
they expressed concerns over their compatibility. The fact that she was
accepted into the school she wanted and he didn’t most likely did not sit
well with him.
On the other hand, parts of the abuse puzzle have stayed with her. It’s
taken her years to trust her current partner. Years into their relationship
she still has trouble believing he would never hit her or threaten to leave
her. It is a work in progress and it always will be.
According to helpguide.org, an international site for information and
help with mental and emotional health, the most telling sign is fear of
your partner. “If you feel like you have to walk on eggshells around your
partner—constantly watching what you say and do in order to avoid
a blow-up—chances are your relationship is unhealthy and abusive.
Other signs that you may be in an abusive relationship include a partner
who belittles you or tries to control you, and feelings of self-loathing,
helplessness, and desperation.”
SIGNS THAT YOU’RE IN AN ABUSIVE RELATIONSHIP
Your Inner Thoughts and Feelings
Feel afraid of your partner much
of the time?
Avoid certain topics out of fear of
angering your partner?
Feel that you can’t do anything
right for your partner?
Believe that you deserve to be
hurt or mistreated?
Wonder if you’re the one who is
Feel emotionally numb or
Your Partner’s Violent Behaviour
Does your partner:
Have a bad and unpredictable
Hurt you, or threaten to hurt or
Threaten to take your children
away or harm them?
Threaten to commit suicide if you
Force you to have sex?
Destroy your belongings?
Your Partner’s Belittling Behavior
Does your partner:
Humiliate or yell at you?
Criticize you and put you down?
Treat you so badly that you’re
embarrassed for your friends or
family to see?
Ignore or put down your opinions
Blame you for their own abusive
See you as property or a sex
object, rather than as a person?
Your Partner’s Controlling
Does your partner:
Act excessively jealous and
Control where you go or what
Keep you from seeing your friends
Limit your access to money, the
phone, or the car?
Limit who you see and where you
Constantly check up on you?
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 18
The site offers the following table to determine whether your relationship
is abusive. The more “yes” answers, the more likely it is that you’re in an
FOR FRIENDS & FAMILY
Recognising the warning signs of domestic violence and abuse
It’s impossible to know with certainty what goes on behind closed doors,
but there are some telltale signs and symptoms of emotional abuse and
domestic violence. If you witness any warning signs of abuse in a friend,
family member, or co-worker, take them very seriously.
General warning signs of domestic abuse
People who are being abused may:
• Seem afraid or anxious to please their partner
• Go along with everything their partner says and does
• Check in often with their partner to report where they are and what
• Receive frequent, harassing phone calls from their partner
• Talk about their partner’s temper, jealousy, or possessiveness
Warning signs of physical violence
People who are being physically abused may:
• Have frequent injuries, with the excuse of “accidents”
• Frequently miss work, school, or social occasions, without
• Dress in clothing designed to hide bruises or scars (e.g. wearing long
sleeves in the summer or sunglasses indoors)
Warning signs of isolation
People who are being isolated by their abuser may:
• Be restricted from seeing family and friends
• Rarely go out in public without their partner
• Have limited access to money, credit cards, or the car
The psychological warning signs of abuse
People who are being abused may:
• Have very low self-esteem, even if they used to be confident
• Show major personality changes (e.g. an outgoing person becomes
• Be depressed, anxious, or suicidal
GETTING OUT AND GETTING HELP
Whether or not you’re ready to leave your abuser, there are things you can
do to protect yourself. These safety tips can make the difference between
being severely injured or killed and escaping with your life.
PREPARE FOR EMERGENCIES:
Know your abuser’s red flags.
Be on alert for signs and clues that your abuser is getting upset and may
IT IS STILL ABUSE IF...
• The incidents of physical abuse seem minor when compared to
those you have read about, seen on television or heard other
women talk about. There isn’t a “better” or “worse” form of
physical abuse; you can be severely injured as a result of being
pushed, for example.
• The incidents of physical abuse have only occurred one or two
times in the relationship. Studies indicate that if your spouse
or partner has injured you once, it is likely he will continue to
physically assault you.
• The physical assaults stopped when you became passive and
gave up your right to express yourself as you desire, to move
about freely and see others, and to make decisions. It is not a
victory if you have to give up your rights as a person and a
partner in exchange for not being assaulted!
• There has not been any physical violence. Many women are
emotionally and verbally assaulted. This can be as equally
frightening and is often more confusing to try to understand.
Source: Breaking the Silence Handbook
explode in anger or violence. Come up with several believable reasons
you can use to leave the house (both during the day and at night) if you
sense trouble brewing.
Identify safe areas of the house.
Know where to go if your abuser attacks or an argument starts. Avoid
small, enclosed spaces without exits (such as closets or bathrooms) or
rooms with weapons (such as the kitchen). If possible, head for a room
with a phone and an outside door or window.
Come up with a code word.
Establish a word, phrase, or signal you can use to let your children, friends,
neighbours, or co-workers know that you’re in danger and the police
should be called.
Make an escape plan
Be ready to leave at a moment’s notice. Keep the car fueled up and
facing the driveway exit, with the driver’s door unlocked. Hide a spare
car key where you can get it quickly. Have emergency cash, clothing, and
important phone numbers and documents stashed in a safe place (at a
friend’s house, for example).
Practice escaping quickly and safely.
Rehearse your escape plan so you know exactly what to do if under attack
from your abuser. If you have children, have them practice the escape plan
Make and memorise a list of emergency contacts.
Ask several trusted individuals if you can contact them if you need a ride, a
place to stay, or help contacting the police. Memorise the numbers of your
family, emergency contacts and a domestic violence hotline.
EMERGENCY CONTACTS AND INFORMATION
Central Police Station: 428 80 00
Seychelles Hospital: 438 80 00
Praslin Hospital: 423 23 33
La Digue Logan Hospital: 423 42 55
Alliance of Solidarity for the Family (ASFF)
Call: +248 432 3211; 252 5711; 250 1247
Seychelles National Council for Children (NCC)
NCC OR SOCIAL SERVICES HELPLINE: 422 4390
The names have been changed to protect the family’s privacy.
19 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
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if applicable. Seychelles Box shipments are subject to standard Terms and Conditions of Air Seychelles & Air Seychelles Cargo.
Former Beauty Queen on a Divine Mission
The moment the Jane Stravens changed her birth year on an application form so that she
would be old enough to participate in the Miss Seychelles 1972 contest, she had no idea
of By what Jane was to Edna come. Stravens
Not only she would win that crown but also make it to the top 10
finalists in the Miss World contest in London later on that same year. The decision was not
even one that had been thought through adequately. She had simply wanted to try her
luck in the national pageant and when being 16 was the only deterrent standing in her
way, she changed a number. Looking back, she realises that it also changed her life.
Jane was born in Seychelles to Joachim and Marie Stravens in 1956. As is common with
many families where the head was part of the police force, they move around the island
quite a bit. As a child, this provided a wonderful real-life ‘Alice in Wonderland’ scenario for
Jane who in turn got to learn about different places and beaches. They must have made
quite an impression on her since many of these locations are featured in the books she
wrote as an adult such as “Shirley and Her Friends the Dolphins - Listen To The Silence”
where the main character, Shirley, is from a small village called Quatre Borne in the district
Following her crowning as Miss Seychelles in 1972, which made her a household name on
the islands, Jane went on to spend six extraordinary weeks in London as part of the Miss
World contest. This of course happened after Eric Morley had been informed that a 16
year old had won the crown and still gave the approval for her to participate. Jane would
end up making history for Seychelles as far as Miss World goes; to date she is the only
Seychellois who has made it to the top 10 finalists. Turning down a modeling contract
after the pageant, Jane returned to Seychelles and started a career in the travelling
business. She’d had already had a taste of it and she wasn’t about to lose it. Working with
the Travel Services Seychelles gave way to travelling opportunities which Jane longed for.
It was in the 1980’s that she finally succumbed to the inner voice that kept telling her that
beyond Seychelles’ shores something new and exciting
was waiting for her.
The place was Italy. For the longest time Jane had felt a
fascination with this country which has been the starting
point of phenomena of international impact such as
the Roman Empire, the Roman Catholic Church, the
Renaissance and the Risorgimento. Indeed, the cultural
element of a life in Italy is one of the boxes that had to be
ticked for the move to take place.
“There’s one recurring
element in most of
and pursuits and that
is her interest in the
Italy did not disappoint Jane; in fact it provided ample
playground for her to explore multiple interests and
talents. Forward the clock and we have a Degree in
Theology, three years spent at the Brera Fine Arts
Academy; one of the most important art education
institutions in Italy, six published books and four more
waiting to be published. There’s one recurring element
in most of Jane’s endeavors and pursuits and that is
her interest in the divine powers, or simply put, God.
“God is everything to me,” Jane confides. She recalls
how when she was growing up, practicing religion was
never a discussion in her home, it simply was. Church
was attended every Sunday and every night her mother
would gather the family together to pray. Following a
particular difficult time in Italy she decided to deepen
her knowledge in religion as part of building a stronger
relationship with God. As she puts it, “before there was a
flame and now it’s a full blown fire”. Not one to keep any
acquired knowledge to herself, Jane also makes time to
teach children catechism and also the arts.
A desire to share her love for God coupled with childhood
memories that continued to infiltrate her thoughts, her
first book came to life; How to Be Useful to Humanity -
The Birth of Silk. “I have always had something to say,”
Jane says. Jane also states that it is a wonderful thing
to encourage children to cultivate their passions from
an early age. Jane also takes credit for the colourful
illustrations in her books. Her interest in developing her
artistic side has not seen its final light since she expresses
further interest in learning more.
21 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
On her mind right now is the EXPO (research on food and energy)
which will be in Milan this year, from the 1st of May to the 31st of
October. Jane is organising the 2nd edition of the “Children’s Painting
World Competition and Exhibition, entitled “Praising the Lord
Together”, in order to give praise and
thanks to God for all that he has given
us to enjoy for our health and beauty.
This initiative has been blessed by
Pope Benedict 16° more than two
years ago. Jane extends the invitation
to participate to the children of
Seychelles; find out more by going to
Jane’s website: www.janestravens.com
Jane’s to-do list seems to be a neverending
shrinking one. Her thirst for
knowledge, her love of life along with
her devotion to God keeps her going
on to the next thing and the next…
Jane’s books are available on
Amazon, Barnes & Nobles (US)
and also from her website www.
Jane as Miss Seychelles
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 22
Good, honest fun, along
with lethal cocktails, guitars
and crayfish have Brigitte
Monchouguy in high spirits
Alas many were under size and some were breeders so we did
the responsible thing and released them back into the ocean. We
gathered the remaining three lobsters and put on our snorkelling
gear to dive for Roe’s abalone, prying them off the surrounding
rocks and straight into our mesh bags.
Word around town was
that our friend, Crispin,
was holding a bona
fide Aussie bush party
to celebrate his 40th birthday. My
boyfriend, J and I decided to head
down south to check it out. We made
the three-hour journey from Perth
straight after work, stopping only for a petrol refill and chiko roll to snack on. Let it be said
that rural West Australian service stations are far from a culinary mecca.
renée martin designs
We arrived in Margaret River in total darkness and had to pitch our tent in the dead of
night, thankfully aided by head torches and my partner’s impressive camping skills. We
woke up the next morning under the blazing sun and drove straight to Redgate Beach
for a reviving dip, then took advantage of the low tide to bait our licensed crayfish pots
before cooking a breakfast of bacon and eggs on the barbie.
