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du soleil et ma coeur petite

[Jess]
I did WORK today.  I mean…I tried and my goals got a little closer, today. This is cause for celebration and, since I’ve been on my own all day and all evening, this has taken the form of happily-ending romantic comedies all afternoon and into the night.
Now I’m off to bed. Hurrah!

A few months back, I stumbled through writing a grant for the first time and, by some act of God, it went through and now my agency is receiving money for a bunch of really neat things—tree planting, preserving the janga population, developing a nature park at the entrance of Jamaica’s only National Park and solarizing their eco-lodge.  The solarizing was my own touch and it’s been mine to bring through to fruition this whole time.  Well, the tree planting has run into problems and the nature park work has been extremely slow going.  The solar work?  It’s actually coming along and we hope to do the installation in January.  I sort of get the feeling that the members of our community group don’t find the solarizing THAT exciting…which is disappointing.  However, I know that it will be an asset to their eco-tourism product and that it will end up saving them a bunch of money and hassle in the future.  I’m hoping it will also expose the neighboring communities to renewable energy options and start them thinking of new opportunities to get off the JPS grid…to take initiative and make better use of the resources all around them.  Can you tell that the solarization excites ME?  And the beauty of these outcomes is that it’s not costing them anything.  It’s actually providing some of them with salaries and, not only salaries for a while, but also skills that can be used indefinitely.  They don’t seem to appreciate these aspects and that’s too bad.  I’m really proud of what it could mean for them and the whole area.  I’m getting more and more used to being feeling like the minority.

Today, I made a couple of arrangements in order to complete a task.  In my home country, this would not even be news-worthy, but in my current life it’s kind of like a miracle.  One lady would meet me on the road by my home at 8:30am.  We would walk up to the square and meet one taxi at 9am that would drive us up to the cabin site.  We would commence measuring and planning out where to put the solar components. Afterward, we would be driven back to Comfort Castle by that same taxi.  Sounds simple, right?  Well, it was.  The lady was early and didn’t feel like waiting at the square.  Thus, we walked and talked all the way to Millbank and met the taxi at the place I needed to pick up keys anyway.  There we met some other BPFA members heading up the road, so we gave them a lift and headed up to the cabins.  Everything was copacetic there–better than we expected in terms of placement.  We were back in CC before noon.  The taxi fellow wanted way too much for his time, but we were able to settle easily.  Now on to the next step, which does NOT involve yours truly.

I love today.
This kind of teamwork makes me have all sorts of thoughts that are optimistic and…relieved. I start going, “You know, things here really aren’t going too badly and I’m not doing so terrible myself!”  In fact, I’m meeting with Annie tomorrow to really plan out our upcoming CraftCycle workshops and then I’m meeting with the CC Primary School principal on Monday.  Josh even promised we could order in (just kidding) and sleep on our mattress in the living room while we catch up on all the tv shows we’ve missed…and call it a “date!”  Things are definitely looking up.

Remind me that looking up is half the battle?

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2 Responses

  1. Way to go Babe!! It’s about time productivity……totally the result of all your efforts, (and much frustration) got into gear. You go girl!! Love you so much!
    Mom

  2. wow jesse! think of where you started and where you are now! i’m so impressed!! :D you’re a super star!

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