Friday, October 4, 2013

Wedding Week 4: Honeymoon Snaps!

Good morning!

I'm finishing off this week sans our usual She Was a Bird flourish of Photo Friday, as I wanted to show you a couple photos from our honeymoon! We went to Jamaica the Monday after our Saturday wedding, and came back home 7 days later! I am really glad we went, and we had a ball, but as I've told several friends, I could have kissed the ground I missed America so bad by the last day!

We left BNA for Miami's International Airport in the afternoon, had a short plane trip down to the tip of Florida, and posted up at Bacardi's Mojito bar for the three hour lay over. The plane arrived in Jamaica around eight that night, and we took a cab from the airport in Montego Bay (yes! Just like "Kokomo!" We saw Key Largo, and then were in Montego! Baby,  why don't we go?) to the Decameron in Runaway Bay, St. Ann Parish. The cab driver was a tall man in his fifties' named Clive who spent the entire forty five minute ride describing various cultural and physical landmarks of Jamaican history in fluent, liltingly accented English, practically without taking a breath. Dude really knew his Jamaican country side! Unfortunately, it was pitch black with no illumination for the most part of his tour, and we had to imagine "up there, the home of Usain Bolt" and " on this spot, where Bob Marley was born". 

The nightscapes were punctuated with tiny bars, the size of a small storage shed, the doorless doorframe of which gave view to space for maybe three people and a handhewn configuration of shelves and bottles behind a tiny counter. "ROLEX CLUB", one hand painted sign read. "PRETTY LADYS PLACE", another. I didn't get any pictures, but they looked almost exactly like this, but illuminated at night by a single fluorescent light. "Eeen JahMAYcah, is all kin' of got de black, de Chiiinese. De Indian, and de white man. Eeen JahMAYcah... it's nottabout de color of de skin...but de color of the money," Clive opined, as we bounced along down one of Jamaica's main highways, on the left side like British roadways, large commercial trucks passing on the right. He talked about various cultural groups, how they came to the islands, and which groups had been most successful in terms who lived in the residential areas, and who lived in the "innah CIT.TEE." I wish I could remember more, but I was so tired and on edge at this point it was hard to retain information.

We rolled into the resort, tipped Clive heavily, and checked into our room. Each room was in its own little cabin type thing, like a nicer (but less kitsch, sadly) version of the Cave City concrete teepees in Kentucky and California. I loved being "separate" from the other vacationers while still being "around people". I always hate walking down hotel hallways in a dripping bathing suit or in the middle of the night on an ice run!

The beach, naturally, was the main attraction, and we got up every day to go sit on the shore like it was a paying job. The all-inclusiveness included drinks, but the quality of those drinks largely depended on the bartender (who might also be a dancer in the night show, or head chef at the evening's meal). We sat with the waves at our feet and drank frozen pina coladas and talked about all the marine life we hoped to see!

On Tuesday, walking through the commissary type area for breakfast, we realized we were possibly the only Americans on the entire resort! Most people were from the UK, and the dining room was a patchwork quilt of accents from Northern England, Southern England, and everywhere in between. I heard a little German, a little maaaybe Dutch, and one, very vociferous fan of a butt-shaking, built Jamaican dancer, who kept shaking the national team jersey he was wearing, and yelling "COLOMBIA! CO-LOM-BI-AAAA" in much the way Tony Montana does in Scarface at the stage. The resort people were very friendly and only a little mean in their teasing of us poor tourists. Once, when getting beach towels, one enormous man greeted us with an aggressive, insistent, "WA GWAN? Waaaa gwaaan, mon? Wa gwan?", sounding like Terry Crews as a Martian. Turns out, that's the Jamaican "What's up?". We heard this many other times over the course of the trip (along with "Ya, mon", almost as one word, and peppered throughout conversation the same as a Valley Girl might say "like"), but this was hands down the most intimidating time.

Here, a fellow vacationer from New Zealand took our photo. Matthew: "I bet our accents sound totally insane to you." Kiwi: "Yaah, theeey DO-oooOO." Well, at least it was mutual.

Before I left for vacation, I took some of the money I received from my bridal shower and dropped about eighty bucks at Target. Folks, you know I don't own any clothes that are both a) cotton and b) not swishy little cocktail dresses (ie ANYTHING suitable for beach wear), so I did some much needed wardrobe shopping. Luckily, September is the end of the line for Target beachwear, and with deeply discounted shorts and tops and shoes and everything else, I was able to make out like a bandit. All of my pictures seem to show me in swimsuit and shorts or skirt, but I had dresses and t shirt and everything! My poor dad, who has always been mildly against my "creative" attitude towards personal self-expression through dress, kept commenting over these pictures, "You look so grown up! You should get clothes from there more often! No joke, you look nice!" I'll take whatever compliments I can get, though! See how blue the water is?

Here, Matthew poses with a skeleton we bought from a guy on the beach who was carving them. He had flaming hearts with the Harley Davidson logo flying above them right next to Rastafarians smoking next to maps of Jamaica, in terms of his figural work. I felt bad because when we started the bargaining process, he mentioned that he usually gets $70 for a carving. Um, in estate sale or flea market terms, that means you usually get $35, and you would take $20, so I offered $25...oops. He wasn't mean but he was obviously one, not taking twenty five bucks for his work and two, deeply disappointed at this opening negotiation. Over the course of several trips to the Jetty Bar (next to which he was set up), we talked him down to $30, and heck, look at the thing. It was worth it! We named him "Skullford".

