‘I began to pray’

This is how San Fernando King of Carnival Aaron Kalicharan, 25, felt when he collapsed under the weight of his costume “Danhyang Desa” during his appearance on stage at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port-of-Spain on Sunday night. He was a finalist in the national King of Carnival competition at Dimanche Gras.

His costume which comes from the band Outta De Rain Forest led by his parents Ivan and Wendy Kalicharan, spans 23 feet in height and 35 feet in width. The defeated Kalicharan hoped to make “a brief appearance” yesterday at Skinner Park, San Fernando, stage for his band in the bid to win Band of the Year in the southern city.

He said an MRI scan will be performed on his right knee today and he has also been advised by doctors to rest the foot.

On Monday, he regretted not been able to join the band on the road to display the costume that won him his fourth title in San Fernando as he had to stay at home, using a pair of crutches to move around.

Recalling the accident at the Queen’s Park Savannah on Sunday night, Kalicharan said the wind was always his biggest challenge and he felt the parade of the kings and queens should have been done a little later in the night.

That is when the winds are calmer, he said. “Since we were mounting the costume, the wind was giving a hard time. My mother (Wendy) spoke to me about how to handle it.”

The wind, Kalicharan said, just kept pushing the costume, eventually picking it up and throwing it up. “It fell, pinning me to the ground.”

Kalicharan said with the adrenalin “still pumping” he was up and with an injured knee still danced his costume which eventually placed eight in the competition. He praised the quick response from officials of the National Carnival Commission (NCC) who took him to a medical tent for first aid. He has advice for organisers of the Dimanche Gras show. “This year costumes came in much too early and I believe the calypso should go first and the costumes later. It would be better for all the kings and queens.”

Another king Gerard Weekes also fell with his costume “Dragon Can Dance” because of the winds.


"‘I began to pray’"

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