Sunday, June 17, 2007

From Jamaica

Let's switch countries for a day. I've been for a couple of weeks in Kingston, Jamaica. Bob Marley's city, and Reggae's motherland.

It's in some ways similar to Uruguay. It was colony, it's a small population country. Officially 2.7 millon inhabitants. It's an emerging economy as well, and both countries suffer from emigration issues.

If I had to answer quickly what are the pros and cons of Jamaica vs Uruguay, I would answer something like this,

Jamican Pros


Jamaican people seem more optimistic, lively, outgoing, and warmer than in Uruguay. This is for me probably the best thing about this country. Their people. The party mood, and no problem attitude.


There's only one season, and it's summer. If you are the type of person that doesn't like cold seasons. This may be your place.


If you are not a surfer, or if you don't miss waves in a beach, jamaica's caribbean beaches are warm, and have crystal like waters. This is not exactly a pro, it may depend on your taste on beaches in general.


Jamaica is geographically closer to the rest of the world. It's a two hour flight to Miami, and 8 hour flight to Europe.

Jamaican Cons


Jamaican seems more violent, and dangerous. It feels that way, and the stats agree.


Traffic is chaos, even more than in Uruguay.

Buildings & Architecture

Uruguay once dreamed of being a great country. It has a golden era, and today a lot of buildings like El Palacio Legislativo, and El Palacio Salvo witness that. You don't find anything like it in Jamaica.


It's free in Uruguay, even University. This is not the case in Jamaica, you have to pay.

Final thoughts & Conclusions

I guess I expected a bit more, from a place that has such a brand name as Jamaica has. Everyone in the world knows Jamaica. Even though they are fewer, and smaller than Uruguay. What puts Jamaica on the map still puzzles me. Is it Marley? Is it Reggae?

If I had to guess I'd go with it's people, and their attitude towards life. Where a Uruguayan might blend and go unnoticed you won't miss the Jamaican.

I'm very grateful, people have been really, really nice to me here, but despite all the good stuff, I'm feeling a bit homesick. It don't matter the reggae, hot weather, and everything. Ya mon, Me wanna go home



gabouy said...

Here are some pictures of the trip.

Anonymous said...

Jamaica is not heaven. It is quite known internationally for it being a very homophobic society. That takes away all of that feeling of freedom and laid-back country. Uruguay seems freer by far!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I left Uruguay in 1969, for the USA. I went back in 2005, and I realized I really miss that place. There is really nothing else like it. Yes It is a poor litte country without minerals or petroleum, but people there seem to know how to live well and be happy in spite of it. Sadly I am way too materialistic to live there. I hope someday i can move back home once I'm retired.

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