September 18, 2010

Spiders or Sharks

Artemo is surrounded by sharks. At any given time there are 4 to 6 black tip reef sharks circling our boat. This poses a bit of a problem since our method of getting clean is sea baths. Alex thinks it is pretty cool and as I did laundry on the back deck the other day he swam around the boat. It was strange to keep looking up to make sure he was safe and see Alex and then see the sharks. I told him to speak to me every minute or so, so that I didn't freak out. Later in the day I asked him to spot for me (basically wear his snorkel mask and watch for sharks) while I took a bath. Unfortunately on this occasion one of the black tips decided it would be fun to play a game of chicken with Alex and made a b-line right for him. He jumped up in the dinghy faster than I had ever seen him move. Regardless bath time was OVER.

Suwarrow is a really cool deserted island with a neat history. A man named Tom Neale came to live alone on this island in the 50's, 60's and 70's. He ended up writing a book about the adventures he had setting up his life here. It is titled "An island onto oneself". It is definitely worth a read. I love imagining him here and being able to put real images to each moment as he has described it in his book.

There are now 2 park rangers who stay on the island for the cruising season and there is a club house and cook shack where everyone hangs out. The rangers are from Rarotonga and are unbelievably nice and organize outings and pot lucks. When we checked in they said we were free to use the showers on the islands so given the fact that bathing with the sharks wasn't appealing this is what we set out to do!

The shower is at the back of the club house and has no light and is quite dark. I had Graham connect the wires for the pump and away I went. I forgot to bring my regular glasses, so I had on my prescription sunglasses. I basically showered in the darkness. It was still wonderful. Once I had finished Amelia had her shower. After about 10 minutes I found her and her pile of stuff outside of the shower room doing the "weebie geebie" dance. She said there was a HUGE spider in the bathroom. The biggest spider she had ever seen and she kept repeating, "It was furry, furry!" She was FREAKING out. Graham went in the room and managed to get the spider out and I watched as it scurried up the wall. It was huge and yes it was furry. Totally terrifying. I realized that I must of showered with it to!

Once Amelia had calmed down I asked her to describe what had happened. She said that she finished her shower and her clothes were hanging on the back of the door. She went to reach for them and she spotted the huge spider in the shadows on the wall. The problem was that she was naked. Outside the shower room all the cruisers were gathering for the potluck. Her options were....stay with scary spider and dress OR run out naked in front of cruisers. She opted for taking her chances with the spider. She said she kept her eyes on the spider and carefully put on her clothes. She then grabbed everything up in a frenzy, exited the room and proceeded to have her break down!

So now each day we are faced with the question as bath time comes round......"Spiders or Sharks?"


  1. The spider would have finished me and I would chose dirt or to visit Louis more often. Sharks or Spider quite a delema both being dangerous. How about a sponge bath?

  2. I was just thinking I would choose dirt! lol I am soo happy Alex made it back in the dingy safe and sound.

  3. eeeeeeewwww Millie. You are one brave gal. Danika would have ran out naked screaming at the top of her lungs and probably would have kept running straight into the water with the sharks. she HATES spiders.