I was frankly disgusted by the review of Jamaica in the Oct. 4 Travel section, and disappointed in The Post for including it among a group of articles profiling several Caribbean islands. Some readers may believe that the story is a truly representative picture of Jamaica, when in reality it compares to the Russian version of relaying the truth about the United States by filming life on 42nd Street in New York.

I lived and worked in Jamaica for five years, and the baubles, sex and drugs hawked in Negril are not a reflection of Jamaican culture, but rather represent enterprising pandering to the seediest expectations of some soul-sapped tourists.

For persons seeking to appreciate more edifying characteristics of the island, Jamaica offers the stunning beauty of inland waterfalls; a colorful folklore, which has developed a savory originality that happily complements (rather than trying to "duplicate") its deep West African roots; its own gritty music in reggae; a seemingly unlimited array of delightful fresh fruits, spicy foods, delectable drinks and enticing sweets; and a general population much richer in spirit than the smutty stoned boobies so prolific on the fringes of this magnificent gem of an island.

I'm proud to think of Jamaica as a warm and welcoming second home.

Joan Koule


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