Archives – April, 2006
Itâ€™s Saturday, AKA Laundry Day. Last night I got home from work late, about 8:15PM. I looked at the pile of stinky clothes from last weekâ€™s Negril trip and decided I need a laundry run.
I cracked open a Red Stripe, I always buy a case after I get back, if only to prolong the vibe, and I began sorting my clothes.
First I pulled out all my shorts. I checked the pockets for business cards, Jamaican money and maybe the errant spliff. I knew I wouldnâ€™t find much since I did the same thing before leaving the Blue Cave Castle, but I found myself feeling hopeful during the process anyway. I did find a 1J coin!
As I shook out my shirts nostalgia was coming over me.
â€œWow, thatâ€™s a Jerk Chicken stain from Thursdayâ€™s sunset at the Castle!â€ Iâ€™d been paying more attention to a girl in the yard, than to my fork. Not a smooth moment, but it was a great sunset.
Then I pulled out an old Rubyâ€™s Diner t-shirt (one of my favorites). Iâ€™d worn it around the Castle the first few days, and it was speckled with all kinds of memories. Blue Caveâ€™s amazing Blue Mountain Jamaican coffee, some Callaloo and Saltfish from Brown Sugar, and on the back was some algae and dirt from the platform near the water. I was watching DoloresÂ in the calm Caribbean water as I leaned against the cliff face.
Then there was the loud Hawaiian shirt I wore to Selinaâ€™s for the webcast on Sunday. The cast wasnâ€™t working, but there were quite a few boardies hanging around, Rasta Stan, SLP, TLC, DanaP, Yard Man and Yardie, Julie, Ras Walleye and MNKaren to name a few. The Cowboy was in rare form that day. His new rumba box guy sang a likkle harmony and added to the show. Later Rob and I headed over to Risky Business and we hung out for the sunset webcast. It was a great last day in Negril.
Well I better get my laundry done. Jonesin for JA!!
April 29, 2006
Heading off into the sunset! Had a great time in Negril. Blue Cave was awesome! Coming back in December!
Clive will be here in fifteen minutes to pick me up!
April 24, 2006
Blue Cave Castle – Riding in a small boat up theÂ cliffs, looking at all the high end resorts, some may be fancier, but none stand out like this place! It’s a laid back, quiet place, but there’s always something going on. The staff is great, what ever you need, they are very helpful.Â
Brown Sugar – There is a great little restaurant called “Brown Sugar” a few doors down, they deliver great Jamaican breakfast, lunch or dinner for about 300J per plate. It’s just weird when I call, a Jamaican woman answeres the phone and I feel silly saying, “Is this Brown Sugar?”
Clive’s Island Tours (876)909-1837 – I’ve known Clive for a few years and he is a good reliable driver. You call him, and he’ll be there. He’s on time, he drives slow and he’s been a great tour guide anywhere in the area. He’s not the cheapest but he’s the best!
Sarah Champlin – Great Massage! Worth every penny! She comes to you, sets up, very casual, it was great.
Famous Vincent – He’s the Glass Bottom Boat guy we hired to take us snorkeling. He seemed to really know his way around the reef. Nothing fancy, but everything you need. SunsetÂ on the water was way cool.
Best Meal (So Far) – Xtabi hands down! Grilled Lobster, and Red Snapper.
Best Jerk Chicken (So Far) – Best of the West is holding it’s title, it was the real deal! Ozzies was very good too.
Heading to Catcha Falling Star for sunset, as long as the webcast is happening. I will probably hit Selina’s for the Sunday Brunch Webcast.
Contact: Email VinnyÂ Â Email Dolores
PS: To all theÂ girls who took the right clothing option this week – I just give my thanks
April 22, 2006
Â Sunset from the Castle.
That’s the Kuyaba boat probably heading back from Rick’s.
Â More to come…
Â Vinny Â
April 21, 2006
Greetings from sunny Jamaica!
The weather has been awesome, the sunsets, beautiful!
Sarah Champlin, a woman who lives here in Negril, came by to give Dolores a massage, then she convinced me into getting one. It was just what I needed.Â She was amazing, we felt great afterwards.Â Sunset at the Castle is always beautiful, great views from everywhere.
Went for an afternoon snorkel trip with Famous Vincent, and a couple who are also staying here at the castle.
Â I am not the mostÂ aquatic person afloat but I loved snorkeling. IÂ used a life vest as a floatie, I looked like a moron, butÂ it worked great!
The Reef is reallyÂ beautiful, so manyÂ colorful fishes, so much life! I looked for Nemo,Â couldn’t find him.
While I’m checking out the reef,Â I look over to see a school of fish all around Dolores.Â It took a while but I realized she was feeding them. How Cool is that?
Then Famous Vincent swims over to me and shows me how to feed the fishes. I felt like a little kid in a petting zoo!
We dropped off our friends, and we headed to Ricks Cafe.Â Famous Vincent gaveÂ us a thouroughÂ cliffs tour on the way.Â Rick’s is as touristy as Negril gets, but I still like going there.
