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Who Am I

I am Jadon Davis, the only Barbadian native in the Macaulay Honors College. Thanks to them, I am able to study Electrical Engineering at the City University of New York. Hopefully, one day I’ll even have my own firm in Barbados, specializing in Building Services. I have one younger brother, “the midget,” who lives with my mother and step-dad in Barbados. I love public speaking, and I am a “darn good” Footballer. (I mean real football, which Americans mistakenly call soccer.)

As far as Seminar 2 goes, I loved the walking tour, it was my favorite part of the entire class. I definitely plan to explore other areas of New York, examining some of its rich heritage during the vacation. My favourite reading this semester was by Alfred Kazan, “A Walker In The City.” I can identify with his respect and dread of school, so his writing appealed to me. And as one final thing about myself, I am a member of the best group in the class, Dominicans!

By Way of Barbados

Barbados, my homeland, is a tiny jewel in the midst of the caribbean. Next time you look at the caribbean region on a world map, look for the island farthest out in the Atlantic ocean. You’ll see a tiny speck, with a crescent of other islands spaced behind it, known as the Lesser Antilles. That speck is the place I call home. Far out into the Atlantic Ocean, far from the other Islands, we still do pretty well for ourselves. Barbados is one of the three wealthiest Caribbean nations, and the most densely populated. The sea around the island sparkles and shimmers like an opal, or maybe a diamond, bright and crystal clear. Because of our geographic position, on two sides of the island the sea is rough and violent, ideal for surfing. On the other two coasts (south and west) the calm gentle waters of the Caribbean sea lap the sand. My family has been in Barbados since the 1700's, and I too was born and raised there, actually, I just came to the US last year in July. To be perfectly honest though, I do have some ties to the US.

My mother, Shirley Marshall, was born in 1963, in the small fishing village of Oistins, Barbados. For the first two years of her life, she lived with her parents. Eventually, her parents moved to the U.S., but mom stayed on w ith her grandparents in Barbados, on their farm. They were too poor to even afford a donkey for transportation, and they walked anywhere they had to go. Still, she enjoyed her life in Barbados, helping out on the farm, playing cricket with numerous cousins, and, when tired, running to the nearest beach to cool off. I believe I’ve inherited my mother’s ability to be content, even happy, with little materially. Growing up in Barbados, my brother and I never had many toys, or games - but we never cared. We could take a rock and some newspaper and turn it into a game of football, a broomstick and buckets became a limbo game - sel-sufficient and innovative, that’s us.

Eventually, her parents situated themselves in Brooklyn, and my mother left Barbados to live with them. Noone liked New York however, the pace was too fast compared to their relaxed island living. (I was able to sympathize after 1 week in the Bronx.) So, they moved to St. Louis, becoming the first Caribbean family in their area. In foreign surroundings, my mother became extremely outgoing, she had to be in order to make friends. She is also extremely family-oriented, for a large portion of her life her family members were the only people she knew. Like her, I am also very close to my family, both nuclear and extended. And, I am extremely outgoing, I love to meet new people. My mother has also entrusted me with a strong sense of duty, and discipline, taught to her from the tip of a cane by a strict west-indian father. At 18, my mother moved out. She has continued to love moving even till today. When she was younger she spent time in many states, more recently, we have lived in 3 of Barbados’ 11 parishes.

I believe that my qualities, personality, work ethic, can all be traced to my mom, and I owe her my thanks.

New York and I

I arrived in New York on August 1st, 2008 at the JFK airport. My first impression was wonder, compared to my tiny 166 square mile island, New York is enormous, vast beyond belief. I’m still getting used to its size, and diversity. The area where I live, Co-op City, didn’t help my acclimatization much. It is a city of towering behemoths, giants among buildings. For me, to come from a place where the tallest building is 8 stories, to a neighbourhood where the average is 25, well, you get the picture. I live with my aunt on the 7th floor in one of the buildings, I think living with her is one of my favourite things about the US, (I eat way better than I did at home because she loves to cook!) The one other thing I love about NYC, is the Barnes and Noble in co-op city. For an avid bookworm such as myself, a massive bookstore where reading of the merchandise beforehand is actually encouraged engenders a feeling akin to finding the Holy Grail.

I don’t know how long I’ll stay in New York after I graduate, it’s likely that I will return immediately, back home, back to paradise. But I’m willing to give the city a chance, we’ll see how it goes. Currently, the only challenge I have is in finding my way around, but as I become ever more adept, expanding my boundaries, who knows, maybe soon, I won’t want to leave.