Do I really have to choose between Hello and Wah Gwan? By Stacy-Ann Johnson
At home it was expected that Stacy-Ann spoke "proper English" when communicating with her mom
I am not spending money for private school for you to "chat bad". You need to speak properly.
ok...I guess this will help.
This is the Patois jar. You will put $1 in here every time you speak Patois.
My mother wants me to "speak proper" all the time
When Stacy-Ann visited her cousins, there were no rules about "speaking properly"
ova yah nobody nuh care...chat how you want
ah true, nobody nuh bizness
Knowing it was important to her mother, Stacy-Ann continued to work on her language. When she moved to New York she had no problem "speaking properly."
Now as an adult, Stacy-Ann wishes she had engaged more with Jamaican Patois as a child because she would be more comfortable speaking the dialect. Today, she makes sure that her son is exposed to the dialect from his parents homeland. This includes Jamaican and St. Lucian Patois.