San Michele "Island", Bluefields.

by Gillian Mullins, Nee ScottO'Connor
(Nanuet, NY, USA)

Hi Chris,

My Mum built this house, as she did two others in the area, and I believe you also owned it for a while.

What you may NOT know is that this particular parcel, and the piece over the road where another of her houses, Greenways, was built, had been in the family a long time.

My grandfather, B. A. Kirkham, (who she bought it from) owned it while Mum was still a girl.

Mum's brother "Boy" Kirkham, being who he was, had a chair set-up on the "island" which was concreted over (even back then) like the ones used on beaches today for lifeguards.

He would procure a dead donkey, or some other such animal, tie it off the "island", sit in the chair waiting for the dead critter to attract ocean going sharks and take pot shots at them.

The fisherman must have really loved that!!

Boy, on the way home from somewhere in the car, one night in the dark went over a bump in the road near Font Hill.

He got out to see what he'd run over to find a large alligator stretched across the road.

Deciding he wanted a trophy, but not having his rifle with him, he drove the car back and forth over the alligator attempting to kill it.

No luck. Eventually the creature got fed up with all this and took off into the nearby swamp.

My Uncle George used to keep his yachts in Bluefields Bay.

Don't remember the name of the smaller one, but the larger one was "Mystic" which ended up at the bottom of Kingston Harbour.

Frequently, when we were on Mystic, he would go around pulling up the fishermen's lobster pots to see if there were any lobsters in them.

I was often on the yacht with him amd my aunt on these forays.

One time we did find an "occupied" pot and Uncle George decided to commandeer the lobster.

My aunt protested, saying it wasn't fair as this was how the the fisherman made their living.

So Uncle George substituted an unopened bottle of whiskey for the lobster, which he kept.

I often wonder what the owner of the pot thought when he pulled it up and saw what he'd "caught"!

He also had a canoe called "Upsy Daisy".

For some unknown reason he decided to cut it in half, and seal up the cut ends to make two small boats.

They were, you guessed it, "Upsy" and "Daisy"!!!

Incidentally, "Boy" was champion of Jamaica in track and field while he was at Munro College!


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San Michelle
by: Doreen Tate Wright

Wow, I can only imagine what a beautiful place this is. This is beautifully written!

Nurse Johnstone
by: Gillian Mullins

She not only nursed my grandfather, but me also through a bad bout of malaria.

I refused to eat because I felt so bad, and everything tasted of the quinine that they treated malaria with back then.

I was about 13 or 14 and she tried everything she could to tempt me to eat. Eventually she resorted to orange juice laced with glucose to try to get SOMETHING down me, however little.

I didn't want to hurt her feelings, so when she left the room I would pour the mixture through the jalousies and then give her the empty glass.

We always called her "Johnny" and she was like a memeber of the family. I would have been devastated if she'd found out what I was doing with the juice!
I have a picture of "Johnny" taken about 1950, at Mullion Cove in Bluefields.

B. A. Kirkham - Bluefields
by: Anonymous

Dear Gillian,

My mother, Nurse Johnson, nursed your grandfather for many, many years. She was his Nurse in residence. I stayed at the house to which you refer during many holidays - when there was tilly lamps only. Oh so many memories.

You brought back so many memories. What are you using the house for now, is a B & B perhaps (smile).

It was a beautiful and serene place, I remeber Miss Eve - and the kids. she had a bad knee, I remember wondering when she would pick me up to ride around with her children, how did she drive with that knee.

Let me know if you would like to stay in touch.
HelenAnn Matthews

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