I remember visiting some friends in St Croix, Virgin Islands one winter in the early 70’s. They told me there was this ”hippie type guy” out on the end of the island who had exotic woods native to the island laying all over the place. That was enough for me to rent a car and drive out there to find him.

What I found left me feeling like a kid in a candy store without a penny to buy a piece. I had never seen wood like that with strange names like Kiabacca and others I can’t remember . Beautiful colors , Interesting grain … and fairly large..

I told the “not a hippie guy” who I was and that I’d love to have some of these but I was going home by plane and the weight was out of the question.

He then told me to pick out what I wanted and let him know what plane I’d be on. He would see that I have them on board. I asked how he was going to do that and he told me he knows everybody on the island and is friends with most of them, There was not much he couldn’t get done on St Croix.

I picked out several pieces, one almost 4 feet long, and paid the man.

He showed up at the airport with all of the wood on a dolly, asked to borrow my ticket and disappeared into the bowels of the lobby. A short while latter he came back, returned my ticket and told me everything was taken care of. I figured he had put the wood on the plane as freight and didn’t think anymore about it until I arrived at Bradley in Hartford . I began to wonder where I had to go to pick up freight as I waited at the carousel for my luggage.

Imagine my surprise, and that of the other passengers standing there, when the first log popped out of the curtain with a claim check tied to it.  All of the wood arrived that way… My “not a hippie” friend had managed to get everything on the plane as luggage.

Sculpture in Kiabacca wood from St Croix

From a piece of wood I got in St Croix . Location unknown.

I lost track of this piece. I refer you to a previous post because this proves the point once again… I wish I had kept it. It’s not as bad as I thought it was over 35 years ago. 🙂


Previous Post
Next Post