While the crayfish pots worked their magic we decided to visit Gunyulgup Galleries,
discovering some beautiful locally made glass sculptures and landscape paintings.
Then we headed to Crispin’s own little piece of heaven along the river, where he and
his wife have just completed building their three bedroom log cabin, set in untouched
bushland. A suckling pig was already roasting on a spit and we set about making Crispin’s
grandmother’s famous tea punch, a recipe which has been passed down from generation
to generation and is surprisingly lethal once laced with the requisite gin, rum or brandy!
Guitars and drums were brought out and we had a group sing-a-long underneath the
stars late into the night. It was good, honest fun.
The next day J and I went for our morning swim and checked on the crayfish pots. We
were elated to discover a total of 22 crayfish (Western Rock Lobsters) in our two pots.
Back at J’s brother’s house we prepared a feast of lobster and
abalone cooked two ways – one in a parsley, butter and white
wine sauce and the other with garlic and chili. Serving it with
a fresh grapefruit and almond salad, crusty Yallingup Bakery
woodfired sourdough bread and homemade lemonade, we
enjoyed a veritable feast from sea to table in less than two hours.
Delicious! Until next time, if you can’t be good, be good at it.
Mrs Underwood’s Tea Punch
A. Brew 2 tbsp black tea in 3 cups of boiling water. Let stand for 5
minutes then strain.
B. Dissolve ½ cup sugar in 2 cups of boiling water. Add a handful
of fresh mint and infuse for 5 minutes. Strain and while still
hot, stir in ¼ cup of red currant jelly. Combine A and B. Let
stand until cool.
C. Mix 2 cups of orange juice, 2 cups of pineapple juice and the
juice of 6 lemons. Combine C with A and B. Store in jugs or
bottles in the fridge until needed.
When ready to serve the punch combine 1/3 of the ABC
mixture with 2/3 cold ginger beer, lemonade or soda.
Spike with gin, rum or brandy and serve over ice in tea cups
with a fresh mint leaf as garnish.
Brigitte Monchouguy is a Seychellois legal
practitioner with a passion for social journalism. She
is happiest when travelling, with interests in music,
art, theatre and architecture. She also dabbles in
mixology and will be sharing cocktail recipes along
with her monthly escapades.
23 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
| From London to Mahé |
The difference between men and women
Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus? Despite not liking gender labels, Daniel Balkwill tends to agree
Gender stereotypes are hateful things.
Casually labelling 50% of the world’s
population with exactly the same
attributes is just plain ignorant.
Personally, I can’t bear it when a lady rolls
her eyes and says “Huh, typical man”. I’m
sure ladies find their hackles rising when a
so-called gentleman suggests that all women
talk too much, spend an excessive amount
of time in the bathroom and can’t throw
EXIST BECAUSE THEY
MIRED IN TRUTH
BUT THAT DOESN’T
MEAN THAT THEY
APPLY ACROSS THE
things properly just as we take umbrage
at being accused of being emotionally
stunted, thinking exclusively with our nether
regions and possessing an innate inability
to multitask. It is perhaps the last of these
alleged typical male traits that annoys me the
most but I shall revisit that point later.
Clichés and stereotypes only exist because
they are essentially mired in truth but that
doesn’t mean that they apply across the
board. Come to think of it, I don’t actually
know of any particular woman who talks
sparingly, spends an acceptable amount of
time whilst getting ready in the morning
and has a devilish throwing arm but I am
convinced such individuals are to be found.
Similarly, I’ve not met any men who can
emote freely, rarely obsess over the fairer sex
and have the ability to rustle up a Cordon
Bleu meal whilst juggling a set of flaming
skittles but there must surely be such folk in
Not long ago I reached the end of my
working day. Nothing of much note had
happened. Such is the fickle world of retail.
Undeterred by the paucity of the day’s
successes, I set off for home, striding along
the Providence highway with my usual
combination of pace and purpose. As a wise
man once said, the sooner you get home, the
sooner you get to chill out and play with the
Upon my return, there was clearly a situation
of domestic upheaval. The car’s battery
was flat and there was an imminent storm
threatening. We all had to help push the
stricken vehicle into the garage before the
full might of the tropical elements was
unleashed. Despite the rigours of a day at
work followed by a three mile hike I threw
myself into the task with gusto. Although
there was some initial resistance, the car
began to inch slowly towards its intended
It was at this point that things began to go
awry. Ossie the dog had been observing
this curious activity and decided to get
involved. Normally he views me as his
faithful companion and playmate but on
this occasion something had clearly shortcircuited
in his mind. As I was pushing the car
with both arms fully extended and unable to
protect myself I suddenly felt him jump on
Dan works for Kreol Wines - a wine shop located
at Eden Plaza on Eden Island, specialising in
Argentinian, Australian, French and South
Opening hours: Monday - Friday, 9am - 6.30pm;
Saturday, 10am - 6pm; Sunday, 10am - 4pm
It was then, in the midst of my canine
torment, that I experienced an unexpected
moment of clarity. I was shoving a heavy
car with all my might, desperately fending
off the unwanted advances of an amorous,
temporarily sexually confused 45 kilogram
dog with my left leg and breathing all at the
same time. Perhaps men can multitask after
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 24
Life, love and everything in between
In an interview with George Negus in 1979, Bob Marley clearly stated what richness
meant to him.
Have you made a lot of money out of your music?
Money? How much is a lot of money to you?
Yes, that’s a good question. Have you made, say, millions of dollars? Are
you a rich man?
When you say rich, what do you mean?
Do you have lots of possessions? Lots of money in the bank?
Possessions make you rich? I don’t have that kind of richness, my
richness is life... forever.
His answer was so simple, yet so profound and thought provoking. It made me
reevaluate things too, and ask myself: what is richness? What makes someone rich? Is it
their flashy car and their nice house? Or is it that their family is happy and healthy and
loved, with a roof over their heads and food in their stomachs?
richness of Life
The true meaning of wealth has nothing
to do with money, says Alexandria Faure
In this one interview Bob Marley encapsulates something meaningful and true; that
richness is life.
We spend so much time in our lives chasing after materialistic things and accumulating
wealth; we think possessions and status make us successful, ignorantly unaware that
the richness of life exists in nature, in our loved ones and in ourselves. We may all have
different perspectives on life and varying opinions but this is definitely something worth
pondering (and something we can all agree on…?).
Alexandria Faure is a freelance writer with a degree in Drama & Theatre Arts and hopes to pursue a masters in the near future. She is passionate about preserving the unique
Kreol culture and heritage of Seychelles, and her hobby is researching different cultural aspects of Seychelles and the historical stories behind them. She hopes to share ideas and
thoughts drawn from her life experiences in her articles.
EATING WELL WITHIN YOUR BUDGET
Tips and tricks to make your food go further with Celia Ponzo
As soon as we hear the term ‘healthy eating’, we immediately feel our
wallets draining. We tend to think that eating healthier foods is going to
be a burden on our grocery bill and that only wealthy people can afford to
eat well. Moreover, there is a common belief that eating healthily costs too
much money to be sustainable.
But that’s where we’re wrong. It is possible to eat healthily, without
blowing our budgets. The cost of food, and especially fruits and
vegetables, in the Seychelles is high, but here are some tips that can help
you stick to eating well without breaking the bank…
TRACK YOUR SPENDING
Set aside a specific amount of money you’re willing to spend on food
for the week. Withdraw that amount and store it in an envelope. Once
the money is gone from that envelope your spending for the week on
groceries is done and now all there is left for you to do is be creative with
what you already have in your kitchen. You will be surprised; there are so
many delicious things that can be made from your kitchen pantry. Make
sure you include a big selection of fruit and vegetables in your weekly
purchases. Create a budget for your food per week and write down every
cent you are spending on food initially, to help you understand where you
are spending the most. Ensure that your budget is reasonable in terms of
your income and basic needs.
MIX AND MATCH WHAT IS LEFT IN YOUR KITCHEN
Use up what is left in your kitchen cupboard. Many times we still have
food in our cupboards or fridge that we have not eaten or not even
opened, yet we go shopping. Come up with something inventive to make
with what you have; it may take a little more creativity but at least it will
save having to go shopping. And at the same time ensures everything you
buy is not wasted.
SHOP LOCALLY AND EAT LOCALLY
Explore the market and the local stands along the road or even ask your
neighbour what she has in her back garden. We all know that the cost
of vegetables and fruits at the market can be expensive but why not go
back in time, to when people used to share and swap the produce from
their gardens? Nowadays we pass by homes where fruits are rotting on
the floor never to be eaten. Things like breadfruit, which is full of nutrients
and fibre-rich carbohydrates, yet this miracle food is seen as a ‘poor food’,
which our grandparents used to eat. Yet our grandparents were healthier
and less likely to die of any cardiovascular diseases, as they were not
exposed to so much imported junk food full of salt, sugar and fat. So
follow their example!
ENJOY YOUR LEFT OVERS
Never throw food away, rather store it properly in clean, airtight
containers in the fridge, or sealed in the cupboard. Then quickly and
easily transform the previous night’s dinner into a healthy lunch. This will
save you a trip to the take-away van at lunchtime – it will save you money
as well as ensure you’re not eating excess salt, sugar and fats.
PLAN YOUR MEALS
Planning your weekly menu is vital to keeping healthy. By thinking
ahead about what you are going to cook for each meal you are more
likely to stick to only the ingredients you need, and not spend money on
unnecessary items and impulse buys. It is important to take stock of what
you already have on hand so you’re only buying exactly what you need.
CUT THE JUNK FROM YOUR BILL
This is my last point and probably the most powerful one. Make a list of
all the junk food you are buying. Whether it is the two samoosas at your
tea break or the packets of biscuits, crisps and chocolate in your trolley.
You will be surprised how much you spend on these types of foods and
because these are seen as ‘necessities’ you have never questioned their
cost. Now cut those out at your next grocery shop and see how much
money you have saved. Then use that saved money to buy extra fruit and
vegetables. You will be pleasantly surprised.
Célia is passionate to inspire happier and healthier lives
by sharing holistic tips to her public. Her background is in
medical anthropology and public health. She is currently
working in the nutrition unit at the ministry of health.
25 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
Le combat pour le droit des femmes
Il y a tout juste 40 ans en France, le 17 janvier 1975, la loi Veil
légalisant l’interruption volontaire de grossesse était promulguée.
Jusque-là, avorter pour une raison non médicale était un délit
passible de prison. Ce combat pour le droit à l’avortement a
été celui d’une femme, Simone Veil, ministre de la santé sous le
gouvernement de Valéry Giscard d’Estaing. Elle était soutenue à
l’époque par les personnalités françaises telles que la philosophe
Simone de Beauvoir, l’écrivain Françoise Sagan, l’avocate Gisèle
Halimi, les actrices Jeanne Moreau et Catherine Deneuve et d’autres
signataires du manifeste « des 343 salopes », ainsi que l’avait
surnommé le journal Charlie Hebdo.
