Many many years ago, in a land far far away, a man and his son found themselves in a sleepy little fishing village on the shores of an enchanted island. This place was unlike anything they had ever seen.
The people were very friendly and made the elder gentleman and his son feel very welcomed.
As time passed, the young man had an idea to build a resort where vacationers could come and relax and get away from the day to day workings at home. A place that would be “All Inclusive”. A radical idea at the time. It would mean that once the guests paid their fee, everything else would be included. No more money would have to be spent. All food, beverages, some off site excursions and more, would all be included in the one time charge. There was nothing like that in Jamaica and many people tried to discourage his idea. They didn’t think that it would fly. But this smart passionate far sighted young man, Abe Issa was his name, was convinced that his idea would be a success and that he would be able to actually make money at this venture.
The setting is a small cove on the North side of an island in the middle of the Caribbean Ocean. Nestled in this cove is a magnificent resort. The outside walls are a brilliant white and the buildings glistens under the blistering tropical sun. The grounds are well manicured and maintained. There are palm trees, fan palms, almond trees, flowers such as Bougainville and Flame of the Forest. Along the shoreline, at one end of the beach, mangrove trees crowd the rocky cliffs. Lush green leafy plants and huge vines add color and depth.
A rather small beach less than 100 yards long, parallels the front of the resort. Lounge chairs fill the sandy area in front of the water. At the far left of the beach, is a new swim-up pool bar. There is a veggie bar on the right side of the beach level and a full bar just up a flight of wide cement stairs.
Guests will be found soaking up the sun, playing in the water, playing volleyball, and other waterfront activities such as canoeing, hobie cat sailing, paddle boards and more. This activity continues throughout the play.
More descriptive information of various areas around the resort will be furnished at a future time.
In this play, there are two sets of cast members. There are those that are permanent players, aka PP. These are a special breed of actors and actresses. They perform this play every week of the year. They know all their lines and stage cues. They function almost as a single unit, being in the right place at the right time. Performing all of their routines every day without fail. They interact extremely well with each other and with the other set of players known as GP or “guest players“
These budding thespians are made up of all the guests that visit this quaint resort, week after week, year after year. They generally work well with other GP’s and very well with our PP’s
They may remain in the play anywhere from seven, ten, fourteen days and possibly more. They are usually found in pairs of two.
The GP’s are nervous, unsure of themselves, somewhat self conscious, they don’t know any of their lines, they enter stage left when it should be upstage. They use the wrong make up for daytime performances. They are constantly getting lost in the surrounding sets. Neophytes for sure.
However, by the time the play begins to rap up each week, this group of participants can be considered veterans in the true sense of the word. As you will see, the GP’s come away from this theatrical experience with tears in their eyes and an emptiness in their heart.
And now, the heartwarming story of loving couples who find themselves in strange but beautiful surroundings, and become captivated with the people of the island.
Act I The Preparation
Setting: Your home or apartment. You and yours are doing what ever it is you do, prior to flying out. Dialogue is free and easy. Conversations will include, discussing things that need to be done, ie. Stopping the mail, finding places for the kids, the dog, packing, etc. Improvisation here is critical. GPs must keep in constant communication with each other.
Scene I Some airport
The pair of GPs has now reached the local airport. Normal airport scenery in play here. Counters, clerks, baggage handlers. Voices on the intercom, but no one can understand it. It is about 4:00 a.m. The pair has been up for two hours already. They appear a little frazzled, tired and hungry. They stop at a kiosk for sustenance.
Scene II Reception area waiting to board
The Gps check their paperwork, again, to make sure they have the necessary props for this scene.. Boarding pass, passports, luggage claim ticket. Everything seems to be there. Then they sit and wait to board.
Scene III Tunnel to board plane
He: (walking down the tunnel entrance) “Well, this is it. (big smile on face) We’re finally on our way”.
She: “I know honey, I’m so excited” (Does a little jumping up and down happy thing) “Gee, we’ve been waiting so long”
(Couple holds each others hands as they drag their carry on case onto the plane. They fumble around a bit, trying to find their seat. People crowding in now in the aisle, making the couple nervous as they try to stow their luggage.) They do so and take their seats.
She: “Just think, sweetheart, in a few hours we’ll be in the special place we’ve been reading about. Do you think it will be like the pictures”?
He: “Don’t worry babe, our travel agent said this was the best resort in the whole country. Gosh. It just has to be good”. (he puts his arm around her and comforts her with his reassuring look.) They settle in for whatever your flying time is.
Finally, we hear the Captain’s voice on the intercom. “Folks, this is the Captain. If you look out the window on your right, you will see the island of Jamaica. We should be landing in just a few moments”.
Tired but very excited, they see the island below them. It is almost to much to stand.
Scene IV Sangster International Airport
Customs and Immigration scenery. Long roped off cattle lines for all incoming passengers, customs agents, the usual stuff for this scene.
Wide eyed couple, looking all around, trying to take it all in. Drops some of their paperwork, quickly retrieves everything. They make their way through the official maze, pushing their suitcases on a three wheel transport unit. As soon as they leave the customs area, there are players standing there holding cards denoting certain hotels, others are directing people to various parts of this large staging area.
He: (looking across the huge room, he spots “the lounge”
(cue music and sound: Harps, bells, choir. Bright light shining on the distant lounge area)
“Honey, look. There it is. The Couples lounge. Just like in the picture. Look, look babe”.
She: “I see, I see. It’s so beautiful. Just like in the picture too. Let’s go over there right now”
(She takes her husbands arm as he pushes the suitcases in front of him, and they walk towards the lounge. Big smiles on faces.)
