Throwback Thursday


Looks like I missed the 198 anniversary of the death of Napolean on May 5. However in looking at my monthly stats for the blog I noticed that someone had gone (on the 5th) to a post I wrote back in 2012 about St Helena and his exile there.

My friend Gary’s association with St. Helena has given it a special significance in my mind. His fascination with the place was contagious and we often talked about taking 5 day journey on the RMS St. Helena from Cape Town to the Islands. He had decided that if we were going that far we might as well see Ascension and Tristan da Cunha.

Much has changed since I wrote that post. Gary died last year without ever getting to St. Helena except in his imagination. The much need – and much delayed – airport finally opened in October 2017 and is serviced by a weekly flight from Johannesburg. The RMS St. Helena, one of the last Royal Mail Ships, made her final voyage from the Island on February 10, 2018 . The occasional cruise ship now includes St Helena on it’s scheduled stops.

In rereading the post for one fleeting moment I paused and thought … hmmm the 200th anniversary of Napolean’s death is only two years away. Maybe … just maybe.

Willy Or Won't He

The approach to St Helena as recorded by James Wathen on a three day visit to the island in the summer of 1812.  From his A Series of Views of the Island of St Helena published in September 1821.  It is said that the view, save for the sailing ships, has little changed today.

Yesterday was the anniversary of the death in 1821 of Napoleon Bonaparte; he died in exile, a prisoner of the British, on St Helena – a 47 sq mi volcanic island 1200 miles from Angola in Africa and 1800 miles from Brazil in South America.   Uninhabited when it was discovered by the Portuguese in the 1500s it was to become an important outpost for the East India Company and other English ships on the voyage to the Indies and Australia.  Like many other isolated locations it also served in its early years as a place…

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