I love Jamaican Patois, it’s expressive, colourful and to a foreigner often confusing. When I first moved to Kingston, if anyone spoke to me in Patois, they’d get a blank stare or I’d respond (usually in a loud voice – because that makes people understand you better) asking them to repeat.
Now almost two years later, I like to think I’ve got a good understanding going on. I find myself using it more in conversation. And sometimes only a succinct bit of Patois can get across the point you really want to make. Though at times it still leaves me scratching my head, trying to understand the actual meaning of what someone is trying to say.
The cat’s out of the bag, better to be safe than sorry, striking while the iron is hot – we use lots of proverbs in English. Little expressions of wisdom, offering life advice that can teach you more about a country’s culture than any textbook. Here’s a hilarious collection about how to live your life – the Jamaican way.