Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Day 4 – Montego Bay

Another beautiful and sunny day in Jamaica! This time we drove to Montego Bay to tour historic Rose Hall, once home to the infamous Annie Palmer, a woman said to have killed three husbands and numerous slave lovers before her own death.

But first, Montego Bay – situated on the north coast of Jamaica, “Mo’ Bay” is a popular resort town and will be host to the Jamaica Jazz & Blues Festival in late January – I’m told this is a must, so you know I’m already plotting my return.

The drive here was beautiful with amazing views of the shimmering blue ocean on the left. Rose Hall sits up on a hill where you can get a perfect view of the sea. The house is beautiful, with large bright and airy rooms. We got some great shots outside too. See?

Rose Hall 

Entrance to Rose Hall

View from the balcony at Rose Hall

Our tour guide Thesa went into full character, dressed in her traditional costume as she let the story of Annie Palmer unfold. Here’s the short version:

Annie moved from Haiti to Jamaica in search of a rich husband. She met and married John Palmer, owner of the Rose Hall Plantation.  Annie killed him and her next two husbands along with a number of slave lovers before she finally met with the same fate. There are those that claim they’ve seen Annie in the house or their pictures never quite turn out right because of a certain glow that appears in all of their shots. I didn’t notice anything while I was there, but I also wasn’t keen on the idea of taking a candlelight night tour of the place – why take a chance? No, we had our witch’s brew punch in the dungeon-turned-bar during the daylight hours and kept on moving.

Entrance to the former dungeon.

Last stop of the day was Discovery Bay, where Columbus allegedly discovered Jamaica…and the Arawak Indians that were already living there. Hmmm. Okay.  Anyway, this is a great little place to stop to get a quick tour and history lesson for whatever you’re willing to pay. You can also pick up souvenirs or just hang out and enjoy the view.  

Discovery Bay
Our tour guide showing us where sellers would have their bananas tallied...Come, Mr. Tally Man...

We ended the day snacking on jerk chicken at a nearby outdoor restaurant then headed back to Mandeville. Montego Bay is nice and full of great tourist spots to enjoy.  I got some great inspiration for the novel I’m currently working on and another one that I’m outlining. (Sigh. Writer's ADD kicks in.)

Next stop: Portland!

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