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A MOO-VING EXPERIENCE by Claude Mills Featured

Archive Written by  Claude Mills Wednesday, 26 December 2012 10:43 font size decrease font size increase font size 0
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    I MUST admit I wasn't quite ready to make the move from Braeton Phase III (Portmore, St. Catherine) -- the place I had called home for more than two decades -- to Angels Estate, Spanish Town, St. Catherine. After all, this was Spanish Town, the place my friends refer to in hushed, sober, almost reverential tones as 'Gun Town'. Over the years, my visits to Spanish Town have been thankfully brief excursions to the smelly market, to pay bills and, once, to testify in a small courthouse in the Braeton Inquest.  

One thing has been consistent -- it is a decidedly unpleasant experience. Spanish Town, for the uninitiated, is an ugly pre-historic little town, cursed with a maze of narrow labyrinth-like streets, and dilapidated brick buildings masquerading as history.

Who gives a flying #@$ about the fact that the town is more than 450 years old, has exquisite architecture in the town square, important architecture and ya-di-ya-ya?

I know, I know. Yeah, it has an impressive list of firsts including the postal and railway systems, The iron bridge, Anglican Cathedral, and Emancipation Square, but driving through the town at night or in the morning is not a terrific experience. The traffic is molasses-slow, the same as in Portmore but with the x-factor of smelly beggars shaking you down for money while you stew in your car.

I've been caught in three roadblocks in the general Spanish Town area since I've moved, and there was a recent news report of a car jacking which had the stuff of a Wild West legend. Still, who am I to complain?

In the last decade of my residential life in Braeton Phase III, two people hung themselves, and another 18 died violently within the borders of the community -- seven cut down by policemen less than 30 metres from my house. Still, I miss the place, how's that for deeply weird?

Angels II can't be much worse than the slow-motion nightmare that Braeton has been, can it? However, my new community boasts streets with Italian names like Juventus, Verona, Torino, and some other macho Mafia-sounding names. Do you have any idea what might happen in the next couple of years in our copycat culture? Come on, you've seen the Sopranos on the HBO.

Plus, we have no landlines in the community. Luckily, I have walked right into a brewing war between Gotel which has a foothold in the community and C & W which, bloodied by Digicel, has awoken from its indifference and has begun digging up the streets to put in lines of their own last week.

I am waiting to see who is left standing before I make my choice of telecom carrier. Competition is a mother, isn't it?


My friends keep insisting that I have a house opening of some sort. This is just a lame excuse to come and suck down all the liquor I have been stockpiling in the last few months and to score a free meal. They repeatedly warn me of the Jamaican myths surrounding construction sites. Why?

They want me to indulge in some ancient ritual of murdering a white fowl, spreading its blood at the four corners outside the house, and sprinkling white rum to ward off evil spirits and prevent accidents.

No way, Jose.

My neighbours seem pretty ok so far. No loud music and late night orgies so far, but I can't stand the animals. Every morning I open my door to find fresh, steaming cow patties on the grass in my front yard like curious lawn ornaments. It is not a moo-ving experience I like much.

Just last week, the neighbourhood family of donkeys (mama, papa, and two baby donkeys) kicked over my trashcan and nosed through it. When I tried to shoo them away, they looked at me as though they were examining a recently discovered bug under the laboratory microscope as if to say: what's HIS problem?

Obviously, they don't know whom they're messing with. But they shall -- very soon. Last time I checked, donkeys weren't an endangered species. So at this point, I am not quite sure I'm enjoying the move just yet. But when I find out, you'll be the first to know.

Read 1433 times Last modified on Monday, 23 February 2015 10:16

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