Addie Thomas Equiano Cable

On Sunday 29th August 2021 at approximately 9 am the Google Equiano Cable arrived on Saint Helena. It was a ‘fresh’ morning as dawn arrived and with it the Teliri Cable Ship.

As the buoy with the reference to the cable washed up on the black sand of Ruperts Beach and was retrieved by our friend the strapping, tattooed Scotsman / Diver who works for MCC, I was so glad that this was another event in the island’s history that I had witnessed since arriving home from countries which were wonderful to visit, but aren’t my home per se (even if I believe we are all one global village).

The ‘Eagle’ has Landed

In 1502, Juan de Nova Castella would have had no fortified walls or heavy machinery to greet his crew and him. It is why I believe time is such an illusion. Almost like an A4 sheet of paper that keeps being folded with events meeting on each fold and whilst technology and materials may change, the journey of discovery keeps overlapping.

The Teliri Cable Ship

The amount of work that has been put in by Jerry Roberts and his team has been huge. Nothing in this life is achieved without accompaniment. Even as the geniuses of history (Picasso, Hawking, Einstein, Mozart etc) created breathtaking masterpieces….there would have been people in their circle who would have supported them in some way or other. In the end, I believe together in many instances is better than alone.

Team Equiano Shore Side

We should not forget that this cable has been a very generous gift from the European Union. Europe has done much (Britain included) for the wider community of the Overseas Territories, one wonders how we shall fare as the Brexit ‘Divorce’ is finalised. Many people on the island are concerned that OSTs will be left very much alone as we are constantly reminded that we must become more robust and self-sufficient. All I know is that what I saw on the morning of the arrival of the cable said something about the willingness of folks to work together for the greater good.

Some of the team shore side – huge recognition for the ‘Saints’ who pushed this project forward

We have got to know folks on a personal basis who have travelled in for this project. We have not seen this sort of contractor activity since the Airport Build and a really a small percentage of what was seen back then.

Tammy Williams (Station Manager) interviewing John from the States who came in with MC

Too often we look at the destination, creating all sorts of scenarios before they have happened. For sure, there is much still to achieve / settle / agree before the system can go live to benefit residents, investors, governments etc in 2023 (the suggested new date). But we’ve taken ownership of something very special, a gift, let us remember that it is a gift and not a green card to make huge sums of money out of it to the detriment of the end users.

Equiano Cable Saint Helena
Holding the ‘Baby’

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