I am a Jamaican, presently living in New York. Prior to that I spent almost two years in London.
The most simple but truthful statement I can make, having experienced a bit of overseas (‘farin’), is that…. THERE IS NO PLACE LIKE HOME……”A wen mi check it out Lawd, nuh weh nuh betta dan yaad, dreadlocks….”
I got married in January 2004 at Rennaisance Jamaica Grande, Ocho Rios to a Jamaican-born New Yorker, who left Jamaica when she was only 11 years old.
A few years ago, I visited one of Jamaica’s best hotels, Renaissance Jamaica Grande Resort for an education business seminar. It was not my first time at this hotel, but this particular visit was different – VERY DIFFERENT, because this time I met my life partner.
HOW WE MET
One night I was just chilling out in my room after a long day of work. After review my notes for the day, I went down to the hot tub to relax a bit before going to bed. After doing that, I still did not feel like sleeping, so I dressed and went to ‘Club Mongoose’
(The Grande’s nightclub) The dj was extremely versatile. He had everyone moving in that place.
I was dancing around a bit with a few females and just having a great time. But there was a lady inna di place, with hips and bottom that would make any man miss dem dancing step and beat. Moreover, she knew how to move IT. She knew how to ‘bubble and do did rub a dub’. Lawd have mercy, she just had the moves going. I do not know what happened after that but before you knew it I was dancing with her.
After a while, she wanted to go, so we officially introduced ourselves at the bar and I met her sister. I thought if she was ready, then there was no use staying, so I left the club, gave her my room number and ingeniously ask her, “Do you want to join me back in the lobby for a cranberry juice?”
She agreed, even though it was a poor line.
Well, we spoke for, what we thought was only a few minutes, but only to realized that it was almost daybreak. We connected heart to heart. We exchanged numbers, and then said good-bye and that was that. I was slated to check out the very next day so I left and came back to visit her the day before she left for the US.
After she left, we communicated for hours on end over months, seasoned by occasional visits, until we could hold back no longer, there were too many thoughts, goals, visions and dreams that were in common between us, so we decided that at the same beautiful place where we met, we are going to get married. So with the help of the lovely staff of the hotel and support of family and friends we tied the knot on January tenth of this year 2004.
A connection that was transformed into an intimate relationship that evolved into a lifetime commitment is one of my most significant Jamaican experiences. I have even got the opportunity to help to educate my lifelong friend- my wife, about Jamaica and just how beautiful her home is. This, in an effort to bring her up to date on what happened during the gap of time she was not at home –Jamaica. It is our desire to come back home soon, but with a view to help to make a difference especially in the area of education and health.
Jamaica, Jamaica, Jamaica land we love.
Thanks for the opportunity to share my story with you…Yours truly, Orlando