I move seasonally between my home in Newfoundland, Canada, and my origins in Jamaica, plus the islands of the Eastern Caribbean, and Central America (Belize & Costa Rica). Thus I escape from northern winters to the nostalgia of childhood memories and inspiration of tropical colour.
Now I am in Barbados with family (lucky me!), having rented my house to two professors short-term. De Zika virus doan’ frighten mi like de snow an’ grey back-a-yard in Cyanada. Bouganvilla, potted palms, red ackee, an’ croton plants brighten mi eye dem. Me is back inna mi West Indies!
On the way south I had a wonderful ten days with cousins and friends in my homeland, Jamaica. Since this is a public blog I will not include names out of respect for their privacy. Suffice it to say that West Indian hospitality is the best. I am most grateful to them all.
The primary purpose of visiting Jamaica was to get to Blue Mountain Peak, 7,402 feet high. At 72 I had tried hiking up beyond Whitfield Hall to photograph the mountains for later painting, but COPD and altitude above 6,000 feet limited my distance, as I got out of breath and had to stop frequently My guide, Ras Loxley, told me he could have got me a donkey, so I said, “I’ll be back.” Thus this year, being 74, I felt it was a “now-or-never” challenge.
The Blue Mountain range in eastern Jamaica, above Kingston, is beautiful. I love its geometric structures, vegetation, lighting and colour. It is my favourite part of Jamaica. The Caribbean sea is lovely, I love it, but Jamaica’s Blue Mountains always make my heart sing.