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Even on Vacation Communities Make the Difference

Morning Stroll in the Jamaican Mountainside

I love vacations. Our family, like so many others, has many funny, wonderful memories of vacations that begin with checking into the hotel in a new city or country and end with checking out of the hotel, carrying a suitcase full of souvenirs and dirty laundry!  Our recent vacation was a little different.

We landed in a foreign country, but skipped the hotel part.  We set up our temporary home in the community. The location: 2119 feet above sea level in a quaint Jamaican village where my mother grew up.

Each morning I’d wake up early and retrace some of the steps my mother would have taken as a girl.  I’d stroll up the street saying good morning to many of the older folks, some related, some not, but represent the majority of those remaining residents in sleepy spot in the Jamaican mountainside.

My mother (and father) left Jamaica around 1956 and though she and my father took us back for brief visits throughout the years, I’d never really spent a lengthy amount of time here. We usually stayed in hotels in Ocho Rios, Kingston, Montego Bay or Negril.

Staying in this community during this vacation was a wonderful change of pace and I highly recommend it to those of you choosing to vacation in beautiful Jamaica.  Book any one of the stunning resorts for your stay but make sure to take a few days worth of tours through Jamaica’s communities.

When I celebrate my home, Toronto, I’m really celebrating the distinct communities where people live since it is these places–where people actually live–that make this region of Canada special.  Places like – High Park, Little Italy, The Beach, Riverdale, Lawrence Park, Leaside and Toronto’s surrounding communities like Oakville, Unionville and Markham are all the “ingredients” that make Toronto a delicious and memorable place to visit.

Here are a few images from our June 2009 trip:

Morning Chat on the Porch

Morning stroll took Hannah and I to family for conversation on the porch.


Hannah loved this! Chukka Cove horse back riding, Llandovery.

Chukka Cove, Jamaica (horseback riding facility)

Llandovery is beautiful (near St. Ann's Bay, Jamaica)

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