The wind stopped briefly today, and the water in the anchorage went completely still around the boat. Just around this time, we threw out our "overboard box" of kitchen scraps. I was in the galley preparing various foods and snacks for our upcoming passage when the others started to exclaim and to call me to "come and see - bring the camera". I grabbed Benjamin (no time for hat/sunscreen/clothes/wrap), and ran up the stairs. We were perched on top of a 30-foot deep aquarium! We had four sharks, numerous angel fish, a remora, and various other species (that you will have to ask the kids about, because I don't know them by name!) all exploring the scraps that Max & the kids were throwing overboard (with great splashing to get their attention) one item at a time. For the better part of half an hour, we tossed scraps and watched them circle (although they didn't eat much of what we gave them.) The water below was as clear as the air above, and even deep down to the bottom, we could see fish, coral, and sand. A short while later, a slight breeze picked up, the surface returned to its usual rippled state, and the view to the world below closed again. It was extraordinary.
Max & the big kids are camping ashore tonight - it is our last night in the Tuomotus. We thought that this island was so tiny that it would not have any creatures on it, but it turns out that not only are there rats, but they climb trees! (I am somewhat happy to be hanging out on Fluenta with my familiar bugs, soon to be eradicated by a professional). I understand that their supper of foil-baked marlin, foil-baked potatoes (chopped with enthusiasm by Johnathan), and canned corn was quite yummy. When we spoke on the radio, they said that they were too full to eat the canned fruit that I sent (but they might have room for the squares of chocolate...)
As for Benjamin, he has been sleeping most of the evening, so I have made yogurt, sugared/salted nuts, granola, pancake mix, and chocolate cake (V would like to decorate it tomorrow, but we will see!!) in preparation for our passage. I will set out the (mostly canned) ingredients in the morning for a big pot of soup. The saloon and aft cabins are stowed. I will help Johnathan with his room while Max sorts out the last-minute items (ie post-outboard/dinghy) on the aft deck, and we will plan to weigh anchor at 11am. The passage to Papeete is expected to take about two nights, with an arrival around mid-day on the third day. We have booked ourselves into the marina there to make our stop as efficient as possible (at 100 CPF/foot/day - we will keep our visit short!) and we will coordinate with our agent for the exterminator, the fridge guy, provisioning, and internet access (yes, you might even see some photos while we are there!)
Love to all,
PS - We are enjoying our bananas from the man in the village at the north pass, but they are not as sweet as Marquesan bananas. We still have four pamplemousse, but they are starting to look a bit sad. It will be good to eat lots of fresh fruit & veg when we arrive!
At 7/23/2014 5:56 AM (utc) Fluenta's position was 16°31.11'S 145°28.55'W
radio email processed by SailMail
for information see: http://www.sailmail.com