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Deeply chilled on St Lucia

In this Caribbean paradise, it's still a shock to recognise that today is the haunted "9/11", the day when everybody remembers exactly where they were when that first, deeply shocking footage of suicidal aeroplanes ploughing into the Twin Towers was broadcast repeatedly, almost obsessively. We are still finding out all that it means.

For me, it was the day before my first visit to South America, specifically to Peru to hike three Inca Trails in 10 days. So being deprived of cameras and film at Edinburgh airport seemed a major setback (we publish very visual books which need 70+ photos each). EDI wasn't allowing ANY hand baggage, not even one camera. Two weeks later, after needless worry about X-ray fogged film, I was delighted to find that I had plenty of good shots for our Explore the Inca Trail. Six years on, I am (escapist, perhaps) relieved to be away from television, newspapers and anniversary reminiscences. Like the images of floral tributes, I'm not sure that all that stuff helps us to learn, to regroup and to move on.

Before leaving Scotland, I mentioned to a friend the forthcoming diving on St Lucia , and got a weird "Jetta, don't you ever just chill?" kind of reaction. But I've never known such depths of relaxation as when diving. Today's dive featured a large, friendly turtle, maybe one-metre across, on the wreck of the very photogenic Lesleen M at 21 metres depth (and the water so warm I don't need a wet suit). I'm diving with Island Divers, who combine sea-level relaxation with deep-water professionalism: highly recommended. Can there be anything more deeply chilled-out than swimming with a turtle, stroking a turtle, not even trying to keep up with a turtle?

On arrival in St Lucia, my watch battery packed up. Soon after, I noticed that my travel alarm battery had also succumbed. I already knew that my dive computer battery was sinking too low to be viable (so I borrowed a depth gauge from Island Divers). At home, all this time-uncertainty would have driven me demented, but in St Lucia it simply didn't matter. And the village resort Ti Kaye was just wonderful: once you've stayed there, you'll never want to take a shower indoors again!


This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on September 11, 2007 8:07 PM.

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