Ernie Jackson

Ernie Jackson

Sunday, 20 August 2017 17:58

The Stanley Hotel

We recently celebrated Kristine’s birthday.  It was a milestone birthday and I hoped to do something unexpected and memorable.  After deciding where we would be going, I kept it a secret.  She tried to guess and asked questions.  “Were we leaving the state?  What clothes should I bring? What direction would we be traveling and how long would we be on the road?”  Two days prior to her special day, she asked, “Are we going to The Stanley Hotel?”  She was shocked when I told her, Yes!

Kristine is fond of pointing out that I had never taken her to Estes Park during the years we called Colorado home.  Now we can scratch that one off the list.  Estes Park is beautiful.  We loved the town, the people and how it sits adjacent to Rocky Mountain National Park.  We especially loved The Stanley Hotel… even after spending two nights there.

Most folks go to The Stanley because it’s famous and is supposedly haunted.  Stephen King did spend one night there in room 217 and had an “alcohol induced nightmare,” that was the genesis of his famous book The Shining, as they told us on the tours.  We took the day and the night tour knowing we’d get something different from each since the day tour is more historical and the night is spiritual.  Both tours were amazing and left us feeling a sense of awe and appreciation for not only The Stanley but the man who built it.

Freelan Oscar Stanley (1849-1940) had the Stanley Hotel built and completed in 1904. Before that his identical twin brother Francis Edgar Stanley and he developed the Stanley Steamer car, first built in 1897 and manufactured from 1901 to 1924.  Freelan was also a master craftsman with wood, even carving violins and teaching himself how to play.  Either he is a genius and or very old soul.

To see and tour The Stanley Hotel is an exercise in being not only impressed, but in admiration.  After being told he had a few short months to live and that he might as well go someplace beautiful to spend his dying days, coming to Estes Park and having a complete recovery from consumption (a wasting away of the body especially from tuberculosis of the lungs), he lovingly built the hotel after realizing his home was too small to accommodate their many visitors.  More than that, he was a gentleman that treated everyone fairly, especially the townspeople.  We were told that the environment he created on the grounds and within the hotel was so fun and loving that everyone loved being there, especially the children. 

It has been written in numerous books that we can manifest our own version of heaven on the other side, and it is also said that the veil is very thin between us here in the physical world and our friends and family in the non-physical world.  With that said, it is absolutely no wonder at all of the reports from guests at The Stanley of hearing small children playing on the 4th floor, because back in the early 1900’s, that is exactly what they did.  I believe that when they transitioned, the version of heaven they created was the 4th floor of The Stanley where they play on occasion still today.  All I felt at The Stanley was LOVE and a great appreciation for all that created this beautiful place, in a very beautiful part of the world.

During an evening tour our guide discussed how spirits have made contact with others at the hotel.  His name was Travis and as we began the tour standing in what originally was a room with six pool tables, he explained how spirit makes contact.  He shared that

  • Spirits can be quite adept at manipulating electricity to make their presence known and he shared examples of how they had done so at The Stanley
  • At times when guests have either looked in mirrors or took pictures of themselves in mirrors, sometimes spirits were visible with them.
  • Faraday cages / chambers are used to enhance ours and spirits ability to connect with each other.

As we exited the “pool hall”, Kristine and I pulled him aside and congratulated him for his accuracy and thoroughness in relating the above.  We explained how and why we could validate his comments relating to spirit as we discussed Helping Parents Heal and Quinton.  He lit up at the validation and with the knowledge that this is really how it works.  As we spoke he mentioned his wife transitioned to the other side and she had visited him as well. 

Such divine knowledge.  While it isn’t fair in any sense of the word of how we learned it, it is important to share with everyone so they may KNOW without having to go through what so many of us have gone through to LEARN.  There is no death; there is only a crossing over a threshold.

Blessings!

 

 

Sunday, 13 August 2017 01:15

Oh, That Smile Gives it Away!

