)/ Januar y / Febr uar y 2010 JSIA`DS com
water next to me `this is awesome'`
1he exclamation points are everv
where 1his trip is exceeding mv
halfjoking goal to take the ultimate
fatherson trip 1hat`s whv here on
the coast outside Iort Antonio we`re
staving in a treehouse in a jungle of
f lat snails and green firef lies 1hat
it`s a twostorv Zcfc`g treehouse one
of onlv five carefullv tucked among
the trees at the ecominded Kanopi
House retreat· Jcing 1hat the man
ager Carla has two sons nicknamed
Beenie Man and Bountv who are
showing \ic more than J can about the
jovs of being a bov· Iure awesomeness
1reediving is onlv the beginning
0g 1V` W a BO cP S `
>UaU]WU ?Ubcd] <cigY
M> ; H ; ? I
8 B ? I I 5
Kanopi House’s
ve treehouses are
wrapped so fully
in the Jamaican
jungle that they’re
invisible fromthe
air, the road and the
water. Yet father
and son can look
out and see more
than ever.

into the air From teeth to toes
he`s radiating the giddiness of a kid
doing something his dad told him never
to do `Hold on tight \ic` J alwavs sav
But todav in Jamaica it`s `Jump \ic'`
He plunges ¡o feet straight down
from the almond tree His arms pin
wheel his legs ßail He makes no effort
to brace for impact except to tilt his
smiling face toward me Splash' ¹p
twice as high in the tree the two dread
locked Jamaican bovs cheer then thev
follow \ic with their own jumps into the
lagoon feinting ninja moves all the wav
from the overhanging branches down to
the cool water `Dad` \ic savs treading
*& Januar y / Febr uar y 2010 JSIA`DS com *'
bring sweet loving` Beenie Man and
Bountv with Carla are supposed to be
on the raft behind us But thev don`t sit
Cne minute thev`re Jamaican water
bugs ßitting in and out of the water
alongside us 1he next thev`re bolting
along the banks like gazelles sprint
ing across breadfruitsize stones faster
than J can run on pavement
Rebbo lets \ic plav gondolier but
all he reallv wants to do is whatever the
todav From the lagoon at the base of
Kanopi House we all hop into a boat
for a quick scenic ride along the shore
past Alligator Head Monkev Jsland
(`You have to be a monkev to climb
there` Beenie Man savs knowinglv) and
Dragon Bav Vhen we motor within ¡s
feet of a snorkeler Bountv waves and
vells `Hi Daddv'` Vithout raising his
head the snorkeler waves back with the
hand not holding the spear gun Bountv
savs he`s looking for our dinner fresh
parrothsh `Vhoa` \ic savs
He`s still thinking about that as we
hang out in the `Iiving Room` an over
size nowalls treehouse Jt`s a gathering
place for plantain breakfasts hshfritter
snacks and afternoon paper airplanes
1hat last one is not an ofhcial offering
it`s mv idea Jn all other wavs Beenie
Man and Bountv are putting \ic`s Bov
Scout handbook to shame But when
it comes to knowing how to make the
`Glider :ooo` J can hnallv show them
something All three bovs race around
the Iiving Room launching planes
Amazinglv none (planes or bovs) flv
over the balconv into the banvan trees
But a few ßights do veer From the steps
leading up to the Iiving Room we hear
`Vhat is this on the roof of the kitchen·'`
1ime to get in the car Ve`re about
to become Caribbean Huck Finns A
winding drive inland through the Blue
Mountain foothills leads to the Rio
Grande and Capt Rebbo`s bamboo
raft \ic and J take our seat for the
fourhour glide down the river follow
ing the old banana route from planta
tion to port as Rebbo sings `Vhen
\ic is a big man and he has a girlfriend
brothers are doing And at this moment
thev`re darting upstream to a boulder
for some minicliff diving J know he
won`t be able to swim against even the
gentle current but J grudginglv let \ic
jump in Carla savs `Iet him learn to be
tired with a bit of danger` Beenie Man
and Bountv see \ic swimming hard but
not getting closer 1hev tell him to get
on the bank then thev help him navi
gate the rocks and hnd a shallow spot in
the river where he can make his wav to
the boulder Much jumping ensues 1he
three bovs` smiles are all the same
Vhenweparents call thembacktothe
rafts as the light gets duskv Beenie Man
savs `\ic come with us` He looks at me
J nod and he walks awav Fifteenseconds
later J hear \ic tell them `J`m gonna go
with mv dad` Most awesome thing ever
Jn the IivingRoomthat night stuffed
with hsh and exhausted bv evervthing
\ic conks out on a white chaise J pick
him up for the walk backto our treehouse
holding on tight r A7DEF?>EKI;$ 9EC
M> ; H ; ? I
8 B ? I I 5
The no-walls,
social treehouse
known as the Living
Roomis ideal for
a break after an
all-boys day with
Bounty, Vic and
Beenie Man.


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