Le droit à l’avortement, et par là-même, le droit de disposer de son
corps est un acquis de la révolution féministe qui a considérablement
contribué à libérer les femmes dans les sociétés démocratiques.
Cette révolution féministe est un long combat qui a traversé les
siècles : elle prend ses racines dans le Siècle des Lumières et émerge
lors de la Révolution française : de nombreuses femmes marchent
sur Versailles pour ramener Louis XVI à Paris, participent à la prise
de la Bastille et Olympes de Gouges rédige La Déclaration des droits
de la femme et de la citoyenne en 1791. La première vague de cette
révolution, de la fin du XIXème siècle à 1945 s’attache aux réformes
institutionnelles (droit à l’éducation, au travail, au divorce, droit de
vote, droit à la maîtrise de leurs biens) : la juridiction des femmes
évolue et peu à peu elles ne sont plus des éternelles mineures qui
dépendent de leur époux, de leur père ou encore de leur frère.
A la fin des années 1960, la deuxième vague féministe dénonce la
domination masculine dans la sphère privée et s’attache à libérer
le corps des femmes de cette domination. Cette période charnière,
qui s’accompagne d’une forte féminisation du travail, a contribué à
bousculer les mentalités et a conduit aujourd’hui les femmes à la tête
du pouvoir dans divers secteurs. Pourtant, et en dépit des progrès
indéniables, le combat féministe connaît des écueils : la révolution
féministe dans son expression radicale a exclu la masculinité et force
est de constater que le sexisme, le machisme et les inégalités entre
les hommes et les femmes ont la peau dure, notamment en terme
d’écart de salaires, qui constitue un « plafond de verre ». Dans les
banlieues, le quotidien des femmes n’est guère à envier, entre les
humiliations, les viols (les « tournantes »), les excisions et les mariages
forcés, ainsi que le rappelle le combat de l’association « Ni putes ni
soumises », fondée en 2003 par Fadela Amara, ancienne Secrétaire
d’Etat chargée de la Politique de la Ville sous le gouvernement de
A l’heure où nous célébrons la Journée Internationale de la Femme,
le combat pour le droit des femmes prend tout son sens dans les
pays du Sud. L’actualité déferle chaque jour de mauvaises nouvelles :
faibles taux de scolarisation des petites filles, violences conjugales et
viols collectifs de nombreuses femmes. L’ONU, mais aussi des ONG
et des associations se mobilisent sur place, comme l’association
« Toutes à l’école », fondée par la rédactrice en chef du journal Marie-
Claire, Tina Kieffer, qui aide à la scolarisation des petites filles au
Cambodge. L’attribution du prix Nobel de la paix à Malala Yousafzai,
rescapée d’un attentat lié à son combat pour le droit à l’éducation,
rappelle que le respect des droits des femmes passe avant tout
par l’éducation. Des voix se font de plus en plus entendre : en Inde,
et précisément à New Delhi, l’affaire du viol collectif d’une jeune
étudiante décédée des suites de ses blessures a eu un retentissement
international mais aussi national. Pour la première fois, les Indiens,
sexes confondus, de la classe moyenne surtout, se sont mobilisés
et ont manifesté contre les violences faites aux femmes dans leur
pays. Ce changement de l’état d’esprit d’une société entière ne peut
se faire que sur un temps long, d’où l’importance du travail des
institutions qui oeuvrent pour la condition des femmes.
Passionnée de littérature et de cinéma, Marie Welsch
est responsable culturelle à l’Alliance française des
Seychelles depuis maintenant un an. Originaire de la
Réunion et ayant mené des études de lettres modernes et
de sciences politiques à Aix-en Provence, elle s’intéresse à
l’indianité et à l’identité créole des îles de l’Océan Indien
et espère plus tard en faire l’objet d’une thèse.
Cours de français Ateliers
AllianceFrançaise de Victoria
Toutes les informations sur les évènements culturels à l’Alliance
sur notre site internet www.allianceseychelles.org
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 26
Je suis toujours Charlie !(par Georges Gravé)
Pour être honnêtes avec vous, comme
beaucoup d’entre nous j’ai été atterré, assommé,
désemparé, triste comme jamais, bouleversé
durant cette fameuse journée et les jours qui ont
suivi ces attentats parisiens. Actes odieux qui
resteront marqués dans la mémoire collective.
Je suis resté toute la journée anéanti devant
mon poste de télévision ne pouvant rien faire
d’autre !!! Pourtant à mon âge, ce n’était quand
même pas la première fois que de tels actes
avaient lieu. J’étais même en Allemagne dans
les années 1975 quand la « bande à badeer »
semait la terreur dans la population. Alors
pourquoi tant d’émotions ?? Bien sur, nous
connaissions ces dessinateurs qui depuis
plusieurs décennies accompagnaient notre
quotidien, mais en fait en les tuant
sauvagement, ces barbares ont touché quelquechose
de fondamental pour le peuple Français :
notre liberté. Et notre liberté de penser, de
parler, en France c’est sacré. C’est notre moyen
d’exister, c’est fondamental a notre vie et a notre
survie. Les manifestations monstres qui ont suivi
en sont une preuve éclatante. Et j’oserais dire
« merci » à ces pauvres gens à la dérive, car au
lieu de museler la parole, c’est le contraire qui
a eu lieu. 7 millions d’exemplaires de Charlie
vendus. Personne au grand jamais n’aurait pu
imaginer cela quelques semaines auparavant.
Et au delà de Charlie Hebdo, ses copains refont
surface : notre canard enchaîné national, fluide
glacial, Hara-kiri, des titres presque inconnus du
En France, nous avons la culture de l’Humour
et de la caricature. Cela fait vraiment parti
de notre patrimoine. Déjà sous le règne de
Louis 14, ce dernier embauchait des fous du
roi qui avaient pour mission de se moquer
« gentiment » du monarque et de le faire rire. En
fait c’est peut être Louis 14 qui a inventé Charlie
Hebdo. Que dire de nos chansonniers un peu
passé de mode aujourd’hui mais qui avaient
le don d’appuyer sur les boutons de pue des
nantis et des politiques. Fernand Raynaud qui
déjà dans les années 1960 nous faisait rire avec
ces étrangers qui venaient manger le pain des
français. Alors, ils l’avaient viré ce sal étranger
du village… pas de bol, il était boulanger.
Comment ne pas rendre hommage au grand
Thierry Le Luron, a son ami Coluche, aux
brillants Desproges et Bedos. Et bien sur plus
près de nous toute l’équipe des Guignols. Merci
a vous tous pour oser dire tout haut ce que
tout le monde pense tout bas. C’est aussi ça la
démocratie ! Nous avons besoin de vous. Alors
ce n’est pas trois paumés avec leur kalachnikov,
même s‘ils réussissent à tuer 17 personnes qui
vont faire plier un pays de liberté ou la parole
Et je dois avouer que j’étais satisfait lorsque
presque en direct nous avons suivi la fin des
prises d’otages. Satisfaits de les savoir morts ces
soi-disant martyrs. Au moins, ils ne couteront
plus d’argent à la société. Et je souriais en
pensant à ces trois illuminés, sourire aux lèvres
débarquant devant leur Dieu. Bonjour Allah,
c’est nous les martyrs de Paris. Et Dieu leur
répondant la larme a l’œil, comme la couve
de Charlie Hebdo….. Pauvres imbéciles, je
vous pardonne, car vous avez été tellement
manipulés mais jamais au grand jamais, un dieu
a demandé a ces fidèles de tuer en son nom. Je
ne suis qu’amour !!! J’espère pour eux que dans
leur religion, ils croient a la réincarnation, sinon
ils sont bien dans le pétrin !
Et puis ce fut le ras de marrée, un peu comme
a la libération de Paris. Dans chaque ville, dans
chaque village les gens sont sortis dans la
rue. Du jamais vu, des millions de personnes
ensemble, juste pour être ensemble. Des
millions de personnes de toutes races, de toutes
origines, des noirs, des juifs, des arabes, des
blancs, l’arc en ciel de la race humaine. Oublié
nos différences, nos prises de becs, nos partis
politique… d’ailleurs nos politique, eux aussi,
étaient tous présents et même si cela en a
agacer plus d’un (moi le premier) de voir tous
ces marchands d’armes, voir même quelques
dictateurs défiler au premier rang de la manif,
pas de problème, eux aussi avaient le droit de
saisir ce moment de rédemption. Car c’est bien
de cela qu’il s’agissait. Un véritable moment de
grâce, d’union et de fraternité. Cette Manif a
soigné nos âmes, pansé nos plaies, atténuer
notre chagrin. Cette manif par sa puissante
énergie nous a permis de nous retrouver et de
regarder demain avec espoir et confiance. Des
millions de personnes dehors et pas un accroc,
les policiers se faisant même applaudir, comme
si nous étions déjà en train de réapprendre à
vivre ensemble. Et cela n’aurait étonné personne
de voir le fantôme du Grand Charles lancer a
la foule : « Paris brisé, Paris outragé, mais Paris
libéré » Car c’est bien de cela qu’il s’agissait,
nous avions libéré Paris de la sauvagerie et nous
venions de faire a la française un magnifique
bras d’honneur a ses sauvages !
Et maintenant, trois mois plus tard, que sont
devenus ces merveilleux Charlies ! Apres les
émotions, c’est bien sur le temps de la réflexion.
De nombreuses personnalités de tout bord
osent s’exprimer comme si ce 11 janvier avaient
en quelques sortes libéré la parole. Dominique
de Villepin écrivait dans le figaro du 20 janvier
« Un espoir est né le 11 janvier. Nous avons
besoin du soutien de tout le peuple français,
nous avons besoin d’un débat et pas de la seule
réponse sécuritaire…. Mais tout ne viendra
pas de l’Etat. Il faut que ce fantastique sursaut
du 11 janvier se traduise en actes politiques,
individuels, associatif. Bref tous ensemble. La
guerre, n’importe quel état peut la faire. Nos
vraies armes, ce sont nos principes, a condition
de les appliquer et d’inventer un autre chemin
que celui de l’affrontement. » Oui, car le
terrorisme nous tend un piège, il veut nous
pousser a la faute, et la faute, c’est la guerre.
Notre intérêt est vraiment d’éviter par tous les
moyens l’engrenage de la force. »
Merci a nos hommes politiques de l’époque
qui ont voté le 9 décembre 1905 la loi de
séparation des églises et de l’Etat. Ouf ! Cela ne
c’est pas fait en un jour et il en fallait du courage
politique pour lutter contre « dieu » c’est je
crois a mon humble avis le travail que devrait
commencer le monde musulman.
Pas d’amalgame nous dit on, et tout le monde
sait bien que les terroristes n’ont rien à voir
avec la religion musulmane… Quoi que ! Mais
force est de constater que tous se revendiquent
toujours de cette religion. « Où sont tes sages,
et as-tu encore une sagesse à proposer au
27 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
monde ? Où sont tes grands hommes ? Qui sont
tes Mandela, qui sont tes Gandhi ? Où sont tes
grands penseurs dont les livres devraient être
lus dans le monde entier comme au temps où
les mathématiciens et les philosophes arabes ou
persans faisaient référence de l’Inde à l’Espagne
? » Se demande le philosophe Abdennour
Bidar dans cette magnifique « lettre ouverte au
monde musulman » que je vous recommande
de lire de toute urgence.
