It´s finally time for the puddle jump! We intend to leave for Hiva Oa, Marquesas early this afternoon. It should be a 2-3 week trip depending on the wind, so posts will be less frequent during this time, though we will try to email some in via SSB radio.

In preparation, we made some last minute produce and beer runs yesterday afternoon, and scrubbed all the muck off the hulls this morning to make sure we go as fast as we possibly can. In the process, we had some highs and lows:

  • We located the ONLY canned beer on Isla Isabela, after being told by the grocers that it is not imported here. We bought 6 cases to reinforce our stash, as we’ve been told beer is $4 a can in French Polynesia, compared to $1 here.
  • Jason was kicked by a penguin while he scrubbed the hulls, setting off a morning play session in which we were able to actually touch the penguin on several occasions. He didn’t seem to mind at all. In fact, he just kept on darting around and between us trying to eat all the fish swimming by us and the boat. He felt like he was made of rubber.
  • I got tangled up in a miniature man-o-war that seared my chest, both arms, and neck in a matter of moments. At first I thought I’d gotten into some sea lice, and I rushed to get out of the water, but when I reached the swim platform my skin was burning so forcefully I knew it must be something else. Then I pulled off 2 telltale tentacles and it was clear what had happened. Soon dotted stripes of welts appeared all over my upper body, and I yelled out loud to Frank and Jason to hurry with whatever medical aid they could bring me because I felt like someone had poured scalding water all over me. Frank showed with the vinegar and Jason with a razor for tentacle removal, and now it’s a couple of hours later and the stings have settled into warm red bumps. It seems I’ll live. Not so much luck for the puffer fish the man-o-war wrapped up next to the boat after running into me.
Man-o-war sting

Man-o-war sting