So who arrived late one night
at the Buccaneer Hotel on St. Croix, shrouded in secrecy -- and a
sheet? None other than pop superstar Michael Jackson, who visited
the island ostensibly to check out a 600-acre parcel of land that
would serve as the site for his proposed casino hotel and theme
park. Apparently, he's still "conceptualizing" the project, but
Jackson did say he's seriously considering St. Croix because of his
"love for this beautiful island and its people." The singer toured
the island, just like a tourist. Well, not exactly like a tourist.
He was cocooned in a long, white limousine; was dressed entirely in
black except for his trademark white socks, and was surrounded by
bodyguards at all times. No matter. Crowds of Crucians welcomed him
with shouts of "Mi-chaellll!" He paused outside the Casino Control
Commission offices in Frederiksted to blow kisses and sign
autographs, then paid an unscheduled visit to a Rotary club. He
hosted a reception at the Buccaneer's landmark sugar mill, sailed
the nearby waters, parasailed over the waters, dined at local
restaurants and stayed in one of the resort's beachfront suites.
During his brief visit, Jackson remained quite visible, though he
sang not one note. Who knows? This could be the start of a whole
new chapter in Crucian tourism.