THE RETURN TRIP – Episode 113
…Roy is in no mood for this hassle, he didn’t come 1400 miles to be visibly annoyed… especially not in front of Francine…
After five hotel stops and 60 miles later, the bus and its weary remaining passengers, those boarding in Chicago a 12 hour ordeal, are told the end of the line is near. “Thees eez Ocho Rios, wheech meenz five reevers. It eez the bestest place on our island, offering nacherous beautiful and de best een nateev shopping.”
Ocho Rios is bustling at midday, streets dotted by dented compact cars and sidewalks packed with people, most of who have nowhere to go and all day to do it. Francine cannot wait to be one of them, to actually partake in what Jamaica has to offer, every bit happy to be a citizen of Nowheresville.
But that day is now short and their energy wanes. They would be best served to locate their bags, adjust to the quiet atmosphere and then actually get better acquainted, yes that is the point of them jetting off together.
“Two king sized beds for Crippen, Roy and Francine.”
“Whot eez your name again pleez Mon?” The afternoon clerk suffers from the same disorganized confusion that is the order of the day on this tropical isle.
“C-R-I-P-P-E-N, Roy. I reserved an air conditioned room yesterday. I was told you were not booked up!” He is in no mood for this hassle. He didn’t come 1400 miles to be visibly annoyed, especially not in front of Francine.
“Oh ya Mon, heer you eez,” he reaches below the counter for the key. “That weel be 30 dollas key charge.”
“Okay, here,” he hands one twenty and one ten over the counter.
“American Dollas eez illegle een Jamaica Mon.”
“Where is the nearest place to convert currency?”
“Well what is it, me and this pretty lady need to go to our room?”
“Seex Jamaican dollas for eech US dolla and the banc will open at 9 AM. It closed at 5 PM.” He takes the $20, “Tanc you for da teep. He point up, “201, I get da rest of yur bags, second floor has less aneemals.”
Roy fits the key into the door. At last their paradise sanctuary… beds unmade, a half-full jug of rum, every manner of booze, on every available surface. “Wait here,” he tells Francine
Back down to the desk where he is given a key to 202. It is not as messy, but untouched by maids as well.
Francine politely sits on her mountain of bags, perfectly content like never before in her life. Heads would have rolled if this were last week. “Things can only get better Roy.”