By Earl Bouquet
WHO will be the happiest father when we celebrate Fathers Day tomorrow?
You? Me? I doubt it…
My vote is for Michael Chastanet.
Just consider it. He became the Prime Minister’s Father just eleven days ago. In less than a fortnight, he moved from being the favourite opposition pin cushion to the darling of all who voted for his son to be the new leader of the land.
Life is good to Michael. Not that he was born the luckiest man on earth – or on this rock of sages his age. But just consider again – he started his own Open Mike TV show just as fast as he quit the helm at the mega company he led from one supermarket to a super food market brand.
“Open Mike” has been an open microphone for everything Mike has had to say in open support of his son not only taking over a political party, but also the country.
The businessman in him did not encourage him to invest in becoming a media magnate. Instead, he openly invested his time in the business of making “Open Mike” his weekly political bullhorn in support of his son.
Last Fathers Day, Mike and his son Allen were both proud fathers.
Allen could not have promised Mike that his 2016 Fathers Day gift would be what it has turned out to be. There was no way of knowing what one year would bring. But bring it did something no other father alive here has – becoming, almost overnight and just ahead of Fathers Day — the only Prime Minister’s Father here who attended his son’s swearing-in ceremony.
As I watched Mike on TV (away from his open mike) this past week, I read every bit of satisfaction and accomplishment on his face. And I also noticed him pleat his forehead each time the stark reality of the uncertainty of rates of return on political investment hit home.
His son had just defeated his best friend in the ultimate race to the top. I know how Mike felt about having to make the natural choice between blood and water. And I also know now his son has reached the mountaintop, his gaze has shifted to those other things that will always come with being the father of his son.
I am a proud father of five — have always been, still am and will continue to be. Your father will also have been proud of you, from the day you were born.
Each father reading this column today has every reason to be as proud as every other father here and everywhere tomorrow. But there will only be one father among us all who will be the Prime Minister’s Father tomorrow.
So, (borrowing a quote from the longest prayer I heard on Tuesday) I decree and declare Michael Chastanet the 2016 Saint Lucia Father of the Day tomorrow.
Now, I am sure you agree.