Sunday, January 22, 2012
Imagine Lord Rainier I
However, Rainier I was not a man to shrink from danger. Along with government offices, the Grimaldi family even then had a history of being sea-faring warriors. Rainier carried on the fight as best he could. We can imagine him, wearing his red and white family colors, standing on the deck of his galley dressed in armor, clenching his sword, the wind blowing sea spray in his face as his vessel plowed through the Mediterranean. Imagine his eyes squinting against the wind, keeping a sharp eye for Genoese galleys but also, in a larger sense, looking for any opportunity to restore the fortunes of his family and gain and advantage over those who had driven him and him from his home. At times he had to accept employment from neighboring royals to stay afloat (in more ways than one) such as King Charles II of Anjou. In his service Lord Rainier gained quite a reputation for skill and daring across the Mediterranean area. Imagine it: an enemy galley is sighted, the course is changed toward it as the men below decks groan with all their strength at the oars to increase their speed. The guns thunder, the galleys collide and Rainier pulls his sword and leads his men in boarding the enemy ship, wrenching it from them in fierce hand-to-hand combat. Quite a far cry from car races, football games and roulette wheels isn’t it?