(TRINIDAD GUARDIAN) — A fairy tale came to life for 16-year-old Karina Samaroosingh who arrived in a golden carriage at the Trinidad Hilton and Conference Centre in Port-of-Spain for her graduation ball, much to the surprise of guests, parents, teachers and fellow graduates.
Traffic came to a halt on Thursday night as the intricately designed carriage made its way into the hotel’s car park to loud applause, horn-honking, flashing headlights, whistles and screams of delight.
Seated with Samaroosingh in the carriage was her boyfriend Nathan Greer, 17, a graduating student of Trinity College East who was dressed in a shimmering white and gold hand-sewn tuxedo with matching shoes. Greer is a sprinter with Silver Bullets Athletics Club.
Samaroosingh, a student of Bishops Anstey High School East began planning for her graduation in January. She said she always wanted to “feel like a princess” on her graduation day and wanted to be like fairy tale princess Cinderella, arriving in a carriage.
She chose gold as her colour scheme for the big day and got a seamstress to make a fit and flare dress with a detachable red train. A tiara was her main accessory.
However, she needed a carriage to make the occasion memorable.
“I remember seeing a carriage at Nathan’s aunt business place, Events Land Limited, and asked if I could use it for graduation,” said Samoorsingh, who lives in Arima.
“When my mom heard that I was interested in using the carriage she asked me if I was sure. She said it would have been far easier to go to the ball in a limousine. To me, that was too ordinary. I wanted to be different, to stand out. So there was somewhat of a debate over the carriage being used but I was able to convince mom eventually.”
Samaroosingh said the company was given the all clear to spruce up the carriage which had only been used once for a wedding.
On the evening of the graduation, it was towed behind a Hilux pickup from Chaguanas and when it arrived at the bottom of the driveway leading to the Hilton’s car park Samaroosingh and Greer got in.
Ahead of the carriage were three bikers from Team Splinters who revved their engines, burned tyres and did wheelies to grab attention in the car park which was filled to capacity. This unusual sight led to a pile-up of traffic for several minutes, but many felt it was worth the wait.
The spotlight was finally on Samaroosingh who blushed, laughed and waved to onlookers.
When the carriage came to a stop, Samaroosingh was escorted by Greer into the hotel’s ballroom where she was complimented for her efforts.
Looking back, Samaroosingh, the youngest in her family, said she just wanted to make her dream a reality.
“It was also stressful because I wanted everything to be perfect,” she admitted, revealing that it cost her family “a couple of thousand dollars” to put everything together.
“I felt it was my time to shine. The money spent was well worth it. I have no regrets. This is something I would remember for a lifetime,” said Samaroosingh who will be going abroad in pursuit of her other big dream—becoming an entrepreneur.
She said the effort was worth it as she felt like Cinderella at her graduation ball. The only thing missing was the glass slippers and she did she not leave the ball at midnight.