Les musulmans ont besoin de retrouver
l’essence du message originel. Ils ont besoin
d’un nouveau souffle capable de faire en sorte
que la foi ne se refroidisse pas en rites pervertis
par les hommes. Dans la religion catholique le
ménage est commencé depuis bien longtemps
et merci au pape Francois de remettre les choses
à leur place. Il suffit de voir son dernier discours
devant tous les évêques pour ses vœux. Ils en
ont tous pris plein la tronche !!!!! (« La curie est
appelée a s’améliorer, a toujours s’améliorer
et a grandir en communion et sagesse pour
réaliser pleinement sa mission. Pourtant
comme tout corps humain, elle est exposée
aussi aux maladies, aux disfonctionnement,
aux infirmités…… Ce sont des maladies et des
tentations qui affaiblissent notre service du
Pas d’amalgames, certes et le Coran comme
la bible sont des textes sacrés. Respect ! Mais
en aucun cas ils ne doivent devenirs des livres
politiques, et nous le savons bien, si tous les
pouvoirs, spirituels et politiques sont entre
les mêmes mains…. Danger ! Et il faut bien
l’admettre que beaucoup de pays musulmans
sont encore des pays a forte tendance
« Tu as choisi de considérer que Mohammed
était prophète et roi. Tu as choisi de définir
l’islam comme religion politique, sociale, morale,
devant régner comme un tyran aussi bien sur
LE PEUPLE FRANÇAIS
: NOTRE LIBERTÉ. ET
NOTRE LIBERTÉ DE
PENSER, DE PARLER,
EN FRANCE C’EST
SACRÉ. C’EST NOTRE
A NOTRE VIE ET A
l’Etat que sur la vie civile, aussi bien dans la
rue et dans la maison qu’à l’intérieur même de
chaque conscience. Tu as choisi de croire et
d’imposer que l’islam veut dire soumission alors
que le Coran lui-même proclame qu’« il n’y a
pas de contrainte en religion » (La ikraha fi Dîn).
Tu as fait de son appel à la liberté l’empire de la
contrainte ! Comment une civilisation peutelle
trahir à ce point son propre texte sacré ?
Je dis qu’il est l’heure, dans la civilisation de
l’islam, d’instituer cette liberté spirituelle - la
plus sublime et difficile de toutes - à la place de
toutes les lois inventées par des générations de
théologiens ! » (Abdennour Bidar)
Nous le voyons bien l’après Charlie prendra du
temps, et nous avons un énorme travail à faire.
Changer le monde est impossible, alors il faut
commencer par changer soi-même. Changer
ses habitudes, sortir de sa zone de confort,
regarder l’autre avec plus de tolérance et de
bienveillance. Tendre la main, partager nos
valeurs et accepter les valeurs des autres. Ouvrir
son cœur et avoir vraiment cette ferme intention
de vouloir vivre ensemble !
A ce sujet, c’est peut être les Seychelles qui
nous donne l’exemple à suivre. En effet, pour la
seconde année consécutive le gouvernement
Seychellois en partenariat avec le National
Youth Council ont décidé de promouvoir
chaque mois de l’année 2015 une valeur
humaine. La première semaine de janvier
quelques jours avant les attentats (joli hasard)
le Vice Président Danny Faure nous présentait
ce merveilleux programme : Values for one,
value for all. Demandez le programme : Janvier
/ Responsability, Fevrier / Tolerance, Mars /
Resilience, Avril / Patience, Mai / Discipline, Juin
/ Unity, Juillet / Respect, Aout / Commitment,
Septembre / Peace, Octobre / Determination,
Novembre / Gratitude et Decembre /Paix.
Et si on instaurait cela dans nos écoles
françaises pour les petits Charlies ?
Allez, tous les Charlies du monde, retroussons
nos manches et commençons ensemble à
reconstruire un monde dont nous serons fiers.
Maintenant, nous le savons, c’est possible !
Georges Gravé is the
Personal Development &
Training Manager at the
Maia Luxury Resort and Spa
We asked a few key female media representatives to share their opinions on the incident at
“The terror attack on Charlie Hebdo is yet
another example of how intolerant the
world is becoming, despite the fact that
more people with different values are
migrating to different parts of the world.
This movement of people can lead to
unnecessary tensions because individuals
do not understand each other’s values.
Instead of integration, you get divided
communities where people are wary of each
other, thus leading to such acts. No one
should die because of their given right to
Lindy Vital, Le Seychellois Hebdo
“Freedom of speech is essential for any
democracy. Yet with this freedom comes
a responsibility. Some speech should be
controlled when it poses the potential
of endangering other people. We are
accountable for views that we express. As
much as freedom of speech needs to be
respected and upheld it also needs to be
checked on an even playing field. We have
the right to express ourselves, but we also
have an ethical and moral responsibility to
do it wisely”.
Dawn Athanasius, Paradise FM Presenter
“I believe in free speech, including the
freedom of bigots to speak their minds,
because I prefer to know their real feelings,
than to be fooled by the fashion of political
correctness. While I was horrified by the
terrorist attacks on Charlie Hebdo, I did
not join in the “Je Suis Charlie” social media
campaign because I don’t identify with a
magazine that ridicules religions, even if
they have the freedom to do it. Free speech
is part of your free will, to choose to do
good in the world, to behave with respect
and tolerance, or to do the things that hurt
people and incite hatred. You should have
the freedom to make choices, but when
you make choices that you know will hurt
people, you should expect consequences,
whether a slap in the face, or terrible acts of
revenge. Free speech is not an exception to
Srdjana Janosevic, Chief Press Secretary
“I am not a fan of Charlie Hebdo the satirist
magazine – but I understand the messages
being carried by the publication and the
questions they raise. In my eyes, Charlie
is the journalist, Charlie is the cartoonist,
Charlie is the photographer and cameraman
fighting to tell the truth, therefore I am
Charlie too. Our main weapons of choice are
our pen, pencil microphone and camera.
As Charlie we offend and we get ‘unfriend’
often. On a daily basis, dedicated journalists
dies a little when he/she is in the absence
of press freedom. We fight on Charlies. Lets
fight on... R.I.P to all perished Charlies”.
Tessa Henderson, Journalist
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 28
KNOW YOUR RIGHTS WITH
In the real world of this problem, however, this love-in with the law
translates into the following. Nobody will blame you for causing the
marriage to break down because of your infidelity. This is a neutral factor.
You will neither lose the rights you would otherwise have in the house,
nor will you lose custody of the children. Having got custody of the
children, you will get the maintenance they need for their upkeep, subject
to the requirements of your ex-husband. He may have a second family too
for whom he must care. Since the rule of thumb is to keep the two families
in roughly the same position as they were prior to the breakdown, the
level of maintenance will be set to achieve this purpose. But, this is not
really the problem here because you and your ex have agreed to all that.
The problem is that he has cut the maintenance by 2/3. What can you do?
You will note that I have used the word ‘maintenance’ and not ‘alimony’.
The reason for this is that maintenance is generally used in relation to
money paid for children and alimony for an ex-spouse.
“Our law regarding marriage,
divorce, custody and maintenance
is fair. As a country, we are right
up there with the best and most
advanced countries in the world.”
My ex-husband and I divorced three years ago
following my infidelity. Despite the circumstances,
he left me with the house, primary custody of our
three children and a more than generous monthly
alimony. Six months ago a question of paternity
came up and results proved that two out of our
three kids are not biologically his. He has decided
to cut the alimony to 1/3. The children attend
private schools and our lifestyle has always been
more than just ‘modest’. This financial change has
completely turned our lives upside down. Can I
fight him on this?
Gosh, you really do not make things easy for yourself, do you? Here’s my
advice: let sleeping dogs lie. Don’t even think of fighting your ex-husband.
You were responsible for the marriage failing. You must have known that
the two children weren’t his. You have the house and some alimony. Count
your blessings and make do with what you have.
This short advice may appear rough, brutal even, but it is the kindest way
of giving it. Sometimes, lawyers are stuck and cannot find any advice to
give which will please the client on the other side of their desk. This is one
case. And here’s why.
Our law regarding marriage, divorce, custody and maintenance is fair.
As a country, we are right up there with the best and most advanced
countries in the world. Our family law is really up to date. Parties are no
longer blamed for divorce, irrespective of actual blameworthiness. Courts
can transfer matrimonial property from the legal owner to the nonowner
following marital breakdown. Shares in jointly-owned property
can be adjusted. Custody is granted to one parent or another on the sole
basis of what is best for the child. Money and means do not come into
it. Maintenance payments seek to put the parties as close as possible in
the same position they were prior to the breakdown. In all these things,
Seychelles holds its own with the most developed countries. It is a system
of which we can be justifiably proud.
The only reasons that a parent has to pay maintenance for a child are that
that child is his or hers, the child is a minor or still undergoing education,
or disabled, and that child is not living with him or her. There is no other
legal obligation to pay maintenance for a child. There is also no real legal
obligation for a person to pay maintenance for another person’s child.
There may be a moral reason for doing so – the children may not have
known any other father, the ‘father’ may have treated them as his own
and led them to believe that he would always be there for them so that in
legal parlance he would be estopped (prevented) from saying otherwise
etc. But when push comes to shove there is really no compelling legal
reason for forcing a person to maintain a child which is not his, unless
he has contractually agreed to do so. In this case it is clear that your ex
believed the children to be his and treated them as his, to the extent of
paying maintenance for them. It is only when the paternity test proved
otherwise that he changed. It cannot be argued that he knew all along
and still decided to maintain them. Had that been the case, it might be
said that he should not be allowed to decide otherwise now. But, on the
facts here, this is not the case. He has clearly withdrawn maintenance for
the two children because he feels that you have not been upfront with
him. He has a point.
But, what about the children, you may ask? They are innocent. Why should
they be punished? Why indeed? But, by the same token, why should
somebody who looked after them as a father when he had no legal
obligation to do so continue when he realises that he is not their father?
Plus, they must have a biological father somewhere. Unless that person is
deceased, abroad, or destitute, he is the person who has the duty in law
to maintain his children, not your ex. So, it is to him that you must look for
maintenance to support the life to which your children are accustomed.
If he cannot pay, then you will have to face the unhappy prospect of a
reduced lifestyle. You cannot count on your ex legally to maintain children
who are not his, no matter how terribly that will affect you as a family, or
the two children who are not his.
I am sorry, but this is not a case with a happy ending. Rather, it is a case
which reminds us of the old legal adage: duralex sed lex – the law is tough,
but it’s the law.
Educated at Seychelles College and Cambridge University,
Bernard Georges has two Masters Degrees – in the law of divorce
and in canon law, the law of the church. He is best known as a
lawyer, having been in private practice for over 30 years. Over
the past ten years, he has also been a member of the National
Assembly. He is currently a part-time lecturer in law at the
University of Seychelles, where he teaches Constitutional Law.
