Jamaica Gleaner
Published: Tuesday | January 8, 2013
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Air Jamaica lives to tell 'tail'
The Air Jamaica tail on display along the Palisadoes Road route to the Norman Manley International Airport. - Norman Grindley/Chief Photographer
Like a true work of art, it looks nice, but not everyone understands it.

That airplane tail that has long been sitting at the roundabout near the entrance to the Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston, has, in recent days, left some people scratching their heads. It's painted in the colours of the once high-flying 'Lovebird', Air Jamaica, but since that airline is no more, a number of passers-by have been wondering why the tail still lingers.

"It must be some sort of museum they are setting up," said Stanley Fletcher, as he walked by the roundabout yesterday. "It must be that they want people to remember the days of Air Jamaica. Other than that, I don't see what the purpose is."

Fletcher said he always thought having the airplane tail so close to the airport was a really nice touch.

"I remember when they just put it up. It was a very good thing they did. It just make people see that even though it is an airport where so many planes come and go, it really belongs to us. It is the airport of the famous Air Jamaica," he said.

Ought to be taken down

But now, Fletcher thinks it ought to be taken down.

"We shouldn't just leave it there like a big white elephant. Jamaican people weren't happy when the airline died, so why leave the tail there to remind us? It would be better if they found something more positive to put there, like a statue of our athletes or something. It should be something that makes us proud, not something that causes us any kind of shame or sadness," he said.

Not everyone was so opinionated on the matter though. Packed cars, buses and trucks circled the area with nary a second look being thrown in the direction of the Air Jamaica tail. When asked what he thought of the whole controversy, Sherman Palmer, taking a break from gulping down coconut water bought from a vendor nearby, said: "If dem leave it or take it down it don't matter one bit. Nobody don't even see it anymore. People have dem plane fi go take or people fi pick up. Nobody don't business wid it."


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