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Trini Phrase: Rum Jumbie

Trinidad rum jumbie is a now referring to:

  • Rum Jumbie (n) – Habitual drunkard; alcoholic.

Interestingly slangs like rum jumbie can change over time. I have lived in the United States for 20 years now, and every time I travel back to Trinidad and Tobago, I have to reacquaint myself with the words and Trinidad phrases that have evolved.

In Trinidad and Tobago, there are endless rum shops that can be found almost anywhere- by corners, beaches, main roads and back roads.

It is common to hear the terms “bar” and “rum shop” used simultaneously to refer to the same establishments, however, there are a few distinct differences between them.  To put it simply- rum shops are for the grass roots and down-to-earths, whilst bars are for the more, well, refined if you will.

Trini folklore such as Papa Bois is an oral tradition meant to pass on the stories to the next generation. Other Trinidad phrases in the vernacular are Kote-si Kote-la, Light Candle, Sprawl Off, Jhorts, Sancoche, Bad John,Kaka-Nay.

In conclusion, do you want to learn another Trinidad phrase?

Then click Trini for an alphabetical listing of all the phrases.


Source: Dictionary of the English/Creole of Trinidad & Tobago by Lise Winer

Photo by Marc Babin on Unsplash

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