Here I am playing Trivial Pursuit on the beach. YES, I WON. What did you think?! Bibi put up a pretty good fight, but I emerged victorious. Matthew was amazed I knew that the Green Bay Packers were the most winning team of the 1960's super bowls. My dad lectures me about everything, and Vince Lombardi was no exception! This is day 5 down there, and thanks to SPF 50 sunscreen, I still look pretty pale:

Matthew, doing his best Jack Lord impersonation. He looked so freakin' cute on a beach.

We found this Alice in Wonderland sized chess set near our cabin, and Matthew may or may not have beaten me (in spite of professing to be "terrible" at chess. What a hustler!). You can see other cabins like ours in the background, and at night, they would be covered with little translucent skinned lizards. As you can imagine, we both had a fit looking at them in extreme closeup.

The food was so strange here! I decided to go pesceterian for the trip, and the best thing I had was at the "rsvp only" menu-based restaurant upstairs of the buffet-style commissary. The "Jamaican Run Down" included scallops, shrimp, crab, and snapper all in a curry-like sauce, and it was a-w-e-s-o-m-e. We also had lobster tail one night, all we could eat (which was a lot)! The weirdest thing I saw on the buffet is a two way tie for "braised cow foot" (nope) and "curried goat" (HECK no), the latter of which is a local delicacy! Poor goats. There was brown sugar cane granules to put in your coffee at every meal, but the hilarious part? It's distributed in Jamaica, but imported from Brazil. Dang! And I thought I had a local product on my hands.

All and all, we had a fabulous time, but I was so ready to go back on the last day that I hardly slept at all the night before! I told my parents, upon returning to Nashville, that one of the best parts of the honeymoon was getting to go on it with Matthew. As tense as situations got so far from home (the power went out one night for like 8 hours in 90 degree weather! The car ride back to the airport in daylight was ACTUALLY hair-raisingly dangerous w/r/t other drivers! The decided lack of non-poultry, pork, or beef based protein on the buffets! etc etc), he never said a single cross word to me and we got along like real troupers throughout both the fun and the slightly taxing parts of our honeymoon. I think that says a lot for the married couple we hope to become!!

Did you or a friend go on a neat destination honeymoon? Have you been to Jamaica? What was your experience of that country? Let's talk!

That's all for this week! Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment on this life-event heavy posting schedule. Next week, nothin' but vintage stuff, je te promets! Have a great weekend, and I'll see you on the other side. Til then!


  1. Looks like such a great time! Welcome to married life. It's not so bad, really. ;-) I've never been to Jamaica, so I'll just have to live vicariously through your pics.

    P.S. Wanted to tell you about Jenny's Vincent Price Halloween Cookalong. I think it would be right up your alley:

    1. Hey, Lauren! We had a blast! I'm so glad you're back to blogging-- just read about Katharine Hepburn's brownies over at Past on a Plate! And yes, I am MONDO excited about Jenny's cookalong, oh my goodness. I have that "Golden Treasury" book (bought in a fit of love for Veep), but that is some SERIOUS, LEVEL 10 gourmet work in the book. Maybe I'll get there someday! Can't wait to see how hers turns out, though. :)

    2. The Treasury is one of the things I would save in a fire. Love it to bits. Some of it is a bit fussy. Very 60s.

  2. thank you for sharing your wedding/honeymoon photos!!!
    love them :-)
    all the best wishes for your marriage!

    our honeymoon was on an island too - a very small and romantic one in the baltic sea: hiddensee (

    1. Aw, thanks! That aerial view of Hiddensee on the page you linked me! Gorgeous!

  3. ooooh you too are so adorable, really lovely photos so heartwarming! especially the one you were playing trivial pursuit, you look so relaxed and happy here!
    lots of love and kisses,mary

    1. Thanks, gal! We had an absolutely ball. :)

  4. Curried goat is delish!

    You two look super duper adorable and like you were absolutely having a blast. I think that's what's made your wedding week so much fun - you two just obviously enjoy each other's company so much! It's really beautiful.

    1. The driver guy, Clive, told us, as we saw goats on the side of the road in the headlights that there were mama goats, and baby goats, "but no-o-o male goat", explaining that curried goat is the #1 food for "parties, special occasions, funerals". The more you know!

      And thanks for your kind words! We are so happy we finally pulled this whole thing off with only a few hitches! :)

  5. I especially love the last pic of you two, and I loved hearing all about it, You are darling and write so well. I agree with Dad you looked different some how but still you... you are MARRIED now..
    thank you for sharing, and I too agree I went to Canada recently and was never so happy to come back to the USA and be home... there is no place like home... love laugh and be happy my dear.

    1. Thanks for the well wishes!! We are super happy to be 100% married, that's for sure! :)

      I'm glad I'm not the only one who felt homesick on a grand trip! I felt so ungrateful to be glad to be home, but they have all those "be it ever so humble" and "east or west home is best" aphorisms for a reason!!



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