Sorry, readers, for being away for so long. Life got really busy with looking after Amanda, keeping tabs on my dad and his post-heart surgery medical issues, a garage sale (lots of work), extra days of work at the surgical center, and finally getting away on a vacation! Ted and I were so tired of working and being busy with ‘stuff’ that it was a good thing we had planned this trip and were forced to get on an airplane.
So, where did we go, where did we go??
St. Kitts, of course.
Where is St. Kitts, you may ask, and why did we go there? Saint Kitts (also known more formally as Saint Christopher Island – named after its discoverer – Christopher Columbus) is an island in the West Indies. The west side of the island borders the Caribbean Sea, and the eastern coast faces the Atlantic Ocean. Saint Kitts and the neighboring island of Nevis constitute one country: the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis. Ross School of Veterinary Medicine is on St. Kitts and that is the school my daughter, Jillian, attends. Jillian and her husband Andy moved there in December. We had to visit them! It was a wonderful six days. Out of this trip, I’ve collected many topics to contribute to this blog so look for a couple weeks’ worth of stories that will educate and inform you about this interesting island and our vacation experience.
If you are familiar with Disney Land and the “Small World” attraction, then you know how that song “It’s a Small Word After All” can be so annoyingly repetitious. That was almost the theme song of our vacation as that song kept echoing in the back of my head each time we made a new connection with presumed strangers.
On our first flight from Detroit to Miami, I started chatting with a lovely woman from Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. She had three daughters, we have three daughters. She and her husband were sailors (yeah – us too). She went to Hope College (hello – that’s where Jill and Kristen went). And her children enjoyed many summer camp experiences at Springhill Camp – yes, the same camp our daughters attended and worked at. (It’s a small world after all, it’s a small world after all….)
After changing flights in Miami, we were on a Boeing 737 packed full of people heading for St. Kitts. “I wonder why all these people are heading to St. Kitts” I mentioned out loud to the guy sitting on my right. “Well my wife and I are going because I won a trip though my company” the guy replied. “What company?” I asked. “Oh, you wouldn’t know it – it’s a small company called Henry Schein” he responded. OMG! Of course I knew of that company, it is a dental supply company and I worked several years for a dentist. I explained to this guy that I DID know his company and told him of the dentists I’d worked for. OMG – he KNEW the dentists I worked for! This ‘guy’ was now “Bob” and his wife “April” and we shared some good conversation as we flew towards St. Kitts. (It’s a small world after all ….)
Those two meetings were already good stories to tell of how small a world we live in. But then …
Walking on one of the beaches on St. Kitts, we passed a sunbathing couple. The male half of the couple noticed Andy’s University of Tennessee shirt and called out “Hey – the Vols!” Andy replied, “Yeah – did you go to UT?” The guy replied that he did not but that his brother did. The conversation continued with the typical “Where are you from? Why are you vacationing here?” We found out that this couple was newlyweds on their honeymoon and that Fort Wayne, Indiana was home to them. Jillian piped in, “Oh, my friend just moved to Fort Wayne and is marrying a guy from there.” “What’s his name?” the newlyweds asked. Jill told them and jaws dropped. Yes sir. They knew the guy. Good friends actually. We were all stunned. What are the chances of walking a beach on an island only 65 square miles in size, in the Caribbean, on April 26th, 2013, with Andy wearing just the right shirt, and this guy looking up at just the right time, all from different states, and then discovering this common connection? (It’s a small world after all, it’s a small, small world.)
Although we were far from home, the world itself seemed smaller as we connected with people with similar experiences and shared friends. Of course, the best part of the trip was being with our daughter and her husband. But to cross paths with people like that and experience a linking of lives was (as Ted would say) UNBELIEVABLE.
It’s a world of laughter, a world of tears
It’s a world of hopes, a world of fear
There’s so much that we share
That it’s time we’re aware
It’s a small world after all
There is just one moon and one golden sun
And a smile means friendship to everyone
Though the mountains divide and the oceans are wide
It’s a small world after all.