Mar 27 - Lazy daze

These last two days have been awesome. Three small islands are directly in front of us; the coconut palms are swaying in the breeze, and the nearby sandy beaches and different hued water colors never fail to disappoint. It's hot aboard; afternoons are about 89F-91F down below. Jumping into the water brings cool relief, but the currents can be quite rapid. We've dinghied into the beach and walked completely around the nearest island. On the eastern side, black and gray colored lava rock is abundant, and care must be taken walking barefoot. The small estuary on the windward side, inside the reef, seems to be a fish nursery; it's full of vegetation, quite shallow, and has little definition. A narrow river of fast flowing blue water cuts thru the southern side of the island, but sandbars prevent easy dinghy access. We've done a bit of swimming, but have been told by one of the dive boats that the white and black-tipped sharks, rays, turtles, and Napoleon wrasse, as well as other large fish are further south a bit and can be seen at a depth of about 20m outside the reef to windward. We've played hearts with Stuart & Sheila, have kept the tall stories to a minimum, and have also done a lot of boat work. Our salon table finally gave it up; the outer drop leaf pulled off its piano hinge; it hadn't been repaired correctly in Phuket and it was just a matter of time before I had to rebuild yesterday. Finding our epoxy to repair the teak was the easy part; the formica top needs replacement and will have to wait for another time when the entire table can be re-covered. Our Jabsco watermaker boost pump is still gasping for breath but seems to be working, temporarily. A contingency plan is already in place in case it totally craps out. Our meals are getting pretty creative; we've eaten fresh octopus, given to us a couple of days ago at another island, and improvised our own recipe, reminiscent of eating at the Sponge Docks in Tarpon Springs. The drinking coconuts we've been given are refreshing, and also make a good mixer. We plan another provisioning in Addu in the next few days. Our lassitude will be over soon; it's sure been a nice break. For anyone following in our wake, you'll love this place; just plan on staying for a while.

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