Hi, Today, I’m Bobbi readers! Bobbi’s sister Shelly here!
Welcome to Redberry, where there are no addresses and no real names. It’s the perfect place to hide…
The first stop on our 2015 Jamaica Grand Tour is so stealth that it doesn’t even go by its own real name.
Upon our arrival in Kingston, our Dad had to correct the immigration officials on the spelling of the district name that they had in the computer. Suffice to say, not that many people have been to this little corner of the woods. We can’t ever seem to get a straight answer on the origins of the name Redberry (Red Berry?). Is it from the coffee plants, that literally grow red berries? Is it the famous red dirt? The mystery remains…
Grandpa had the place spruced up for our arrival and we immediately set out to say hi to old and new friends.
Luke here our grandfather’s pet sheep with the soul of a labrador retriever. He bounds about the yard happy to explore his way around the culinary delights of the property but was happy to drop his busy schedule to see what we were up to. All the time. He made sure to check out all of our luggage as we unloaded the van and even gave the our chariot a few good shakes to make sure that nothing was left inside. His pal, the goat, wasn’t as fun. He gave us a few sideways glances and quickly went back to trimming the grass.
Dad put on his tour guide hat and showed us all of the myriad plant species within 100 yards of the door. He pointed out something that was poisonous but as soon as he moved on, we were faced with a dense forest of potentially malicious plants that all just looked, well, green! The delicious ackees and mangoes were easier to pick out, thankfully.
Nature didn’t let us rest that evening. We were all standing around having a chat in the hallway when I noticed a moth about the size of a dinner plate that I’m pretty sure was one of these. (Note from Bobbi: I don’t have a photo of this because I RAN AWAY like a little girl. The thing was the size of my head. NO THANKS.)
Also known as Duppy Bats (duppy = ghost, bat = did you see the size of that thing?), they are superstitiously known to be lost souls and there are plenty roaming the valley. As obscure as Redberry is, it features in its own book of ghost stories written by an Englishman who married a local woman (Ryan, is your Redberry inspired tome forthcoming?). We are linked to the setting of that book in more ways than one as our maternal grandmother was one of the survivors of the train crash that created many of the duppies in the stories! (Another note from Bobbi: We also went to summer camp nearby as kids and the
ghost duppy stories we were told about the area and crash were a little traumatizing!)
After a few days of relaxing in the lush green valley, safely hidden away from the internet and traffic, it was time to move on. Next stop: Ocho Rios!