When you’re in the Caribbean one would usually expect warm sunny weather all day every day, with the occasional storm. Up until yesterday the idea seemed like a long shot and many were beginning to dread returning from sunny Jamaica without a tan. The idea was horrifying. Yesterday, however, the sun peeked out from behind the clouds and the tanning began. [Ed: or in some cases burning] Today was another of those days, but without the sudden, random, and over in a minute rain shower in the afternoon. The day, for slackers like me, began at 9:30 and already the sunshine was blaring. [Ed: We do not encourage such slacking.]
After about an hour snorkeling out in the mangroves and carrying plastic zip lock bags full of seawater under my arms for our research project came a lunch of spaghetti with meat sauce for the non-vegetarians, salad, and fruit. I should have gone back out into the water later for more measurements but with one group member having a blistered foot and myself with a chest cough and clogged sinuses, the afternoon was instead spent working on my sunburn and evening out the tiger stripes on my arms and blotches on my legs that resulted from poor sunscreen application two days ago. I’ve since learned to apply sunscreen liberally and evenly over my skin, rather than a less time consuming slap-and-smear technique.
I thought the afternoon was going well up until maybe 2 or so when the ice cream man showed up on his bike. Then it was official. The older Jamaican man sat eating fried chicken while he served us “Napoleon” flavored ice cream for 100 Jamaican dollars each. Now, I’m fairly sure that vanilla chocolate strawberry ice cream is actually called Neapolitan ice cream, but I’ll overlook that little detail. I also noticed that anyone attempting to pay with American paid nearly double as he asked for $2 American, roughly $170 Jamaican.
With only a week left here in Jamaica, every day becomes more valuable for working on our projects and hopefully getting off of the compound a couple more times, and with the weather finally behaving, things are looking promising.
Debbie and the ice cream man