They do the lounge bit. A Couples staff member finds their names on the list. They get a cold Red Stripe and have a seat on the thick cushions that are along one wall. They talk briefly with some other Gps that are all so waiting for the bus. When it is time, all the Gps head for the bus and settle in for the ride to paradise. They have no idea what they are in for. Everyone thinks that this is just going to be a great vacation. Boy. Are they in for a surprise.
Scene V Couples Tower Isle
They finally arrive at Couples Tower Isle. The bus drives up the entrance way to this magnificent resort, goes around to its left, and parks under a huge portico. To the left is the large reception area for Couples Tower Isle. A historic landmark indeed. As the newly arrived Gps disembark, there are other more experienced Gps who have been there for two, three or four days, passing through the lobby. They smile and think, “If they only knew”.
There is lots of commotion as one of the four PPs takes all the luggage off the bus and sorts it by couple. These four gentlemen players are the first to greet the new arrivals. They help set the tone for the next seven to fourteen days. And the tone is great. The check-in process begins.
Scene VI Your Room
As the new couple opens the door to their room, it takes their breath away. Their eyes dart all around the room, taking in everything they can process. Then they both see the French doors that lead out to their private patio. As the bags are being brought into the room, the Gps thrust open the doors and walk out on to the balcony. They stand there motionless. They have their arms around each other. They just can’t believe their eyes. Stretched out in front of them is the Caribbean ocean. At the shore line, the waters are blue green in color. Clear as glass. The two overwhelmed guests appear to be stunned. Further out in the ocean, the waters are a deep dark cobalt blue with tiny wisps of white foamy water dancing across the surface.
They then turn their attention to the beach area. It is filled with happy, content, satisfied sun bathers. In the air the slight smell of salt water mixing with aromas wafting all the way from the beach grill.
He: “I guess the travel agent was right honey. This looks like a wonderful place. I can’t wait to explore everything.
She: “Me too. Lets unpack first. Okay”?
He: “Sure babe. Whatever you want”
The couple quickly puts away all their things, changes into shorts and a tee, and head out to see what’s in store for them.
Scene VII The lobby and beyond
He and She, hand in hand, smiling all the time, walk down the main stairway that leads to the spacious lobby. The room is bright with natural sunlight. The floor is made of large three foot square grey tiles. Gleaming clean. Giant white pillars support some of the ceiling area. Just inside the lobby to the left is the reception desk. Pps, right on cue, begin the check in process. To the right, large glass windows and two sliding glass doors that open to a large cement walkway. To the left, this walkway will lead to the path for the new swim-up bar and stairs leading down to the beach. To the right is the path that winds around the building, ending up near the main dining room and the main bar.
The rest of the day, the two newly enamored guests spend time walking around, finding all the interesting places. The next morning, they will take the official “Newbie tour”, lead by a PP staff member. They will then be able to enjoy the rest of their stay.
Scene VIII All around the resort
It’s only been a few hours since our happy couple‘s arrival,, but already they are meeting other Gps and making plans for the evening’s activities. They gain more and more confidence as the day wears on. Some refreshing liquid enjoyment. Things are looking great. By the end of day one, the happy couple is tired but so filled with adrenalin coursing through their bodies, they are not yet ready to retire. More time is spent around the main bar area with other Pps and Gps talking and laughing with one another. The air is electric.
However, the time finally catches up with our two love birds, and they pack it in for the first full day in “Always Always” land. As they turn out the light and drag themselves into the large King size bed, they sigh in unison. A long satisfying sigh.
He: “Goodnight honey. I love you. This is going to be a great vacation”.
She: “I love you too. I can’t wait until morning. Goodnight”
End of Act I
For purposes of this play, I have the couple in this story arriving on Sunday. That way, they will see and be part of everything for the duration of the play. Remember, this play runs every week of the year. It is basically the same routine every week.
Act II The first morning
Scene I Your room
After a very restful first night, the couple awakes early for their first full day of discovery and excitement. It’s about six a.m. But before either one of them gets out of bed, they lie there next to each other, staring up at the ceiling.
He: “Wow. We’re finally here honey. It’s been a long road”.
She: “It sure has. But now we’re really here. Let’s see what it looks like outside”.
He goes to the curtains and opens them wide. The sun is bright and beautiful in the Eastern skies. The waters are calm and clear. The air is thick with humidity, even this early in the day.
The two Gps walk out onto the patio.
There is hardly a sound to be heard in the still morning air. Overhead, a man-o-war bird soars high on the rising thermals. Circling round and round in the sky. The lounge chairs down on the beach are lined up like soldiers. Just waiting for the first guests to come and claim one.
The tiny waves coming ashore are almost without sound, as they gently fold over one another then ever so softly, spread their liquid across the sands. Then quickly roll back into the sea.
He and She decide to go down to the beach and look around. Breakfast won’t be ready until 7:30, so they have plenty of time.
Well it certainly seems as though our happy couple is off to a great start for their first full day in paradise. With six more Acts to follow, they are in for some grand surprises.
For instance in Act III, Scene IV, they partake of the Beach Party. In Act VII, Scene VIII, they experience the Saturday Night Gala. A spectacular event. And in Act IV, Scene II, their off to Dunns River for a fun climb up the falls.
There is always something new right around the corner in every new Act or new scene. I don’t want to reveal all the Acts of this titillating tale of tantalizing tropical treasures.
Come be part of this living play. Enjoy all the excitement and fun for yourselves. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you will create some of your most treasured memories. This is a play for all people. Come see what all the buzz is about.