S/V Bluebottle

The Christ Child

28 December 2011
There is, as usual around this time, a lot of talk about the real meaning of Christmas, and the ministers of religion take their roles seriously and give their official views. The Queen gives her Message (I must admit I only watched it once, and that was decades ago). My dad once commented that Christmas was "bad temper time", and most of us would admit there is a lot of Christmas-associated stress within the family, what with food prep, gift buying, holiday travel arrangements, etc, etc. We lose it, we drink more, or eat too much - and we try to have a good time, yet often it IS a blessed time too.

For me the best moment of all was seeing the Christ Child. It happened in Windmills toy shop in Hobart, where Adrienne and I were looking for a present for our granddaughter, Belle. We fell into discussion with a lovely young mother who had a two-year-old and a 9-month-old baby crawling at her feet. While she was telling us of the toy we had chosen and how her two-year-old had loved it I was watching her baby daughter as her mum picked her up; the baby was looking at me with unbroken attention, as curious about me as I was about her! We said nothing to each other as I touched her outstretched finger, but much was exchanged. Communication unhindered.

It was only afterwards, recalling her face, that I said to Adrienne I saw the Christ child! The little ones' face, her whole attitude, reflected a natural trust, utter openness, total fearlessness, and in that moment I saw it - how can I explain it otherwise - the Christ Child.

I can feel tears starting behind my eyes now.

Vessel Name: BLUEBOTTLE (ex-Aura)
Vessel Make/Model: Lidgard 49' steel ketch
Hailing Port: Hobart
Crew: Adrienne Godsmark and Joe Blake
We have completed our trans-Pacific voyage - from Panama to Hobart via Ecuador, Mexico, French Polynesia, Tonga, Fiji, Vanuatu and Bundaberg, and are now pausing before resuming land life. [...]
When the port authorities here were approached to renew our Panamanian boat registration, they said "You can't call your boat Aura - that's taken" so we decided to call her Bluebottle! If you know the Goons, you know of Bluebottle, that little twit! He was always getting into trouble with his thin [...]
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Who: Adrienne Godsmark and Joe Blake
Port: Hobart