A Nevispages weekly feature by Curtis Morton Sr
The way I see it, Nevis has quite a number of unsung heroes.
Persons who have excelled in their respective sphere of duty and gone above and beyond, what was actually required of them, in order to assist their fellow human beings and to give selflessly to the land of their birth.
One such hero in my mind is the man I know as NORTON. I suspect that his surname is Cornelius, as he is the brother of Mrs. Gloria Anslyn and brother to John Cornelius. Our friendship goes way back….
I had just learnt to swim (that’s another story) and it became a habit of mine, that every day when I came to town to work, even before I went to the office, I would go down by the Bayfront and just look longingly at the sea, looking forward with great anticipation, to my next swim.
One day, Norton joined me at the Bayfront.
‘You want to go in?’ he quizzed.
‘Yeah,’ I said enthusiastically.
‘Well, come back later. We go for a swim.’
Later that evening, close to sunset I returned to the area of Gallows Bay, half not expecting Norton to show up.
There he was, with that eternal smile on his face.
‘Ready?’ he asked matter of factly.
‘Sure,’ I said and proceeded to get into my swim clothes.
We both dived into the water, close to the small pier at Gallows Bay. It was already getting dark and it did not take me any time whatsoever, to know who was dictating terms.
Norton told me that we would swim to the main pier.
As we swam we chatted.
Norton is a talker, you know!
As we got close to the pier, I saw a flashing light but paid no heed to it.
As we climbed onto the main pier, a stern voice shouted:
‘Hold it there!’
We both froze.
I realized immediately from the accent that it was the then top cop on Nevis and a personal friend, Mr. Vincent Spooners.
“Oh Sandopey is you’ (Bajans accent). ‘It’s a long time I was watching the two of you. I thought that it was persons up to mischief. I won’t recommend you go swimming this late again.’
We never did.
It was only last week that Norton saw me in town and said: ‘You remember when Spooners nearly lock us up?’
We both laughed heartily. That’s our special memory.
Well I newa!
That apart, Norton has worked for many years at the Charlestown Post office. So long has he been there, that not even his superior officers can give me accurate records. They all agree however that he performs his duties with diligence and precision.
When Norton is removing mail from the boat to the Post Office, on his beloved cart and sounding the horn that sounds even harder than that of the Mark Twain, is a tradition as dear as the changing of the guards at Buckingham Palace! He may never receive an independence award.
He has, however, been formally recognized by the postal staff and he has endeared himself in his own unique way, to the general populace of Nevis.
The other day, I was so impressed. As I stepped into the Post Office, there was Norton alerting me that I need to allow him to sanitize my hands. Of course, he had to mention Mr. Spooners again and of course, we had our usual augh.
He may not have the degrees of some and he may not acquire the wealth that his hard work is worth, but I know that his contribution will not go unnoticed by the God whom we adore.
One day Norton, by God’s grace, you will receive your deserved due in heaven at last.
That’s the way I see it. How do you see it?