ICYMI in Jamaica: Much Ado About Dreadlocks, INDECOM Chief Steps Down, and JUTC Needs to Shape Up: August 2, 2020


August 1 – Emancipation Day – is as good a day as any to restart writing my weekly news posts. I have missed doing them, actually. They help me (and hopefully you) keep a finger on the pulse of things. So, it’s a humid evening, an hour to go before curfew kicks in at 11. … More ICYMI in Jamaica: Much Ado About Dreadlocks, INDECOM Chief Steps Down, and JUTC Needs to Shape Up: August 2, 2020

International Coastal Clean Up Day Is Still On – With a Difference


Just as I was wondering whether Jamaica’s International Coastal Cleanup Day would be possible this year, the coordinators, Jamaica Environment Trust (JET), informed us that it will take place – keeping COVID-19 protocols strictly in mind. And, as I noted in the previous blog post, technology is playing a part in this time of the pandemic, … More International Coastal Clean Up Day Is Still On – With a Difference

“Physically Closed, Virtually Open”: National Library of Jamaica Offers History Resources to High School Students


The National Library of Jamaica must be rather a lonely place at the moment. No pesky members of the public requesting manuscripts, firing questions, asking where the bathroom is, and whether they can make photocopies. All the usual traffic has faded away; but the NLJ has always done a whole lot more than the regular … More “Physically Closed, Virtually Open”: National Library of Jamaica Offers History Resources to High School Students

At-Risk Groups Will Soon be Able to Self-Screen for COVID-19


This is such good news. I am sharing with you all, because it cannot come soon enough. Telemedicine has been talked about for long enough in Jamaica – now at last here is the opportunity provided by this pandemic to protect vulnerable groups – who should not be leaving home, and who don’t wish to … More At-Risk Groups Will Soon be Able to Self-Screen for COVID-19

Revitalizing the Caribbean Tourism Sector: The IDB’s Innovation Challenge


Our tourism sector has not yet emerged from the doldrums. In Jamaica, while battling COVID-19 with what appear to be depleting resources, we “opened up” to tourism on June 15. Now, close to one month later, we seem to be just feeling our way. Nevertheless, our ever-upbeat Minister of Tourism Ed Bartlett told us a few … More Revitalizing the Caribbean Tourism Sector: The IDB’s Innovation Challenge

Happy Summer Solstice


Tonight is the Summer Solstice. It is the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere and the time when the Earth is tilted most closely to the Sun (23.4 degrees, to be precise). At the same time, it is the Winter Solstice in the Southern Hemisphere, where everything is the other way round. The … More Happy Summer Solstice

More COVID Reflections: The Sweet Sadness of Life Online


I wrote recently about my new obsession with housework (except for the cooking, regrettably, since I am culinarily challenged) during the Time of COVID. Another aspect of life at home is online life. Everything that we did before has expanded, and then some. The WhatsApp platform, which had already become a bit of a fixture … More More COVID Reflections: The Sweet Sadness of Life Online

UNDP Launches Dashboard on Countries’ Preparedness and Vulnerability to COVID-19


My recent post on an Oxford University study seems to have stirred some interest (partly, I suspect, because of some Jamaican readers’ partisan political leanings!) On March 25, 2020, the University’s Blavatnik School of Governance launched its COVID-19 Government Response Tracker, (including a Stringency Index), which it describes as “the first ever tool to track and … More UNDP Launches Dashboard on Countries’ Preparedness and Vulnerability to COVID-19

Earth Day 2020 in the Time of COVID-19: Lessons We Are Learning


It is the eve of Earth Day 2020 (Wednesday, April 22) and its fiftieth anniversary. Last year, I collected a bunch of inspirational quotes and did some philosophizing. 2020 is a historic occasion, which we will celebrate online while something else – something almost beyond our imagination – is unfolding in our lives. Like most periods … More Earth Day 2020 in the Time of COVID-19: Lessons We Are Learning