Tuesday 24 May 2016

Bob Marley excursion, Nine Mile, St. Ann, Jamaica

Sister Sarah and I did the  Bob Marley excursion to Nine Mile today, which is where he was born and is buried.  Nine Mile is owned and operated by the Marley family. We did it with Island Routes on the Zion bus.

The drive was up into the mountains.  The roads were really narrow and windy.  At one point, a truck came barreling down the road and smashed into the driver's side rear view mirror.  Glass went everywhere.  Barry, our driver, stopped ... the other driver didn't.

We stopped along the way for a snack at Bumpers Lawn Bar & Rest Stop.

The snack was a Jamaican beef patty ... it was good!

There was a cute dog and he loved getting his belly rubbed.

 We were off again driving through the countryside.

When we pulled into Nine Mile, our tour guide said that if we wanted weed cakes or joints, we just had to go outside the gates.  There was no shortage of vendors.  This young couple did and came back with some cake (a slice was $30US and fat joint was $10).  BTW, they ate some of the cake after the tour and were snoozing not too long afterwards.

Their $30 piece of weed cake

In keeping with the spirit of Bob Marley, any joints you bought/bring could be smoked on the property (in the restaurant, the mausoleums, etc.).  Sister Sarah and I didn't buy anything ... we didn't need to as the smell was in the air from lots of people smoking.  So you have to visit Nine Mile with an open mind.  After our tour and before we were getting back on the bus, there was a last chance for anyone if they wanted to buy anything from the vendors outside the gate.

We started off in the courtyard.

Souvenir shop with teeshirts, bags, etc.

 We went upstairs to the bar ... the views were nice.

Sister Sarah and I

At the bar for $10US, you could buy a shooter which they lit on fire.  You had to drink it while it was on fire through a straw.  You got to keep the shot glass.

After watching these men's reaction, I passed

There is a room with a lot of Marley memorabilia.

Me and Sister Sarah

There was a band that would play a song for each group of tourists.

Then we were led to the mausoleums.

Up the hill
The graves of Marley's grandparents, aunt and uncle

Kito was our tour guide.

This mausoleum is where Marley's mother, Cedella, is buried.  We had to take off our shoes before we entered and we couldn't take pictures inside.

This is Marley's childhood home ... he lived there until he was about ten.

Supposedly the bed Marley was referring to
in the song Is This Love?
Me and Sister Sarah

This is where Marley, according to Kito, meditated and "medicated" ... it's just outside the house.


This used to be the kitchen ... yes, that's a weed plant.

This is Marley's mausoleum ... we weren't allowed to take pictures inside here either.  They had no issue with people smoking weed in the mausoleums, though, and I could smell that many had.

Then we headed back down the hill.

Sister Sarah, Kito and me

We headed back down the windy road.

The roads are really narrow. They drive on the left side
and the road is wide enough in most spots for one car.
So a lot of times, an oncoming car had to stop

and back up to a safe spot to let us pass.

We stopped in at Bumpers for a late lunch which included rice, jerk chicken ad jerk pork.

Right after I finished my meal, I found a dead fly on my plate :(

It was an fun day but I don't think it was worth $85US.

It was interesting to drive through the countryside.  It would have been nice, though, not to have been so structured at Nine Mile.  Our group went into one building for a few minutes, then out ... then the next group did the same.  I know they do it for time management reasons to keep the groups moving but it would have been nice to be able to linger and spend more time in the Marley buildings.  It felt rushed.

In addition, it would have been fun if they had made the rum punch more plentiful.  We had small one when we started off and another small one when we left Nine Mile.  On other excursions I've been on, we could have a rum punch whenever we wanted one.

Our Air Canada rep asked how it was and I was honest.  Another couple from Canada on our excursion told her they weren't happy either.  She was really surprised as she usually gets rave reviews about it.   She suspects we didn't have the better bus tour guide.

1 comment:

Teresa said...

Looks like a good way to spend some time.