And, he is a budding writer. He has written and published two
novels to date and he promises many more books on history, law
29 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 30
so much more than a pretty face.
By Marie-France Watson
31 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
There’s nothing that makes my day more than
being able to see the accomplishments of my fellow
independent women, so it’s no surprise that I was
completely ecstatic about my sit down with the lovely
For those of you who don’t know, Ms. Houareau was
an athlete, one of THE best this country has seen! As a
sprinter, she took to the track plenty of times for 100m
sprints, 200m sprints and even 400m sprints with the
occasional long jump feats to add to her list. Although
she also participated in long jump events, Joanna was a
sprinter at heart, setting records for all three distances
during her career as a sprinter. It is no secret that her
400m and 200m records have yet to be broken. The
shorter 100m sprint record that has been held by
Joanna for over 15 years was broken in 2014 by aspiring
athlete Joanne Lou-Toy. If it took this long to break a
100m record, one can only imagine how long it’s going
to take to break the longer distance records.
Joanna’s rise to success as an athlete started while she
was still quite young by participating in the interschool
29th June sports competitions. Her talents were
recognised and she was recruited to join the national
team at 12 years of age and soon after she participated
in her first Jeux des Iles in 1993. Joanna never lacked
motivation in pursuing athletics as she had many great
influences within her own neighbourhood at Pascal
Village such as her neighbour and relative Vincent
Houareau who would always bring her along to his
athletics club training sessions at the beach. Alongside
Vincent, Joanna also had the late Mervin Pierre who
helped groom her into a sprinter at a young age in the
Beau Vallon based Athletic Club.
Potpourri December Cover
Two covers where Joanna has assisted on hair and make-up
Unconditional support is something she always had from her family, most of it coming
from her mother Julie Laporte. Julie’s support was alongside that of members of the public
and the athletics federation itself which provided Joanna with great coaches throughout
her career; many of the coaches also served as father figures as her own father was not
supportive to her.
She was a nationwide star in the sports world, having competed in various competitions,
both here in Seychelles and overseas such as:
• Jeux des Iles
• Jeux d’Afrique
• Francophonie Games
• World Championship Games
• World Indor Championship games
• Olympic Games
Potpourri January Cover
100m final 29.06.95
The list goes on and on with various regional competitions but her biggest accomplishment
was being part of the Olympic games. I asked her how she felt about going to the Olympics
and her response was “First and foremost I was overwhelmed, the feelings were something
I can’t totally describe as I was very excited at the same time for having the honour to stand
and compete against the world’s greatest, the ones you only hear about and see on TV, I had
the opportunity to see them face to face, and not only the athletes, but a variety of different
sportsmen and women from different sports. To me the Olympics is the best sporting event
any sportsman or woman can ever be a part of.”
As with any athlete, Joanna encountered difficulties that stirred feelings of giving up within
her. Being a sprinter is not the easiest thing in the world… the training is relentless and
hard, carried out on a daily basis, to maintain and improve the speed. During her school
years at polytechnic, she took a break from the sprinting world for a couple of months
All Africa Games 99-100m
IOIG 2003 Mauritius
All Africa Games 99
Joanna and Frankie
IOIG 2003 4x100m relay
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 32
33 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
leading towards exams in order to focus on her studies. Juggling athletics with its intense training,
constant travelling to participate in competitions away from home and studying at Post Secondary,
as well as trying to build a path to an alternate career was causing a tiresome and stressful life for
Joanna. What pushed her to not fully give up was the achievements and milestones she reached as
an athlete, the accomplishments and rewards for her hard work fueled her and motivated her into
Unfortunately, Joanna retired from her career as a sprinter in 2008 following a persistent leg injury
that was refusing to get better without prolonged rest. “The more I rested to heal my leg, the more
time went by and I was getting older so I decided to stop and found myself never going back. I
didn’t regret my decision as I had accomplished more than enough during my years as a sprinter.
Sure I missed it, but it was time to move on”. And move on she did, into a new career that filled the
void left by retiring from athletics. I’m sure you’d be quick to think she didn’t move too far away, on
the contrary, she did. She left the track and moved on to hair brushes and make up brushes; these
are now Joanna’s trade tools. Having always had a passion for styling hair, Joanna saw it as the
perfect career choice, it’s easy to tell she’s the type of person who lives the life she loves, and loves
the life she lives, by putting her energy and time into things that bring her joy.
After retiring from athletics, Joanna went to Australia and enrolled into a three year Hairdressing
and Make-Up course in the Melbourne based Sheila Baxter Institute for Hair & Beauty. Upon
graduating, she came back to Seychelles to start her new career. She took her childhood passion
for styling her sisters’ Emma Hoauareau-Motheé and Janice Houareau whenever they had a
special place to go, & turned it into a career! An example of Joanna’s work can be seen on some of
Potpourri’s recent covers where she was the make-up artist for the cover model. Quite impressive
work if I may say so myself. She is truly a multi-talented individual.
Following in her aunt’s footsteps, Gaelle Dubignon
After two years of being a freelance beautician with establishments such as Ste. Anne Resort
and Spa, Marco Pros and Direct Bookings as well as individual clients who are forever loyal to
her, Joanna is currently in the process of acquiring her own salon while she still has one hundred
percent of her time to spare as she has no children yet. When asked about whether she would
like her future sons or daughters to pursue athletics like she did, her answer was “Yes, definitely
yes! I feel that the involvement in sports is a very important aspect of a child’s life; even up to
adolescence as it helps develop you in various ways. It provides you with a sense of responsibility
among other things, this is one of the reasons I’m encouraging my niece Gaelle Dubignon, in the
hopes that she might attain the level I did, maybe even be the one to break my two remaining
records! And keep things in the family”.
After spending half the time talking about work,
I was curious to find out a little more about her
lifestyle, and it was no surprise when I learnt that
Joanna was truly the down to earth person I had
pegged her to be, with a kind heart. Her idea of an
ideal ‘fun-time’ is going to the beach, socialising
with her family and friends, as well as spending
quality time with her boyfriend Hans. Not being
an athlete hasn’t changed much in Joanna as she
is still to this day anti-smoking and anti-alcohol,
which equally means she dislikes people who
abuse the two amongst other drugs. She likes
to keep to herself, in her own world, away from
the constant gossip always going around the
grapevine. She also believes in working hard for
what you want and appreciating what you have.
Although Joanna has stepped out of the athletic
scene, she feels that the youth of today aren’t as
dedicated to the cause, that they let too many
negative distractions into their lives instead of
the good. I couldn’t leave our little tete-a-tete
without asking her if she has any words for the
few aspiring athletes there to keep them on the
right track, her words were: ´To succeed as an
athlete you must first and foremost have the
mindset to do it on your own without others. It all
depends on you as in the end your successes and
achievements are all your own”. So there you have
it, Joanna Houareau, more than just a pretty face,
a role model to all the aspiring female athletes
and aspiring beauticians of Seychelles. From
tracks, to brushes, she made it.
VIEW FROM THE STATION
I GET BY
…with a little help from my friends, says Jenny Gilbert
I am absolutely ecstatic right now. The article I am about to embark on
has been sitting with me for a few days and I have to say that I felt a little
apprehensive about writing about this subject. Just this morning, as I
was deliberating about the article again, I found myself inexplicably led
to another area of healing which is exactly what I was looking for and I
“[BECAUSE I WAS] LABELLED AS
SOMEONE WHO ‘SWIMS WITH
THE DOLPHINS’ OR ‘IS AWAY
WITH THE FAIRIES’, I OFTEN FELT
COMPELLED TO STAND UP FOR
WHAT I KNEW MADE ME FEEL
WHOLE, ALIVE AND CONNECTED
TO A WIDER UNIVERSE.”
didn’t have to do anything at all! Co-incidence? Luck? Maybe for some.
However, I know that I will always get what I want when I’m willing to
open up to the help that is just waiting for me. It’s being offered all the
time; I am never alone and I wonder why – especially since I work in this
field – I don’t call on it more regularly. One thing is for sure: the more I
apply what I know in a practical way, using it in my ordinary daily routine,
the more I am blessed with beautiful results.
Today my experience is no exception; simply deciding to brave it and
write about angels was enough to call on whatever angel took me to a
place of incredible enlightenment. More on what I discovered will follow
in a future article but for now let me honour the angels for guiding me to
this place by sharing my view on these light bearing, loving entities with
Since childhood, and for many years, I felt that I had to defend myself
against derisive comments and ridicule from those who considered me to
be slightly crazy or, worse, unintelligent. Often labelled as someone who
‘swims with the dolphins’ or ‘is away with the fairies’, I often felt compelled
to stand up for what I knew made me feel whole, alive and connected to a
With maturity, and a steadfast commitment to helping to heal the
planet (and myself), I no longer worry about what others think because
I realise that I never doubted myself at all. Every day, in some small or
magnificent way, I am better and better and closer to living a life as a
worthy individual, connecting more and more with a truth far greater than
anything I ever learnt in an established, conventional institution.
I have learnt that the more I give, the more I open up, the more I free
myself of judgment, the more I am willing to stand up for my principles
and the more I am willing to be guided by universal intelligence, the more
my self-worth develops, the more at peace I am, the younger I feel, the
more vibrant I get.
So it is no surprise that this year’s programme of articles is also a
means by which I can share some thoughts on subjects which are very
much intrinsically healing for humanity and you, the readers. I do not
necessarily have a deep knowledge of all of these subjects myself but by
sharing my time I get to stay in touch with tangible, real truths and get the
chance to tweak your interest and set some of you on a path of enquiry.
Just for today I hope you’ll set aside the ‘critic’ inside, that you’ll open your
mind to the possibilities that exist for you to be more ‘wholy’. I know that
the Universe is magnificently generous, non-judgmental and impeccably
true, that its intelligence is irrefutable and, most importantly, that it is just
waiting to embrace you so that you can free yourself to be one with it.
There are countless ways in which you can start connecting with universal
energy to claim your place as the intelligent, incredible individual that you
are. For a moment, perhaps you could suspend your disbelief and know
that you have nothing to lose by doing so.
Let’s visit the Angelic Realm. Angels have existed forever. They are
innumerable. Angels can be considered to be transformers of light to
sound, carrying messages to and from heaven (or The Divine/The Source/
Universal Energy/God) in a language that us humans can understand.
There are enough men and women who spend entire lifetimes studying
the history of these celestial beings and it must be fascinating. The good
news is that we don’t have to study Dante’s Angelology to invite angels
into our lives. I believe that there is an infinite pool of wisdom available
to us, and to lock ourselves up in theory and conjecture about their
existence is somewhat futile when there is enough evidence throughout
history to suggest that angels (whether metaphoric or not) surround us.
