Tuesday, August 28, 2007
So, as most of you probably heard, Hurricane Dean was making a beeline for us in Jamaica. I'd kind of expected it, and had even taken out extra insurance for extreme weather, just in case we needed to be moved at our expense.
We knew there was a hurricane heading our way by the beginning of our second week. The Jamaicans were so relaxed about the whole affair, that it rubbed off on you and you felt calm too. The only time we had a feeling of dread was when the hotel management put a note under our door the day before it hit saying "If you are American please report to reception as your Government want to evacuate you." No other nationalities, just American!
We stocked up on water and snacks, asked to be moved to a safer room as we were originally on the top floor and facing the storm, and waited. The staff were amazing, they worked all the way through delivering sandwiches and water to our rooms, even handing out board games for the kids. We went out for a walk a couple of hours before it really kicked off, and it was a strange feeling. You can feel it coming, and its ever so gradual, then suddenly before you know it the rain starts lashing down.
Pete and I took the kids out into the corridor when it was quite bad, all linking arms, it was mad! We actually managed to sleep that night, our room was so protected from the winds, and when we got up the next day the sun was shining and the staff were out sweeping and raking. By lunchtime, it was all back to normal. We were so impressed by the way they dealt with it that all the Brits put a collection together and got almost $2000 for the staff on that shift to share.
We were so pleased we'd been given the opportunity to stay, it was certainly an experience we'll never forget, the kids were all in awe of it and will have lots of stories to tell their friends at school. It added something to the holiday, rather than detracting from it.