Friday, September 16, 2011

No Surprise There!

Today's Gleaner responds to a CNN travel report that Dunn's River Falls is one of the worst top 12 travel destinations.

When we brought a missions team here in 1984 our free day was spent at Dunn's River Falls and eating at the Ruins. We saw it for what it was and enjoyed it. Nature at its best! Cool, clear water falls. Since we have lived here we have taken visiting family there and enjoyed it as well. It is one of those things that Jamaica is known for. If you don't have a shirt from the falls you just haven't had a complete Jamaica trip!

However, reading this report I understand how it made the top 12. There are some things that are just "givens" in the Jamaican culture. Since we live here we are used to those "givens" but when you are a tourist and not used to those "givens" uncertainty may arise and frustration step in.

There are going to be hagglers, there are going to be people in your face. There is going to be begging. There is a different English called patois. The impoverished and needy recognize that people who visit the falls are people of great wealth (in their eyes). Desperation will lead you to the tourists as will deception. A friend told me recently that in our town a particular beggar knows no other way of earning money and he has begged so long that he has a house and a car. He still goes "to work" everyday on the street to beg. Doesn't make sense does it?

So in thinking about the report this morning I wonder if we were down and out without Jesus and no means of support what would we do?

Den calls it culture shock confusion. Maybe people have to have an intercultural class before vacation!

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