August 19, 2007

10 am Deadline

It is now 9:50 am and JPS (Jamaica Public Service) has announced a 10AM power cut to protect their network. Both satellite dishes have been disconnected and taken down from the roof, so no CNN for awhile. CWJ (Cable and Wireless, Jamaica) has managed dial-up speeds this morning of only 4.8 and 14.4 kpbs. It took over 5 minutes for the sign-in page to load. Hope this gets posted B4 the power is cut.

I've spoken with family both here in Jamaica and abroad, trying to assure them we are as ready and prepared as we can be. We were offered shelter in several homes in Florida, but we both feel strongly that we need to be here, together, facing what comes.

My husband has taken all possible safety precautions to secure our home (and his brother's) and minimize damage. Now we must see what comes.

We should not attribute this to an ACT OF GOD. He flooded the world once to show His extreme displeasure with our disobedient behaviour. He also promised that He would not send another flood as punishment. IT WILL BE FIRE NEXT TIME!!! Bad weather is nature-driven, often caused by man's disrespect of the environment.

Continue to pray for our island and all those in the path of Dean.

Jah guide and protect!

August 18, 2007

Unwanted Visitor

It is now 2:07 pm on Saturday in Jamaica. We are getting ready for Hurricane Dean. My husband and several young men from the district are putting up the pre-cut plywood forms that fit over the windows in anticipation of Dean's arrival tomorrow morning. It makes the inside of the house dark and it blocks the cooling mountain breezes. But as we have seen in past hurricanes, it dramatically cuts down on the wind and rain damage.

UPDATE - It is now 4:05 pm and the weather is turning angry. Dark clouds gathering, thunder grumbling under it's breath in the distant mountainside. The pounding of hammers comes in quadrophonic sound from the valley below us, the slopes on either side of us and from further up the mountain. The people who live around us, most of them my husband's family, have been thru hurricanes before. We batten down what we can, pray fervently and then deal with the reality of what the coming morning brings.

Depending on the level of destruction, we will probably be without power and phone service for a while. This is the most recent info I could find. Click the (CNN)-- link for current updates. Please cover us with your prayers as we wait for our unwanted visitor. Once the danger has past and we plug back up, I will blog again.

Jah, guide and protect!

(CNN)--Hurricane Dean intensified Saturday as it muscled across the Caribbean and headed toward a dangerous rendezvous Sunday with Jamaica.
Forecasters fear Dean will be a destructive Category 5 monster packing 155 mph winds by then.Saturday morning, as Dean roiled the open waters south of Puerto Rico, the storm's maximum sustained winds neared 150 mph with higher gusts, putting it at Category 4 intensity and making it the strongest storm so far of the 2007 Atlantic hurricane season.

August 17, 2007

Celebrate Marcus Mosiah Garvey's EarthStrong

"Don't remove the kinks from your HAIR.
Remove them from your BRAIN."
-- The HonorableMarcus Mosiah Garvey[1887-1940]

Today is the EarthStrong of the Honorable Marcus Mosiah Garvey, who was born in St. Ann's Bay parish of St. Ann on August 17, 1887. Sites that give you access to his works will help you to understand his commitment to the upliftment of Black people across the world.

Additional links of interest:
The Official Site
Historical Facts
Black Unification Network

Let us honour the ancestors who struggled against odds we can only imagine.

August 16, 2007

Wigton Wind Farm

Wigton wind farm in the parish of Manchester is Jamaica’s first wind energy project. The 23-turbine scheme, with an installed capacity of 20MW, was built by RES for Wigton Wind Farm Ltd, a subsidiary of the Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica (PCJ).

The Terms of Reference for conducting the Environmental Impact Assessment for the Wigton Wind Farm are here.

How electricity can be generated from wind power is explained with labeled diagrams showing the parts of the machinery used.

Wind energy, as part of a diverse renewable energy portfolio can make an enormous contribution to our national energy security and help meet rising demands in a sustainable way.

August 15, 2007

Wind Chime in a Mango Tree

I am so blessed to live in Jamaica. This is the windchime that hangs from our mango tree. It has a deep chiming sound that reminds me of cathedral bells. My husband ate mangoes from this tree as a child.

This is a view of our side yard.

This is the view from our front verandah (porch for American readers). See what I mean about being blessed?

August 13, 2007

Dominoes In Jamaica

Dominoes are such an integral part of Jamaican life that many of us just assume it is as popular in the rest of the world.

Rules and game names differ. These rules seem to be geared towards American and Canadian players. Here in Jamaica, partners and cutthroat seem to be the most frequently played games.

Emotions run high, as egos and reputations are at stake; not to mention who pays for the next round of drinks. The ear-numbing THWAK of the domino being slammed on the table top as someone shouts, “A hit dat, tu rahtid!” and the Heiniken and Red Stripe bottles rattle precariously. Many seasoned players have learned to place their bottles on the ground to prevent spills.

