Bequia by Any Other Name…

BequiaDusk is my favorite time in Bequia: sitting, as I am now, with my feet up on a lounge, a tumbler of my special rum punch at hand, looking out over the jade foliage, the turquoise sea, the pinkish clouds, listening to the soft crash of the waves. Or maybe it’s dawn: I wake each day, look at the sun rising over the same sea, the same palms, and say, “Another beautiful day in Bequia.” That’s Beck-wee, not Beck-way!

Living in paradise, we seem compelled to be irked by minutia and, for me, that includes the correct pronunciation of our adopted home. Every foreign guide adds, in parentheses, “Beck-way.” Just today, reviewing an article in the New York Times, the newspaper of record where I come from, I saw it again: “Beck-way.” But no local here says it like that! A poll of local staff and customers at the airport restaurant yesterday confirmed: “Beck-wee.”

So I now proclaim it over the crashing waves, over the cyber waves: It’s Beck-wee, damn it!

Island Pronunciation Guide

Bequia (beck-wee)
Grenada (gre-nay-dah)
Isle a Quatre (eel a cat)
Mayreau (my roe)
Petit Nevis (petty nevis)

Questions or Suggestions?