Wednesday, January 20, 2010


I'm Legal!

Tuesday (yesterday) I flew from Kingston to Fort Lauderdale. I arrived at around 8:30am and Maria Lawrence (my boss/ principal at cccd) had family in the area, and her aunt's husband picked me up. We made the 40 minute trip south down I-95 to downtown Miami, then explored a few city blocks til we found the right street. David dropped me off and we planned to meet at a nearby hotel in a few hours. I found the Jamaican Consulate and made my way up to their suite. I didn't know what I was expecting, but I didn't think it'd be very busy...boy was I wrong. I opened the door and almost hit some folks standing in line waiting to be seen, and there were probably 20 people sitting in chairs. I was in line for maybe 15-20 minutes before approaching the window. Everyone else in the room were Jamaicans getting Passports, and I felt like I was back on the island, complete with two different women cutting ahead in line by just walking up to the window while claiming to everyone in line "I just need to ask a question..." Well lady, what do you think the rest of us are doing here!?!? Anyways, I had all the documents I needed, the lady helping me clarified a couple questions on my application, and then I was told to sit and wait for my name to be called. 20-30 minutes later, I got called to the cashier window, where I dropped $161 for some ink to get stamped in my passport. After paying, I was told it'd be about half and hour. I ran and grabbed some breakfast and then about 11:30 I got called up to the window and collected my passport, VISA stamp inside!

After the Consulate, I walked down to the hotel where David was going to pick me up. They had wifi, but you had to be have a room and a PIN to access it. I picked a nice lady at the front desk and approached her, stating that I needed to get a PIN for the internet and the concierge told me to go to the front desk. She asked if I was a guest at the hotel, and I said no, I just wanted to get online for a bit....she grabbed a piece of paper, wrote down some numbers, handed it to me with a smile and said, "I'll make an exception, just this once." Thank you! and I was good to go...I was catching up on things online when the Indiana Pacers started pouring through the lobby on their way  back from practice. An assistant sat down in the lobby on the chairs next to me, and pretty soon Troy Murphy walks through the door and sits down next to him. He's a big dude! I had my camera in hand waiting for an opportune moment to get a picture, but David pulled up so I needed to leave.
We headed to Miami Beach and took the scenic wrote up through South Beach and the Art Deco district. We arrived at his local hang-out, an English Soccer Pub, to watch the Manchester United vs. Manchester City soccer match. It was funny watching crazy soccer fans from opposing teams talk smack back and forth during the match. It's the first time in my life I've actually watched soccer on TV, and the first time I've watched it around soccer fans. Made it less painful, and the end was slightly exciting with MU trying to tie the game in the final seconds, but I'd still have to say that soccer is very boring to watch...although, it was better than expected. Then we headed to the restaurant Maria's aunt runs (Auntie Fay) and got some delicious fried chicken and chips. We got back to their house and I killed time until the Purdue game, which made my night end on a very positive note. Go Boilers! Today I head back to Kingston around 2:30. Goodbye America (again).

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Hey, Blake! I'm pleased you got thr - God be praised!

Anyway, I'm Bertram I've just started to learn JSL and I start volunteering at CCCD here in KGN. I called to find out today if Church is on this Sunday but I was told no. I guess I'll head off to Calabar Baptist Church for the Deaf - my 1st time it will be.

Anyway, hope we can meet up some time!

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