I still have two unanswered questions related to Jamaican domino playing. "Why are domino tables always rickety and why are the stools so uncomfortable?"

This is why today's blog almost didn't get posted. Much too easy to loose track of time here. Even so, I've bookmarked it as a favorite. Playing on-line doesn't have the excitement of being at a high-spirited game, but it is a great cyber-time-waster.

August 11, 2007

Look So Different, Essentially The Same

That is true for us humans, as well. No matter how different we may look on the outside, we are basically the same. We are all The Father’s children; some just more obedient than others.

The foundation stitch for both these bracelets is RAW (right angle weave). From essentially the same beginning, we end up with such a dramatically different ending. The center row is basic right angle weave. Alternating the size of the bead used between the “up” and “down” beads of the RAW stitch is what creates the curve. Using different sizes and types of beads gives each bracelet it’s own distinct style.

The black and white has varying sizes of faux pearls and seed beads. The toggle is a cage of netted faux pearls with a loop of 1-, 2-, & 3-drop peyote stitching. The toggle was designed by Geneva Beck and featured in the June 2007 issue of Bead and Button magazine using crystals. I like how it looks with pearls, too. Do you?

The aqua and clear has seed beads ranging in size from 6-15 in the band and the toggle is made from three bi-cone beads that also become a decorative dangle. It reminds me of the gentle ocean waves that caress the white sand beach at a place in Negril that I love so dearly. OK, so now I hear the call of the beach, the beads and the blogs!

August 10, 2007

Black and White for Safety

Since Sister P (Prime Minister of Jamaica, the honourable Portia Simpson Miller) announced the date for general elections, my wardrobe choices have been narrowed considerably.

No red or orange, (PNP) no green (JLP), and no blue (NDM). Even if you don't support a specific party, the wearing of the colors can lead someone to believe that you do. I can't afford to have some emotion-fuelled political en*thug*siast (I'm sure my fingers meant to type enthusiast) fling a rockstone thru my windscreen. I drive in communities that are fervently aligned with one party or another. T-shirts, banners, bandanas, head-ties, streamers and flags all announcing the party of choice for that district or community.

In an attempt to remain safely neutral, I have limited myself to dressing only in black and white and various combinations of the two. It has been a challenge, but I only have to keep it up until elections are over. Once the dust settles and the roars of disappointment fade, I can go back to more colorful wardrobe choices.

For those of you not in Jamaica or not familiar with our political parties:

JLP Jamaica Labour Party (Opposition Party)
NDM National Democratic Movement
PNP People's National Party (Ruling Party)

August 8, 2007

Recycled Jewelry

This bracelet was made from buttons clipped off a business suit I wore in my former corporate life. During the early 80s most female managers were wearing boxy three piece man-tailored suits in an attempt to be accepted into the Old Boys Club. Since I knew that would NEVER happen for me, I did not make as great an effort to fit in. When I wear the bracelet now, I give thanks that I never have to wear another suit, or carry another briefcase to another corporate meeting. I am blessed to be able to live the life I do.

The artisians on these sights also use recycled materials to create useful and decorative items.

I love the comic book bracelet on this page.

Here I can't decide between the safety pin bracelet or the typewriter key bracelet. Love both!

Check out the On The Road collection here.

Reuse everything you can to reduce the amount of waste going into our landfills. Our children, our future, our world deserves our best.

More recycled jewelry by Lady Roots

Hematite Cross Necklace

This necklace design was loosely based on the large, elaborate EthiopianCoptic crosses. Two-needle right angle weave stitching was used for both the necklace and the cross. The cross was embellished with smaller beads. The clasp is a trailer hitch.

August 7, 2007

Red and Gold Ndebele Bracelet

Ndebele stitching with red and gold seed beads surrounds one accent bead in the band. Clasp is 14ktGF wire that slips into the beaded loop.

It fits snugly around my wrist. After four days of beading (with sporadic stops to wander around in cyberspace) it was finally finished. It thrills me to know Jah has blessed me so abudantly that I can use my brain and my hands to create something that I feel so good about.

August 5, 2007

Overabundance of Pearls

Various sizes of faux pearls were used to make this feminine bracelet. The beaded toggle is functional and decorative. Fits a 7.5 to 8 inch wrist.

August 4, 2007

Our Newest Jamaican Hero

The name Barrington Irving, Jr will now be permanently etched in the history books. As the first Black and youngest person to fly around the world he has made Jamaica proud.

Link Yard Flex for a great article about this young man who knows that not even the sky is his limit!

August 2, 2007

Rootsman International Sound going mobile

Unable to find reliable box lifters for his massive sound system, Rootsman is converting a 16-foot Isuzu box truck into a mobile sound system. It will be one of the largest mobile sounds in Jamaica.

For bookings, in Jamaica, call 999-ROOT (999-7668).