JAMROCK.

“This is where I grew up,” my mom says with a smile  as we rode through the parishes of Trelawny, Jamaica.

Trelawny is a parish in Cornwall County in northwest Jamaica. It is bordered by the parishes of Saint Ann in the east, Saint James in the west, and Saint Elizabeth and Manchester in the south.

We are on a small, tight tour bus with ten other people (including my sister) as we sit firmly in our seats while the bus rocks back and forth on a high, steep bumpy road. As the bus goes faster, you can even hear the leaves of the palm trees scraping the windows.

I was excited. This was my second time going back to Jamaica in twenty years. I feel like I missed out on so many things there; although I am not a native. Physically being there surrounded by the people, the music, the food, and even trying their native tongue made me feel like I was part of their society.

My mom laughs as she remembers old roads she used to walk on while staring out the window and smiles as she sees the school children walking in their colorful, well pressed uniforms. “The girls always wear bows and ribbons in their hair,” she says in patois, the country’s native dialect.


I take in all the sights and sounds while we ride through Manchester and Montego Bay. There are so many cuts and corners that you could easily take a step forward and be in another town within seconds. The weather is humid, but the cool, balmy breeze made me feel like I was in paradise.


As we finally reach the town of Negril, we go to a cafe in the area and bought gifts at the gift shop, drank coconuts and enjoyed the beautiful view.


I couldn’t stop taking pictures. The frustrating part of the picture-taking process was that I couldn’t pack the sunshine and spirit back home! Taking pictures doesn’t do this place justice, but I tried the best I could to capture the essence of Jamaica.


 

As the day came to an end, the thunder started to roll and dark clouds blanketed the sky. I was in a hurry to get back on the bus in fear of getting drenched.

 

I am happy that I got to see Jamaica again thanks to sailing on The Royal Carribean cruise line. Since my last visit, seeing it now as an adult, I have a much greater appreciation of my time spent there and learning the culture. I definitely want to visit again in the future and explore more of what this beautiful country has to offer.

                             One love.

Labadee.


Labadee, which is located on the northern coast of Haiti, is a private resort my family went to on a cruise ship for vacation. We sailed on The Royal Caribbean: Freedom of the Seas.

We set sail for seven days on our cruise to the Western Caribbean and one of our first stops on the map was Labadee. The island was magnificent. Green, lush palm trees surrounded the resort, some even blocking our path where we walked. The sun was golden and hot. The water at the beach was the perfect temperature to take a dip in. The music and colors of the resort made me want to stay forever!

I snapped a lot of photos of the island and pictures don’t even do it justice. You need to see this place in person!

Dancers greeted us with traditional music


amazing palm trees
A live band playing for us
these are used to make palm wine
Barbecue lunch at the beach
me and my sister
works of art
my mommy

wearing a green Marc Jacobs military dress
browsing the gift shop
major photo fail

  my sister snagged a picture with the locals