The alarm went off way to early.  A 5:25 a.m. flight time is way too early as well.  Curbside check-in wasn’t even available prior to 5:00 in the morning and checking bags was pretty much ridiculous as what used to be done for us, we (the consumer), had to do for ourselves.  Meanwhile the clock was ticking.

We made it to the security check-in line (we were in Denver headed to Indianapolis), which was longer than expected given the hour.  I wasn’t freaking out or angry, as I fantasized about driving to Indy (or anywhere for that matter) to avoid the feel of being herded like cattle and completely at the mercy of the societal machine. 

There was an older couple in line ahead of us (feel the energy shift…).  Their energy was soft, sweet and gentle all at once.  This white haired couple looked at us once and then again.  And then the man spoke and asked if we were on vacation.  After telling them our plans and where we were going, Kristine and I asked the same of them.  The man that appeared to be either in his late 60’s or early 70’s shared that his father had passed (transitioned) and he and his wife were traveling to San Francisco to spread both his parents ashes in the bay. 

This couple was clearly at peace and had a calmness about them.  After sharing our condolences, both they and us had to move forward because the line was moving surprisingly quickly.  As we walked I said, “Please excuse me, but I just have to ask. Have you received any signs from your Dad?”  I went on to quickly introduce them to Quinton.  As I spoke about Q-man and signs in general, his wife began to beam.  Her smile was contagious and her eyes twinkled.  I turned from the man and to her saying, “I see that smile.  What signs have you received?”  She said something to the effect, “He is in my mind and I find myself constantly thinking about him.”

We continued talking as we tried to keep up with the security line as the speed of the line actually increased.  I shared Quinton holding my hand 30 hours after he died (transitioned), seeing him in his room (I was awake), hearing him call my name (I was awake) and the dream visitation that was so vivid and clear.  They were looking at Kristine and me as they took it all in.  By then, we were almost at the point where a TSA agent would be checking our ID.

We closed by not only encouraging them to take note of what they experience while spreading his parents and her in-laws ashes.  Take note of anything different, unusual, or may seem like a coincidence.  We further gave them our Quinton’s Messages / Quinton’s Legacy cards and further encouraged them to write us if they might be inclined to share what it is they experience while on the water. 

We closed by telling them it was a mission of ours to share this divine and special knowledge that there is not only no death, but life is eternal.  We expressed our desire that mainstream media would report and share this larger view of reality and how doing so would surely make the world a better place, but in the meantime, we are here to share.  We asked permission to share anything they might share with us.

They thanked us with their eyes and in word, as we went right and they went left.  As we fiddled to get our ID’s out of purse / wallet and prepared show them to the TSA agent, they looked over and thanked us yet again.  They were off for a somber occasion, but I sensed a joy in them.

We are part of a group of grieving parents, grieving the transition of our children, but what applies to us also applies to everyone grieving the transition of a loved one.  There is no death and life is eternal; the same is true when a parent, sibling, Aunt, Uncle, Cousin or friends leaves this physical reality. There is no death and we all continue after crossing the threshold.

Don’t be afraid to ask, “Have you received any signs?”  The subsequent conversation may make your day.

Blessings!

Quinton’s Mom and Dad

Sunday, 13 August 2017 01:06

Making a Difference

While I was in my twenties, I know I said on at least one occasion, “to make a difference in one person’s life.”  Well, maybe it was more like at least a dozen times.  Even back then I wanted to help in some way.  To make a difference in one person’s life would be an honor, a blessing and enough.  Then I met my wife and we had two beautiful children.  As time passed, together we made a difference in more and more lives as did our children.  What a gift to do so! 

And then tragedy struck, Quinton’s visits immediately demonstrated that there is no death and our lives took a different direction.  So did being of service and making a difference.  Whether we like it or not, we were chosen to be messengers of sort, to help heal and to make a difference at a whole new level. Doing so doesn’t happen in an empty room usually; it happens out in the world more often than not.

