Is it somehow indicative of our relationship that we spent our second wedding anniversary in a dark confined space covered in bat shit?
Yesterday afternoon we crept on hands and knees over slimy rocks and huge piles of guano as the bats all slept soundly on the roof of the cave. Fluffy bird feathers stuck to the muck on our bodies and who knows what kind of large insects scuttled around us. Not having brought headlamps, five of us followed Ola and his flashlight up and over the slippery rocks and asked him every minute or so to shine the light back so we could find our next foothold. There we were – six of us in a cave with our laughter echoing off the rock walls and huge grins on our dirty faces, all exclaiming, “Tonga is so freaking awesome!”
Our friends (Okestern & Ninita) offered to leave Will and I in the large ceremonial chamber for a romantic evening in the mud. The chamber is quite special; there is even an opening in the roof from which food was lowered for important feasts being held there in ancient times. Tempting, but No.
In answer to the question above, yes, I do think the situation was fitting. Our first two years of marriage have been far from ordinary: living on a 40ft boat, being together 24/7, learning how to work together at Hydrovane, and dealing with everything good and bad that comes with sailing our own boat thousands of miles across an ocean. We’ve accomplished a lot, done a ton of learning, and pushed each other to do things we never would have done before…. It only makes sense that we’d be in a strange, extraordinary place on the anniversary of our wedding. The guano may have been a bit over the top, but at least we got to wash it off it the magical underwater part of the cave.
I know everyone is fascinated by blog posts about things that are scary or have gone wrong. The gripping stuff! In spite of that, I can’t help but write a bit more about how incredible these days have been. I know, I know, it gets boring: “beautiful white beaches, palm trees, turquoise water, blah, blah, blah.” But cruising in Tonga really is incredible. We are now a band of young cruisers – everyone out to explore and enjoy the world! Morning exercises on the beach with our friends, swimming in coral gardens and caves, preparing for our own pig roast (the guys on Waskavi and Lady Lostris have purchased a pig and are picking it up today), sunset rum drinks, shell hunting, making jewellery, and scurfing. The icing on the cake for us is that we have email access over the entire Vava’u Group of islands with a Digicel Tonga SIM card in our iPad so we can even keep up with work while we play.