Monday, August 30, 2010

Booked a flight home already...

So I had to book a flight home already. I'm not entirely too excited about it because I am loving Jamaica. In earlier posts I mentioned that I have to take the GRE's, so that is what I am coming home to do. Fly in Thursday, take the test Friday, have all day Saturday and fly home at the crack of dawn on Sunday. Quick "link up" with my CT people and then back to my new Jamaican life. So rather than totally freaking myself out about the GRE's because I am placing an ton of pressure on this one test by flying home and paying more than I ever would for an overrated standardized test that barely evaluates your ability to be a Grad Student (ditto for SAT's, maybe not for MCAT's/LSAT's, but for most). I am foreseeing this as an opportunity to experience what it would be like to study for a test that you only get one chance to take due to financial obligations. In the case of Jamaica, and graduate with a 4-year degree who wants to pursue an education in the US would have to fly to Miami at anytime or wait for the only 2 testing opportunities that come twice a year here in Kingston, and hope you get a spot and nothing goes wrong.

In the US we can take the GRE's at anytime. In Connecticut it is offered at 3 different locations, twice a day, 6 days a week, and you can only take it once per calender month. There are so many chances for increasing your score, seems unfair when comparing Jamaica's situation to ours. So this is a cultural experience for me, viewing the advantages of a functioning infrastructure that caters to our people quite well in some aspects such as standardized, re/certification granting examinations. These are only small examples of a vast number of disadvantages.

QUICK INTERJECTION: Not only have I noticed that my grammar is getting progressively worse, my spelling is slipping too. So are my massive screw-up's like switching two, for too, or to. Anita & I were laughing because when we do something silly or a bit idiotically at home are parents always ask us how we became Fulbright's? Anita's parents came up with the term "Halfbright" no need to say anymore!
Also check out the above Christian Science Monitor article that my buddy Dave posted on his Facebook. Yep, scary stuff. But good news, "The combat mission in Iraq is over, operation Iraqi freedom is complete". Now moving all troops, capital, and equipment (all-encompassing) into Afghanistan and maybe one day Pakistan. Yikes. Well Obama said it will end a year from now so lets give him the benefit of the doubt, since he stuck to this withdrawl date, that this could actually .

I have been trying to attach a soundbite that I took of constant car alarms from the balcony of my apartment. For some reason it is not entirely working. I think I am just doing it wrong, oh well if I can merge photos into panoramic images I am sure I can figure out how to attach a wma file.

At the suggestion of an undergraduate professor of mine, I spent roughly 7 hours on researching faculty at the graduate universities I want to attend, to see where my interests and my studies/experiences match theirs. Exhausting process. There are so many professors who are researching different things that captivate me. So I am narrowing it down by making it fit with my experiences. The Caribbean, the penal system, immigration, substance abuse prevention, education, economics, international law, refugees, forced migrants, intellectual property and copyright law. And believe it or not, after all that prattle about a nebulous career path, there were professors whom were experts in all various studies that complemented mine. I mainly found the best fit with professors all located in the North East, from D.C to up North. Looks like I'll be coming home at some point!

Okay so enough about the really uninteresting stuff. Look Lyme Caye photos.
It's totally sunny, the water is clear and amazingly warm; then the next minute it is pouring and you can barely see cause the rain is like splashing salt water into your eyes. Greg told us that by the time we leave Jamaica we will be able to see under the water despite the salt. I don't quite believe it. So I tested it out and tried to open my eyes under water and and spent the rest of the day hoping something would assuage my pain. So now I have a basis to compare my future attempts of looking underwater.

One of my favorite parts of Jamaica are the taxi drivers. All of them are so dynamic and have hilarious nicknames; Money, Mister Pinney, Barbie, Jacko, Llyod, Junior, Mister John and more. Usually they will show you around on your ride because your obviously a foreigner, the accents give us away immediately. Also our obvious lack of swagger. They tell you about their families, where they grew up, all the places they have worked, and they usually point out a few of Jamaica's famous locations named after hero's such as Marcus Garvey and Bob Marley. Taxi drivers make the best tour guides. Here in Jamaica they all have personal numbers so if you find one you like, for the right price you can get a steady driver. So we are interviewing because Ricard's car broke down and we are not sure when it will be fixed again.

This week has also been the week of the Jamaican Beef Patti for us. We went around and tried random Patti places only to come up with the same conclusion that we were told we would find. Tastee patti's are the best, good thing we can see one from our balconies! We figured that rather than take everyone's word for everything we would try most things out for ourselves. I also received a lengthy lecture from one of Jazz's friends, Omry, that I cut fruit wrong and actually eat it wrong too. He cut up mangoes, black spotted mangoes, pears, sweet sop, and june plums. Lesson learned. He also taught Jazz how to steam fish, Anita tripped out because the fish still had heads and skin! It was really delicious.

Our friend Kam, who brought us to Lyme Caye, picked us up and brought us to Medusa. It is an outdoor bar that is all inclusive drinks for $1000J. It's ridiculously cheap and they have great music and quite a diverse crowd. From UWI students, to professionals and travelers there are all kinds of people. I spoke to one guy from Botswana and one from Wales all in all of two minutes. This bar shuts down early in comparison to most, at midnight exactly the music goes off to keep in accordance to their noise ordnance. We will definitely go back here.

Grad Classes start next week at UWI, which I am incredibly excited for. I am taking Caribbean Political Institutions I and World Trading Systems this semester and next semester I am taking Caribbean Political Institutions II and International Political Economy. Wednesday will be my first day of Grad Classes ever! YES! More work! Speaking of work I really need to stop blogging and work again. Until something interesting happens, I'll be working and not blogging!

1 comment:

  1. You inspire me my dear! I need to get my GRE book out from under the pile of Disney DVD's that have taken precedence and stop being such a loser! Keep me posted on how much it sucks, and I'm so excited to keep following you on this journey. Heck who knows, maybe some day you and I will be hosting the family Thanksgiving in our DC Condo? ;-)