When my Aunt and I arrived at the Holiday Inn SunSpree Resort in Montego Bay on Saturday we both had our hair braided in cornrows, but we took them out that night because they itched too much. It took us four hours to undo them so we were up until 4:30 a.m. taking them out. I got impatient with one of the thinner braids in front of my ear and got it tangled so bad that I ended up cutting it off! Susie (my Aunt) won $500.00 in the casino that night. We had supper at the Sea Breeze Grill open-air resort restaurant on the beach.
Sunday: We walked in the ocean and took a cab to the few village shops that were open. We then had the driver give us a tour of Montego Bay. After traveling at a high rate of speed on the wrong side of the road and waiting for wandering cattle, pigs, cats, and dogs we were shown an old Spanish plantation called Richmond Hill. One of the Jamaican waiters showed me his unfinished paintings. We saw a beautiful sunset after eating at the Sea Breeze Grill. I participated in a dance along with the band Magic Moments.
Monday: We took a six-hour jeep safari excursion in the mountains and stopped at an orange grove where the driver backed up the jeep so that
we could pick fresh oranges from a tree and eat them. We saw old burned down homes from when the slaves rebelled to earn their freedom. Planted along the road were plants that close when they are stepped on (Shame O Lady) and pricker plants that were all planted to either stop or show the direction that the slaves escaped. We then swam with the guide in the green Great River (which divides the parishes of St James and Hanover) and I did an excellent job swimming against the current. We had a picnic lunch. While we were swimming a pig tried to run off with my shoes, so I was told. When we finally got back we were completely covered in dirt from the ride!! That night we watched one of the entertainers (Conroy Gardner) eat fire and do fire limbo (he later became my
disco buddy when Susie would go gambling, Jamaican men are VERY friendly).
Tuesday: We went on an early six-hour boat excursion to the Black River to watch the guides feed four crocodiles, and later went swimming in that SAME river (crocodiles are territorial). On the boat I ate spicy crayfish covered in Jamaican Love Sauce. My Paper City Savings First Aide kit saved the day when one of the other girls accidentally spread the spice on her face and burned her skin. After eating lunch at a local restaurant the tour took us to YS Falls where I tried (operative word) to swing on a rope and jump in the water between waterfalls. At night we participated in crab races at the beach party at the resort.
Wednesday:We went on a five-hour excursion to Dunn’s River Falls in Ocho Rios and climbed the 600-foot raging waterfall. I bought a video of this. For supper that night we ate at the most elite restaurant in Montego Bay called Margarite’s, as a couple gave us their gift certificate that they could not use. After, we stopped in Margaretville. That night Susie won $200.00 in the casino.
Thursday: We went on an eleven-hour excursion to Negril and swam in the ocean at another Margaretville besides a glass bottom boat ride. I had a bad experience here when a friendly young Jamaican tried to sell me Hashish, and when that did not work he tried to sell me some quick loving-GET AWAY! That evening we ate at Rick’s Café to see the sunset and the cliff divers, but even though every day was sunny in Montego Bay, we had rain in Negril – boo. Back at the resort I helped Conroy (after his contortionist act) judge a teen dance contest in the disco.
Friday: We FINALLY took it easy, and the only time we left the resort was in the evening to go on a boat tour of the Luminous Lagoon outside of Falmouth. In the pitch darkness we took a boat tour out to the center of the lagoon and went swimming with the Phosphorous micro-organisms that make the water glow when it moves! Our bodies were completely lit. There are only three lagoons like this in the world and Jamaica is blessed with one.
Now when can I go back?????