As part of my own healing, angels in my life directed me to, no that isn’t right – they insisted I start coaching high school football at my alma mater, Evergreen High School.  Well, I have written about this and discussed it in detail (read Quinton’s Messages), so I am not going to do so again.  But I will share that a young man gave me a letter.  I am going to tell you that I am reminded again – the why I walk this path.

He writes:

Coach Jackson,

I felt a need to say thank you.  You’ve been one of the greatest role models and idols I’ve ever had.  You’ve been through some really rough times and yet you keep a positive attitude.

My freshman year I was planning on quitting when you told me your story.  I doubt you know how much that had an impact on me.  Your story showed me that you just have to put your head down and push through.  I was the slowest, weakest and was my own worst critic.  You showed me that I have everything I need already and I have to do is work.  I remember not being able to throw the ball more than ten yards and I couldn’t pitch the ball whatsoever, but you saw something in me that I didn’t see within myself.

Sophomore year came with another challenge, a new freshman quarterback who could throw better and was faster.  I was nervous that he was gonna start over me until I remembered something that you had told me, “Get out of your head.”  I buckled down, lifted, conditioned and trained harder than I ever have.  It came down to it and I won the job.  I asked the coach why and he said it was because the team wanted to follow me.  At the time I didn’t think much of it until last week.  You pulled me aside and told me I was a great leader.  Then it clicked.

I don’t really like to talk about what motivates me, but over the summer I read your book.  That book is the reason I’ve been lifting so hard, working so much, and been trying so hard.  So, what I’m saying is, Thank You for being such an inspiration to me and keeping me playing football.

With Love,

I am moved to say the least.  What a validation that we collectively can make a difference.  Do you hear me?  Do you feel me?  Even though we have been through tough times (no need to compare and contrast our tough times), we can still make a difference.  I ask again, Is there no greater honor; Is there no greater blessing?

Go forth my brothers, sisters and friends!  Continue to heal yourselves by healing the world.

Blessings!

Ernie and Kristine

Sunday, 02 July 2017 18:38

Autumn Voldrich and Her Gift to Us

When Quinton Stone Jackson, our son, was here in the physical realm with us, he had a friend named Autumn Voldrich, daughter of Chris Voldrich. For those of you how have read Quinton’s Messages, you have already met Chris Voldrich and her daughter Layla.  Chris has three children, each of them truly amazing in their own way.

Autumn and Quinton always played together when our daughter Cheyanne and Layla played soccer, going back to when they were two years old. The picture below is of them when they were in first grade. 

The years passed quickly and then Quinton transitioned. Four years after Q went home and began rocking our world with his visits, Autumn had a ruptured aneurism in the left hemisphere of her brain (google her).  The odds were against her and most with her type of aneurism didn’t survive, but her doctor was adamant and would say, “You are going to be my miracle.” She is indeed a miracle. 

Four years have passed and her recovery is nothing short of astonishing. She now has her driver’s license, is starting to play music and very recently has started writing.  Her perspective is a gift; this soft spoken young lady who has been forced to come to terms with her disabilities.  The anger, rage, frustration, the wondering of “why me” is replaced with her writing this, titled Reality:

Reality – Life goes by fast. It won’t stop and wait for you.  We think we’re invincible, that everything is on our side.  Then just in the nick of time it changes, and the future with it. 

Reality changed for me. I changed as a person.  My entire life changed.  I kept on trying to search for the things I lost.  Internal struggle of everyday things that once were so easy.  I thought everything would be mended, hoping a smile would get me through a day.  Believing that time would give me back what I lost. 

I’ve come to terms with my dreams that cannot be. Knowing that some dreams will not come true.  Time has taught me to let go.  To have faith that new opportunities will come my way, I plan for new dreams and a new future.

My fate has lead me where new relationships were made, from doctors to friends to teachers to everything in between. I never dreamed of counting on others.  I had so many questions for God.  I was so mad and upset at the world!  “Why would you do this to me?”  “Did I do something wrong?”

