Wednesday, June 15, 2011


I pulled out my final supply of a dozen eggs this morning and they are all mouldy on the outside of the shells. Provisions are getting low. Sugar, flour, rice, lentils, nuts now eggs are down to the final meals. The small yellow stifling box of a building run by a Chinese man had little to bolster the missing items. Some weevilly flour in holey plastic bags didn't appeal but I bought 6 eggs for 6 Pa'anga (3 US$) and some breakfast crackers. We have plenty of starchy roots: cassava, "yam", and potatoes, and breadfruit (not a root). So, we can eat like the locals eat which is not what I'm used to but should be just fine. except that with Toby aboard it's humbling for me to not have interesting, appetizing meals every day. It's something I have taken pride in for our entire cruising life, that I can (if not seasick) whip up a tasty treats out of simple ingredients. Things are getting a bit on the skimpy side however, partially due to my new reticence to purchase and eat items from cans. The lining of tin cans is usually made from polycarbonate (Plastic recycling #7). "Polycarbonate plastic is made with bisphenol A, which can leach….especially when heated. Bisphenol A [a.k.a. BPA] is a homone disruptor, linked to early onset of puberty, obesity, recurrent miscarriages, and decreased sperm count, and is associated with breast and prostate cancers." (Slow Death by Rubber Duck, p. 272-273).

So, I didn't stock up with the usual standbys of canned soups for health reasons, but it sure is cramping my meal prep style.

Meal prep for Eloise is still pretty simple. If I don't want her eating what I make for the grownups, I can scramble her an egg or steam her a carrot. She also has been nursing frequently because of that lower right molar that just keeps growing under her gums.

In other news, the island of Ha'afeva has been enjoyable. There's a ½ mile walk into town from where we are anchored on the west side of the island. We pass young cows, taro and cassava farms, mango trees, pigs, and the frondy trees that are used for weaving mats and numerous other handicrafts. Eloise waves at every cow, points and waves at each pig and squeaks and points when she sees something particularly interesting.

Lucy is a local lady with six children, an industrious husband and a bedridden father. I had been hoping to meet someone to hand off some of Eloise's outgrown clothes and found her in Lucy. Lucy has also been eager to meet cruisers to make them handicrafts, do washing or provide traditional Tongan meals. She told us she doesn't want to charge money but just to have people trade whatever they think they want to give her. Her kind offerings to make Eloise numerous woven items made us want to give right back to her.

Lucy's neighbor, Peter, on the other hand, with his repeated requests for money, petrol, etc. is not so easy to befriend. I can show up at Lucy's house and visit with her and her kids and ask questions about their culture, take pictures of her kids being cute, etc. With Peter's constant opportunistic mindset, there's no relationship, no sign of interest in getting to know one another, as with Lucy. They each see palangis (foreigners) as a means to improved lives but the difference is in the approach and how they treat the palangis.

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