Skull Island

Lars Alfredson
Wed 22 Jul 2015 07:46

2015-07-18 Skull Island

The morning starts with firing up the generator followed by the water maker and the washing machine which is loaded with various towels bedding and clothing.

While the washing machine does its thing, I take to the computer to edit pictures and write some more. Lars is busy cannibalising hatches various of their working hinges to replace the broken ones on the more important ones. These hinges are evidently of a limited life span and seem to be breaking with increasing regularity.

Shan is busy hand washing the more delicate items of our laundry.

With the washing done and the yacht festooned with drying clothing, looking like a Chinese laundry, we set off for Skull Island on the horizon. The journey entails a wide detour of a coral reef that lies between it and us and, as we motor along trying to spot where the deeper water starts we notice two dark objects behaving very oddly out in the middle of the reef far from land.

Zooming in with the trusty camera, a click reveals two dogs, up to their middles in water, frolicking about, having the time of their lives leaping around chasing each other and presumably fish.

Carefully manoeuvring over the end of the reef we hit the ocean swell and as we approach the island the low tide shows it now joined to its neighbouring land and the reef exposed. We pole our way the last few metres until we run out of water before tying the dinghy to a stranded tree trunk and wading ashore.

It’s a very small island about a third the size of a football pitch, thickly covered in vegetation and trees. As we follow the path passing a couple of concrete graves and crosses, we enter a larger clearing.

Here, sitting in hollows, on a large mound made of coral slabs and staring out of their eyeless sockets are the grinning skulls of the late, great warriors. These are grouped together and on top of the mound is a large “A” shaped tomb with a triangular door, inside and half way up is a floor double decking the skulls, from whence its inmates greet us with a cordial smile.

In front of them are several circular pieces of shell which were used as currency. In another nearby is a hollow containing several large signalling conch shells presumably gifts to the Gods.

It’s an eerie, though touching sight and, it’s interesting to see some Christian style graves there also. It doesn’t appear to have had much in the way of visitors apart from tourists from the neighbouring resort and the occasional yachtie.

We return to take in the now dried washing and have a healthy fruity lunch washed down with a crispy beer.

Later in the afternoon we visit the Resort to book in for dinner and to check their fridges are up to par with a few sample beers. While we are there the local fishermen arrive with a canoe load of crayfish which we are assured will be on the menu tonight.

6ish and it starts to rain fortunately it gives up before we depart. We’ve not been there long when Shan has to be taken back to base with a dicky tum to resume her diet of dry biscuits. Meanwhile dinner comes in form of a buffet, plenty of fish, meat, chicken and the promised crayfish.

Bob the Blog