Thursday, 23 March 2017

St. Matthias Church

Another sad afternoon two weeks ago.
The mother of my friend Helen had passed away and I attended the funeral at St. Matthias Church...  my childhood church.

 St. Matthias Anglican Church

St. Matthias Church is located on the south coast in the parish of Christ Church.
Situated on three quarters of an acre of land donated back in 1837 by John Mayers, a clerk of the House of Assembly who also became the chief builder of the church.
The church was originally built as a Chapel of Ease but when completed after a cost of four thousand, two hundred and fifty pounds ( £4250.00), it was rather grand and larger than the other chapels of ease and other churches on the island.

It was consecrated on August 2nd, 1850 by Bishop Thomas Parry.

Due to its close proximity to The Garrison where the British soldiers were stationed it was utilized as a chapel and the two institutions formed a close bond.
The British Government leased the chapel at  £75 per annum for the soldiers. The Chaplain of the Forces conducted the Sunday morning service and the Vicar conducted the evening service.

Today St. Matthias still has close ties to the military as it serves as the chapel for the Barbados Defense Force with its Rector as the Chaplain.

Arriving early for the funeral with my girlfriends, I had the opportunity to wander around and immerse myself in memories of bygone years.
It was nice to see the old familiar building again where as a child I had lingered at the doorway many times looking up wondering if I were able to climb to the top ( I was a tomboy back then).
Entering a church is always a humbling experience for me and funerals seem to make me ponder the delicacy of life more, and this evening was no different.

The church is listed as an architectural and historic interest by the Barbados National Trust.

The Dauntless Tomb
Herein lie the remains of fifteen officers and the captain's steward of the HMS Dauntless who died from yellow fever as a result of the epidemic that gripped Bridgetown in 1852.

The frigate was moored off Carlisle Bay and the deadly disease  claimed the lives of sixty seven men on board.

The marble tomb was donated by the Royal Navy and is located in the southern section of the church cemetery.
Also buried in the cemetery are other citizens who succumbed to the disease.

A brief history of the church here .
More historical info here.
I found this Youtube video "Morning has Broken" with the church's bells.

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

My poor Beast

My dear old Beast was in poor health.
Trying to oblige my desires each morning as I started him up, he would splutter and wretch.
Umpteen times I turned the ignition and he would make an effort but then he would give up... after several tries he would finally give another sluggish attempt to engage and then spring to life.
I knew it was time for a service.
I had been working him so hard recently.
Fetching and carrying heavy loads and I really had not been taking the time to care and nurture my poor baby.
Called up my friendly mechanic Frank to schedule a service.
I decided too that I would book my poor baby for an under body chassis and engine wash since we still had not found the transmission leak even after changing the seal and hoses.
 The guy I previously used for the under body wash service had gone out of business so another car care place was recommended.
I went by to check it out (can't take my beloved to any old place you know) and I was pleased with what I saw.
"Do I need to make an appointment?" I asked the pressure washer guy who was busy cleaning under a huge truck on the hoist.
"No Miss, just come by early and it's first come, first served. We open at 7.30am" came the reply.
The following day Beast and I arrived extra early.  I paid for the service inside the office with a very pleasant young lady and then headed outside to wait my turn.

 Even though my poor boy continued to give a hard start in the mornings, I was always amazed at his "ready to go" attitude.  Once he did get started he drove smoothly on our many pot-holed roads of late.
Frank was still backed up and couldn't schedule Beast for a service immediately as I'd we waited.
One day I begged him to come by to see if he could figure out the problem.
This he did.  He jumped in the driver's seat, pressed the gas pedal twice, turned the ignition and presto Beast sprang to life immediately!!
"Well Vee, you've got an old boy now so the automatic choke is will now have to do the job of the choke from now on.  Before turning the ignition, give Beast a little gas and then switch on and he should be good to go," Frank advised.
All I heard out of that is that I now have an old boy....which me as an old girl will have to look after even more (not that I mind) dear old Beast.
I thanked Frank, and he left promising me that he will fit us in early the following week for a service.
Daughter dear was a bit concerned, "Don't you want something newer to drive Mum?" she asked.
"No thanks," I told her.  "Beast has been so loyal to me over the years....has never broken down on the road....always brings me back home and then shows up the problem....brings me back with flat tyres that miraculously show up the following day before I set off from home....I know what I have now, but I don't know what I will get.  Hope you don't think of getting rid of me too because I'm getting old too."
"No MOTHER!!! Of course not!!" she cried.
Finally service day rolled around.
Beast has had his service and all is well.
We will continue to grow old together....all is well that ends well.
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