Amy’s and my fourth wedding anniversary. Landed in Mobay and traveled by van to Negril. Our driver is the gregarous Jinx Elegant, couldn’t ask for a better info source for first hour trip. Taking in the roadside shacks, hand-painted signs. Many shacks do double service as businesses and homes — people live and sleep in them, but also serve lunch from the front stoop. Passed one labeled “Rastarant.”
Jamaica has third-highest rate of traffic fatalities in the world – roads are pretty bad and drivers are spontaneous, often crazy. Govt. driving safety signs are everywhere, with a variety of messages. Saw one reading “Save a live, drive good.” So much for gubmint grammar. Others reading “Don’t be in a hurry to enter eternity.” Anti-litter signs near rivers: “Don’t teach your garbage to swim.”
First two nights at “Beach House” in Negril — set into lush jungle right on white sand beach. Air sultry and moist. Straight to water with mask and fins. Bathtub-warm, but just sand and kelp close-in. Cicadas and frogs and night creatures so loud we thought we wouldn’t be able to sleep, but of course did. First meal of jerk chicken sears lips and tongue — but we would find much hotter versions as we traveled. Rasta Bobby offers “much respect” but just wants us to buy him a beer. Soon we learned that everyone says “Respeck” to everyone — or is it just said by hustlers to tourists?