More culturally interesting experiences yesterday.
Kiritimati - kir is i mas. Ti = s
We had a pretty rough start on the boat - I guess the culmination of Josh's bad mood. Tipped me over - I had to tell him to get over it. Probably surprised him as I don't generally give him too much of a hard time. I guess I was tired of all the whining. "its hard, its hard", yeah well, welcome to cruising - shouldn't be a news flash. Finally Dennis and I went to KPA (kiritimati port authority) internet café to buy some internet time. It is located at the end of the wharf. We dinghied over as there is a very nice dinghy dock on the wharf. We decided to get the KPA because when we put up our wifi antenna, it boosted the signal well enough for us to get it on the boat. It makes homework for Josh easier. Still a pain in the ass according to him, but at least he will be able to make progress in his biology course. Took us a while to get it set up and going and figure out how to turn it on and off. Then Dennis and I went in to check out the festivities. I don't think that Josh didn't want to come as much as he really wanted time away from us. Plus he had homework. We missed the marching - something that actually started on time- it was probably the highlight of the day according to Carla. We heard them beginning around 730 am, but that was way too early. Josh thinks his homework affects only him……
First on our agenda was to find some bread. I am doing my best to put off having to bake my own for as long as possible. We were able to buy some (even on the holiday). $4 for two loaves - Orowheat eat your heart out!! I think they must use a little whole wheat flour, cuz it is not really all that white of bread. Actually we scored ice cream cones first. Nice to have something cold. Amazing how hot is on shore. Felt cool on the boat with the breeze, but shore was hot and muggy.
Independence Day celebrations here are very much a community event. Seemed to us like a big community bbq while watching soccer or whatever other sport was going on. We decided to walk to the water side of the field, hoping it would be a bit cooler. It wasn't really. The field was surrounded by their version of "pop ups" over cement picnic tables. Basically open buildings with corrugated roofs. Some have wood floors, some not. It looked like the family all came for the day, with their sleeping mats, kids, toys etc and bought food from the different vendors. We were standing there watching the game - looking like out of place white people - when a man started talking to us - where you from etc… Turns out Meka (his short name) is the mayor. Wow talk about hospitality! He bought us lunch and beer (even a bud will taste good when it is cold and free). Meka explained about the schools - each village has a primary, the government has one secondary to I think 8th grade and there are two private, church based, senior high schools. He also explained about the soccer teams, talked about his family, and how unused to seeing white people here they are. Tourists come here, but generally to fish and they never leave the hotel they stay at. Meka is a very nice man - he would not let us pay - we laughingly said we would vote for him and tell people to vote for him. Turns out we were eating from Bob's (driver from yesterday afternoon) family's food stand - hence the budweiser beer.
Meka's 14 yr old son was playing in the final we were watching - don't think his team won. When the game ended, Meka left to go rest up for the evening's festivities - a big bbq sponsored by the minister. We have not been going to any of the night activities as coming back to the boats in the dark with the dinghies just seems a bit iffy. By then, we figured we had seen and done all that was to be done and it was time to head back. We brought our food with us - so technically we had carry out for dinner last night! I had hoped to get some of the sweet and sour pork (no breading), but they ran out. I was able to taste it from the pot - man yummy!
Kind of a lazy boat day today. I have done dishes and tidied up, drilled holes in one of our deck boxes - I love power tools! Dennis put in a switch to turn the subwoofer on and off - uses too much power for full time use. We may go in later. The internet we bought yesterday is turned off - can't see it today. So goes the cruising life. Finally get Josh motivated to do his work and the internet craps out. REALLY!!! Is pretty windy again today - supposed to be through the weekend. Hope to be out of here Tuesday (US time). I think we have decided to go to Manihiki. It is only 600 miles and will break up the trip to Suwarrow. I am already thinking of what food to prepare ahead of time for that crossing. May buy a couple cans of corned beef and some potatoes for a stew - that always goes over well. Surprisingly I found no canned beef in HI before we left, or at least none I was willing to buy.
Went over to Hoo Roo this afternoon so Josh could use their internet connection (they have the govt internet). He was able to connect and take some quizzes for biology. I checked my gmail and banking. The Hoo Roo internet cafe is very upscale - served us rice and fish balls - yum. We provided california wine, beer (moondance) and snacks. Hoo Roo is such a nice boat - a catamaran, so lots of space. Thanks very much to them for keeping our student happy. No big plans for tomorrow - is Sunday here, so quiet day in town. If the winds calms down maybe some water time - we will see.
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