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Rambo, Rose Hall, Jamaica, & Team Jesus

Mark (looking over the railing of my cruise suite balcony, down into the tourist village built at the exit from the cruise ship in Falmouth, Jamaica; we can see the shoreline of north Jamaica): “Where’s the beach?” (we only see rocks and foliage).

Angel (looking, too, and trying to remember all the excusions info): “I don’t know. Montego Bay is that way (pointing to the far right). That’s a bunch of shops, down below us. You’re going to have LOTS of opportunities for interactions with the people. Lots of Jamaicans are going to be coming up to you asking for a dollar.”

Mark grimaces, but I know him. These Jamaicans have never encountered a force like Mark before. I picture what’s going to happen. I picture approach after approach being met with, “Hi! What’s YOUR name?” followed by a big, friendly Mark grin and “let me say a prayer for you.” Mark fully intends to counter the Voodooism Jamaica is known for, and which I’ve described in full to him, with his “Team Jesus” t-shirt he’s wearing and his faith. He WILL too.

Angel: “This is a little rectangle of shops they’ve built for the tourists. At the far end over there (I point out for him) will be lots of Jamaicans at a gate. They are going to offer to take you on their scooters deeper into the area.” In my mind I see this scenerio. It does not end well. I imagine someone taking Mark somewhere away from others and trying to do something to take advantage of him. I picture him missing the time frame, 5:00 pm, to reboard the cruise ship. This is why I bought him insurance. I also picture him taking anything bad that could possibly happen to him and completely turning it around for good and for Jesus. You don’t mess with Mark. He’s a force of nature. Say, for example, someone tried to harm Mark…he’d twist it until he’s having tea with their grandmother and saving the entire village. Mark is chomping at the bit to get into Jamaica. Not me. I’m waiting for room service to bring my breakfast I ordered last night. I’m staying in my room, drinking coffee, curled up in my cozy bed. I stop crises before they happen.

Angel (we’re still on my room balcony, looking down into the Jamaican shops, over my railing): “Most of the people on the ship have already bought their tickets to their excursions. I’m turning you loose to go do Mark stuff. Then you can come back and tell me all about it, and I’ll write the stories.”

Mark: “You’re not going?” I had bought an excursion to Rose Hall but Royal Caribbean had left me a paper in my room saying they were refunding my money because Rose Hall had become unavailable. I’d already figured out “The White Witch of Rose Hall’s” Voodoo history and relayed the story to Mark. I’ve already written two short-stories about it. Scroll down my page or go look on my website.

Angel: “Probably not. But listen to me… Remember at Eden Roc when you were on the beach and I hollered at you from the lounge chair (100 feet away) to tell you I was going back to my room but you didn’t hear me?” When Mark had noticed I was gone he had assumed I had walked further down the beach or that I had been kidnapped. When he didn’t find me he got hotel security and the front desk involved. I had simply yelled, “I’m going back to my room,” texted him, and left him a voicemail. His phone had died and I didn’t know that. I had just been too tired to rewalk that 100 feet back to the ocean wave tips again, which I’d already done once. I had thought he’d naturally think I got tired and went back to my room. But no. I am extremely independent. I had just left. When I had reached the Eden Roc gate I figured out it was locked and I had both of our room keys. I know Mark. I had pictured him climbing the fence or walking around to the front. Just in case, I had seen a soda can and had placed it where the gate couldn’t shut. I’d unlatched the other gate, next to it, for him. Later, when I asked how he got back through the 6’ tall gate without a card key he had said, “I climbed over.” I had figured he would, if all else failed, and I was right. I had not foreseen him involving security and the front desk because he thought I’d wandered off or had been captured. I hadn’t guessed that one right at all. “You know me. I’m independent. I was tired. Of course, I’d just go to my room.” Nope.

Angel: “If I get off this ship there’s a chance something could go wrong and they wouldn’t let me back on since my passport is expired.” The Royal Caribbean cruise was a “closed loop” and just required a certified birth certificate and a Driver’s License, which I had. A foreign country would have their own set of rules, which passengers were supposed to figure out, themselves. Since my birth certificate had my maiden name and my driver’s license had my married name I had brought an entire folder of supporting papers to prove both names were mine.

Mark: “Do you think that could happen?”

Angel: “Only if I got hurt while in Jamaica, so probably not. But, just in case, all my paperwork is in that little purple suitcase over there” (I pointed). “You have a copy of my room key, make sure you take it with you. Then, if I DO decide to get off the ship and can’t get back on, you can bring my documentation to me.”

Mark nodded ok. He was chomping at the bit to go, but I kept him a bit longer. “Remember Eden Roc. I’m telling you where I’ll be. If I DO decide to leave the ship it will be to take a taxi to Rose Hall, anyway, to get pictures.”

Mark: “So you can write your story.”

Angel: “Right. Exactly.”

Mark’s phone rings. It lights up with a picture of his late dad. It’s the picture Mark loves, his dad’s shirt is off, he’s in his prime, very muscular, he’s holding a military knife, going through the brush, in combat. “My dad was the REAL original Rambo,” he always says, proudly. “I’m just a fake Rambo.” Mark doubled Sylvester Stallone in “Rambo.”

Angel: “You’ve got your dad’s blood and genes.”

Mark: “It’s a sign. Dad’s going with us. He’s going to protect us in Jamaica. I have my pictures set up on my phone to be random. It could have been any of 30 photos that lit up but it was the one of my dad.”

Copyright 2024 Angel Isaacs All Rights Reserved

Written March 18, 2024 at 11:57 am


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