We were the complete tourists, drinking Corona’s and eating the Appetizer Sampler ooing and aahing at the divers. You gotta love the place.
Then is was back to Blue Cave Castle to clean up and hit Kuyaba for dinner. Dolores decided that Blue Cave Castle was the most striking, on the West End.
Kuyaba was nice, but we didn’t realize how burned out we were andÂ we were dozingÂ off waiting for the check.
Dolores is probably stateside by now, I have a few more days!
I’ll be back
April 20, 2006
We made it!!Blue Cave Castle is awesome!! AND it now has wireless internet, how cool is that!Got in at about 1PM Sunday,Â and by the time Clive got us out of Mobay we were raring to go! We had a wild ride to Negril! But after running around all day, we barely made it to sunset.
I didn’t know Easter Monday is a holiday, it made it feel more like a Sunday. We hung out at the Castle all morning, and hit Selina’s about eleven.
We met Brooks there and he took us to Half Moon Bay up in Orange Bay, we had fun there, very nice peaceful place. Dolores was in the water playing with a bunch of kids for about an hour.
Went to Ozzies for Jerk, craft market for some stuff, sunset at Blue Cave, dinner at Xtabi.
We’ll probably hit a webcast today or tomorrow.
Peace! Vinny and Dolores in Negril
April 18, 2006
Come in, Come in!! This is Paradise, do you read me?
April 18, 2006
OK, I’m officially excited!
I’m packed and ready to go! I have a 30″ rolling duffel bag overstuffed with everything anyone would ever need in Negril!
The way is clear! Wheels up at 9:45AM from Philadelphia International Airport, with the hour difference I will land in MoBay about noon-thirty, through immigration and baggage, hook up with my buddy Clive and be in Negril no later than 2 o’clock!! Woo Hoo!!
Oh yeah, on the way I will meet up with my newly blonde friend Dolores, we’ll be hanging out for the first part of the adventure.
Plans? Drink, smoke, eat, dance, and hopefully make a complete fool of myself.
Other plans? Well I try not to plan, but I am a planning maniac so I can’t help myself.
I want to hit a few RealNegril webcasts, I’m not sure what ones yet, but definitely Selina’s Sunday Brunch (4/23).
I want to go to Black River via route taxi, maybe hit YS Falls, Benji’s or Roaring River.
I really want to check out Savannah-La-Mar for Market day on Friday, I plan to get a few friends to come along.
I guess that’s it, I want to check out a few restaurants that are either new or ones I’ve never been to, and I want to relax, see some friends, and have a great time!
I have a cell phone for this trip, and if you didn’t get my email, drop me a line and I’ll send you the number!
I’ll be blogging almost daily, so stay tuned!!
Vinny from Philly is Negril bound!!
My next post will be from Easy Rock!!
April 15, 2006
Two weeks out!! Woo Hoo!
I was planning post my packing list again, but when I looked at it I thought, “Dude, get a life!”
So I decided to work it over and share my comments with you, dear reader.
Here we go!
â€¢ 2 pairs – Swim Trunks ** I didn’t even get them wet last time
â€¢ 3 pairs â€“ Shorts
â€¢ 3 pairs â€“ Gym Shorts **One is fine, it’s not like I’ll be working out!
â€¢ 10 Assorted T-Shirts
â€¢ 3 Polo/Golf Shirts ** Overkill
â€¢ 3 Hawaiian Shirts (For hot dates!) ** I may have to play dress-up on this trip
â€¢ 1 pair â€“ Jeans **Pending weather, this may be a “”No Pants” trip
â€¢ 5 pairs â€“ Socks ** I ain’t bringing no stinkin’ socks!!
â€¢ 12 pairs â€“ Underwear (incl. Silk Boxers for above) ** I may not bring 12 pairs but if I say any less, my Mom would disapprove
â€¢ Flip Flops ** How anal am I? Is there really enough difference between Sandals and Flip Flops to require two list entries??
â€¢ Running Shoes (LOL, as if Iâ€™ll be running) ** As if, I make myself chuckle
â€¢ Light Jacket/Windbreaker ** More Overkill
â€¢ 2 Hats ** Eagles & Phillies – Yo Philly peeps gotta represent!
â€¢ Laundry Bag ** OK I never brought one of these, it just sounded good
Health & First -Aid
â€¢ First-Aid Kit (Simple, Band Aids, alcohol wipes, tweezers)
â€¢ Neosporin (For creepy crawly bites)
â€¢ Aloe Vera Lotion
â€¢ Sun Block 15 SPF
â€¢ Sun Block Stick 30 SPF (For my nose)
â€¢ Chapstick w/ UV protection (Keeps lips kissable
â€¢ Bug Repellant w/ at least 30% Deet (Canâ€™t use wimpy stuff in Jamaica)
â€¢ Pepto Bismol (Get individual serving packets, helps w/ humidity)
â€¢ Excedrin Extra Strength (Great for hangovers! Individual packets also)
â€¢ Vitamins (Which I buy in single serve packages anyway)
â€¢ Hand Sanitizer (Good when hand washing doesnâ€™t permit itself) ** I was ok, if a bit obsessive to this point, but I have to 86 the Hand Sanitizer!
