ParikaA trip down the Essequibo generally starts at a town called Parika – if you’re planning to explore the river, this is where you’ll probably pick up your boat. Parika is located in the northern part of the Essequibo and this town of about four thousand people definitely has a bit of a rough-edged feel to it. It was a clean place, though, and was busy with markets, people, and water vessels. Markets seem to be a big thing for Parika – people who live along the northern part of the Essequibo come here to sell their produce daily. The main focus is the Sunday Market, though. Parika gives the impression of ‘hard life’, but there is also a lot of development happening here. Congestion and cramped quarters is a problem already and I can only hope that someone sends a city planner out there to help Parika through its growing pains.
BarticaFurther south on the Essequibo, there is another town called Bartica. It is much larger than Parika, with a population of 15,000 people. It is also considered to be the “gateway to the interior” of Guyana – this is because from here is where people generally leave to start jobs in the bush and here is where they tend to return if not going home. What’s in the bush besides beautiful hardwoods and giant spiders, you ask? Gold and diamonds…and lots of it. Bartica has a long history of being where miners picked up their supplies and sold their newly dug up treasures. Today, though, many employers just fly their miners to the interior from Georgetown.
Question: Do you agree with my premise in the first paragraph? Why or why not?