I like to see angels as my higher consciousness gurus. I believe that if we
affirm, in total integrity with ourselves, who and what we are and hope
to be, and when we are willing and open to being directed by an angelic
intelligence to guide us towards achieving goodness and ‘wholiness’
(wholesomeness if you like), avenues will be opened to us that we cannot
‘intellectually’ fathom. There is nothing that can harm us in believing that
we are surrounded by these higher consciousness gurus or angels – they
are there to protect us from calamity and to serve our higher purpose. We
will not be punished for reaching out and widening our experience of the
universe – no matter who suggests that we will. Remember always that
God (or whatever you choose name him/it) is ever loving and allows us
total freedom to honour our life’s purpose. If our intentions are good and
our hearts are loving, we are safe. Know that all religion stems from this
“WITH MATURITY, AND A
STEADFAST COMMITMENT TO
HELPING TO HEAL THE PLANET
(AND MYSELF), I NO LONGER
WORRY ABOUT WHAT OTHERS
THINK BECAUSE I REALISE THAT I
NEVER DOUBTED MYSELF AT ALL.”
While it is believed that each of us has our own personal guardian angel,
most religions and traditions discuss archangels as the managers of
our personal guardian angels. It is understood that the archangels are
specialised in various areas and that they guide and provide superintelligence
to us through our personal angels. As an example of
an Archangel, let’s look at the patron saint of protection, Archangel
Michael. Lending courage and strength in times of strife and major life
changes, Michael is believed to have intimate knowledge of our Divine
life purpose. He knows our mission and understands our talents and
interests so that we may help others. While Archangel Michael protects
us, he also provides us with clarity. When we are confused, he will ensure
we receive clear answers to our questions. As a non-denominational
angel, Archangel Michael is there for us in every way if we simply ask. His
35 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
help and guidance is unlimited, non-judgemental and
respects our free will. His guidance is completely safe
and trustworthy. A better friend is hard to imagine!
I suppose it is easier to envisage angels with form and
character which is probably why these angels have,
over time immemorial, developed personas. Archangel
Michael is depicted as a tall, handsome man carrying
a sword which, it is said, he uses to slay our fear and
heighten our courage and strength to face challenges.
There are many accounts throughout history of when
Michael has been called upon by inspired leaders and
light workers. From the time of Adam and Eve when
Michael is known to have guided Adam to farm and
care for his family, Michael has been guiding legendary
individuals such as Joan of Arc and others to perform
incredible acts of courage in order to fulfil their passion
to help others.
Just today, know that you are being watched over with love, and nurturing care. Take a deep
breath and allow your guides to surround you and lead you to a place of calm and serenity,
clarity and new experiences. If this is difficult for you, consider Lady Luck as an angel. Create a
picture in your mind and imagine that this angel, called Lady Luck, is watching over you, ready
and happy to whisper words of wisdom. Start to develop a relationship with her and she’ll
introduce you to her friends. Consciously start the process of inviting in these happy, healing,
loving energies to your space and you may just find yourself starting to live the life you are
Jenny Gilbert is the founder and owner of Everglow Ltd, the island’s premier
natural health manufacturers and service providers. She is also Director of
Wellness at Resonate Wellness at The Station. Homeopathy is a well recognised
system of natural medical treatments for most diseases and conditions. Please
visit http://www.thestationseychelles.com/reflections or email wellbeing@
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 36
Dear Annalisa ......
Cursing and forgetfulness are issues that Annalisa helps our readers solve this month…
Foul Mouthed Parenting
Forget my birthday-not
Q: Dear Annalisa,
Recently, I find myself swearing at my 7-year old. I have never been
known to curse and it shocks me that I am unable to control my anger.
My child is driving me insane and I am now dropping bombs left, right
and centre. How do I stop this?
A: Dear Potty-Mouth Mummy,
It seems the swearing and cursing has become a way of dealing with
your child’s testing ways. The only problem is that this method is neither
effective nor healthy (for either of you). Children don’t only learn skills
that make them more mature and successful in life. They also learn skills
that make them troublesome. Your child has learnt that they can behave
in a way that elicits feelings of anger from you. Your child has learnt that
they have the power to spin you out of control. More importantly your
child is learning that swearing is an “ok” behaviour when angry.
The first thing to do, is to find alternative methods of responding to
your child’s troublesome behaviour. Most children thrive on attention;
it makes them feel important, loved and popular. Young children
favour any behaviour that gets them frequent attention. So a “naughty”
behavior that delivers a swear word is a behaviour worthy to pursue
because it delivered the much-needed attention.
If you feel irritated by your child’s behaviour and believe that they are
doing it deliberately to seek attention in a negative way, it may be best
not to give them the attention they are after. The trick to reduce the
likelihood of the “naughty” behaviour occurring is to withdraw attention
from it. Simply ignore, and ignore all the time. Note here: aggressive,
dangerous, or destructive behaviour, should never be ignored, at any
Some guidelines for ignoring behavior:
• Choose one behaviour that is annoying or irritating, at a time.
• Every time this behaviour occurs, everyone significant to the child,
should ignore the behaviour.
• Avoid eye contact with your child.
• Avoid verbal contact with your child.
• Avoid physical contact with your child.
• Stop ignoring your child, as soon as the undesirable behaviour
• Expect the behavior to get worse before it gets better.
• Ensure that any behaviour that is unlike the undesirable behaviour is
The other thing to do is get a jar and for every time you swear, put a SR5
coin (or more) in there. It would mean a cost to you, for swearing around
the house. The money should eventually go to another person around
the house (not your child) who has to live in this constant “bombdropping”
environment (given they are not swearing either). Be honest
and pay up each time, that in itself should deter you from running a
potty-mouth (unless you cheat).
Q: Dear Annalisa,
I forgot my best friend’s birthday a few months back – the first time in
23 years! We laughed it off but I get the feeling she is still upset about
it. She ‘forgets’ to invite me to girls’ nights out and a week ago forgot
to tell me she was travelling. This is someone I used to speak to almost
everyday – including the birthday I forgot. I need us to move past this.
What’s step one?
A: Dear Louise,
To forget your best friend’s birthday, is BIG! And to not forgive a best
friend, for it, that’s BIG too. Now which is bigger, tends to depend on
which side anyone is on.
I’m guessing step one might require a bit of backtracking to as far
back as the day you realised you had forgotten her birthday. Did you
apologise? What did you do then? Moments like these, call for empathy
- putting yourself in the other person’s shoes. How would you have
felt? What would you have liked your friend to do if the situation was
reversed? Bearing in mind, even best friends may have different takes on
“IF YOU FAILED TO ACKNOWLEDGE
HER TRUE FEELINGS THE FIRST
TIME ROUND THEN CREATE THE
OPPORTUNITY TO DO SO NOW.”
Sometimes when important things happen between friends, things that
may cause pain, hurt, or disappointment we are eager to “laugh it off”.
The “laugh it off” is sometimes done to make light of a difficult situation;
not knowing how to deal with the situation from both ends; fear of
coming across as selfish or greedy may cause the affected person to
play along; not knowing how to deal with the affected person’s reaction.
These are all possibilities why humor or laughter is sometimes used to
try and remedy an awkward situation.
Now it’s all-good if the affected person is genuine about seeing only
the funny side of the whole situation. If you gather, she’s not really
laughing, then step two would be to talk to her about it. If you failed
to acknowledge her true feeling the first time round then create the
opportunity to do so now. It’s also a moment to share your own true
feelings about the situation and your fear of its consequences on your
Step three (optional): throw her a “sorry I forgot your birthday for the
first time in 23 years, please forgive me” party. It can be the simplest
party for two; two cupcakes, one balloon, and a big sorry sign; just be
genuine and do it from the heart. Hopefully it wins her over. All in all, I
wish for this friendship, a lot less forgetting and a lot more forgiving.
Annalisa Labiche is a practicing Clinical Psychologist with over five years experience. She completed her Bachelor of Art (Psychology) degree and Masters in
Psychology in Australia. She gives advice on a multitude of subjects, including relationships, parenting, family issues, psychological disorders, substance misuse
amongst many others.
37 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
La trisomie 21 ou Syndrome de Down.
contenues dans le liquide amniotique ou le placenta. Le prélèvement,
appelé amniocentèse ou biopsie du trophoblaste, n’est pas sans
risque (risque de fausse couche). Ce prélèvement qui n’est pas
disponible aux Seychelles, est proposé uniquement si le fœtus a des
risques élevés d’être atteint de Trisomie 21.
Après la naissance, l’existence de la trisomie peut être suspectée
et nécessite alors la réalisation de l’étude des chromosomes de
Le 21 Mars est la journée mondiale du syndrome de down, je profite
alors de ce numéro spécial de Potpourri pour parler un peu plus de ce
Quelles sont les origines de la trisomie 21 ?
Dans chaque cellule du corps humain, il existe un noyau. A l’intérieur
de celui-ci se retrouve des gènes .Un gène est une petite portion
d’ADN, support de l’information génétique de l’individu. Les gènes
portent les codes responsables de nos caractères héréditaires,
et sont regroupés dans des structures appelées chromosomes.
Classiquement, le noyau de chaque cellule chez l’être humain
contient 23 paires de chromosomes, 23 venant du père et 23 de la
mère. Le syndrome de Down apparait lorsqu’un individu se retrouve
avec une copie partielle ou complète du chromosome 21. La
personne atteinte a un chromosome surnuméraire sur la 21e paire de
chromosomes. Elle ne possède donc pas 46 chromosomes, mais en
Il existe différentes formes de trisomie 21.
C’est au moment de la formation des ovules ou des spermatozoïdes,
avant la fécondation que se produit “ l’incident génétique “
responsable dans 95% des cas de la trisomie 21.
• Si toutes les cellules de l’organisme ont 47 chromosomes, on
parle de trisomie 21 homogène.
• On parle de trisomie 21 en mosaïque, lorsque seule une partie
des cellules est touchées.
Dans 5% des cas, c’est une trisomie par translocation. Le
chromosome supplémentaire est dans ce cas attache a un autre
Quels sont les facteurs de risques ?
La trisomie 21 touche toutes les populations. L’origine ethnique ou le
niveau économique ne sont pas des facteurs de risques.
En dehors de la présence d’une anomalie des chromosomes
équilibrée impliquant un chromosome 21, le seul facteur de risque
connu est l’âge maternel au moment de la fécondation. Le risque
d’avoir un enfant avec une trisomie 21 est en effet de :
• 1/1500 naissances si la mère a 20 ans
• 1/1000 à 30 ans
• 1/400 à 35 ans
• 1/100 à 40 ans
• 1/28 à 50 ans
Comment fait-on le diagnostic ?
Avant la naissance, il est possible de diagnostiquer une trisomie 21
chez un fœtus pendant la grossesse. Mais uniquement par des tests
qui permettent de prélever des cellules du fœtus. Ces cellules sont
Comment savoir s’il existe un risque élevé ?
Des tests sanguins effectués chez la maman, permettent de faire un
calcul du risque. Ce test n’est pas disponible aux Seychelles.
Aux résultats sanguins sont combinés l’âge de la patiente et la mesure
de la nuque du fœtus (clarté nucale). Cette mesure est réalisée lors de
l’échographie du premier trimestre. En effet, les fœtus dont la nuque
est plus épaisse que la norme sont plus à risque de trisomie 21.
Quelles sont les conséquences de la trisomie 21 ?
