St. Vincent

If you ever want to go on a great Caribbean adventure and don’t like the tourist scene, St. Vincent is for you.  Cruise ships are few and far between as the volcanic island has a rugged coast all around so it’s not easy for big ships to dock.

st. Vincent

St. Vincent is not arid like many of the other Caribbean islands. It’s mountains produce rain clouds so the island has lush, tropical foliage. Crops are terraced throughout the island: most of the produce for the other islands is grown on St. Vincent.


There is a volcano that you can hike up to the edge of the crater. Puffs of smoke come out of domes that are slowly growing. We were taken up by a tour-guide, a Canadian ex-pat, who also provided us with a great vegetarian lunch. It was a hard hike up but the view from the top is spectacular! You can see the whole island and the surrounding ocean.


The highlight of this trip was a visit to the “Pools of Owia”. It was here we had the most magical experience. Our guide told us about this spot on the north of the island where huge waves crash onto lava rock walls and fill little pools in the volcanic rock that are warmed by the sun but deep enough to swim in. Swimming in these pools while huge waves crash on the other side of a rock wall is so exiting. But the day was made even better as we luckily coincided with a solar eclipse!  While we were swimming in the pools the sunlight changed to an eerie light that made it all seem like a dream.  Truly one of the best moments in my life.

pools of aowiapools3

I don’t have much urge to travel these day and couldn’t afford it even if I wanted to. So I am extremely happy I had the chance to visit St. Vincent.

My Job

Tell us about a time when everything actually turned out exactly as you’d hoped.

Landing this job I have now was a big, lucky break for me. Being 60 years old and having worked with my ex-husband at our apiary business for 25 years, not too many places I applied to would even interview me. Almost out of money, my anxiety was mounting, I was afraid and my confidence was zero. I didn’t even feel myself to be ’employable’.

I had been thinking about and looking into taking cake decorating when I saw an ad on-line for cake decorator at a fairly near-by grocery store saying “Will train”. It came out on the day of a huge snow storm so there was no way I could make the drive but it had a faxing address. My computer doesn’t fax. I happened to be e-mailing a friend that day who lives in Vancouver and told her my problem. She said she had a fax modem so I could send her my resume with a cover letter. We did some back and forth, finding the right file formats and she sent it out hours after I saw the ad.

I stood at the window and looked out at snow for long periods of time with the mantra “Please, please, please……” running through my head.

The storm ended on a Saturday night, the roads were cleared and my driveway plowed out Sunday.  Early Monday morning I drove to Grand Bend with another resume and jangling nerves. I wanted it so bad; I was very nervous.

My interviewer, who is now my boss, is a positive, cheery go-getter. She liked me and called me a firecracker!  Little did she know my energy was from 3 coffees and extreme nervousness. That was also lucky because she never did receive my fax.

I got the job!  Not only did I get the job but a few months later they decided to train me on cash, also. Now I have two jobs in the same store which is great. Two completely different jobs and different co-workers. On cash, I can wear my hair down and nice earrings and flirt with retired men. In the bakery I wear a hair-net and baseball hat which makes me magically invisible! When I work at night, no one even sees me! I dance, I fart, sing along to the ‘easy-listening’ music. It’s all just cleaning at night and I know I do that well; I have plenty of experience cleaning.

Yes, much as I would love to be retired, this job was my lucky break! Today I have the day off, relaxed and worry-free; who wouldn’t want that? I’ve earned it and that feels awesome!

And what about cake decorating? Well, the main person still does 80% of it and I get very little practice. I watched her for a couple of months then one day my bakery boss said, “you should be able to write on cakes by now”. That was my training. Mostly I make the regular cakes, such as Chocolate Fudge cake, Snickers Bar cake, and cream pies. ‘Yeah, it’s a tough job but somebodies got to do it.’

“All It’s Cracked Up to Be.”