Jamaica March 2009: 12 – To Kingston

I wake up pretty early, eat my last Seastar breakfast and Alfred is right on time to pick me up. I’ve never had Alfred drive me before, though of course I know of him, lots of people I know love him. He has a really nice van, with high ceilings and killer AC and tons of space. I hop in front because I like the view and on a 4 hour ride, we’re going to be chatting 🙂

We set off east, through Sav. T’s asked me to pick up some lobster in Whitehouse because it’s almost April 1st and lobster will be out of season until July. So we cruise along the south coast on the same route we took to Black River the other day. It’s really a lovely drive, with little bits of blue blue sea on the right, small towns along the road.

We arrive at Whitehouse and head down to the fish market near where the fishermen come in. I’ve never been down here before, there is everything you can think of to buy here. Alfred locates some nice lobsters and we choose about 6 two pounders. As season is ending I paid more than I had in Treasure Beach in November – $500J a pound – but that’s a steal by US standards, I’m happy. We get a box and some plastic and some ice to keep them alive/fresh on our drive and head on.

I’m not a big photo taker on the road anymore, especially if I’ve been that way before. I do wish I’d taken some at the market but we were occupied with shopping and it was also raining a bit (just the second rain of the trip and it didn’t last long).

But I did get this truck we were behind for awhile full of cows AND goats…

We decided to stop on Spur Tree Hill in St. Elizabeth at my favorite jerk place. Great food, ready fast, and a beautiful view. I only took this photo there, of these things growing on the power lines

We got some jerk pork and jerk chicken and a couple of drinks, relaxed a bit and headed on.

The ride went really fast, Alfred is a lot of fun to talk with and we just chatted the drive away. We hit the new toll road sooner than I remembered the last time I came out, and from there we ZOOMED into Kingston.

We made a stop at a supermarket for drinks and whatnot and headed right on to T’s house.

I was surprised how close it was to her old place, and to Hope Rd. I’d pictured it being way out of town but it isn’t…kind of the best of both worlds, killer views and quiet, but just 5 minutes from everything.

T came out to greet me and I was happy to see her as well as some folks I met last trip. I get the house tour and HAVE to bring my camera because everywhere I look there are amazing views, like almost 360 degrees, wither city or mountains in every direction.

The hood

Looking to the Blues

More Blues

Zoomed in on downtown, the harbor, the Palisadoes and Lime Key
To the city, downtown is center-leftHope Road and New Kingston

T shows me to my room – I get my own room and it is super cozy!

This is my room the next day…didn’t make the bed yet 🙂

We do have lobsters to eat and Alfred is going to join us for dinner before he has to go back to Negril so we need to cook them.

Uh-oh, no one is really sure how to cook the lobster. We don’t have a pot big enough to boil them all and I’m thinking grilled is the way to go with Jamaican lobsters anyway so we opt to parboil some (individually) for me to grill and the others will be boiled all the way for those who want that.

So once they’re out of the water Alfred shows me how to halve and clean them…not for the squeamish this job – but he’s a patient teacher and I get the hang of it.

Now I’ve never grilled lobster before. I have, however, spent countless hours watching Lydie do it at 3 Dives, and I think i have an idea how. First, I make garlic butter. Tash adds scotchbonnets to it. I know we need to grill on tin foil, not directly on the fire, so we get that and take the whole setup up to the grill on the deck. Which, may I say, is one of the loveliest spots I’ve ever grilled food at 🙂

We baste the lobster with the garlic butter mixture and let it go for about 10 minutes as the others take care of boiling the other lobsters.

I have to say, it was delicious. We totally pigged out and still had lobster left over!

Alfred left to return to Negril – I’ll definitely see him again, he was a great driver and a lot of fun to ride with. Some friends of T’s showed up and we spent the evening sitting around talking…I am in Kingston and I’ll be here for at least 3 nights and I am really glad I came 🙂

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