No matter how hard I try I will never see that old me, but I’m okay with that now. Sometimes I wonder what it would look back the old me as where I am now.  I look around and know that it could be much worse.  I tried to heal wounds, but I learned to deal with them instead.  I don’t like that fate changed my life for me, but I have learned to love myself again.  I like my new normal, my new reality.  I am so thankful for this path it lead me down.  I am so grateful that I’m allowed to write this.  That I can smell the freshness of the rain hear the sound of music.  Now I can venture into a new life, go new places, and meet new people.  I can do all of this, because I know life is way too short.  Sometimes I wonder if change is meant to shape our lives.

From the pen of a seventeen year old, miraculous survivor of a ruptured aneurism; from the pen of a young lady that had to learn to walk again, speak again and come to terms with her new reality. Such courage she lives her life with!

And this perspective applies to us as well, whether we like it or not as we live in our new reality where our beautiful children are not walking hand in hand with us, even though they send us the stunning signs of their continued existence.

Walk with courage my friends. Know that we are eternal and we remain behind for a season because we have much to do.

Blessings!

Ernie and Kristine

 

Helping Parents Heal 1st Annual Conference

Know There is More

Our friends and loved ones who came to us as we emerged from lives shattered by an unimaginable tragedy, know our passion.  When our son, Quinton Stone Jackson, transitioned to another realm, we were at our lowest.  Shocked, beaten and bowed.  It is here where the healing began, in those lowest moments.  We cried, but in the silence, we realized something quite magical was unfolding.  This is where our passion was born.  Quinton’s visits that began so soon after he left, changed everything.  Quinton’s spirit showed us he was not gone, he was simply in another realm.

This knowledge was all we could talk about and then it morphed into writing and publishing two books.  We had an overriding and urgent desire to share, to shout it from the mountain tops, a gift of knowing There is More; a gift born on the wings of the ultimate tragedy.  It is our belief and growing passion that this knowledge has become ever more important in a world we find increasingly divided.  The knowledge awakened within us, parents grieving the transition of their son and his visits.

We have continued to share as the opportunities presented themselves over the years, resulting with us merging our passion with a group founded by Elizabeth Boisson and Mark Ireland, called Helping Parents Heal - www.helpingparentsheal.org.  Here is the mission of this important organization:

Helping Parents Heal is a non-profit organization dedicated to assisting bereaved parents, giving them support and resources to aid in the healing process.  We go a step beyond other groups by allowing the open discussion of spiritual experiences and evidence for the afterlife in a non-dogmatic way.  Affiliate groups welcome everyone regardless of religious (or non-religious) background.

It is here that Kristine and I share our journey with grief, awakening and forgiveness.  I (with Kristine’s loving support) am honored and blessed to not only be part of this organization, but on the Board of Directors.  Kristine and I are here to help in any way we can.

The 1st annual Helping Parents Heal Conference is scheduled for April 13 – 15, 2018 at the Embassy Suites Phoenix / Scottsdale location per the link below.  This conference is a must attend event whether you are bereaved parents and if you want a glimpse of a larger view of our reality.  The conference will be uplifting and inspiring and will embody the Helping Parents Heal mission statement. http://conta.cc/2m8RvG8

Along with the fellowship of being in one place at one time, in support of one another, we will have numerous speakers and presenters including, George Anderson, Suzanne Giesemann, Susanne Wilson, Gary Schwartz, Bill Guggenheim, Dr. Mark Pitstick, Mark Ireland, Roberta Grimes, Elizabeth Boisson, Mark Ireland, and even me.  Within the link above you will find the bio’s of everyone and then some.

Come join us! Have your eyes opened wide and hearts filled with Love.  Register now to take advantage of the early bird discount.  If you are traveling from out of state, plan your trips and book your flights now.  We look forward to spending time with all of you.

Blessings!

Ernie and Kristine

 

Saturday, 29 April 2017 15:05

A Generous Heart and a Kind Word

A Generous Heart

The impact of a kind word and a generous heart can be quite incredible at times. The interesting thing is, we don’t know when either will be impactful.  Sometimes our overtures may be rejected or spurned with hostility resulting unfortunately with us sometimes  holding back.  What a tragedy that is.  Other times, it is simply amazing.

