Thursday, November 22, 2012

Pirates, and other seafarers

I have spent a lot of time wondering about boat travel, lately. Wondering as in pondering, as well as "being in wonder of".

After our initial visit to Nuapapu, and the wild success of that boat ride (complete with dolphin sighting!) I was not at all anxious about the 22 hour boat ride that would bring us and our junk from Tomgatapu to Vava'u.

I should have been.

I was fine when land was in view, which made up about a total of 4 of the 22 hours. I leaned over the railing, stared up at stars, saw schools of flying fish, felt the wind and sun on my face, oh it was magical. The sun was setting when we left Tongatapu, at 4am I stumbled to the restroom and glimpsed some Ha'apai boats from outer islands coming toward us, around 8 we docked at one of the Ha'apai islands and walked around, and sometime around 2pm we caught sight of the first of the Vava'u islands. At all of those times I loved this trip.

The other 18 hours I was in the fetal position on the boat deck. It was just so....rocky. So rolly. So up and down. My stomach stayed in my throat, and if possible I no longer had a head. I never got sick, but next time I hope I can at least sit up for some of the ride....besides all that, I recommend it, and I'll do it again. There is something grand and adventurous about this boat ride, and the magic of spotting land after hours of water is something to experience first hand.

During the numerous hours I spent lying on the deck, I couldn't help but wonder at all those who came before is. Imagine heading off on a ship to a destination unknown and spending months at a time on the water. It is utterly amazing to me.

On our short ride from Neiafu to Nuapapu the water was much less tranquil than our initial trip. At some points we had to turn the engine off to breach the waves, it was really not scary at all and very exciting. I love being on the water! While we were slowly moving along, we spotted a boat in the distance. There was a quick conversation about who it was, and again I marveled at the bravery and ability of the seaman. How can one tell who it is? I mean, I'm sure around here everyone recognizes everybody else's boat (s), but I sure can't see a thing! And back in the day, I can't imagine the courage it would take to see a boat up ahead, and having know idea who could be on it, continuing in the same direction.

I've got a lot to learn about island living and sea faring. :)


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