position S13 52.340 E167 33.240
Ocean Rival Journey Log
Adam Power Diana Power
Fri 14 Jun 2019 20:03
Friday 14th June
It was a rolly night with the swell comming into the bay and wind across so not much sleep
In the morning we bought some veg from the market and as the vatus were depleted by the exit zarpe we waited for the bank to open in advance of the queue which we were warned would form for goverment payay. The money was on ration as the cash hadn't made it onto the plane from Port Vila but 5000 was all we had planned to change anyway. Some ladies had brought baskets to market from the other side of the island and Diana was keen to support a new basket making enterprise.
Roger had promised to find us a truck to give a lift to the cinic but we set out walking and reached the rather remote clinic before any trucks appeared. The test was however quick and easy and the hand-written ticket pronounced negative. Roger arrived on his quadbike and ensured that we didn't pay for the test, or for the extra antibiotics we bought to replace the stores. We got a lift back to town with a truck from the church of melanesia.
In the afternoon I had a good walk up the hill to see the view of the bay at the stone cross and then over the hill to a village on the coast around the peninsular. Some school boys walking home accompanied me and then a pair of young construcion workers took over and guided me through the forest to the beach and then around coast and back through the forest to the Sola road. They showed me an amazing fresh water spring which produced a delightful crystal clear river. A lady doing her washing a bit further downstream was producing volcanic scale bangs as she slapped the clothes against a flat tree stump. My guides told me about poisonous plants- one fruit used for catching fish by simply putting it in a pool, and a complicated drug they take using a nut a bean and some wood ash. The nut makes their teeth and lips red now I see that most men have the same red mouths including Roger the Policeman. Some other lads on the beach later said laughingly it is good for f***ing - they looked a bit high.
On the road back I met several people- a teenaged boy introduced himself (John) and said his mother had died and he is looking for a sponsor for his school fees. Schooling is only free to age 11 in Vanuatu. He apoligised for the direct aproach but I said there is no harm in asking. He gave me the name of the administrator for the anglican church that seems to be the main religion in the Banks and Torres reqion of Vanuatu. I had spotted the adminstration building near the stone cross so I called in and asked for Timothy. He turned out to be Johns uncle and his sister had tasked him on her deathbed with the responsibilty for Johns education. He is struggling as he has children of his own to pay for but is duty bound by the dying words of his sister. I took Timothys details and will see if we can help. The school costs around $500 per term. Timothy is hoping that if John can get through school he would be in with a chance of a Banks organisation scholarship to study medicine in england.
We had a superb meal at the yacht club in the evening to finish off the vatus and I collapsed in my bunk rather earlier than usual.