Friday, July 23, 2010

Jamaica Mon

My husband and I travelled to Kingston, Jamiaca a few weeks ago. We weren't really there for a vacation. I had to go there to apply for my EEA Family permit so that I can live in the UK with my husband who is a citizen of the EU since he's Irish. It was a crazy trip and though I hear some areas of Jamaica are amazing (Ocho Rios or Montego Bay) I certainly wouldn't ever recommend going to Kingston for any extended period of time and certainly not for a holiday. There is poverty all over and it's really sad to see. Also, there's not much to do and it's not safe to walk around on your own or even in groups after dark. But like any city of the world, it definitely does have some charms and we tried our best to experience what we could while we were there!
Appleton Estate is the famous rum from Jamaica. Also a big favorite here in Cayman.

Red Stripe is sold EVERYWHERE!


I love the road signs!

Are you a good driver???

This is a store on the side of the road... we didn't go in.

This house looks like its best days are behind it, but I bet it was beautiful at one time. Would love to restore this house!

This is the fish market on the way to the airport. There are shanties everywhere and all on top of each other. They are so small I couldn't imagine living in one alone, much less with a family. There are also loads of prisons everywhere with razor wire and guard stations... a bit scary!

We were there during Style Week, but none of the events were close enough to attend.

We did see some beautiful art in hotel down the street from ours when we ventured out one day. I love this mask!


This painting of Barack and Michelle Obama caught my eye.


These masks are too cool!


Gorgeous relief sculpture!
The application process was hairy! I was all prepared before we left, but we had a few hiccups! I was first turned away for wearing shorts... it was like 100 degrees! So I had to run back to my hotel (about 1/2 a mile) and change. Then they wouldn't allow my bag, so my husband had to stay outside... once I got in, I realized I forgot to get cash. So I had to go back out and get some USD from Mr. Julep... and then I found out that even though USD was recommended, they no longer accept it and we had to find a way to get Jamaican money! I was crying at this point... my appointment (non-rescheduleable) was for 9am and it was approaching 10am at this point. But hubby saved the day and brought the Jamaican money! After that it took over an hour when we'd expected 20 minutes, but I got everything submitted. I'm still waiting to hear the decision, so I'm a bit nervous, but there's no reason at all for it to be denied, so I'm probably worrying over nothing. I'll post some other photos from our trip a little later!

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3 comments

  1. I went on a mission trip to Kingston in high school. There was so much poverty. I remember the police on the sides of the roads with machine guns. At the time, there was civil unrest and my parents were worried sick! It is a really beautiful country though.

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  2. Jamaica is very beautiful with rolling hills and mountains, and she also have a happy and comfortable middle class who are also very well-educated. Poverty is everywhere. Even here in Europe, though of a different kind.

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  3. I know that poverty is everywhwere. There's definitely poverty here in the Cayman Islands and I grew up in a very impoverished part of the US. However, I have never seen so many homeless people before in my life... not even when I was in NYC and I felt very humbled and fortunate for what I have and the opportunities I've had after seeing what I saw in Kingston.

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