During our 25th anniversary cruise, our hospitality team member who kept our room tidy gave Kristine a $50 gift card to use toward a spa treatment.  Kristine utilized it toward a manicure and pedicure, and in doing so, she met Monique the nail tech from Jamaica.  We had ported at Ocho Rios earlier in the week, which is where Monique is from.  They had a lot to talk about since we had been literally in her neighborhood.

Both Kristine and I were smitten with the crew, typically asking questions about their families, home, contracts and time off when the opportunity presented itself. During the course of their conversation, Monique shared a touching story about going to the store in Jamaica prior to beginning her new tour (contract) on the Carnival Vista.

Monique had gone to the store to buy some groceries; at the checkout she found herself behind a mother with three small children. The mother had a cart full of groceries and her children desperately wanted some sweet treats.  Monique saw the money the woman had in her hands and knew what was about to unfold.  They didn’t have enough money to pay for everything they had, which resulted with them sorting through the items in the cart to decide what to put back and what to pay for.  For those of us who have either been in this situation or have witnessed something similar – it is gut wrenching.  Monique watched this unfold, focusing on the children and knowing they would be leaving empty handed.  She then did something incredible.

Monique, only having limited funds herself, paid the shortfall herself. She rationalized that, her new tour was about to begin so she would be fine.  She further rationalized and understood, it would come back to her eventually in some spectacular way or another.  And it was worth it to see the family’s despair transform to joy. 

A Kind Word

The cruise ended. I was melancholy the day before.  We had so much fun, met so many wonderful people that it truly didn’t feel natural to be leaving.  We disembarked and took a taxi to a hotel that Kristine had booked.  We were tired.  While sitting in the lobby quietly, waiting for our room to be ready and just resting, we noticed another couple.  Come to find out, they had similarly just finished a cruise as well and were not have a very good morning at all.

The couple seemed familiar in a way that you may not believe or understand. The woman was trying to be upbeat and take their morning difficulties in stride (after all they did just finish a wonderful cruise) while the man was hell bent on being pissed off and upset.  He was grumbling and grunting his displease with not only their morning but I think the world in general. He was powerful in his displeasure.  They ended up sitting down with us.

I took a chance, something I sometimes do and greeted both of them with a hearty Good Morning, a smile and intentionally radiated a loving and calming energy. The woman responded in kind, I think appreciative of a kind word and a bit of good cheer.  We started talking about the cruises we were on and soon learned the source of their morning difficulties.  Almost immediately, I noticed something quite wondrous; the man’s demeanor completely change, like stopping and turning on a dime.  He turned to face Kristine and me, and joined the conversation.  It was a beautiful thing to witness. We talked for a while and eventually parted ways.  However, since we both had arrived prior to check-in and had to wait a while, we continued to notice them.  And his bad mood never did return.

Never underestimate the power of a kind word. Don’t stop being kind due to occasionally meeting a curmudgeon who might reject your kindness, because there is always somebody in the wings who will be lifted by your kindness.  Who knows – you may even make their day, or they may make yours!

Blessings!

Saturday, 29 April 2017 14:56

JUDGEMENT

My journey in grief began with realizing that our son, Quinton Stone Jackson, really was not dead – he had only transitioned, effectively crossing a threshold. He visits and signs were so over the top, vivid and spectacular that I immediately realized there is no death.  This realization, this opening of my mind to a larger view of reality in a sense, saved my life.

My next thought after this realization was, “Why didn’t I know?” And so my journey continued. I read voraciously; reading about grief, reincarnation, life between lives, energy, The Law of Attraction, signs, etc.  I learned that coincidences really are god-incidences and to pay attention to them.  I learned that all of us are spiritual beings having a human experience and I learned that we have the power to shape our reality.  Like I said, I read voraciously and much of this genre was considered New Thought.

