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Missed By A Lightning Bolt - The Day I Went In Search Of Usain Bolt's Family Home In Coxeath, Trelawny, Jamaica     

My brother and I were feeling nostalgic for that old time Jamaica we knew as youngsters, so we decided to go for a drive in the countryside, up in the hills South of Silver Sands. For such an expedition the best man to enlist would have to be Michael Stewart, one of the more popular drivers in the Mysilversands fleet, as he lives in the “bush” up beyond the Alps in South Trelawny.

Not wanting to wander aimlessly through the lush verdant countryside, we decided to fix a purpose to our country drive. Over many years, I often passed through Sherwood Content and through Coxeath on my way to and from Windsor House, where the single lane road ends and the Cockpit Country truly begins. At that time, I did not know that there was a youth living in Coxeath who would one day break the World record for 100 metres and 200 metres, winning Olympic Gold and becoming one of the most famous people on the planet. He could easily have been one of the boys who would run behind my vehicle as it drove by!

So, not having been there for more than ten years, that Sunday in September 2010, at about 5:00 PM we set out from Silver Sands Jamaica for that tiny sleepy district just South of Sherwood Content hoping to find the house where Usain Bolt spent his childhood days.

After five minutes, we passed through Duncans and headed up into the interior to Clarke’s Town. Soon we were ascending corkscrew bumpy roads, enjoying wonderful views of the valley and distant hills. Fifteen minutes later, we took the right turn at Kinloss and ten minutes later we entered Duanvale, only a five minute drive from Sherwood Content.

Sherwood Content, with a matchbox post office at the centre, had not changed much at all and as usual there was hardly anyone around. Just when I was thinking how deserted the roads were and that we had not seen another vehicle for miles, a big white BMW suddenly appeared out of nowhere from the opposite direction, and somehow that narrow road expanded to accommodate it and Michael’s bus as it went by.

A few hundred yards further along we decided to stop and ask a group of people walking along the road if they could tell us where we could find Usain Bolt’s home. A young man in football kit, said with a surprising tone in Jamaican patois, “Den yuh nuh see him jus pass yuh on de road?” (English translation being, “Didn’t you see him just drive past you?”)

What a coincidence! And for a brief moment I thought we should turn around to catch up with him, but immediately abandoned that idea as there was no way Michael’s bus would catch that BMW. The footballer told us that the house was a few hundred yards further along on the road to Windsor Caves, so we motored on. When we felt we were close to where the house would be, we stopped beside an old farmer with long dreadlocks to ask directions again. He repeated that we had just missed Usain Bolt and gave us further directions.

Sure enough, just a few hundred yards along we came upon the house which the dreadlocked farmer had told us would be easy to find as a high perimeter wall with lights on the columns and a huge iron electric gate was recently constructed. I took some photos so I could prove to my disbelieving friends that I did go to Coxeath to find Usain Bolt’s family home.

Usain Bolt family home Jamaica

As we drove back to the coast via the Martha Brae River with the setting sun decorating the sky in continuously changing warm tones, I thought I must be more of an admirer of Usain Bolt  than I had realized. I wondered how many people would make this forty-five minute journey from Silver Sands Jamaica to see a fairly ordinary house in a small country village. Would you?


Silver Sands Villas Jamaica News