Friday, November 09, 2007

Jamaica Part 2 - The Bus Ride

The nice thing about traveling as part of a fairly large group is that most of the arrangements are taken care of by someone other than you. We get off of the plane and we already have transportation waiting for us. The wife and I just roamed along with the group.......we were like lemmings.
Now that we have boarded the bus, we have passed the part of the trip where you have to be at Point A and Point B by a certain time. No more hurrying along and no more stress. It is even better that everyone on the bus is part of our group. At this point, I have no real idea of where in Jamaica I am or how long it is gonna take us to get to the Sunset At The Palms resort in Negril. The tour bus is comfortable and we are all happy.

As the bus leaves the parking lot of the airport, the first thing I see is a gas station and it pretty much looks like one that you would see at home.

Within a half minute, I see this sight and realize that I am in Jamaica. The condition of this sign tells a story.

The road to Negril is a fairly long and narrow one. No superhighways here and it was rare to see any intersecting roads. This road we are on is right along the coast. To the our left........poverty, squalor, shacks, slums, third-world existence.

Hmmmmmm.........I must admit that I was beginning to wonder about this trip.

A frequent look to the right makes you feel alot better.

And yes.......there are mountains.

I noticed many places had iron-clad windows and doors. I see this kind of thing in the inner city of Baltimore. In Jamaica, it is necessary to have this stuff. The population is impoverished and there seems to be no delineation between the haves and have-nots. If you have a little, you keep it behind bars.

And yet, just down the road a piece it looks promising.

They drive on the left hand side of the road in Jamaica............I cannot imagine that I could ever get used to that.

After about an hour of driving, the driver stops off the beaten path so that we can get drinks, use a restroom, and stretch our legs. He pulls up to this stand-alone establishment called Golden Apple Tavern. We figure that the driver has some sort of agreement with the owner of this establishment that he would bring him some customers whenever he would be in the "neighborhood". From what I could see, there were hardly any other people in the vicinity and certainly not customers. We all exited the bus and entered the was not like any "tavern" I have ever seen. On the front upper right corner of the building, I spotted this sign :

Hmmmmmm......never seen anything like that before. Very interesting.

Sitting on the "bar" were the selections of liquid for consumption.

You can see here how everyone in our entourage wore either pink or teal t-shirts. Our group of Chesapeake Medical Staffing travelers had been given a "goodie" bag prior to leaving Baltimore, which, among a host of assorted stuff, was "official" t-shirts and caps.....all color co-ordinated.

Even the bus matched the color of the men's t-shirts......hehehe. We boarded the bus and hit the road. It was about another half hour before we would arrive at our final destination.
Coming Up Next : Jamaica, Part 3 - We Arrive At The Resort

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