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Edwin Paul Albury - Brilander
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Page 1 of 1Total of 4 messages
Posted by:Aug 29th 2008, 02:43:37 pm
Jungle JimThe subtle alchemist in his lifetime wrote two books, many articles and speeches that were published but at his death he left many nuggets of gold unpublished and some unfinished. Just before his death in 1987, Paul was working on a Bahamian novel Wrak Ashore, which portrayed the life and times of Harbour Island in the halcyon days of the late nineteenth century. The eight thousand words that he wrote illuminate the social milieu and give great insight into the thought of people, who have long since passed from memory. Although it is a fictional story, we can see that Green Cay and Hope Sound are Harbour Island and its magnificent harbour; and the hero Seaborn Thompson reflects the early life of Paul Albury himself as revealed in the following excerpt:

Hope Sound was still asleep for the most part, but it was stirring. Here and there, could be heard the chopping of firewood and a few plumes of smoke could be seen rising above the kitchens. Soon it would be wide-awake to face another July day.
Leaving the town behind Seaborn moved with easy strides along a path, which threaded its way eastwards through dense coppice. It was known as the Well Road, so named because it led to a well of fresh water near to the beach. Those who thought about it considered it strange that the only fresh water found on Green Cay was less than one hundred yards from the salt ocean sea. The people agreed the well was a precious asset – a Godsend they would rely on in times of drought. When the rainwater cistern ran dry, the well was the only source of supply of fresh cooking and drinking water.
As Seaborn strode toward the beach, he reflected on all the times he had walked that road before. As he remembered he was about 10 years old when his mother let him go alone. He was now 21. During all those years it had been a ritual to start each day that way, that is, except Sunday or when the weather was unpleasant. It was a habit of which he never tired. In fact, he looked forward to it each time with a degree of enthusiasm for a new experience normally reserved for adventure.
Stripping to his short pants, just as the sun cleaned the horizon, he set out to walk the beach. A gentle breeze blew in from the east, germinating small waves, which shimmered up the mild slope of the shoreline ever so gently and ever so quickly receded. It was along that margin, constantly wetted by the incoming waves that he preferred to walk. The sand was firm there and cool and felt so pleasant to his naked feet.
As far as the eye could see there was not another soul in sight. He was alone and he felt light hearted and carefree as the little white crabs that scampered before him, or the sandpipers flying before him, or the breaking waves with their gurgling, joyous sounds.
Far out to sea was the three masted schooner, still motionless for with sails hanging listlessly, for there was not a breath of air to fill them. “Like a painted ship on a painted sea,” he murmured, remembering a line he had read in one of the preacher’s poetry books .

According to Paul’s son Danny the walk from his home, The Battery, to the Pink Sands Beach was a daily occurrence for his father. At the age of ten, Paul also circumnavigated Harbour Island rowing a dinghy, a skill that was to prove to be invaluable to him in later life both practically in The Royal Canadian Navy and in his writing.
Posted by:Aug 3rd 2008, 09:15:04 am
Jungle JimIn his beautiful eulogy on the death of his friend in 1987, Sir Geoffrey Johnstone wrote about Paul’s love of Harbour Island:

Harbour Island. It never got out of his system. When he could afford it, he bought as his summer residence "The Battery", perched on a rise overlooking the harbour and the Eleuthera commonage to the west. His face would become wreathed in smiles at the mere mention of its name. Every August it became his retreat for the entire month. It was the wellspring of his labour, the subtle alchemist that could transmute life's leaden metal into gold. There he could return to his roots. From this spot, he could go "haulin" with Robbie and his kinsmen and his friends in the long boat. Here he held court and rejoiced in the company of old friends. From this place he could see the boats come and go. And as the heat of the summer's day subsided, he could watch the incandescent beauty of a Bahamian sunset staining the waters of the harbour with its crimson hue. This place gave a man space to breathe, time to think. Time to think about the meaning of life. About eternity. About the richness of God's grace and the boundless measure of His love .
Posted by:Aug 2nd 2008, 06:10:57 pm
KimberlyVery interesting ... keep these excerpts coming!
Posted by:Aug 2nd 2008, 01:46:00 pm
Jungle JimIn August 1921, the largest Bahamian built four masted sailing schooner the Marie J Thompson slid down the slipway into the harbour of Harbour Island. As the band played stirring music to herald that event, Ma Lolly Albury, watching from under the shade of the fig tree, felt that joyous stirring in her womb that announced the impending birth of her fourth son - Edwin Paul Albury was born on the 13th March 1922.

Although moving to Nassau at the age of fifteen, Paul never forgot his precious upbringing in Harbour Island in the midst of a loving family, relatives and neighbours, who looked out for each other in times of hardship and rejoiced at family occasions. The community was made up mainly of hardy seafaring men and their industrious wives, who ran their homes. They were typical examples of the protestant work ethic with strong moral values that St Paul calls ‘the fruits of the spirit’.

Paul carried these ‘fruits of the spirit’ to school at Queen’s College, Nassau, Her Majesty’s Royal Canadian Navy and at McGill University, where through self-discipline and hard work he qualified as a dentist. He settled back in Nassau, setting up his dental practice, raising a family and finding the time to serve his country as Head of the Dental Association, Founding member and President of Nassau East Rotary Club, President of St Andrew’s School Board, Commodore of the Nassau Yacht Club, Senator in the Legislative Council and as he is best remembered – as President of the Bahamas Historical Society, of which he was a founder member.

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