Sojourn in St. Thomas '10 - Day 2

sea urchin A gray day with some heavy rain convinced me to go into town after some futile attempts to snorkel and swim. With me being thirty pounds underweight and with low blood pressure I get cold far too easily and they lack of sun had caused the temperature of the normally delightful water to drop. No light also meant limited visibility so I didn’t enjoy snorkeling all that much either, although my investment in a pair of flippers was a great idea and I was astounded with how much power they gave me allowing me to risk currents and brave reefs that I wouldn’t have before.

sea urchins of death

synagogue

Town wasn’t too exciting as my naïve continental mentality was blind to the idea that shops close early on Friday rather than stay open late as in NYC. Didn’t find anything interesting to buy and I need to get some gifts for friends. I did enjoy going to the St. T synagogue (oldest under a US flag in the world). It was rather beautiful and had intriguing, sand covered floors (a nod to the crypto Jews of Spain who, after being forced to convert to the religion of love and meekness under pain of death and, well pain (torture) remained true to their faith and used sand to muffle the sound of their basement prayers, and not, as what is often incorrectly reported, as a symbol of the exodus from Egypt). I won’t go into the history here any more than to say it’s actually quite interesting and the informative video featured a rather hilarious rabbi (see Germany, the holocaust is the reason their aren’t any funny people left in your country).

synagogue sand

I also saw the studio of Camille Pissarro, which was less interesting, having nothing of his time there. Dinner was at an artist’s restaurant in a shady section of the isle. Romano’s (named after the owner) is an interesting person involved in human rights and protests against screw caps on wine, but unless you order the osso bucco the meals are so small and overpriced that you want to mount a protest against him. Ambulance outside of hotel. A lady took a header.

Pissarro