Jamaica, land of Bob Marley and the Rastafarians. Land of the bobsled team that came in 14th place in the 1992 Winter Olympics. Land of Red Stripe beer, jerk chicken, and the occasional – but certainly noticeable – whiff of schwag.
It was a long day, but I’m glad to be here. I barely made my connection in Miami and finally checked into the Courtleigh Hotel in Kingston at 9:30pm. My room is quaint and comfortable, the attached picture is my remote workstation for the next 3 days. The hotel has a nice pool, several bars, and 24 hour fitness and business centers. It is also right smack in the center of New Kingston, straddled between the mighty Pegasus and Hilton hotels, and a stone’s throw away from many of the stores I will be surveying.
I’ve been training as a surveyor in Boston for the last month or so, and with Westchester, NY and Stamford, CT under my belt, I feel adequately prepared to tackle the Caribbean on my first set of international cities. After Kingston, I will survey Kingstown, St. Vincent and then St. George’s, Grenada until August 26th, when I return stateside.
In each city, I will meet with realtors to assess the rental market and will also price a variety of commodities and services, anything from grocery and clothing stores (women’s underwear, ahem) to insurance rates and automobile quotes. The idea is to collect the same kinds of goods and services around the globe, so we always look for the same market basket. Collecting these prices isn’t too bad for a seasoned surveyor, but since I’m new, I’ll likely be putting in long hours.
I’ll also likely be work in some beach time. I hear the Caribbean sunsets are stellar.