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Attempting to discover the essence of Portland                                                                                                                     



Welcome to our HillyPortland Newsletter         Volume 1      Issue 5   July 2014

Quiet Portie

Hilly Portland.                                                                                                                     

Portland is one of the larger parishes in the island of Jamaica.

It was one of the last few parishes to be settled and you may just ask why?  Let’s look at the map of Jamaica below and observe how close Portland is to the city of Kingston.   Kingston and maybe I should say Port Royal was the mecca of Jamaica in the original times.  Settling away from the city is always attractive, as us pseudo aristocrats know very well, so you would think that even back then they would look at where Portland is positioned and take advantage of it's cheap real estate. This Portland is adjoining St Andrew, just a few miles next door to the Portland border is UWI, the seat of learning for most Caribbean people, isn’t that a recipe for an attractive suburb?

Why isn’t a few acres of land where you can invest in a few cows, leave the wife or husband at home and drive (your buggy), to take care of business in the nearby city, not a good buy? Do you think if everything were equal Portland would not by now, be an overgrown suburb of Kingston and maybe even fighting to become it's own city.

Hope by now you are saying let’s talk about --------- Portland and forget the rest of the stories, and your anger will mean that  I got your attention. I am  not under any duress to write an article about Portland. I am doing this venture because I love Portland, and would love to be a part of it's vast potential for growth, so I do crave your attention to the picture I am painting.

Parishes of Jamaica


Well Portland is not one of those flat parishes, it’s a mountainous place.    The mountains overpower everything and even form a natural barrier between the populous areas of St Andrew and Kingston to the south of Portland: (There is only one drivable roadway through these mountains from Kingston to Portland and it may not still be drivable . I have driven through this mountain pass on one occasion and have no appetite for a second trip.)  Only closer to the northern caribbean sea are there fair sized patches of flatlands, and very little (flatland)elsewhere. It’s on these patches of flat land that the various little townships are built.        The commercial entrances to Portland from Kingston, involves going through the eastern section of the parish of St Andrew and St Mary or, the longer way of going through St Andrew and the entire parish of St.Thomas.  Both these entrances require native experiences to be not afraid.



So now you understand why Portland was never nor will ever become a suburb of Kingston although we are, geographically speaking, neighbors. This Portland though, has developed qualities of sophistication that challenge the minds of outsiders. I mentioned somewhere that there are only fairly small areas of flat lands. These flat lands, even to today are owned by the aristocracy, so in many areas the town is small and some people live on some hillsides that frightens the outsider.

People with a choice live in Portland because they want to.

Because of the difficulty of going up and down many hills and around many corners to get to another town, people tend to stay in their own town or village, and develop much pride for their location. This unity shows the good and the bad side of people, but you will be pleasantly surprised when you find out how many good people there still are in Portland. www.hillyportland.com

We will continue this discussion next time and continue to give you an intimate look at why Portlanders have such a strong love for Portland. We also think that a focused look at Portland will uncover areas of need, where a core group of Portlanders can make quite a difference in peoples lives. 

We need your opinion and your help
We are planning a whole Portland get together sometime next year.We are open to anyone who has a workable interest in their home parish. Send us your best email address. Name is optional.
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