The Lady and the Unicorn
We dived the SS President Coolidge in Santo, Vanuatu , in the year 2000.
The SS President Coolidge was the second largest passenger ship ( after the Titanic ) 70 years ago , and during the Second World War was used to replenish supplies to the American soldiers fighting in the South Pacific.
It was sunk near Vanuatu , a French Polynesian Island , ironically by an American torpedo .
Miraculously almost all of the 2000 American soldiers on board managed to scramble up to shore safely and only 2 lives were lost .
The most famous item on the ship is a porcelain picture called The Lady, featuring a woman standing in front of a horse, which is left hanging to this day on the wall of a pitch dark corridor near the Grand Ball Room deep inside the ship , 38 meters under the waves .
I was having a stream of problems at that time, and was told by well meaning friends I needed to enlist Heavenly Powers to combat my run of bad luck .
As I've to dive 120 feet just to see the portrait of The Lady for two seconds , I decided to paint one of my own so that I can see it all the time , while at the same time calling in the Powers that be .
The Lady in my painting has in one hand the World and in the other , the Cross . It is my intention to have this life as well as the next covered !
I put in the Unicorn as it is so hard sometimes to fit in with the other horses.
The hills in the background are the hills I can see out of my sitting room window at home , but I put in the sea where the Ho Tung Village is . I just love the sea .
Scattered on the ground is my favorite flower the daisy ; amid some Chinese herbal medicine plants, for I was doing a preliminary course in Chinese Medicine at the time.
In the painting there is also a fir tree , a bamboo tree and a plum tree , the 3 friends whose steadfast friendship survives even the harshest winter , so says the old Chinese scroll .
At the end of the day, my belief is it's not Heavenly Powers but our friends that'd help us get through the troubles in life !