There have been many magical mornings when we awake
to find the boat surrounded by wildlife and fantastic scenery, this is equally true since arriving in the Marquesas. We have
gone up on deck in Fatu Hiva and Tahuatu to find large schools of dolphins
playing around the boat, the youngsters leaping and twisting out of the water
while the adults flirt and mate, sharks lazily gliding past with their unique
snake like action, large rays "flying" around the boat and huge schools of
fish seeking safety from predators under the hull.
Here in the fantastic surroundings of Daniel's Bay,
the waterfilled caldera of an old volcano, the boat has constantly been
surrounded by a large school of small fish that come right up
to us when we go for a swim, sheltering from the midday sun and also using
the hull for protection against their many enemies. This morning we awoke to the
sound of large fish chasing the small fish and could see what looked like a
large number of Jacks or Trevalleys working together to herd the fish into tight
groups before attacking in unison, scattering the shoal before working together
once more to herd them up.
A stark reminder of the contrast between the beauty and
harsh reality of nature.
Behind us the first rays of the morning sun was
lighting up the huge volcanic cliffs on the west side of the bay, bringing
out the fantastic range of colours from the rock and foliage.