Il en existe plusieurs, voici les plus fréquentes :
• Une déficience intellectuelle variable, avec des possibilités
d’intégration sociale différentes selon les enfants. Cela
n’excluant pas une autonomie relative des personnes
atteintes de trisomie 21. D’où le rôle primordial de l’éducation,
et de l’accompagnement de ces enfants des leur plus jeune âge.
• Un aspect caractéristique du visage (qui n’empêche pas a ces
enfants de ressembler a leurs parents).
• Une taille ne dépassant pas 160 cm à l’âge adulte.
• Une diminution du tonus musculaire (hypotonie) et une
• Des malformations d’importance variable le plus souvent
du cœur ou de l’appareil digestif, pouvant bénéficier de soins
• Des troubles ORL, de la vue ou de l’audition…
Quel suivi pour les personnes atteintes ?
La prise en charge des problèmes spécifiques rencontrés dans la
trisomie 21 doit toujours être conduite dans l’objectif de permettre
une meilleure insertion sociale et professionnelle.
Beaucoup de symptômes classiquement décrits dans la trisomie
21, sont secondaires à l’hypotonie et à l’hyperlaxité et peuvent être
bien améliorés par la prise en charge précoce en psychomotricité,
kinésithérapie et orthophonie. Il doit y avoir une mise en place dès le
plus jeune âge d’un partenariat entre les parents et les professionnels
de l’éducation, du soin et de la rééducation joue un rôle primordial.
Cela permet également d’accompagner les parents et leur permettent
de mieux comprendre leur fils ou leur fille.
Il n’y a pas de traitement médical de ce syndrome.
C’est grâce à la meilleure prise en charge des problèmes médicaux
et notamment au traitement des malformations cardiaques et des
infections que l’espérance de vie des personnes avec une trisomie 21
a beaucoup augmenté puisque plus de 50% dépassent l’âge de 50
Pour plus d’informations n’hésitez pas à contacter le professionnel de
santé qui vous suit.
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 38
Working moms have a lot on the go, but being realistic and having a sense of humour makes all the difference,
writes Nathalie Hodgson.
Most women this millennium are returning to work when their children
are still very young, without being questioned or judged. With the cost of
living on the rise, two incomes is what is required to keep a decent family
household or to maintain the lifestyle you once led but with additional
mouths to feed. So how do you balance work, love and play when no one
has the time? I spoke to two working mothers to share some valuable tips
on how it’s done.
Neesha Kumar, 30, Creative Director, decided to extend her three-month
maternity leave, dip into her annual leave bonus and eventually resigned,
after having her first child. ‘I would rather die than leave my little one so
young’, she thought to herself. But after six months she realised that this
was not financially viable; she had to return to work and decided to take
up a position that she been offered some time back. Returning to work
not only helped to pay the bills but it opened up new doors of valuable
experience, which has led her into opening up her own business (Neesha
‘The to-do list is so long that I am overwhelmed just looking at it’ Neesha
explains, ‘I am mentally racing back and forth between my responsibility
to my two children (six-year old girl and one-year old boy) and my
business. I can’t take sick days as this means I don’t get paid for that day
and the work is then a day late. There are simply not enough hours in the
day to accomplish what needs to get done, so I am often up until 2am or
39 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
It is the ultimate juggling act; the pressure on working mothers and
fathers with full-time careers and young children leads to a constantly
racing heart, all-consuming guilt and a certainty that you’ve become
inadequate at home and at work when things go slightly wrong. So the
key is to place some logical strategies as pillars into your daily life to keep
the walls from caving in.
Being a great mom isn’t
about making every meal
or doing every load of
laundry. It’s also about
being a strong female role
model for your children;
the two are strongly interweaved.
An essential part
of being a great mom is
pursuing your own passions
and being an interesting,
dynamic, growing person
that your children have as
‘Honestly my work-life balance needs some improvement’ Neesha
confesses. There is no quality weekday family evening time, as I am
working solidly to build my young business. I am blessed with a husband
that fully supports and understands this critical stage. I do force myself
to take some downtime when I have been multi-tasking all day however
and I do not work on Sundays (at all). This is strictly family time. I cook and
spend time with my loved ones’ Neesha explains.
and daughter (feeding, bathing, playing, stories). It’s just manageable
really. I have a lot of motivation as my patients offer me many kind words
and letters and of course the support I receive around me from my
partner, family and friends’.
Being a great mom isn’t about making every meal or doing every load of
laundry. It’s also about being a strong female role model for your children;
the two are strongly interweaved. An essential part of being a great mom
is pursuing your own passions and being an interesting, dynamic, growing
person that your children have as an example. You want to raise strong
individuals and they need to see that in their adult figures every day of
Alice continues, ‘even after the most hectic and stressful day at work, the
duties don’t stop. There is no law that says that you have to make all your
meals from scratch, clean your own house from top-to-bottom every
week. I make lists about what needs to be done and cut corners on things
that really don’t matter, so I have more time to spend with my family. They
are my priority and I always make time for them. I know my career and
my studies are important too and hopefully one day my daughter will be
proud of her hard working mum’.
No matter how great your job, your boss, your partner and your kids may
be, it’s your number one job to take care of yourself. This is one job you
simply can’t delegate. Without your own health you are no service to
your family or your job so make sure you are ticking those boxes in diet,
exercise, check-ups and some personal hobbies (for your own mental
growth and happiness).
Alice Mancienne, 25 years, Staff Nurse at The Seychelles Hospital and
studying an Advanced Diploma in Midwifery at NIHSS, remembers her first
day back at work after having her daughter. ‘I fought back tears and kept
calling home to check up on her every second, it felt awful, even though
I knew she was in good hands with my grandmother. The only thing that
kept me going was picturing that little face when she would see me again.
This kept me sane and motivated’.
Alice always wanted to be a mother and always wanted to be a nurse,
a job she loves. ‘I am living my dream, I know this, but every day is not
picture perfect. I work shifts and my day includes dressing wounds,
preparing patients for operation, admission, withdrawing blood, doctor’s
rounds, administering medication, providing support and giving
reassurance. Then it’s time to go home and I do some laundry, cleaning,
preparing meals, feeding the dogs and spending time with my partner
While interviewing and talking to many working mums the one ultimate
secret that is constant in the working mums power kit is to always keep
your sense of humour. When dirty nappies fall at your feet, the babies are
screaming in the bath and you know dinner is about to burn, humour is
the ultimate weapon against the craziness around you, and the one thing
that will keep you sane.
Nathalie Hodgson is a writer, mother, PR & Marketing
consultant, Doterra essential oils consultant and yoga
instructor, juggling this whilst raising two kids, running
her own business and enjoying the most of life.
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 40
41 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 42
Why not today?
What makes us put things off instead of just getting them done? Lynette Botha doesn’t have all the answers, but
she’s working on it…
43 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
I put the ‘pro’ into procrastination. This is not to say I’m lazy, or not a hard worker. Au contraire.
I am a workaholic – always hustling for more jobs on the side; mostly out of want than
necessity (for the time being). But man can I put things off – until the pressure is so forceful
and the deadline is so far gone, that I have to pull an all-nighter to catch up. And this is not
only with work. This happens with renewing car licence disks, taking in the dry cleaning,
going for a haircut. I once read a star sign that referred to Librans as ‘lackadaisical’ – and I was
like, “there, you see, it’s not my fault, it’s the way the stars aligned when I was born. Now I’m
off the hook”. If only.
This feature first
"If you, like me, would
like to be a little less
anxious and a little
more proactive this
year, take note."
Truth is, it’s hundred percent me. And you. And like any other bad
habit, it’s something that takes time and commitment to rectify.
open in separate tabs is like asking for trouble and
setting yourself up for failure. When you need to do
something, tell yourself: I’m sitting down for an hour
and solely focusing on this. When you decide to switch
off and focus, you’ll be amazed at how much you can
achieve in a short space of time – you may get so
into it that you carry on for longer than the time you
assigned yourself. You’ll also find that you really did not
miss that much on social media. Maybe just another
When you’re ready to get started on your task –
renewing your driver’s licence, for example – make
sure you have everything you need. Your old licence,
ID book, photos, the correct amount of money in cash.
Starting out on a task and getting halfway because you
don’t have all the tools at your disposal will take the
wind out of your sails – and you’ll probably put it off
for another two weeks because you just. can’t. face. all.
Procrastination is a real syndrome though – it’s not just you ‘putting
things off’, some people suffer from it to a point where it can be
debilitating. So it’s no surprise then that countless psychological
studies have been done to not only understand why people
procrastinate and what triggers it, but also, what you can do in order to
re-train your brain to want to get things done.
If you, like me, would like to be a little less anxious and a little more
proactive this year, take note of the following (don’t worry, I’ll keep it
short, I know you’d rather be playing Candy Crush):
Yes, this sounds pretty basic, but once you’ve started on a task – even
if you do not complete it immediately – you are more likely to finish
it (and sooner) than if you don’t start at all. Need to file a report by
Friday? Start the Excel spreadsheet on Tuesday – even if you only
create the columns and headers. You’ll probably make your end of
week deadline. This is due to something that psychologists call the
Zeigarnick Effect. In a nutshell, assignments that are unfinished are
more likely to nag at you and remain top of mind, than tasks that you
never started at all. Because it’s constantly on your mind, it becomes
irritating and makes you anxious and you just want to get it done.
Believe in yourself
Yes, really. Often procrastination stems from self doubt – a fear of
failure or a feeling of not being good enough. You’re so scared that
you’ll do something incorrectly or not well enough, that you never
get started on it in the first place. You’ve committed to organising
a bachelorette party for your best friend but you’re so anxious that
everything won’t turn out perfectly that two weeks before the event
you still haven’t even sent out invitations, nevermind secured a
venue. The longer you put these types of tasks off, the worse it gets.
You become more anxious, more deflated, and less likely to want to
get started. Stop doubting yourself, believe you can do what needs
to be done and challenge yourself to prove it by starting work on it
Make a list
If you’re anything like me, you may be great at writing a list, but not
so great at doing anything with it once it’s written. But writing lists is
scientifically proven to make us more likely to do things (and to feel
less anxious by getting things out of our heads – where they can be
forgotten, and on to paper – which you hopefully don’t lose). A list
does not literally need to be a piece of paper with bullet points – it can
be any form of you getting what you need to accomplish out of your
head; this may be in your diary, on your iPad or via an App. The one
form that I find works for me, is electronic calendar reminders, set for
days leading up to a certain task or assignment – it’s like building in
time to allow yourself to procrastinate.
Turn off your WiFi
And your cellphone. And your social media notifications. Move away
from the TV. Keep distractions to an absolute minimum. Sitting
down to complete a task with Facebook, Twitter and YouTube
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 44
HEALTH & FITNESS
Are you brave enough for this intense workout? Hassan Al-Ameri is here to guide you through it…
Here is an example of a training session you could try, if you’re feeling
really brave and in the mood for something that will push you both
mentally and physically. It’s certainly not for complete beginners, and is
also designed for those who prefer to train with a partner.
I call it the “Soldier of Misfortune” as it’s based on a training principle that
was applied to our training sessions whilst I was serving in the army. I
still feel that this standard is by far one of the most important to consider
when designing a training program for yourself or anyone else.
