“We are actually leaving the boat!” I hollered with unexpected glee as we took off towards the yellow Yacht Services tent and dinghy dock. Local kids played under a plumeria tree laden with fragrant white flowers, many already scattered on the ground like confetti. Adults breakfasted at long picnic tables under blue vinyl tents. I stepped onto land and felt immediately dizzy. So did Diane, so we took a knee as Greg passed up the garbage to us. We plopped down in front of the Yacht Services office to let the dizziness pass while Greg and Susan filled out paperwork with Kevin, the logistics man in Taiohe. After a few pleasantries with fellow cruisers we plunged deep into the world of wifi, returning messages from friends and family, posting pictures.
Alas, we have to wait on one more official document from Tahiti Crew, so we will meet with the gendarme on Monday. “Just don’t get in any bar fights,” said Kevin, “and you’ll be fine.” Freedom! We explored the small local farmers’ market–all kinds of coconuts, all sizes of banana, yellow and deep purple ube sweet potatoes, banana vinegar, fresh turmeric, chiles, bok choy, squashes, preserved red berries. We walked in the shade along the bay under a huge variety of trees, some dripping with vines, voluptuous pods and bright flowers. Others supported giant breadfruit and glossy green leaves. The soft, yielding, deep red soil cushioned our feet. We took out francs at the bank and sat down for lunch of poisson cru, Hintano beer and fried sliced potatoes.
Thanks for the proper welcome Nuku Hiva, we are so so very glad to be here.