St Kitts – formally known as St Christopher Island – is where we have been docked for the past week. I like this description of St Christopher – the patron saint from Lucky Mojo (http://www.luckymojo.com/saintchristopher.html) - rather than the Wikipedia definition and was so tickled with it – I wanted to include it in my blog. I am not Catholic – I’m Episcopal – or as Ann Miller says: “Light Catholic”!!!
CATHOLIC PATRON SAINT OF TRAVEL SAFETY
The one-time Catholic patron saint of travelers, Saint Christopher -- whose name means "Christ carrier" -- is not mentioned in the Bible. While there may have been a 3rd century Greek martyr named Christopher, the story told of him is now generally acknowledged to be a 12th century addendum to the Christian canon. Christopher is typically depicted as a tall, middle-aged, bearded man with a staff who wades across a river carrying the Christ child on his shoulders. As the story goes, the extremely robust Christopher devoted his life to carrying people across an otherwise unfordable stream. One day a little child appeared before him and asked to be carried across. To Christopher's surprise, as he forded the river, the child steadily increased in weight until Christopher found his tiny burden so heavy that it was almost impossible to bear. When he asked the holy babe why he weighed so much, the child replied that he carried the world's sins upon his shoulders. As a reward for his service, Christopher's staff was miraculously transformed into a living tree, and Christopher himself became the Patron Saint of travelers.
Christopher was a widely popular saint, and was especially revered by mariners, ferrymen, and travelers. His feast day was July 25th, except in Greece, where it was celebrated on March 9th. In modern times a major center of his cult was in Italy and among Italian-Americans, a fact that did not stop the Vatican from de-canonizing him during a late 20th century purge of the list of saints. Saint Christopher medals and holy cards are more difficult to find now that his status has been downgraded to that of a mere legend, but they are still being manufactured and many Mexican and Italian Catholics still believe that his image is the best amulet to carry in one's wallet, wear on a necklace while on a journey, or hang from the rear view mirror attachment of one's car. The enamel and silver Saint Christopher medal shown here dates from the 1930s.
We are currently at Port Zante Marina just east of the cruise ship dock and get to see the throngs of passengers disembarking and scattering about the town in search of finding a day’s enjoyment. We hear the loud horn blast in the early evening – warning cruisers it’s time to return to the ship.
We are within walking distance to the main town of Basseterre and all the local shops, so we haven’t rented a car and have mostly been hanging locally. There are three grocery stores just three minutes away, plus numerous other shops and eateries.
We arrived slowly – after ten engine breakdowns during the passage – on Friday, June 7th. We had hopes of getting help with our engine problem from the most qualified engineer in town, David Ridsdale-Saw, owner of Indigo Yachts. Per Caribbean custom he doesn’t work on the week-end – so we were anxiously awaiting Monday – and his expertise at troubleshooting our difficulty with our fuel problem.
Monday came and went…..Tuesday came and went….Wednesday we scoured the docks hoping for a glimpse of him, talked to the people whose boat he was working on, talked to his workmen, e-mailed him and borrowed a phone to call him (no answer). In general we tried to do everything we knew of to get in touch once again (we had a five minute conversation with him on our Friday arrival – with a plan laid for Monday) – to no avail.
|A glimpse of the school yard|
|Love riding on the Seas!|
|I think she just likes marinas!|
Oh! Here’s David – back again for more information. He and Cap are in the engine room. Cap is telling the tale once again and David is listening intently. I tell him, as he enters, that I am writing about him in my blog. “I don’t make any promises” he says to me. Yet, I don’t get discouraged. He is British; he seems quite the gentleman – beautiful accent – excellent credentials. He has an Engineering degree and has been in the yachting business over 20 years and was Chief Designer at Camper and Nicholson – a very well known yard and a respected position. No one previously has guaranteed work and they all know we are moving on and cannot come back to complain. For now, we are putting our trust and faith in this man and his abilities as well as in the hands of the other Man - above.
Some images of Basseterre, St Kitts - around town during our walk.