Surarrow, Coconut beer, Manta Rays, Crab, and Hammocks
We have been anchored here in Surarrow for the last five days and each day has been a new adventure. To begin the anchorage is perfect with no swells or waves rocking us. The weather has been very sunny and the breeze has been cool. Our first day on anchor here we just slept and read books because it was raining off and on so a nice day off was nice to have. Tuesday I dragged Adam out of bed at 7am to go snorkel with the Manta Rays. It was amazing, we took our dinghy to a small reef just off our anchorage and jumped in. I was surprised to see six Manta Rays swimming circles around the coral reef. Each one of the rays was between six or eight feet wide and swam with us. I would dive down and rub there bellies which caused them to want to be near me more. Then the next day we hiked around Anchorage Island and discovered big pools off the beach on the back side of the island that contained dozens of Black Tipped Sharks. It was interesting because when Charlie the Park Ranger would yell to the sharks and they would swim up like dogs and he would freed them a few chunks of fish. I enjoyed the hike around the island and saw some very cool things.
On Wednesday Adam and I spent the day cleaning Dragonsbane and worked on a few project. I repaired our broken mainsheet traveler with a spare part from our friends John and Sue on Wizard. Looks like I am back in business as far as using the mainsail again. We then enjoyed a pot luck dinner with all the other cruisers and listened to Harry play some live music as the sun went down drinking Rum and coconut juice out of the coconut. It was wonderful chatting with all the other cruisers that have crossed the Pacific. Folks from all over the world were at the party and it was a great time.
Thursday we went for a tour with Charlie and had to give him 2 liters of gas form Adam and I plus 20 bucks. We went to Bird Island and saw thousands of birds. The birds were hatching eggs and there were little baby birds all over too. They looked so fun and I guess you could say cute. Then we went over to Seven Island were I found out that the Island is named Seven Island because there are seven types of coconut crab that live there. The Coconut Crabs were as big as basketballs. They were many different colors that ranged from black, red, purple, yellow and so on. They looked like something out of a alien movie. They were crawling everywhere and would climb up the trees and eat the coconuts. I was very worried about losing a toe to one of these things as I walked around. We then ventured out and went snorkeling in a forest of coral heads that created a amazing forest of coral pinnacles that I swam through and saw sharks, turtles, sting rays, and the most healthy coral I have ever seen in my life. I would put this coral reef on the top of list of best snorkeling I have ever done and is 10 time better then the BVI or Virgin Islands.
Friday I spent the day laying in a hammock as i read my book and napped with the ocean breeze keeping me cool. Then I got up and had dinner with everybody and ate coconut crab. The crab was sweet and had big chunks of crab meat that I smothered in butter. We also had some local coconut beer that Charlie the Ranger made from the coconuts on the Island. After everybody ate we enjoyed Harry and Dan playing music and sang songs. Charlie came out with a pitched of Rum mixed with coconut juice that was chilled. We all circled around the rum and Charlie would fill one glass and we would each get a big shot of rum and juice. This was called a sharing circle and this is how Charlie drinks. So you guessed it, I got smashed.
Today I woke up with a bad hangover, so I went back to bed after I held the SSB Radio Net. I woke up later in the morning and went to shore to collect 26 coconuts so I could make myself a batch of coconut beer. I learned from Charlie that you need 26 coconuts worth of juice, one cup sugar, and one teaspoon of yeast to make a batch. So Adam and I climbed up coconut trees and made coconut beer. I then talked to some nice folks Goran and Anniaree from New Zealand, they gave me a recipe for bread. So I made bread this evening and it turned out great. I also helped a nice America single hander named Jerry find his anchor cap that he dropped in 60 feet of water. Adam scuba dived it and I stayed on the surface to give him reference for were to look. Adam found the part and so we were rewards with a 5th of vodka for our trouble and the guy was one happy sailor.
We will be hopefully off to Niue Island on Monday but who knows I may sail somewhere else or leave leter in the week, who knows.
Take it easy,