Dis and Dat

Those of you who have been to Jamaica have undoubtedly delighted in listening to the locals speak. They say things like tree instead of three, dis and dat instead of this and that and the all too famous Ya Mon. The native tongue is called Patois. I’m not sure if it’s classified as a language or a dialect. I could do a google search I guess but frankly it doesn’t matter. It’s awesome.

I start my morning again today with an early rise and I find myself at my ultimate blot spot; a little beach cabana the one in fact that we carved our names into the day we arrived. I don’t have anything specific in mind so I thought I’d just do a little post about dis and dat.

CJ caught a little bug yesterday. Felt kind of dizzy and a little bit off in general. These things invariably happen on beach vacations. I’ve had everything from jellyfish stings to stepping on sea urchins to blowing up an MCL happen to me in the past. On this trip I’ve been blessed minus a few bug bites and an attempted jellyfish sting which I mostly foiled. To her credit CJ muscled through and made the best of it. I noticed that she was so concerned about ruining my day so I reminded her at dinner that we had a great day regardless. We got in some yoga, some beach time, a nap, I swam some laps, we watched a little TV for the first time and we still got 4 square meals. That made her feel better. I also reminded her that the last time we arrived in Jamaica she took care of me for three days because I arrived with the Swine Flu. That made her feel better still. She likes to make sure she is taking care of me too.

You always meet some cool new people on an all inclusive vacation. It must be part of the all inclusive. Most of them pass in and out of your life. Once in a great while it’s more than that. I once met a guy that changed the direction of my life immeasurably when he convinced me to buy a home in New Buffalo. I am eternally grateful. On this trip nothing like that is going to happen. Maybe a few new Facebook friends but that’s about it. Frankly I spend nearly all my time back home on stage at work and teaching. That is no longer my vacation modus operandi. It used to be but just like the number 23 it’s about adaptation and change.

Here’s another way I notice I’ve changed compared to past vacations of this type. I no longer try to vacation harder than anybody else. You know the ones I’m talking about. The ones who try to do the most activities, know the most people by name, get the fastest drink, eat the most meals, stay up the latest every night. There’s nothing wrong with that mind you. It’s just no longer my thing. I suspect I used to be one of those guys.

The other morning we walked out to our beach chairs under the cabana. I had put our bag down there about an hour previously and when I came back there was some sunscreen on one of the chairs. I asked CJ if it was hers and before she answered a lady came running up and said, “No that’s my sunscreen we got up at 6 a.m. to save these chairs and you came by and stole them!” Really? What did she do lie in wait for an hour so she could come up and confront me? I told her that I didn’t see anything on the chairs and she responded by telling me that they put towels on the chairs at 6 a.m. Brilliant lady! Two resort issue plain white beach towels just like the ones that are left on hundreds of beach chairs overnight. I told her I didn’t see any personal stuff so I had no idea and we then moved about 20 feet down the beach to another cabana after reminding her that she was on vacation. Probably not the most yogic response but whatever.

Later that night we were taking a post dinner stroll on the beach and we coincidentally arrived at the beach bonfire just as they were lighting it. There we dozens of chairs set up in a circle and one hammock. Since we were the first ones there we got the hammock. About ten minutes later after all the chairs filled up we saw that same lady surveying for a spot to sit and she glanced at us in the hammock. For a brief second I wanted to shoot off a trite, “Karma’s a bitch isn’t it lady” but this time I was a little more yogic.

It’s fun to use the lines from Forgetting Sarah Marshall at points during the trip. That movie is epic in our world of movie fun. Like if we see a guy alone at dinner we mumble to ourselves in Jonah Hill’s voice, “That’s got to be boring. You want a magazine or something?” Or if I can’t find a sandal I want to walk up to someone from the resort and say in Aldus Snow’s British accent, “Excuse me missus I’ve lost a shoe. It’s just like this one. Not it’s evil twin…” We’ve tried to refrain from our abundantly large habit of taking photos of so much food. Sometimes we feel like the Asian couple in that movie  Every once in a while we would spoof that them with a photo.

In other random news somebody stole our bug spray last night. I was smart enough to remember to bring some good strong deet laced bug spray. It’s helped but it hasn’t prevented some bites along the way. Last night we sprayed ourselves down before going to dinner and left the can on the deck like we always do. I guess somebody who forgot bug spray noticed and decided they wanted to take it. I’m thinking karma again. We will be bug free without it for the last night (we are eating inside anyways) and they will get chomped. Take that you thieves!

Well it’s our last full day. I’m sure it will be a good one. We have couples massages scheduled this afternoon and a late dinner at the more upscale restaurant. The rest of the day we have to do whatever the energy tells us to do. Sometime tonight We’ll start that pre-packing ritual that begins to move you back to your everyday life energy. It’s always a little bittersweet, but when you have lives as good as we do back home it’s not so bad! I’m looking forward to my first meal at a Chicago restaurant, I’m looking forward to telling to engagement story to the one or two people in metro Chicago that didn’t hear it before the fact, I’m looking forward to Jessica’s 5:45 C3 class on Sunday night. We’ve got quite a year or so ahead of us indeed and then who knows? Couples Swept Away sounds like a pretty good place for honeymoon!

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About Jim Herbert

I've been wanting to write my whole life. By age 45 it had amounted to nothing more than a storage locker of half full journals and a lot of unfulfilled dreams. Then Paris in the fall of 2011 happened. It was the catalyst I needed to consistently blog. At first I had a hard time hitting the publish button, but now two blog sites and over 300 posts later I'm hitting my stride. I'm also a budding speech writer. I've recently been heavily involved in the Chicago Storytelling scene and have also won the Chicago Toastmasters Area 66 International Speech Contest. Check out our website at www.emergingintojoy.com for more details about the amazing things that are happening in my life. A book or two are nearing completion. With another Paris trip on tap for Easter of 2015 I can only imagine that there are Infinite Possibilities on the horizon!!!
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