And remember; never sacrifice one element of fitness in pursuit of
3 x 5 wall squats (toes against a wall)
3 x 15 bodyweight squats
3 x 10 goblet squats
2 x 10 push-ups
2 x 10 proper push-ups (lie flat and take hands off the floor between
10 x 5 man makers (push-up on dumbbells, row each side, feet in,
stand, shoulder press)
THE MAIN BODY (PARTNER WORKOUT)
4 X 30secs on/30secs off FROG HOP
4 X 30secs on/30secs off PUSH PRESS (hell style)
(rest with weights above your head!)
4 X 30secs on/30secs off SPLIT JUMP
300 seconds total FRONT LEANING REST (high plank)
(stop the clock when you need to rest)
Do not be fooled; this is a muscle-aching lung-busting workout – not for
the faint-hearted. Get in touch with me and let me know how you found
Until next time…
Yours in Health & Fitness,
Hassan is a Master Trainer from the European Institute of
Fitness, living on Mahé. For any further advice on health and
fitness, you can contact Hassan directly on:
Tel: +248 2568629
Complete three rounds of the following with one minute’s rest between
250m row whilst partner performs a rack hold (24kg men/16kg women)
Then switch to complete the round.
45 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 46
RIDING FOR THE PLANET…
AND YOUR HEALTH!
Save money, improve your fitness and do your bit for the environment
Photographs: Joe Clothilde
Can riding a bike save the planet, and you? Experts say that cycling could
help resolve many environmental and health problems. It just needs
to ‘catch on’, and become the next green and fashionable thing to do.
Contraptions on wheels are the most popular form of transport over
land for most people. Amid an array of cars, trucks, vans and jeeps, the
simple and modest bicycle tops the list for the healthiest, wheeled mode
of transport, for you and for our planet. Why not ride bikes to help the
environment, save on gas, generate less greenhouse gases and burn more
calories, all at the same time?
Cycling is a low-carbon, eco-friendly mode of transport. Car exhausts are
a cocktail of all types of cancer-causing and global-warming-inducing
gases that include carbon dioxide, sulphur oxides, methane and other
particulates. Bikes have no exhaust system; they are solely powered by
your strength. Subsequently, riding a bike produces zero emissions, which
equates to zero air pollution and less incidences of throat and lung cancer
caused by the particles that contribute to air pollution. By the same token,
working those muscles to power the bike forward will increase your
metabolism and help you burn calories up at a rapid pace. Not only that,
pedalling away on a bike helps to keep your heart healthy (and pumping).
Parking lots are also a problem for the environment, especially with the
increasing number of motorised vehicles on the road. This means clearing
more land for parking that was once home to plant and animal life. The
asphalt, tars and other chemicals poured to make parking lots and roads
also release pollutants into the air and create heat islands that contribute
to global warming. The removal of trees and other vegetation eliminates
vital biomass that helps reduce the quantity of carbon dioxide in the
air. Bicycle parking requires little space, which means that bikes help
minimise the effects of global warming and also preserve habitats.
While you ‘ride for the planet’...and for yourself, remember to always keep
safe. Here are a few reminders from one of our previous articles on safe
• Avoid busy streets
• Wear a helmet
• Wear brightly coloured clothes to increase your visibility
• Follow the rules of the road
• No music players or mobile phones to distract you or inhibit your
Last but not least, while most bike riding on Mahé or Praslin is done for
sports or for recreation more than for commuting, we should tip our
hats to our brothers and sisters over on La Digue, who use bicycles as an
everyday mode of transport, and serve as inspiring role models – and
that’s the kind of biking enthusiasm we want to spread.
Contributed by Ginnie Laurencine for Sustainability for
Seychelles, a local NGO whose mission is to promote
sustainable living in Seychelles. Contact us on info@
s4seychelles.com or tel. 251-9135 or 422-4072. Find us
on the web at www.s4seychelles.com or on Facebook.
47 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 48
at Le Méridien Fisherman’s Cove
Divine dining is how
Vee Mari Power sums up
her experience at this
Le Bourgeois Restaurant kicks off the year 2015 with an
exclusively seafood menu created by the artful genius of
Executive Chef Anthony Robin who specializes in Fusion Cuisine.
“We are excited to re-launch Le Bourgeois as the seafood
restaurant on the island, unique menu which is affordable with
good portions and an excellent variety complements the location
and personalized service” quotes Wael Rashed – the General
Manager of Le Meridien Fisherman’s Cove.
Dining at this sensational restaurant is guaranteed to satisfy even
the most adventurous taste buds.
Stroll along the floor lit decking from Le Méridien Hotel that
meanders along the coast line of Bel Ombre and enjoy the
gentle breeze that blows in from the North of the island, until
you stumble upon this secluded eatery. This is a dinner-byreservation-only
type of establishment, with a cozy seating
arrangement to ensure a private fine dining experience.
The À la carte menu offers a fantastic array of locally sourced
delicacies that will stimulate your appetite. We recommend the
generously portioned appetizer of crab nachos or the crispy
calamari with black olive tartar.
For the main there is a tempting selection of seafood risottos
and pastas that will no doubt leave you sighing with satisfaction.
We were drawn to the star of the show, the Asian Spiced Grilled
Lobster with truffle mash, grilled asparagus and orange-carrot
sauce. The rich and aromatic flavours of the spiced lobster are
matched perfectly by the creamy truffle mash.
Dessert at Le Bourgeois is a must! You will be hard-pressed to
choose between options of Chocolate Teardrop to homemade
caramel ice-cream with peanuts, popcorn and chocolate sauce.
We enjoyed the warm chocolate-walnut brownie with homemade
vanilla ice-cream and blueberry compote. It is the perfect
balance of sweet and savoury and beautifully presented as a treat
for the eyes, as well as your sweet tooth.
Everything about this dining experience suggests attention to
detail and pure luxury, from the location, and the delectable
menu to the impeccable table service. There is also a wonderful
list of wines and suggestions from the house sommelier for each
course so you can be sure to fully experience the sensory delights
of every part of your meal.
“At last we have a true sea food restaurant at Le Meridien
Fisherman’s Cove, unlocking a new culinary experience to our
guests locally and globally” quotes the General Manager.
If you would like to share the same culinary experience,
discover more at http://www.lebourgeois.sc
49 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
A tale about St Patrick
Do you know where this day originates from and why we celebrate it? Read on…
St. Patrick was born in South Wales, his father was a Roman
called Calpornius. When he was about 16 years old he was
taken by Irish raiders led by the infamous “Niall of the nine
hostages”. They took him to Ireland to a place called Mount
Slemish near the present town of Ballymena.
There, he worked as a slave for six years. During this time
he had several dreams where God told him he must escape
from Ireland and become a priest. He walked 200 miles to the
coast where he escaped to Scotland, returning home, and
eventually going to France where he became a priest and then
a Bishop. He was Bishop of Auxerre in France for 12 years. He
was haunted by dreams of the people of Ireland calling him to
return and bring Christianity to Ireland which was, at the time,
a pagan land. In 432AD Pope Celestine decided to send him on
a mission to convert the Irish to Christianity. St Patrick arrived in
Ireland in the winter of 432AD.
Christian faith later on. So if you are a Christian today with some lineage to
Ireland, you may well owe a debt to St. Patrick himself.
He died on March 17th 493AD and was buried in a place called Down Patrick.
In recent years, St. Patrick’s Day has been celebrated at the Level 3 Bar in
Seychelles. On St Patrick’s Day 2014, Level 3 Bar was renamed “Rogan’s Irish Bar”,
making it the first Irish Bar in Seychelles.
This year St Patrick’s Day will fall on Tuesday 17th March.
You will find all the traditional celebrations at Rogan’s Irish Bar.
A VERY HAPPY ST. PATRICK’S
DAY TO YOU ALL!
SLÁINTE! (GOOD HEALTH)
Many stories have been told about what happened next.
He converted the whole of Ireland in around 30 years. He
is responsible for the 29th of February being a day when
the ladies can propose marriage. This was to help speed
up wedding proposals in cases where the men might be a
bit slow or shy. He used the Shamrock, a three-leaf plant of
the clover family, to help explain the trinity to his flock. His
converts became the new stronghold of Christianity in Europe,
and Ireland shone the light of the Christian faith throughout
the dark ages in Europe, and sent missionaries to return the
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 50
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MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 54
WEDDINGS IN PARADISE
55 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 56
WEDDINGS IN PARADISE
Big Booties and Cash Cows
The Undeniable Influence of Kim Kardashian...
By Kurt Gilbert
As a full-time fan of Kanye West, I’ve had to put up with my fair share of
Kim Kardashian-related news over the past couple of years. Admittedly,
before Kimye was a ‘thing’, I paid very little attention to the camera-hungry
stylings that placed Kim on the A-List of celebrity culture. I had the same
fundemental problem with her that so many other people do; I couldn’t
reconcile the fact that she’s made silly amounts of money by airing her
dead-end, first world ‘problems’ on TV, while far more important issues
are crammed into a four minute slot on late-night news. That’s the case in
America, at least.
What’s important to note at this point is that I’ll never ride a bandwagon
purely because everyone else is on it, and neither should you. I’ve learnt to
question everything in order to create an informed and justifiable opinion
on whatever I may be talking about, and Kim Kardashian is no exception.
For that very reason, I decided to take a deeper look into the life and times
“Granted, her field is pretty much defined by being in the right place,
wearing the right clothes, and laughing at the right jokes, at the right
time, but that doesn’t detract from the simple fact that she owns it.”
of young Kimmy, and what I concluded from that
brief foray and indeed, how I feel now, may come as
a shock to anyone who knows me and/or has read
anything I’ve written over the past couple of years.
It’s like this – I think Kim Kardashian absolutely
deserves her place on our TV screens, Instagram
feeds, Facebook newsfeeds and magazine covers, and
She’s not as stupid as you think.
Mrs. Kardashian-West is, in fact, one of the most savvy,
ingenious individuals in her ‘field’ right now. Granted,
her field is pretty much defined by being in the right
place, wearing the right clothes, and laughing at the
right jokes, but that doesn’t detract from the simple
fact that she owns it. If for one minute you think that
anyone can do what she’s done as long as they have
a little bit of luck and rich enough parents, let me be
the first person to tell you that you’re more dumb
than you think she is. There are plenty of super-rich
people who would love to be in Kim’s shoes, so why
aren’t more trust fund heiresses and insurance money
girls marrying the biggest musicians in the world, or
getting special endorsements from fashion labels like
Dolce&Gabanna and Yves Saint Laurent?
I’ll tell you why – they’re either not willing to work for
it or they’re not thinking big enough. Kim Kardashian
does both, and has for a long time. She understands
her target demographic, sets high goals and pushes
them out until you can’t open an internet browser
without seeing her name or photo somewhere. Sure,
a lot of what she does isn’t exactly the pinnacle of
artistic evolution, but that’s a matter of taste more
than anything else.
The bottom line is that Kim K has converted a
derogatory reality show start-up into an independent
A-list career. She runs in her own lane and for that
alone, demands respect.
57 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI
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MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI 58
59 MARCH 2015 | POTPOURRI