A dear friend of mine, Les Pendleton, and old soul, with tears in his eyes told me to read the Gospels and to start with the book of John. I had tried reading the Old Testament twice earlier in life, but had never ventured into the New Testament.  His emotional plea moved and motivated me, so I went out and purchased a NLT Study Bible. 

The red print moved me and continues to move me. I highlighted and even created a list of the passages that spoke to me; you know – the red print.  All of it is powerful, sometimes I see the power immediately and some upon reading a passage again, but there are a couple that stuck with me:  I say, you are gods!” – John 10:34 and “…anyone who believes in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works,…”- John 14:12. These passages, while should be taken into context of their entire passages, actually sound strikingly similar to what is considered today as New Thought.  These passages and the principles of The Secret and The Law of Attraction result in me thinking of the influence of my own thoughts.

The words and teaching of Jesus, identifiable by being in red are a roadmap of how all should be living, whether we are religious or not, and regardless what religion we are. They speak of Love, Faith, Forgiveness and not judging others.  To me, this is pretty simple and straight forward; these teachings in the gospels are crystal clear.  For example, Luke 6:37 – “Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn others, or it will all come back against you.  Forgive others and you will be forgiven.”  Straight forward, right?  There is no context to be concerned about here, is there?

This brings me to my point. As I look at the turmoil in the world, I am left to wonder how much of it we have created and how much I have created with our / my judgement and or condemnation. New Thought and the teachings of Jesus illustrate to us, that each and every one of us have a power; that our thoughts and words have power to influence our reality.  So when we stand in judgement and or condemn others in some way, how much does that focused thought or word impact those we are talking about, and how much of it comes back to impact us?  Something to ponder and in doing so, Luke 6:37 takes on a far greater significance. 

Personally, I believe that same passage applies to each of us in that, we should not judge or condemn ourselves. Again, our thoughts and words have power that many of us do not realize.  My father at times stood in judgement of me and condemned me.  My reaction was to ‘fix him’ – I took it upon myself to judge myself even more harshly than he ever could, to lessen the impact of his words.  I fixed him alright; Thank God I have made good progress in undoing that one.

In closing, understand your strength. Understand the power of your thoughts and words.  Be kind to yourself and others.  You may be very pleasantly surprised with the results. 

Blessings,

Quinton's Dad, still on a journey…

Sunday, 16 April 2017 14:40

The Divine Spark

So many of us know, because of our children on the other side, that life is eternal; so many of us have learned, through our healing and reading since our children have returned to our eternal home, that all of us are a Divine Spark. This Divine Spark of life, links us all, but in today’s hectic world, filled with trauma and drama, it is challenging at best to sense it. 

Kristine and I were blessed to go on a cruise to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary.  We chose Carnival and sailed out on their newest ship called the Vista for a Western Caribbean cruise that included stops in Ocho Rios Jamaica, the Cayman Island and Cozumel.  This floating city had approximately 3,900 travelers and 1,500 staff.  We really had no idea what to expect, but even with that, what actually happened filled us with wonder and reverence.

It is said, over and over again, that we really should pay attention to the coincidences and synchronicities. I also think we should honor those instances in some way; maybe acknowledge them or even engage immediately. On this cruise, without electronic devices, social media and tv’s blaring bad news – maybe it was easier to do so.  With that said…

We noticed a family of four every day. Mom, Dad, Daughter and Son; we saw them either sitting and eating, or walking somewhere, or at a ship function.  The day before the last day, Kristine and I sat down for a quick bite of breakfast, and found ourselves sitting next to them.  We honored this synchronicity by speaking with them, telling them that we noticed them daily.  While we didn’t and still don’t understand the why, we felt like we needed to tell them they are a beautiful and special family, and we did so, much to their appreciation.  And we didn’t see them again. 

