Post Meridian

Sur la plage

After breakfast – they do a great buffet here, which I’m too old and, more recently, earnest about dieting, to pillage as it deserves – Kathleen and I strolled to the nearby shopping arcade, which is really too modest for that appellation even if there is an arcade of sorts. At the General Store, they sold all the usual stuff – gin, vermouth, scotch, and rum, rum, rum. I took it in with a stupor. The bottles answered a prayer that, although I’m no longer saying it, I used to pray so earnestly that it’s difficult to see the happy answer and yet have no reason to move. I chose a bottle of Chardonnay from the rather smaller choice of wines.

We stocked up on snacks, postcards, stamps, and lip balm, and then headed across the way to the dress shop. This is where I bought the hat shown below.


This is what happens when you ask someone else to take a picture that you yourself would take, if you didn’t want it to be a picture of you. That’s the only way I have of explaining the unflattering uncertainty that takes the place, here, of an intended nonchalant gaze off toward the sea. Kathleen did in fact catch me gazing out to sea… with unflattering uncertainty. Perhaps I am squinting? Perhaps it’s the no-see-ums that swam into my eyes at about this time? Perhaps, as some would say, I’m just impossible to please.

The dress shop, as we knew, carries hats for gents as well as other many supplies, but the feature that undoubtedly attracts most male visitors is the nuisance corner, a small padded bench with its own stack of magazines. I’d have taken a picture, but it would not have been a pretty picture, and, besides, how odd. To take a picture &c. Kathleen found a good-looking suit jacket, on sale for the usual reason – but then that’s why Kathleen hardly ever pays attentions to size labels.

Having left Kathleen behind to try on clothes, I returned to the room just in time to hear the phone ringing. Who could this be? Not the office, surely. Indeed not – although it was a lawyer at the other end of the line. A very pleasant woman whom we’d shared a taxi with on our ride in from the airport. I will save her story for tomorrow, though, because – and this is why she was calling – we’ll be having dinner with her and her husband tomorrow night! I’m sure there are many people for whom such an invitation, after such an encounter, would not be at all remarkable, but Kathleen and I have a tendency to clam up when we’re on a trip. I can remember what I did differently yesterday (and it was I who made the gesture): I remarked that this was our second Thanksgiving in St Croix. Well, that was that!

Meanwhile, regular readers will be relieved – nothing less, I’m sure – to know that I have almost finished with this week’s Book Review. What’s new on that front is that I’ve taken to annotating the Review as I read it. Yes – writing on the pages with a pen! What a concept! Someday, I’ll tell you why I stopped marking up printed matter of any kind long before I went to law school – but not now. The good news is that I won’t have to think when I begin writing up my reviews. The thinking part has been done.

3 Responses to “Post Meridian”

  1. Migs says:

    The lovely photos remind me of our beaches in the Northern Philippines. But of course they don’t sell hats there, because everybody makes his own.

    And are those people behind that pulchritudinous gentlemen even of legal drinking age?

  2. Migs says:


    What’s wrong with me? And for a 22-year-old to be talking about the drinking age, too…

  3. Tony says:

    That is quite the fetching shirt! Of course, I have about 30 Hawaiian shirts myself. I also approve of the hat, but I am also a fan of hats as I am sure you know.

    Put on plenty of sunscreen and let us know how things went with the dinner with your new acquaintances.