Greetings from Ghizo

Yay for touristy towns with wireless Internet available on the boat. I’m in Ghizo on the island of Gizo… or is it Gizo on the island of Ghizo. Whatever. I’m in the Solomon Islands. The Solomons are pretty darn cool. Firstly, there is the history – up until the 30s, these guys were known as some of the most dangerous people in the world what with headhunting and cannibalism and all. Now they are incredibly friendly. The sight of some major WW2 battles (Guadalcanal is the main Island here…), there is some amazing diving and snorkling. We’ve essentially been following the American advance since Luganville in Vanuatu which is pretty meaningful now that it is Rememberance Day tomorrow. Some highlights thus far:
Marovo Lagoon in the New Georgia Island group in the Solomons. Pretty much the most amazing coral I have ever seen. Full stop. We’re snorkling in maybe 6 feet of water and then we get to the shelf and its full of brilliantly coloured corals and fish, all at snorkel level. That was pretty neat.
Then we were off to Munda, also on New Georgia I believe. Then we traversed Diamond Narrows between two Islands – a mile long, maybe half a mile wide in its widest. It felt like we were going down the Amazon. People were cheering as we sailed by. Amazing, Then it was down to snorkle a wreck of a Japanese supply ship WW2 era. Also amazing. I swam up the smokestack. Yay me and conquring my fears.
Next it was to Kennedy Island, the Island that JFK was shipwrecked on in WW2. Tiny tiny Island close to Ghizo. Now we’re in Ghizo and I spent the most amazing afternoon playing volleyball and soccer with the youth at the local united church who were having a sports day. It was so much fun!! It totally recharged me and now I’m feeling more positive about things (groceries were frusterating me.)
Offshore isn’t all fun and games though. It is pretty much the hottest I’ve ever experienced right now. We measured 45 degrees on deck the other day. I have never sweat so much in my life. My skin problem has come back, so I’m back on the antibiotics, hopefully this will clear it up. And food is so hard to come by here. The grocery stores, when they have them are tiny and quantities are tiny and expensive. We spent $500 US today on what would have maybe cost half that at home – some canned fruits, veg, a bit of margarine and enough meat for 1 meal. Its a bit sketch. I think this is the area of Offshore I was most concerned about and it is living up to my expectations. I’ve heard that Rabul in PNG where we are off to next is a bit better. I hope.
But for now, I’m just going to enjoy Ghizo. There is a sunken Japanese Zero plane in the harbour I may be able to check out tomorrow (but I’m cooking and I’d also like to try and get to church too).
In other news, I’ve signed a contract to finish the summer season and the fall season next year with SALTS, cooking still. I’ll be cooking trip 4 an 5 – August 9 it starts in Port Hardy and then cooking until October 30. So that is life as far in advance as I’ve planned. After that, who knows?!?

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