I went home to Florida for Christmas a few weeks ago and got to spend time with my family and friends. I took Willow with me for our first trip together, and she did SO well on the plane! She stayed quiet in her little crate under the seat in front of me the whole time. She’s such an angel. My family adored her, and she took over my parents’ entire house as if it was her own.
I went out with my friend Christina one night and discovered that humidity is no longer friends with my newly cut hair, half of which is naturally curly. Every time I curled my hair to go out, not only would the curls completely fall flat within minutes, but my roots would start to curl back up because of all the moisture in the air. It was a nightmare! I got twists put in my hair before going away for New Years. I was definitely not trying to mess with my hair at all on the rest of my vacation. :)
My family came over for dinner on Christmas day, and I made a highly requested cheesecake for them. I made a ginger blueberry sauce for this one. The whole cake was gone by the end of the night. :) Dad DJs for an online soul/reggae station once a week so I got to listen to him play in our basement with the fam. My brother and I also put together our yearly jig-saw puzzle. This year, we worked on a challenging Game of Thrones puzzle. I didn’t get a chance to see the finished product though; hopefully my brother finishes it off. I also got a chance to visit my godfamily, who I hadn’t seen in such a long time.
For the new year, I decided to go somewhere I haven’t been in three long years: Jamaica. The last time I went was to see my ex, and I think I subconsciously distanced myself from the island to get over that horrible breakup. But thankfully he and I made peace a while ago and then sometime last year, I started getting an itch to revisit a place that has felt like home since I was a baby, ever since my parents sent my brother and me to Jamaica every single summer until we were in high school. So I decided it was time to go back to my second home, and I made it happen.
It was great to stay with grandma in her beautiful home nestled high up in Red Hills on the edge of Kingston. We got to catch up and argue about whether I was going out on a certain night because I’m still her little grandchild in her eyes. :) I took her out to her favorite restaurant one day and we got a chance to cook together. I also got to spend time with friends and family I hadn’t seen in what felt like forever, and I met a new awesome cousin of mine, Nicole!
As usual, I was out and about at all the popular parties since events during the holidays are always so much fun. On New Years day, I went to Frenchmen for the first time, an exclusive party held every new year where they play amazing music from old to new, and the crowd is full of all age groups. I even ran into one of my dad’s friends while there. The venue, Caymanas Golf Club, was so beautiful and spacious. There was a huge dance floor and the place was well decorated. There were several food booths and women could even get their makeup touched up in the restroom. Everyone was dressed to impress in their best cocktail/classy party attire, and there was a fireworks show later in the night. I absolutely loved that party!
Another event I went to was a breakfast party with nothing but soca music. I love soca, but I didn’t know most of the songs they played at this event so I didn’t have the best time. There were food stands but the lines were soooo long. But I got to hang out with my good friend Tracy and saw my cousin Germaine while there too. I also met the amazing Jamaican singer Tessanne Chin. :) Other than that, I went to a few more parties and a beach party called Big Cups that was SO much fun. I think Big Cups and Frenchmen were my favorite events of the season.
Germaine took me to his friend’s house one night for a house party, where Usain Bolt showed up to play dominoes. I naturally had to get myself a picture with the fastest man in the world. :) Some other friends of mine also took me to San San beach in Port Antonio, which was a small, quiet beach with beautiful water.
The one weird thing about the trip was that pretty much every single guy who showed interest in me or who I was interested in was around the age of 25-26. Siiiigh. I guess it’s a good thing that I sorta still look that age, but at age 30, I’m realizing that the party scene is not the same generation as me anymore, lol. Reality check! :)
It was GREAT to reconnect with my friends and family while in Jamaica, and I realized just how much I truly missed it there. I don’t know when I’ll go back–probably not until 2017–but I can say this was one of my best trips to Jamaica that I can remember. I also got some art made by an amazing Jamaican artist, Robert Campbell. It is the first of what I hope to be a collection of masks/wall decor from all over the world. I want to put them on my living room wall to remember all the amazing places I’ve visited. I’m already looking forward to my next trip! :)