*Note: For safety and security’s sake, my descriptions in this post need to be vague, but also clear enough that my readers can understand. So I’ll be renaming some key places that might otherwise give away too much information. Bear with me.
My community rests on a hillside with a road that zigzags its way to the top. On your way up from Morant Bay, some great distance behind you, you eventually arrive in my sweet mountaintop town. You’ll know you’ve reached it when you pass the church bearing its name.
As you continue driving up, you eventually pass my workplace, Amazingly Awesome Primary School. But the road doesn’t stop there. Bumping along, you’ll soon arrive at A Most Important Place, where the road wraps around the building sharply, and continues the zigzag upward. A little further ways, and you will reach my house in Sweet Jamaican Home Town.
Like most of the PCVs in Jamaica, I walk to and from work every day. But relatively speaking, compared to most PCVs, my worksite is a fair distance away from my home. And with my transportation situation – which could definitely be improved – trying to catch a taxi could take an over hour. Obviously, this might pose a big hassle for me…
But wait! There’s a shortcut?
That’s right, ladies and gentlemen. Please allow me to introduce you to “Jacardi.” It’s the more common nickname for the all-natural shortcut that allows me to travel from Sweet Jamaican Home Town to Amazingly Awesome Primary School, keeping me off the main road and bypassing A Most Important Place altogether. This route saves me approximately thirty minutes each way and has become my primary source of exercise.
Almost everyone uses this path, and it’s been in the community for generations. Most days, when I walk, I’m in the company of students. I’ve grown to love the mornings when my ears can pick up the sound of their distant chatter, or catch snippets of a conversation in a language I’m still learning to understand.
My favorite part of walking, if I ever find myself alone, is to pause in the middle, and just listen to the sounds of nature. It’s a great way to start my day.
And it’s got a great view!