St. Ursula’s Day

St. Ursula’s Day is a national holiday here in the BVI, so we had Friday off work!  I wanted to know why I was able to spend the day child-free, so I googled St. Ursula’s Day.  Here are the highlights of my search:

Legend has it that a Roman0-British Princess, Ursula, was sent abroad to meet her future husband.  On the journey she brought with her 11,000 virgin handmaidens, as you do, of course.  A storm caused the ladies to blow off course, where they were intercepted by the Huns, and all the virgins were beheaded.  There seems to be almost no historical validity to any of this, and in fact, Ursula has been left out of Roman Catholic Calendar of Saints.  However, Christopher Columbus and Ferdinand Magellan both named parts of the Caribbean after her pack of virgins – thus, the Virgin Islands!

To commemorate this momentous holiday, we set out for a neighbouring island, Jost (pronounced Yost) Van Dyke and The Soggy Dollar Bar.  Located on arguably one of the most beautiful beaches in the BVI, there is no dock in this harbour.   When boats pull in the passengers must swim (or wade) to shore, soaking all their dollar bills.  The Soggy Dollar is known for the best Pain Killers around (the Nilla Killa was my favourite) which we enjoyed immensely.

Tony took this golden opportunity to create a perfect Corona advertisement:

Apparently his original intention had been to get the couple in there, but the boys were all so excited to join in – I think they took about 10 of these pictures!

We also caught a great view of a water spout in the distance – the first I’d ever seen – which is essentially a tornado in reverse.  The funnel is actually sucking water up into the air!

As we arrived quite early in the day, we had the beach and bar to ourselves for quite awhile.  But, as we lounged, the place became quite packed.  This shows some of the boats that were there by 2pm.

When boats full of students pulled in, we took it as our cue to exit, and we headed off to a more deserted island, Sandy Cay (pronounced Key), for a bit.  This was in fact the island Tony had seen from Tortola a few weeks ago and vowed to visit!

After a quick hike around the island (about 20 minutes, and that was barefoot!) we swam back to the boat to head home.  The day was completed with another fabulous sunset over St. Thomas!  These are the days I love it here!! : )

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4 Responses to St. Ursula’s Day

  1. Monica says:

    Ha! You guys are lounging on the beach and we are preparing for snow tomorrow… crazy! Looks like you had a great holiday, though!

  2. Megan says:

    Ah! We are so jealous! We will be in St. Thomas I believe on 11/15…I will wave to you 🙂

  3. Nancy Kline says:

    Just as beautiful as I remembered it two years ago. Loved swimming in to the Soggy Dollar Bar, also. Nancy K.

  4. Morgan says:

    Love the pics!!

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