This week’s word is: GEORGIE BUNDLE

A day I was visiting with a Guyanese-American girlfriend of mine, listening to her rant about the latest fight she had with her boyfriend. Seems she had, once again, caught him stepping out with another young lady and she had had enough. She told him to “Pack up your georgie bundle get outta me house!”

“Excuse me?” I said. “His what?”

“His georgie bundle! His stuff! His ish! His damn clothes, his CDs, his stupid electronics…” You get the picture.

According to Crucian Dictionary a georgie bundle is a small bundle of possessions. But further research* shows that the term is actually a corruption of the phrase Jahaji Bundle. Jahaji is an Indian word meaning shipmate, specifically those indentured servants who traveled from India to the Caribbean on the same ship. A jahaji bundle was the bundled possessions of those servants.

Because Indians immigrated to so many Caribbean nations, the phrases georgie bundle and jahaji bundle are used throughout the region. Upon arrival in the West Indies, Indians brought with them not only their precious bundles, filled with memories of home and supplies to help adjust to a new land, but many new phrases and traditions that have since become a part of the rich and beloved tapestry that is Caribbean culture.



*Big Drum Nation, Dictionary of the English/Creole of Trinidad & Tobago: On Historical Principles