22 Sep 2008
Since you can’t come to Jamaica without listening to Bob Marley or viewing his birthplace and final resting ground I felt the need to take the tour. Before it skips my mind, not everyone in Jamaica listens to Bob Marley all day long. During my entire trip I only heard maybe 2-3 of his songs on the radio. Shy of my Ipod, Bob Marley music was sort of rare in comparison to all of the other Reggae.
Nonetheless, after a 45-minute or so trip through a dozen or so small villages we reached Nine Mile, the home of the Bob Marley tour.
Even after watching every Nine Mile video on YouTube, I was shocked at how small everything was. My mind was prepared for a giant tourist trap and I was rather relieved to find a small compound with a gated parking lot. My friends went to hang out with some of their local friends while our driver escorted me directly to the start of the tour. When I use the term “escorted”, it sort of means taking you from point A to point B without anyone messing with you. If you are being escorted by someone who is known and or respected by the locals then everyone knows to step back with their offers of gifts or services. My escort could of enjoyed the tour for free but he opted to give me my space, this was the first time I was on my own in Jamaica. This created an odd feeling, for the first time I was exposed even though my friends and guides were only a few hundred yards away.
Since my tour was someone ruined by watching all of the videos on YouTube, I will leave out the actual details of the tour so you can enjoy it when you visit. Please stay away from the YouTube videos!
The Marley family cook stove. Most of the Jamaicans that we met cooked outdoors in an open fire pit.
The back side of the restaurant at the Bob Marley tour.
This is the famous tour guide from all of the YouTube videos! He is able to maintain a smile on his face all day long even after dealing with bus loads of tourist.
A picture of me in Bob Marley’s mother’s bedroom. While I did not measure their home, I doubt that it is larger than 350 square feet. Most homes in Jamaica are very small compared to what we are use to in the US.