Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller was, as usual, immaculately turned out, as she stepped into the press room at Jamaica House to face the media. Long had persons been pining to hear from her on numerous issues.
Today was the day she would face the assembled media and invite them to question her on matters of national importance. As the person in charge of the country, the woman who runs the yard, the prime minister had no intention of ducking any question from anyone.
She would be decisive in challenging members of the Fourth Estate about their facts if the premise of their queries was wrong. She would not, like Sister Sandrea, her de facto information minister, wilt under the pressure of the twin threat posed by Archie Gordon and Abka Fitz-Henley.
Although she doesn't watch much television these days, she had indeed witnessed their nut-by-bolt destruction of Sister Sandrea on two occasions and was praying they would be cocky enough to attempt something similar with her. If the score was now two-nil in their favour, she would bring the game back to 2-1, if they ever dared to bark up her tree.
The prime minister also had a score to settle with those microphone bullies who have never had the burden of running a country or had to look into the eyes of people after breaking their promises to them. Many chatty-mouths were claiming she was sheltered by her handlers out of fear she may say silly things.
Hit back at Snipers
Well, today she was going to show them. She was going to prove she had not thrived in politics for 30-odd years by being doltish. Today was the day to hit back at the snipers and reassure the Jamaican family that Mama was taking care of them.
The prime minister began by instructing her press officer to forgo the niceties and proceed with the agenda. She wanted to get right into it. Let the questioning begin now.
The first thing she was asked concerned the broken promise of work for jobless Jamaicans. The prime minister explained that unlike some governments, her administration's failure to deliver the promised jobs was not because it did not care. She said jobs were scarce because getting meaningful employment going in this economy was far tougher than her team had bargained for. She conceded that certain big projects had experienced delays in their lift-off, with the result being 16.3 per cent unemployment.
She conceded that job creation is not easy in the best of times and that the promise of employment through JEEP was genuine, based on a considered set of factors.
According to the prime minister, it's like a domino game, where everyone knows that you have drawn a hand with all the doubles. Your partner also has a bad hand, while one of the other players leaves the table for an extended bathroom break. You can do nothing under those circumstances but wait and hope that upon resumption luck smiles on you.
The prime minister responded to the question about growth by admitting that things have not gone to plan in that regard. She told the media that if she were in Opposition, she would have a field day knocking the Government about its performance on growth.
She said the process of laying the groundwork for growth was painstaking, but that it would be no different in the hands of another party. She reminded the media that her Government had been given a five-year mandate to improve things and that her team was less than halfway through. She asked for understanding and for the success-or-fail verdict of the growth agenda to be made at the end of the five years.
The prime minister was lamenting the failure of her administration to tame the crime beast when I was jolted back to reality by a thunderous banging on the door to my office. It was my news editor demanding to know if I planned to contribute anything to the evening newscast. I said yes, and tried again to find sleep after he had left.
If only I could get back to la-la land and hear more from my prime minister. But, alas, the dream was dead.
George Davis is a journalist. Email feedback to email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.