Close your eyes. Imagine walking into your kitchen. Turn on the cold faucet and pour yourself a glass of water. Now drink it. Taste every molecule as it makes its way down your throat, refreshing you with each drop. Now imagine that you are in Uganda, in a small village. It is 93 degrees and humid. You see Namubiru. She is only 14 and just walked two miles to fetch water for this evening’s meal. And while she is tired and dying of thirst, she will not chance drinking the water before boiling it, for fear of getting diarrhea, again. Open your eyes. What you just imagined represents me. It represents my duality. As a daughter of Ugandan immigrants, born and raised in America, I am constantly faced with the duality of my existence.
My travel style is
definitely inspired by my
Ugandan heritage and my
love of my blackness.
From a young age I visited my family in Uganda, vacationed in the Caribbean during the summers and hung out with cousins in London. My parents introduced the importance and enjoyment of travel to my life. My curiosity of the world was truly inspired by my parents who gave me access to it. We had a globe in the house that I was constantly spinning, dreaming of the places that I might visit some day. Fast forward and I have made my way around that globe several times. I have visited 65 countries, 35 states and six continents. I have lived in five countries on four continents. My travels are largely driven by my desire to visit every country in the world. I believe that in order to understand others and be tolerant, we need to see, with our own eyes how people live. Traveling has made me more open-minded, empathetic and self aware. My travel style is definitely inspired by my Ugandan heritage and my love of my blackness. I wear my hair closely shaven as my mother did as a child. I wear very bright clothes and I love love love prints. I also make it a point to wear bright, bold lipsticks. My style is also inspired by my travels. One of my favorite things to do when I visit a new country is to head to the market to buy jewelry, clothing, or fabric to have clothing tailor made. Often times no matter where in the world you catch me, I am wearing items from no less than three countries. Since 2008, I have been blogging about my travels. What started as a blog for my friends and family to keep up with me when I moved to Japan, turned into Catch Me If You Can, a travel blog that takes readers around the world and aims to inspire people to travel more. In 2015, I started Jet Black, a boutique travel firm that helps people to journey beyond their daydreams. We do group trips so that people can travel to awesome destinations with other dynamic individuals and we also curate unique itineraries for those looking to plan their own vacations.
We also have a shop that contains Jet Black Finds, goodies that I pick up from my trips, #JetBlackFlash, temporary gold metallic tattoos that let you show off your love of travel and blackness and finally Jet Black branded products. My travels, my blog and my business all align because I am nothing, if not a nomad, itching to buy my next flight. ——————————- Born and raised in Detroit to Ugandan immigrants, Jessica is Afropolitan. Seeds of travel and wander were planted at an early age when she embarked on her first international journey, traveling to London and Uganda at the age of six. Jessica’s sense of adventure led her to move to Japan in 2008, giving life to Catch Me If You Can. Jessica has lived, worked and studied on four continents and visited over 60 countries on six continents. Catch Me If You Can chronicles her travels, the people she meets along the way, and features many of the poignant images she has captured, with hopes of encouraging readers to get out and see life through a different cultural lens.