â€¢ Wet-Ones (I put them in the fridge, Woo Hoo! Instant cooling!) ** This may sound like overkill, but don’t knock it till ya try it! An old restaurant manager’s trick.
â€¢ Condoms ** I never know how many to bring. Is a dozen wishful thinking? Does a three pack show a lack of self esteem? Colors? Ribbed for her pleasure? What the hell is that all about? Should I throw a few away each day so the maid doesn’t think I’m feeble?
â€¢ Nail Clippers ** Stop, just stop! Jeez, Nail Clippers . . .
â€¢ Floss ** Cut this, I ain’t flossing on Vacation!!
â€¢ Mouth Wash ** In Jamaica I think this is called Red Stripe
â€¢ Conditioner ** Who was I trying to impress, I don’t have enough hair to call for it’s conditioning!
â€¢ Gel ** Gel was soooo 2005
â€¢ Disposable Razors ** I look like a monster if I don’t shave
â€¢ Shaving Cream
â€¢ Moisturizer ** Can you say metrosexual? Cut it!
â€¢ Hair Brush
â€¢ Hand Lotion (Udder Cream is my fave) ** Hand Lotion? Cut it!
â€¢ Towels â€“ Washcloth ** I’ll buy a beach towel at the Craft Market near Roots
â€¢ Digital Camera ** Need this, EVERYONE is in town that week
â€¢ AAA Batteries â€“ Energizer Max – 8 Pack ** For above Camera
â€¢ Laptop Computer (I plan to blog this trip daily!) ** I’ll try to do better this trip
â€¢ DVDâ€™s (Laptop has a DVD Player) ** I just bought King King!
â€¢ Blank CDâ€™s ** New Laptop, it’s all DVD now baby!
â€¢ Disposable Flashlight (De power go black a lot) ** I actually used this a few times
â€¢ Smokerâ€™s Candle (Keep the ganja smoke to myself) ** Never lit it, left it at White Sands
â€¢ Disposable Rain Ponchos (for those afternoon storms) ** I actually brought 2 of these last trip, what the hell was I thinking? If you ARE walking in the rain, isn’t the rain the point? I walked from Selina’s to White Sands in the rain last August, it was a lot of fun. The cab drivers thought I was nuts.
â€¢ Disposable Lighters (Keep in checked baggage) ** Ya Mon
â€¢ Leatherman (8-in-1 All Purpose Tool) ** I bought a knock off last time for $15 bucks it broke the first time I tried to use it
â€¢ Travel Clock ** Another thing I never brought last time, NO CLOCKS ON VACATION!! Use de sun and de sea!
â€¢ Cell Phone ** Renting one this trip, email me for the number
â€¢ Sunglasses ** I need to buy some new trendy ones. I have a strangely shaped head and it’s hard to find the right glasses
â€¢ Breath Freshening Gum (Jerk Chicken is great, but â€¦) ** Awww Yeah, watch out ladies!
Mind and Body
â€¢ My Jamaica Journal â€“ Itâ€™s a leather bound journal Kristine got me a few years ago that I only use in Jamaica. ** Sacrosanct!
â€¢ Books ** Still haven’t found THE book for this trip. I have one on India and the Bill Bryson “Dictionary of Troublesome Words” though bringing a dictionary, even this very cool sylized one, on vacation might not set my mind free, which is generally my goal for vacation reading.
â€¢ An appropriate assortment of Meditation Crystals ** I need to hit “Gary’s Gem Garden” in Cherry Hill, NJ to spice up my collection.
â€¢ My Mini Buddha
â€¢ Assorted Incense
â€¢ Money some 20â€™s, and $100 in singles for tipping ** I’m amazed sometimes, after years of visiting Negril, the US One Dollar Bill, is still much appreciated for casual tipping.
â€¢ ID, ATM Card, Credit Card
â€¢ Travel Wallet
â€¢ Plane Tickets
â€¢ Printed Hotel Reservations
â€¢ Pens (1/2 a dozen, for the customs forms on the plane. Youâ€™ll become a hero because no one has a damn pen)
â€¢ Airline headset from previous trips ** I think I lost these
â€¢ Lonely Planet Guide to Jamaica â€™03 Edition ** I bought the ’06 Edition, of course
â€¢ Jamaican Road Map (Donâ€™t ask me why) ** I just like Maps
â€¢ Candy for the Kids â€“ Non-melting, individually packaged, and yummy! ** I’ll definately pick up a bag for this trip though I gave out very little candy last trip. I guess a single forty something guy handing candy to small children could always be misconstrued.
WOW, I guess I will have a much lighter load this trip.
April 1, 2006