minutia press.
No problem (mon)

We just returned from a week in Jamaica. We stayed at Riu Negril, which you can find on the web sort of -- there's an informal site that has a lot more information than the official site. Here's an observation and a trip report.

A common thing you hear in Jamaica is "No problem". I've even heard locals say that there are never any problems in Jamaica. So on the way back to the airport, I asked the bus driver what word they use when things get truly messed up.

He told me they say they have a "situation". I found this interesting, since I would be more worried about a situation than a problem, but maybe that's my own semantics run amok.

The flight there was easy, though the FunJet version of an aircraft is pretty crowded: 6 seats across, and if the person in front of you reclines, there's not much room in front of you. In fact, when one person reclines, you can watch the recline wave propagate backwards through the aircraft as each person tries to grab more room.

Upon arrival, we had something of a situation. We had two rooms reserved and had asked for them to be in proximity of each other. On arrival, we were told that the rooms were in separate buildings, which meant our 6-year-old spent the first night with us. The next day we went down and tried to straighten out the situation. They are not prepared to analyze room assignments, so they told us there were no rooms free and we'd have to stay put. But when I asked if they had any room free on our hallway, they found one just a few doors down, so the situation was solved.

The place is amazing. The food is incredible; you can drink all you want (we're not big drinkers but it's great to just swim up to a bar and have them make you something); and the weather was perfect. In my prevvious life in NY I owned a 16' Hobie Cat (sailboat), and they had 14's that you could check out and sail. I took out my daughters on the first trip, and it was great. I had them control the rudders and the sail a bit, and showed them about tacking and jibing.

Unfortunately, my 6-year-old got stung by a jellyfish the first time we went in the ocean. I was swimming right next to him but didn't get stung. I pulled him out and he wasn't crying or anything but it hurt. In an hour or two, after some topical hydrocortizone, the bites went away but he lost his lust for the ocean.

On my next sailing expedition I took my older daugther and the 6-year-old. It got very windy so we were moving pretty fast, and at times, with our weight too much forward, we'd dip and take on some water on the trampoline. I liked that but the 6-year-old wasn't too thrilled, thinking a jellyfish might wash up and sting him. My (St Louis Blues) hat blew off my head while we were sailing, so we performed a rescue at sea of the hat. The first run, I was heading downwind, much too fast for the older daughter to grab the hat, so I turned around, headed mostly upwind and then directly upwind when we got to the hat. She's now telling her friends that she rescued my hat from certain death.

She also learned how to windsurf for the first time, and was able to get up and going a bit, even with some turning. It was tricky because of the high winds, even with the smallest sail they had.

Every night they had late entertainment of some form, so we didn't get to bed until 11 or 11:30 PM, and barely made it into breakfast in time to eat in the main room (whose buffet closed at 10:30 each morning).

We had a great time, and people say I'm a bit darker so I guess I caught some good rays.


Glad to hear your vacation was warm & fun - I spent a week in Florida with rather chilly weather (for Florida at least) and then I came home to Chicago to enjoy a nice foot or so of snow.

Posted by: Ed at January 8, 2005 1:47 AM