OUR JAMAICA: TOUGH WOMAN, 'COAL' WORLD.
“I've been burning coal since the age of seventeen. I would say I am a jack of all trades…I do many things...I am a fisher woman and a fish vendor. When I go out to sea, I use a hook and line. When I am done burning the coal, I travel to Spanish Town to sell the fish I catch at sea. I can also build fowl coops and goat pens and even deliver babies. I delivered three babies so far and even cut their navel strings. Coal burning is one of the most difficult jobs since creation. I have to find the wood, stock it, get the bush and then get the dirt to cover it. I have three children and one of my daughters sometimes help out with the coal business. The profit from the coal business is given to my daughter; she uses it to hustle or turn around and we both benefit from it.
Many people say I look like a man but I don’t mind. Looking like a man save my life many times. Sometimes I am in some strange and lonely places and when other men see me they would nod and say ‘respect me boss or easy nuh father’ I am 60 years old and I love to work. I never had a choice but to work early, plus my children’s father had gone to prison for 12 years. He left me when he was released and went to marry another woman who eventually killed him. So you see, this is my life. I work hard for my own.’’