Another time, while at the spa reception we met a man. We spoke and he learned that we are from Arizona and he is from South Carolina.  Because we are from Arizona, he shared one of his clients is from Scottsdale, went on to provide details of his business and even share some of his challenges.  With my business experience I was able to concisely provide advice; he was amazed, appreciative and in awe that I got the crux of his challenge so directly, and he indicated that we will be in contact for further discussion.

These two interactions with fellow Divine Sparks are shared as an illustration of how we were tapped on the shoulder and guided to be of service; we all have these opportunities! But the best was happening all around us for the entire trip.

The most beautiful thing for Kristine and I was the crew, a crew of Divine Sparks from all over the world representing sixty-seven different countries. Too many, they were just the crew, there to take care of the passengers but very quickly we perceived them for their Divinity.  We noticed their name tags not only had their names, but country of origin as well.  As we engaged with them as the opportunities presented themselves, we shared Quinton with a few of them while learning of their lives and home land.

During one of those conversations, somewhat overcome by how extraordinary they are, we excitedly told two of them that we wanted to get to know not only them better, but the entire crew better.  These two, one of them already introduced to Quinton, just shook their heads in awe and appreciation of us!  Our reaction was the proverbial “Huh”? and “What”?  They shared that too many of the passengers just look at them as the hired help, nothing more.  We were incredulous. 

As the cruise continued, we met some of the crew that were doctors and lawyers; we learned about their “contracts” ranging in length from six months to ten months, their time off at ports and between contracts. Some were there in their first year while others were in their tenth year.  They were from India, Indonesia, Russia, Serbia, Bosnia, South Africa, Jamaica, Montenegro, England, Germany, Arizona, Mexico, Serbia and the list goes on.  All of them Divine Sparks of light working in unison as a cohesive unit; whether we engaged with them first or they with us first, every time they lit up, as did we.

As we engaged with them and heard of their homes, we again and again were told how special we were because we wanted to know about them. We were connecting on a soul level where collectively our divinity is more easily recognizable. 

They show us what we are capable of. They show us that indeed, all of us can cast our differences aside and work together; maybe they actually show us, that we have no differences at all because all of us are Divine Sparks from One Source.

Blessed and Blessings

Ernie and Kristine

Our names are Ernie and Kristine Jackson, and we were in room 9272. To celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary, Kristine persuaded me to take a cruise.  So, after 25 years of marriage – this was our first cruise and what an experience!

Being our first cruise and on your new ship, everything was a new experience. There is so much to do within this city on the water, that we didn’t have a chance to do or see everything in six days, but that is okay because we were able to experience your crew! 

We saw Marco (Philippians) and every day as he was responsible to straighten out our room, clean and provide fresh towels as needed. What a joy!  Always with a smile when he spoke with us, and always engaging with us as he would ask our plans while providing advice when the opportunity presented itself.  But this is the tip of the iceberg!

It did not take long for us to realize that your crew was from nearly every corner of the world, sixty-seven countries to be exact! And all of them, I mean all of them ready with a smile and engaging.  We met Rad Ivanovic (Montenegro), Chloe (South Africa) and Monique (Jamaica) at Salon Services; all of them amazing, including the other staff whose names we don’t remember.  As we engaged with Rad and Chloe, telling them how amazing they were – they told us how special we were because we really wanted to know more about them.  This exchange brought tears to our eyes.  I wish I had time to speak with each and every one of your crew, get to know them and their home country.

After that exchange, we tried to engage with every crew member we could, and still only touched the tip of the iceberg. Again, every exchange was wonderful.  From Kristine (South Africa), Erie (food services), Monika (food services) and to Jan Dlouhy (guest services).  Each was a joy and each was attentive.  And then there are the ones we don’t remember their names.  A young man who was picking up glasses in the Promenade who told us of his home in India – Bali.  A woman security guard we spoke with – when we thanked her for being so incredible, she thanked us for our kindness and caring.  One of the more impactful exchanges came after we enjoyed the sky ride.  We were walking around the track as a couple of your crew were wiping down the air vents.  This is tough work that doesn’t allow them much of an opportunity to engage with any of the guests. When we approached them and engaged with them, they just lit up with smiles and well wishes.

