Soufriere, St. Lucia – New Hope,Faith and Rebuilding


As we near the start of a new year of hope, faith and prosperity I was reminded just how precious our lives are and this planet we live on. For days we had rain in St. Lucia and on the day I was to travel to Soufriere I was told that we wouldn’t be going anywhere as some of the roadway and bridges we needed to cross were overflowing and flooded. This brought to light the many survival stories I had listened to during my days in St. Lucia and my hope that we would be able to continue the following day seemed dashed.

But fate would have it to show us some sunshine for a moment and the waters receided the next day and allowed my journey to see Soufriere and the damage Tomas had left behind even after the recovery has been ongoing since early November.

A nurse on property whom I had spoken to, told of a family gone forever and on this day I got to see where they had existed in St. Lucian life. The Livity Arts Studio and the house is gone, crushed by a landslide, with the family still in it. Livity Arts Studio was located above Crystals on the mountain, past a sharp switchback when heading out of Soufriere through Columbette.

 “The southern town of Vieux-Fort was among the worst hit by the Category One storm, while five bodies including those of the owners of a popular craft shop in Soufriere, recovered from the wreckage of their homes that were hit by landslides.”
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While North Americans were pre-occupied with elections, football and the World Series, some residents of the Caribbean were hit by yet another hurricane. This family paid the ultimate price but will always be remembered by visitors and St. Lucian’s  forever.

Eugenia and Sabi, Balenbouche, Summer 2010, Photo by Tricia Fay

“they were a fixture – always there – part of everything.”

Livity Arts Studio

May this family and those others who lost their lives rest in peace after this tragic and fateful act of Mother Nature. A Facebook Group was set up in their honour and memoriam by a longtime friend, Finola Prescott.

This experience has given me great reason to pause and strengthens my resolve to try and achieve greater balance and peace in my life and to live my life to its fullest. Life is never as long as we hope it to be and we need to try our hardest to build and save a better environment and ease the chance of Mother Nature lashing out to get our attention.


About traveliciousdee

Deborah Peniuk is the owner of AYA Life , a travel consulting company that brings dreams to life; and she is @TraveliciousDee, a creative outside-the-box travel planner & retreat builder who has empowered clients to travel since the 1990's. Specializing in small group travel she creates retreats for all doctrines of health and wellness. Her team spirit and limitless imagination are key to anyone planning a memorable "outside the lines" experience.

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