Cooking, The Cooks and the Captain

Sat 28 Jun 2008 00:36
Friday 27th June
Noon position 18:11.6S 157:08.9W
We are making good but not perfect progress to our chosen target amongst the widely spaced Cook Islands: Aitutaki. It is pretty, but the anchorage is tight and shallow, just like me!!, and we will arrive at dusk, not a safe time. Our usual dilemma on this trip. We can't speed up much, so we will probably have to slow down, and arrive the following morning. First we are getting a weather forecast, to see if that will guide our decision, and while we are waiting for it we thought of you all and decided to write! 
Over to Vicky:  I guess i'm talking about the cooking and Mr Captian Cook!  Dad on his hunt for the best shrimp curry this side of the equator produced a exceptionally yummy and indeed ambitions first nights dinner onboard at sea. No mean feat when the boat rolls so much!  Yesterday morning we put out the fishing line complete with dad's favourite DIY squid lure made from bits of blue surgical gloves and biro eyes -i was a little sceptical but fish are pretty thick!.  Just before dusk as i was digging out the tins for the vegetarian dinner option the reel went and we hauled in a rather subdued large black finned tuna (given the usal flapping and chaos assiciated with landing a big fish). It was filleted and did for a tuna tai green curry and he other half is for tonight's dinner. In Polynesia their favourite local dish is Poisson Cru which is raw tuna chunks marinaded in lemon juice and then covered in coconut milk and some raw onions and tomatoes stired in.  Its good in the restaurants but not sure if we should both eat raw fish on the boat at sea!  I have been reading Captain Cook's daries of his adventures in this part of the world from 1774.  Even by then a few of the major pacific islands icluding Tahiti had been visited by european adventureres but he still found and named a good deal more of the south pacific islands including (obviously) some of the Cook Islands which is where we are heading, 234 years and 2 weeks after him!  Most of the islanders he encountered were friendly and the women (by 1774 standards) quite liberated!  He spent his days ashore meeeting chiefs, searching for water, trading odds and sods (nails and cloth) for fruit and coconuts.  In that respect not much has changed from today as on arrival in each island, we still go go see the customs/police man, search endlessely for a tap and in the case of dad, try and pay for mangos by using up his Equadorian money!!  Anyhow off to prepare dinner now, what would you do with a fresh fillet of tuna, an onion, a green pepper and a stack of assorted tins? Its a bit like an episode of Ready, Steady......Cook!
Me, again. Just to say that we do rotate the chores, it's a liberated ship, I do get to hang on to some of the keytasks however, like cleaning the shower drain!!!!! Thanks to Geoff for news from RHH: life goes on. It will be good to have him back on the boat now he has reading glasses: I had formed the view that without them his navigational skills were becoming limited. Don't suppose anyone at work was bothered that he couldn't read anything for the last couple of years, it's not something that an ICU bod would be expected to do anyway!!