This trip so touched our souls, because of your crew! Thank you so much for employing people from all over the world, allowing them to work together and engage with us.  You demonstrate to us that we are all beautiful and that we can get along just fine.

Blessings,

Ernie and Kristine

Sunday, 16 April 2017 13:51

Jamaica – Rupert Tulloch

Hey mon!! Our first cruise, with Carnival on their newest ship, the Vista.  We hadn’t booked any excursions through Carnival; we didn’t want to be too busy, wanting to take it as it came to us.  This turned out to be a good decision.

When we ported in Jamaica, we knew we wanted to get off and see at least some of the island. The island looked so beautiful with hillsides full of trees.  We have been around enough to know how it is in any tourist town if you venture out of the secure area.  With that said, we disembarked and walked toward the customs building.  When we emerged on the other side, there were many stands selling souvenirs, several large vans or buses for tourists who had booked excursions and what seem like dozens of tourists along with several security personnel.  It was quite hectic.

We walked through the area and headed toward a small beach. We just wanted to spend an hour or two checking things out, and then get back on the boat. The beach had a gate and an attendant who explained we had to pay for admittance.  We hadn’t brought swim suits with us, so we just turned around and found a spot along a stone wall to sit and take it all in.  Soon afterward, an older, distinguished gentleman approached us.  His name is Rupert Tulloch and he said, “I saw you come to the beach and turn around; may I intervene?”  His manner, how he held himself and how he spoke gave us the distinct feeling of being safe and cared for.  He asked if we would like to see the country side.  Kristine and I looked at each other and accepted, and are very grateful that we did.  Rupert had several vehicles at his disposal and several drivers; you see this was his own tourist business. 

We have to point out; Rupert and the driver were very cognizant of the street venders vying for our attention. Rupert expertly escorted us to one of his vehicles and his driver, a distant cousin of his whom felt like one of my own cousins, did the same. They both sheltered us and made us feel extremely safe at all times. As he drove us out of town, almost immediately we found ourselves in the Fern Gully Jungle.  The temperature in the sun was warm, but suddenly the air felt cool.  He explained that the road used to be a river, but earthquake decades ago (1907) shifted the river, and the river bed was reclaimed and paved to create a road.  Up and up we went, encased in a beautiful green and lush jungle with so many different ferns, moss and bamboo, it was absolutely spectacular. 

At the top we met a man known as the “Spice Doctor.” He showed us several plants, fruits and nuts. Spice Doctor let us hold and touch their leaves to feel their texture and smell their fragrances.  The information he shared boggled our minds; no need for a pharmacy in the jungle as every plant has either a medicinal, spice and or cosmetic purpose.  On the way down the hill, we stopped by a fine establishment and sampled some natural spirits, very natural 110% proof made from pure sugar cane.  The driver and the lady behind the bar cracked me up as I lifted a small glass with a small amount of liquid to my lips by saying in unison, “no, no, no, no, no, no! – You have to mix it with something!”  I had to taste the liquid in its raw form and it was, shall we say – eye opening, in a good way!  Being a whiskey man, I handled it well, but did mix it with some Pepsi and was feeling just fine and very relaxed for several hours.

We were then taken down out of the jungle as the tour continued and we were given a history lesson on the region.  We ended up at Oceans On The Ridge where we stopped for some famous Jamaican jerked chicken, and beef patties.  Before heading back to port we made one more stop to see the pristine natural mineral waters that flowed through the canals.  We were asked to put our feet and hands in and allow them to heal us, as these springs are known to do so.  

Kristine and I had the most enjoyable/memorable time. We could have gone further and toured more of the island, but will save that for the next time, because we definitely do want to return to this beautiful island.  We recommend it to everyone and we do recommend utilizing Rupert Tulloch.  His number is (876) 331-0886 and his address is Ocho Rios, St. Ann, Jamaica, W.I.

Blessings!

Ernie and Kristine Jackson