Blue Mountain Peak in Jamacia (2004)
I’m finally here in Jamaica and am working at overcoming my fear of this place. There is far more poverty than I had expected, Jamaica is a third world country. Everyone here drives like glue huffing maniacs. The people seem to be reasonably friendly, although most of them are preoccupied with the coming hurricane. Ivan is scheduled to whack the center of the island tonight at midnight. Sometimes I find it hard to believe that 240Kph winds will soon be destroying most of the shantytowns in this country. Right now it’s so quiet and peaceful. I’m here by the pool villa and the peepers are unusually noisy. I keep forgetting why I’m here, I don’t feel safe and I want to feel safe. Jamaica has the highest murder rate per capita of any country. Everyone tells me not to go to Kingston, but Kingston has been evacuated. Where have all the gang members in Kingston gone to? Here in Negril perhaps? Negril is nice, it’s on the West coast. It’s a tourist town with everything but the tourists. Everyone here expects a tip and my rental car has no reverse, or at least it takes me 5 minutes of messing with it to get reverse to work. I should have kept my reservation with Hertz. I don’t know what I was doing trying to save $60. The hotel was also $60, which is too much. I should have paid with a credit card though and I choose to pay with cash. Soon all the power in the island will be down. There is so much poverty here I can sense a criminal element here in Jamaica not far beneath the surface. That brings up fear for me. It’s funny how I know so many drug dealers and violent people and I don’t really fear them, but then when I go to another country that is foreign I do.