Woke up to Slammin’ and Jammin’ this morning – downtown Reggae-fest – commenced upon the clock’s verticals. Red-eyed Rastas and tipping-over tourists stagger street-side in search of something green and smokeable. If one breathes deeply enough, a small cough erupts, followed by the desire to laugh at nothing for hours and then to eat.
It is 7:15 a.m. and I am perched atop an oceanside villa and experiencing culinary impossibility. For the uninitiated, almond pods fall from trees and it is customary to rock-pound them without crushing the nut, thereby gaining the fare. The act is akin to breaking an ice cube in half, or splitting the atom, or resolving the national deficit. Thus, I’m starving, and the idea that the consequence of my hunting and gathering ineptitude is a morning with no nuts, is so post-modern it makes me crave a hearty bowl of Life. (cereal)
The sun’s parabolic movement is southwest. Warm winds carry a vague phycology smell and I can feel the steady pulse of steel drums.The Slovenian girl I’m coaching has a day off, which means we spend two hours practicing, an hour in the gym, an hour scouting her next opponent, and then suffer the indignity of a beachside massage while drinking something willful. Wretched, isn’t it? 🙂
We are returned from a short day at the tennis resort. The buffet was exemplary but since I’m not a food critic…. I’ve spent much of my time here fighting the desire to employ pirate speak. Sure, Jamaica was a pit stop for African slave- traders on their way to America, but for me, the Caribbean will always mean Cap’n Jack Sparrow ‘s puppy-dog-gaze-and-Keith Richard’s-like-speech-pattern, stumbling around the island sands in search of buried treasure. The idea of holding a mango rum and blurting out a gnarled ARRRGGH! provides unyielding temptation.
A quick note: The Jamaican tournament director is low on funds (read: cheap bastard) and refuses to supply bananas for the athletes. One dedicated potassium aficionado – she of 192 centimeters – while suffering from electrolyte-depletion, took it upon herself to scale a nearby banana tree and shake the thing for all it was worth, thus supplying the competitors with sustenance for the 3-hour marathons in this Hades-like heat. I just wanted to say thanks in writing, and if they ever cast King Kong again….
ARRGHHH!! There, now it’s done!