Friday, March 16, 2007

A Visit to St. Somewhere




I find it interesting how the little bits and pieces of life stick to us as we journey through it. We make much of the big events -- the births, the weddings, the jobs, disasters and deaths. Maybe I suffer from a sort of memory vertigo. I never seem to be able to take in the memories of the big events, or at least hold on to them. They’re too much, too fast. I don’t remember my grandfathers’ funerals. I don’t even remember much about my wedding. (I’m sure writing that is going to cost me.)

It’s the little memories that stick with me. I remember Jimmy Buffet’s song “Cheeseburger in Paradise” being played on the radio. I didn’t much care for it. Fortunately, I heard some of his music that didn’t make the radio and I became a fan. Otherwise, I would never have heard “Boat Drinks”, would never have heard his line “I’ve gotta fly to St. Somewhere”, and would never have a catchy title for this blog entry. (Never make the mistake of thinking I’m original. I’m not.)

All this just to get you on the boat. Yeah, sorry, it’s a ship. I figured my wife deserved something special for running our lives while the FAA ran mine. Something to make up for all the missed weekends, holidays and memories. She likes “the islands” so we sailed away to St. Somewhere and I played the ”Cowboy in the Jungle” for the week. And I really did look “so out of place.” Getting on the boat (yeah, ship) some guy remarked, “You don’t look like you belong on a ship, you look like a mountain man.” I smiled. My wife tried not to.

I don’t really like boats. Or ships. And the ocean scares me. But I love my wife, and she loves both. So away we went. Just a short trip to Nassau the first night. The second day was spent lazing away “at sea.” I don’t like that phrase, “at sea.” Oh well, as long as it isn’t preceded by the word “lost.”

We pulled into St. Thomas the next day. The first thing I saw was a float plane (a DHC-6 ?) making a go around at the harbor. A nice, tight turn between the hills. What can I say ? I like airplanes. That doesn’t stop when I’m on vacation. Anyway, just over a day on the boat and I had been transformed into a tourista, I guess. At least the hawkers had no trouble spotting me. But the rain soon took care of that. The locals were happy about the rain too. They’d been having a dry spell.

St. Thomas is evidently known as some type of shopping haven. Shopping isn’t an area of expertise for me. I did buy a watch. When I was done, the nice sales lady gave me a cold beer and shooed me outside so my wife could shop in peace. I think she’s on to something.

The little memories in life add up. An act of kindness, a genuine smile or a cold beer might wind up lasting longer than you would think.

Don Brown
March 16, 2007

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