Bloganuary Day 2
How do you feel about road tripping? I enjoy them. Road trips are almost just as good as therapy is. The only difference is that therapy can be painful before it heals while road trips, for me, are a euphoric high through and through.
Someone recently asked me why I don’t like to stay home because whenever I share photos on my social media space, it’s of me in some new place in my island home living it up the way tourists do. This isn’t true, by the way. People see what I want them to see. So, they create stories in their head and tell them based on what I show.
I’ve made it my mission to enjoy my country as much as a tourist would. After all, I live here! There’s no way I’d be comfortable knowing that foreigners come to my country and can tell me about the swanky spots more than I ever could tell them. That script should be flipped. So, I’m working on that for myself.
In the past year and a half, I’ve seen more of my island home, Jamaica, 🇯🇲 than I ever imagined I would. I’m grateful for the ability to do this. Cause, in truth, there are many Jamaicans who rarely ever leave their communities. There are also Jamaicans who’ve never been to a beach, much less on a road trip.
Yes, you read that correctly. So, if you’re one of those people who think we all live on the beach or near the beach, think again.
Also…while we’re on the topic, we don’t all smoke weed nor are we all of the Rastafarian faith. Our motto is “Out of Many, One People”, and as much as we love coconut water, because it ‘wash awf wi heart’, Jamaica isn’t a place just filled with coconut stands (though we do love a good ‘jelly man’). And, a road trip is NOT fully complete without a nice cold (real from the actual fruit..?) coconut water.
As a matter of fact, despite our political and economic woes, Jamaica is an absolute treasure. She (Jamaica) is beautiful and her flora and fauna never ceases to amaze me. So, to see her in all her glory on road trips is truly a blessing.
I’m grateful for my wandering spirit, friends who are kindred spirits and new friends who facilitate the wanderer in me. If you’re curious, check out Being Jamaican and their Principal Consultant, Teika Samuda. She is an amazing travel enthusiast and guide. The Being Jamaican brand ensures the path less taken is trod to experience the beauty of Jamaica.
Though road trips don’t always lead to the beach, I love going there. The beach is my place of refuge. If not the beach, somewhere with naturally flowing water. In fact, a road trip that I’d like to take leads to a number of spots in Jamaica that I’ve always wanted to go but have never had the right moment to go.
So, I want to go on a road trip that takes me rafting on the Martha Brae River in Trelawny. That’s one spot. The next spot will see me at Floyd’s Pelican Bar in St. Elizabeth. Thebother spot? Well, I’ve always wanted to visit the Seville Great House in St. Ann. Though I’ve been there before, I want to visit the Rose Hall Great House and do their day and night tour. The Rose Hall Great House is located in St. James, by the way.
By the way, there are many other road trips I’d like to go on, but if I were to mention all of them, this blog post would turn into either an essay or a book.
Heading to these places to experience the parts of my culture that gets placed in those touristy advertisements that can sometimes give the “impossible to do/visit” impression for local folks like me – a Black girl who doesn’t fall under the category of rich, wealthy or “well off”. In fact, you don’t need to be bathing in monetary riches to truly see your country. This goes for anyone, anywhere.
That aside, when I go to these spots it will allow me the pleasure of interacting with open deep water, which scares me but also gives me refuge. I’ll get to interact with history and learn or relearn pieces of Jamaica. And of course, heading to these places gives me the chance to secure memories of a lifetime through photography and writing or just the thought of reminiscing.
So, yeah. Going to parts unknown to me or just places that I want to see again adds character to my life, I think. It gives me greater insight, allows me to meet new people and gives me the ability to talk about parts of my island home with fellow country (wo)men and foreigners alike to encourage them to visit and learn about this beautiful and often misunderstood country of mine.
That’s it. Thanks for engaging. Hopefully this will kick-start some Google search on the places I’ve mentioned and you’ll be encouraged to come visit.
Signed with love,
The Suburban Girl JA