Yeshie Renee: A star on the horizon Pt 3
Yeshie Renee jets off to London, England
Third of a seven-part series.
Before leaving Jamaica, Yeshie Renee harboured many thoughts.
“I used to wonder what the experiences would be like living abroad, and that day was closer than I had imagined.”
“My big sister lived abroad and she would occasionally send down her two children, who were pre-teens, to spend time with us in Jamaica.”
“Whenever they (her children) arrived, this would bring scenes of excitement in Denham Town where they stayed. The American accent brought stares, and I too wanted to be part of that moment.”
“Then, the excitement would carry over to days and weeks, especially with their American outfits.”
“”Is farin they come from” and “dem clothes pretty eeh”, were just some of the comments which took rounds in the community.”
“It was a big deal when families had relatives living abroad. This led to more respect than others who were not that lucky. Many friends could benefit by getting a so-called farin soap or cologne.”
One day, Yeshie, who was with her mom in the living room, overheard an argument which appeared to be plans for her to live in England.”
“She (mom) was on the phone talking to dad who had left for England a year before. I sensed a matter of urgency. My mom, realising I had picked up the conversation, warned me to keep my mouth closed about going abroad.”
“I left Jamaica the very day my best friend was having her birthday party. I had gone there to do the final touches on my hair. When she (my friend) popped the question as to where I was going all dressed up, I told her nowhere. I could not let down my guard because my mom told me to keep it a secret as she didn’t want the school to find out.”
“That day I remember wearing these purple bell-bottom pants and a white blouse. And I was really happy leaving the island. My school was supposed to give me a letter but they refused as they did not want me to leave. But I got one from another school I had attended.”
“We actually woke up very early and before long we were packing our suitcases. Mom came over and repack mines so that all my stuff could now hold. My younger sister and aunt were leaving on the same trip.”
“At the Norman Manley airport, we remained there for some time, and I was feeling sick, but I overcome that feeling.”
The flight took some seven hours to London.
“Although I did not get a window seat we were all seated beside each other as a family. My brother came to pick us up. He was very happy to see us.”
“London is quite different from Jamaica, just about everything, including the streets, buildings, and taxis. And, it was the first time I was seeing a train.”
“As I lay in bed that night, I was thinking about so many things I had left behind, Including my mom; she was very precious to me and of course my friends back in Denham Town and Tivoli Gardens.”
Next: Yeshie Renee first year in London, England.
(Photo courtesy of Yeshie Renee)