Picture courtesy of Fahad Martin Pinto
Picture courtesy of Fahad Martin Pinto
Picture courtesy of Fahad Martin Pinto
Picture courtesy of Fahad Martin Pinto
Picture courtesy of Fahad Martin Pinto

All posts in My Jamaica

Memory of Jeffrey Town All Age School

 

There was a time when the burnt rice at the bottom of the pot on Sundays was the most sought after portion of the meal. Today, scraping the “bun bun” as it was called would be frowned upon. There was a time when pleasure was taken in roasting a few dried coffee beans, to savour the aroma and then beat those few beans in the homemade wooden mortar.

Today, we line up at coffee shops for cappuccinos, lattes and brews from countries most of us will never see.  At this stage in my life and 38 years after leaving Jeffrey Town, St. Mary, the most interesting memory of the school I once attended is that of eating bulgur. A nutritious lunch served with some chicken that cost about three pence in those days. Now, I am plagued with tales of children going to school without breakfast. Lunch programs are now the norm because a hungry child cannot concentrate in the classroom.

Those who cared for me as a child, took pride in ensuring that we had something to eat before heading to school and that some form of lunch was available to eat. In one generation the memory I have is just that, “a memory”.

by Patrick Buchanan

Grand Jamaica Homecoming 2012: An amazing journey!

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Just how lucky was “Lucky”?

It was an overcast day and as I journeyed home from I reflected on what transpired before and thoughts of a nice warm meal was very attractive. I had just left my study group at school. As I walked the familiar path home, I reflected on the topics discussed earlier and started to develop my strategy to recall important facts. It was then I heard it!

My heart started to beat really fast, however I stopped to listen and looked around. I had heard a faint whimpering sound coming from shrubbery along the roadway. Nothing. I walked on believing I was probably imagining the sounds. There it was again! I stopped and listened; the sounds stopped too. I continued on, but there it was again! So I retraced my steps to the spot and used my foot to push the overgrowth aside and not too long into my search, there he was, an all black pup, weakly pushing his little head out of a brown paper bag, yelping, it seemed, for “help…help…”, while his siblings napped.

My heart skipped a beat, then it pounded loudly within my chest. Within a split second, my decision was made. I couldn’t take them all, so the one which sounded the alarm would go home with me. I got to work. I opened my folder, got some folder leaves out, crumpled them and created a little bed to cushion and keep the pup warm for the short journey home. As I walked home, I kept looking down at my little treasure. His eyes weren’t even opened yet. The yelping had stopped as we slowly journeyed home.

We stopped once along the way home to purchase some ‘Longlife Milk’ for my little pup. On my arrival home, my hands were full. I shouted, “Help! Help!” and windows and door opened and family members ran to meet me. My Dad being the first to get to me, he asked, “What’s the matter, girlie?”
I said, “Look Dada, look what I found!”
He asked, “What’s that a rat? That little thing won’t survive Karen, its too young!”
My siblings were all just as excited as I was and so every member of the family was mobilized to work shifts feeding or petting, my little darling of a puppy.

My mom said, “No, Kar, he’s too young; he’s not going to make it.”

While Dad kept on “He was taken from his mother too early.”

I would have none of that. “No, we are not going to stop trying to save him! Please Mama; please Dada?” My Mother then declared, “This dog is really lucky indeed!” From then on, he was called “Lucky”.

And so we plodded on with ‘Lucky’ warming milk as often as it was necessary to feed him. Before the first feeding each morning, I would use the warm milk to gently wipe his eyes, then feed him while talking to him, before I leave for school. Of course, on leaving strict instructions were given to my Mama to remember to feed him during the day.

One morning I woke up to a low whimpering sound and got up to find Lucky at my bedside; his EYES WIDE OPEN!!

We continued feeding and loving him.

Late one afternoon, as I arrived home, the picture before me brought tears to my eyes. I rushed in to see ‘my baby’ and found my Dad sitting in a relaxed way, with ‘Lucky’ in the crook of his arm being fed from a baby’s bottle. That was a sight to see. A tall ‘strapping’ imposing figure of a man, holding and bottle feeding a wee pup! It was a funny sight, but a touching one. The pup was a part of the family and so when Lucky was ill, the entire family couldn’t eat – we were affected.

Lucky Smith lived to a ripe old age and was one of the sweetest pets we have ever had.

~Submitted by Karen Smith-Rose
Kingston, Jamaica