Here is a New Year’s Challenge to you if you live in Jamaica. Albeit slowly, Downtown Kingston seems to be making a recovery. I see many signs with properties for sale as I drive around. Although the Ministry of Health has moved out, I gather the building has been sold so there should be something happening with it. There is now a Dominoes and a Payless store.
Late last year I had been thinking to myself that I had not been downtown to go shopping in a long time. A part of that is due to my current address. Downtown is no longer en route to work/home. When I used to live at Copacabana I had to take the bus downtown then from there another bus to get to work and vice versa for home. On the trip home, that often meant a stop at the bookshop on lower King Street where I would browse, buy books on sale and then walk to Parade (the side where Captains is) to get the bus to Copacabana. I would often be seen walking up the hill with my bag of books. I have not lived in Copacabana for a while but I still used to make my trips downtown invariably going there the weekend before school starts not on purpose but just having it work out that way, every year telling myself that it was not going to happen the following year.
In recent times, most of my trips have been to the National Gallery but even these have been few. I am still trying to make the Sunday openings at the end of the month but I often find myself being out of town or with other commitments.
With my neglect of downtown in mind I had decided to go downtown n Saturday and I had a few other interested parties who wanted to come along. Since it was close to Christmas and I could not be bothered with the rush, a date had not been set but it is a new year with lots of open dates still so we just have to set a date. My challenge to you is this, if you haven’t been downtown in a while (or never) plan a trip. Take along a little bit of money, don’t plan on buying anything big, dust off your walking shoes and just go take a look around. If you must drive, then drive but I recommend taking the bus especially if you only need to take one.
And for the bargain hunters, here’s a music video for inspiration. I must say this video is better than a promotional video for Jamaica (tourism wise) that I saw recently. JAMPRO/JTB take notes!