Friday, May 24, 2013

Help has sailed in

Ocean Classroom spent a week helping the cocoa farmers of Grenada.  Fifty students worked side by side with local agricultural students to clear brush, plant cocoa trees, 
harvest cocoa pods, help in the fermentation process, and make cocoa balls.

Pick up time early in the a.m., everybody is ready to work.

Bagging dried cocoa...

After clearing the bush, the students planted 100 trees ,.... in one morning.

 A well deserved soak in the cool water.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Amazing Grace

Amazing Grace 

Gulping air as I reached the skeleton of a church I had targeted from the 

St. George’s  harbor, I immediately saw it was more gorgeous 

with it’s roof off then it had been when it was whole.  

Last fall, the hurricane had blown the roof away and the floor to one side was 

gouged to the basement by fallen debris.  Ancient fragile carved wooden pews 

were pushed to the other side where some of the stained glass windows were 

still in tact.  Nature left the nave wall standing and Christ remained on the 

cross with the brilliant sun illuminating a scene usually shrouded in the 

mystery of a dim sanctuary. 

After dropping a dollar in the contribution box, I felt compelled to keep going 

up the hill where there was a lovely , overgrown graveyard with English 

sounding names on the tombstones.  Most of them were embedded flat so I 

could jump from one to the other.  I reached the very edge of it where the 

land suddenly disappeared under a tree descending steeply, 20 stories below, 

to the sea.  

Down to the left the bustling harbor was being 

rebuilt in front of two huge cruise ships and their 

passengers rushing  the streets to find something to buy.  On the other side 

was a grand view featuring the metal cage that had been a  gigantic outdoor 

sports arena crushed away from the harbor, decimated and deserted,  in 

danger of becoming another infamous ancient ruin.  

Twirling around to 

begin hopping tombstones back to the entrance, I sensed  movement beside a 

lonely, naked dwelling collapsing next to the graveyard.   To the side and 

above the road going down  to the beach,  the bent figure of a tall, long 

limbed, not young woman, slowly dragging a huge corrugated piece of 

roofing up the steep grade,  came into my view.  

My first thought was to run 

and help her, but then I went reverently still,  to prevent intruding on 

something so intimate that it would embarrass both of us if she knew I was 

there.  I observed the torturous, tedious task of her getting this strip 

positioned in a way she could lean it against the decapitated little house.  After 

piling rubble and climbing on top of it, she gathered enough strength to tip 

the rippled strip of metal onto the roof and 

proceeded to push it next to another one laid across the top of one of the 

barren blue rooms. She probably began the sustained project this morning 

and already it was noon.  Perhaps by evening, she might have shelter from 

sudden, short showers and be able to sleep in privacy by tonight. 


with my glimpse of simple survival, I chose to walk the precarious path 

around the other side of the burial ground anchored by ornate black wrought 

iron enclosed graves overgrown with lush, tropical, blossoming  vegetation. I 

hustled back through town to our harbor and boarded the ship in time for 

late lunch.  When the food had been cleared and everybody was declared 

aboard, we suddenly discovered we had speakers attached to 

the front mast.   The hearty sound of  Mahalia Jackson

surrounded us with “Amazing Grace.”

“A-a-a-maz-i-n-n-ng Grace, how sweet the sound!” 

Grateful tears relieved my eyes as we fell in place to the rhythm of the hymn, 

hoisting the sails, thus beginning our journey from Grenada through the 

Grenadine Islands. 

All the elements were in our favor.  The sails made that 

sucking sound of capturing the wind and the ship quickly tipped to one side. 

We could still see the roofless churches of St. George’s far behind us when 

more dolphins then I had encountered in my entire life performed as a 

synchronized flotilla arching out of the water right beside the ship, before

 anyone could get their cameras out!  

Surely all was right in the universe and I had a 

blessed adventure ahead of me. 

                                                      Marilynn Frances Lundy

Marilynn Frances Lundy is a business consultant and coach in NYC.  She has travelled all over the world for business and pleasure, which gives her a global perspective on all that she pursues. She has written the book, "The 10 R's For Better Speaking, That Can Transform Your Life" and if you wish to purchase it, or find out more about her coaching, you can go to her website,  Marilynn is currently writing a memoir, to be completed by the end of this year. If you want to read a blog of her most recent trip, to study Art Deco Design in Cuba last month, please go to her website,