I wanted to blog about this a long time ago but I’ve been waiting to receive a copy of the actual TVJ clip of my spot on Smile Jamaica. But alas….this is Jamaica so I could be waiting until I’m 90 to get that.
Anyway, on January 31, 2017 I got to appear on the Smile Jamaica morning show at the Television Jamaica studios in Kingston. In December of 2016 I had just barely launched the website for my new business in Jamaica called Jamrock In A Box and somehow the producers caught wind of it on Facebook and sent me an email requesting an interview. I kind of almost shat myself with nervousness at the thought of being on TV, much less Jamaican TV as a Canadian introducing a new product in the Jamaican tourism market. What questions would they ask me? How would I answer them? Would I look like a weirdo on TV? And WHY do I have to go to Kingston LOL!
But of course I decided it would be a great experience and so I said YES! So off to Kingston I went a day in advance and spent the night at the Four Seasons Hotel in New Kingston, hoping for a good nights sleep before the show.
The next morning I wouldn’t exactly say I was spry waking up to be on TV at such an early hour but once I was at the studio and in the waiting room with others appearing on the show I attempted to get my game face on. Either TVJ didn’t like my game face or they thought it was too pale because they whisked me away into the makeup room to doll me up. The makeup girl laughed at me for taking pictures but they don’t know about my blogging tendencies. I was going to try and take pics of everything.
After makeup was finished I went back to the wait room where guests sit and wait for their spot on the show. While I was sitting there I realized the two men on the TV screen right at that moment were the two men I was just in the waiting room with. They went onto the show while I was in the makeup room.
Soon after I took that photo a lady came to get me and took me to another dark little room to sit. It was right outside the actual studio where there was one other woman waiting to go on. Both of us simultaneously spit the gum out of our mouths into tissues and put it into our purses, laughing at each other. She expressed how nervous she was and all I could do was agree with her. I remember telling her I had rum in my gift boxes and suggesting that we both take a shot. Then they came for me. Ugh.
I really, REALLY wanted to take pictures of everything including the inside of the studio but there were signs hanging everywhere indicating that absolutely no photography whatsoever was allowed and that cell phones should be turned off. I put mine on silent and conceded to the fact that I wouldn’t get any pictures of the studio and the crew. Boo! I was, however, able to sneak this picture of the production room while I waited.
Once inside the studio the two female hosts, Simone and Dahlia noticed me and my gift boxes immediately and were ecstatic that I was there! One of them said they’ve been excitedly waiting to find out who was the mastermind behind this new product because they thought it was a brilliant idea! They prepared the set for my spot and told me where to stand for the cameras while having casual conversation with me. Dahlia knew I was very nervous and standing next to her I also felt extremely short lol. She’s one tall woman!
The photo below was taken from the Smile Jamaica Facebook page. Thank goodness, because without the video clip of my appearance I have no proof that I was even there! I’m still holding out hope that they send me the clip though.
So here’s how it all went down. My spot was only about ten minutes in total and I did fairly well answering all her questions. In the beginning my voice actually disappeared, you know when you’re trying to clear your throat but it’s just not working? I chalked that up to the early morning hour. Aside from that everything went smoothly, she kept me smiling and laughing and I think I did an okay job.
With all the cameras in the room I really had no idea what angle I should be looking at. There was one point where I looked at one of the TV monitors and it was completely zoomed in on the tattoo on my upper left arm which made me laugh. They kept that shot on the TV screen for way more time than I thought was necessary which is still making me laugh out loud right now. The tattoo is a little Rasta man holding Canadian and Jamaican flags. I also got a good laugh out of the other host, Simone, who snuck up below the table out of camera range to steal the rum out of the black gift box.
Once it was all said and done I came out of the studio with a big smile on my face. Whether the whole thing helped my business or not, it was a fantastic experience! As I exited the building I pulled my cell phone out of my bag and was shocked to see that it was exploding with messages. My Whatsapp had a billion messages from friends all over Jamaica telling me they saw me on TV. Everyone had mixed reviews – some said I looked really nervous, some said I did great and they were proud of me. Even my favorite girl from the airport bar in Montego Bay saw me and sent me a message.
I arrived back at the Four Seasons by 8:30 am and feeling like I’d already put in a full days work. It was weird, the whole thing happened so fast and I was sitting at my hotel eating breakfast like nothing had ever happened. My friend who came along for the ride to Kingston with me snapped this pic while we ate breakfast and looking back at the photo I felt like I looked like a clown (but a very happy clown) with all that makeup on. I rarely wear makeup in Jamaica so for me, this was a LOT.
After breakfast I went back to my hotel room and had a nap. I didn’t sleep well the night before (probably from nervousness) and I had a long drive back to Black River ahead of me so I needed some extra rest.
When I checked out of the hotel at noon the girl behind the front desk kept staring at me and she finally said, “Hey…weren’t you….” and I cut her off saying, “On Smile Jamaica this morning? Yes that was me”. We both laughed and she said she recognized the tattoo on my arm LOL.
There was only ONE downside to appearing on Smile Jamaica that day. I had no idea that they flashed my phone number on the screen for business purposes which led to a hundred and one messages from random Jamaican men who now wanted to be my boyfriend. Of course.