Written By:

Deanne Allgrove

Current Rock of Residence:

Jamaica

Island Girl Since:

Birth

Originally Hails From:

Jamrock aka Jamaica

Deanne is a consummate beach bum but her other happy place is her family’s hostel in the Blue Mountains, Whitfield Hall, from where people hike up the highest mountain in Jamaica, Blue Mountain Peak. There is no internet or electricity there and it’s the perfect place to curl up by the fire with a glass of wine or coffee (since it is a working Blue Mountain Coffee farm) and either write her own stories or read other people’s. The bonus is meeting people from all over the world who come to visit, so sometimes the stories are told the old fashioned way.

Storytelling is her life as a writer for a local travel magazine, newspaper, and website as well as crafting everything from ad campaign slogans to public awareness campaigns, scripts for corporate anniversaries, and videos for villas. In her spare time, if she isn’t at a beach somewhere as she travels across the island writing, she’s… well, writing… scripts for TV pilots, an animated series, and short films with her passion project partner. That, or long-winded Facebook posts about waiting at the tax office, the universal angst of a bad driver’s license photo, her interaction with a herd of goats on a highway, and other moments from her daily life on an island.

She speaks English and Spanish and has lived, studied, and worked in different cities in Colombia, Venezuela, Spain, Canada, the USA, and England, and she has travelled to numerous other places but invariably has always returned home to Jamaica after each adventure.

It is here she ran barefoot as a child, climbed mountains, and swam in rivers and the sea. This is where she played hopscotch in prep school, sang in choirs, and performed on stage in children’s theatre for years. This is where she would act in a local soap opera and held her first paid writing job at age seventeen. This is where she would “drink a rum,” go to sea with friends, and eat pan chicken from a roadside street-food vendor at 3am in the streets of Kingston after a party. It is where they play the National Anthem at the movies, and, even though she helped film the thing, she still gets choked up at the end when everyone turns and salutes the flag.

Although she misses seeing plays on Broadway, like when she lived in New York, or going ice skating down the canal in Ottawa or skiing in Whistler, like when she lived in Canada, or happily dancing the night away, like when she lived in Madrid, it is Jamaica that holds her soul. Driving the paved or dirt roads across this island in her twenty year old Suzuki Samurai jeep, singing at the top of her lungs, and discovering all the old and new things to enjoy across Jamaica is the reason for the smile on her face. And, of course, telling those stories.

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