Workaway, so far, has been excellent for us. It has given us a way to travel (without breaking the bank…hopefully), and live in the real life of these countries and cultures. The only downside is, you do have to spend some of your time working which isn’t for everyone, but you do get a lot of time off to have fun, and the working side seems to make everything more authentic and a real experience. If your lucky you will meet hosts such as Michael and Lise who make your time with them so great it doesn’t matter. (Also it will hopefully took good on my CV)
As I said last, we arrived on Sunday. After work the following day we went into Ocho Rios town. Not for anything in particular. Just to look around and get a feel for the place. It instantly made me feel a lot safer than in Montego Bay. We didn’t stay long, we were tired, but I do remember the ice cream. My love of ice cream could match Joe Biden’s and I had one nearly everyday. If you are in Jamaica I do recommend the Devonshire House. It is the way to go, especially Black Cherry. Tuesday was the same. Hanging out with Marco and Chris, playing cards and teaching them Mills; but on Wednesday they got a puppy!
There were a few animals already at the farm. Dogs, Tyler and Brando, a few chickens and that evil rouster. A goat I named granny, and a cat – Tipi. Tipi was small, bossy and liked sitting on your shoulder and digging in his claws. He also liked bread. In the Sunday we arrived we had brought a loaf of bread and some other things. Ten minutes of it being left alone in the room and Tipi had found it, ripped through the plastic bags and ate about five slices. Not whole ones, just select corners. You could get him to do almost anything if bread was involved.
On Wednesday, Lise went out for work in the morning. Michael popped out and came back with the most tiny puppy. She could easily fit in the palm of his hand. Where she was she wouldn’t have survived. Not well looked after and the smallest in a cage of bigger animals. I fell in love. Late that evening, Lise came home and saw her fast asleep in my lap. The look of shock was fit for a comedy film.
“What is this?”
“Ask Michael” I said.
Oops. someone is in the dog house.
Lise did not know about the puppy, and she wasn’t allowed a Donkey which she proclaimed very unfair, don’t think she wanted it really, was quiet funny to hear her protest though. The puppy was so cute you couldn’t help falling in love with her. They named her Tash. The other dogs were very jealous of the attention she was getting, but got used to her slowly. She liked to play bite, which was cute at first, but her little sharp puppy teeth hurt. Went straight through my dress and she had a liking for Michael’s shoes.
Our first week we went to the Blue Hole. It’s a set of waterfalls and rivers that you get to jump off, absail down, swim through and rope swing across. It was awesome. Me, Jake, Marco and Chris went. It was great. They highest jump was just over 20ft, which the boys don’t desperately want to do – so I went first. Nearly lost my bikini but was very fun anyway.
We met a lot of people while we were there. Lises brother and an Air B&B; but other workaways too. Isabel was the first person we met. Only with us for a few days but lovely to talk to. She was from Germany too, (we met lots of Germans in Jamaica) and she was working with J.O.A.M for her university course. (Jamaican Organic Agricultural Management.)
Manu – German, Fedricka – Italian and Michael – Canadian, all came on the next Sunday. Jake’s birthday. We had already been to the beach with Isabel and that night we all went out to a proper Jamaica jam session, with one of the local men we had met while working, we knew him as Spinal. Jake was so drunk by the end of it they got him to dance and sing (well, more like butcher) Bob Marley on karaoke.
They also said that me and Jake should be married by now and have Jacob Jr on the way. They added some rather graphic sex tips to help with the matter too.
Jake was so hung over the next day he spent most of the time lying in the grass moaning.
In Ocho we went to a few different beaches, Mahogany beach was our favourite (it was also free as an added bonus). We went there one day with Marco and Chris and met a Rasta Man. He told us all about his beliefs and that the earth is the woman that brings life, the sky is the man and rain being the sperm. Women like the earth, need to be honnered, respected and looked after. He offered all this up very freely without our asking, not sure how we even go to the conversation to be honest, but was interesting non-the-less. After we had to get a drunk Marco and Chris back home and stop them from walking off with a kids shirt and selling there shoes for weed.
We went to Turtle river park, where as you can guess we saw turtles; and Konoko Falls. Another set of waterfalls where you have to navigate them to climb up. I dealt very well with the sudden cold of the water and wet leaves around my feet. While there you could also see the gardens and a little museum. Konoko was the last day. So on that night we went out for a meal and had this lime and coriander chicken. It was very good but neon green in colour which was a bit strange
Overall we had the most amazing time there and didn’t desperately want to leave after only two weeks. After a tough start in Jamaica they had made it a perfect. I was in much better spirts on the way to a next workaway in Boston – Jamaica. At least it’s the origin of jerk chicken, which is something to look forward to.