Dream the dream. Dream, dream, dream, dream. Make me the moon and let the sea spill out of me.
I am laying down on the bow of the boat. It’s 1:11 a.m. and I’m wearing sunglasses. It’s the Super Flower blood moon lunar eclipse and my eyes are all over it, but it’s too bright for them to be naked. The celestial bodies are delicious. La lune, waxing and waning, reflecting the light of 1,000 sunsets and dripping crimson onto my skin. The sky is swollen with splendor. The twinkle of the etoiles. The prisms cast upon the clouds. The sound of waves on hitting the reef beneath it all.
I am still here, in this paradise boatyard. Waiting for the moon to set and for the fish to wake up, so that I can sit at the edge of the coral shore and let them nibble on me. The little white fish with yellow tails and black tips like to do that. There’s usually a trumpet fish trotting nearby.
All day long, I climb a long ladder to my swim-steps, then climb my swim-steps to my sailboat treehouses, up and down. Juniper’s new whisker stay went on like a charm. I installed, yet another, starboard navigation light. The ocean fries only that light and I don’t know why! I decided to remove all of Juniper’s bottom paint, because it was thick and cracking like a cantaloupe anyway. I was up until 3 a.m. last night painting primer on Juniper and I never want to see a paintbrush again. Furthermore, I don’t know how everyone stays so clean when they paint a boat. It ends up in my hair, my mouth, my toes. I wind up looking like I’ve been crawling around a cave for the last 20 years and feel total exhaustion.
I’m hoping to splash on Saturday morning. I need to get on the water. My solar isn’t enough to sustain the batteries and without my alternator, I’m living on land in lantern light. There is power here of course, but I don’t have a way to convert 220 volts to 120 volts, so it is what it is. Me and the power of the sun.
Erwan, whose name I spelled wrong before, will join me to Fakarava and then down to Tahit. His steel boat is beyond repair. Corroded hull, a seized rudder, a questionable engine, half an ignition starter key, busted water pump, and lord knows what’s crawling around in the galley and eating his 5 year old food. All that’s left is the painted rainbow and the boat’s memories of being stuck between glaciers of ice for three days straight.
Apataki is a nice place for a boat to die and transform into something new. I said we should turn the boat into une maison de poisson. Tony, who owns the yard and says voila often, is going to turn the busted boat into a shrimp house or something of the sorts. Whatever Tony turns that boat into, it will bloom, cause that boy’s thumb is blue and green. He’s got Halloween pumpkins and cactus and every kind of fruit tree, all growing out here in this coral desert. And his pigs are fat too.
Tony didn’t know he could eat the orange pumpkins. Said he kept them so he could carve them into smiley jack-o-lanterns and stick them on mean customer’s heads. I showed him how to bake one up and make it real tasty. I thought he liked it, but then I saw him carrying a bunch of the Halloween pumpkins and I was about to send him recipes, when he said, “I’m going to feed them to the pigs. I’d rather eat the pig than the pumpkin.”
There’s a whale bone next to Tony’s kitchen house. Sometimes I sit on it just to feel it’s power. Sometimes I walk the reef. Sometimes I wander into the coconut forest and it crawls with crabs and I sing at the top of my lungs.
Word to the wise, never sit beneath a coconut tree, I’ve seen 30 coconuts splat onto the ground since arriving.
In typical Olivia fashion, I got an infection. I felt fatigued and pain in my body beneath my left rib for four days straight. Could hardly lay down. Erwan determined that my kidney was infected. I said, “Am I gonna die,” And he said, “Yes…. but I don’t know when exactly.” Now I’m popping cranberry pills like popcorn and eating some medicine that he gave me, but it expired in 2017 so who knows if that’s doing any good.
A day later, he got a severe case of vertigo and I had to do this crazy maneuver where the person sits and you tilt their head 45 degrees and throw them fast onto one side of their body and their eyes start twitching like a tweaker, then you wait for the eyes to stop and throw them the other direction. Kind of freaked me out to do it and I don’t know if I can ever unsee those tweaker eyes.
What else? Oh, I went to the village the other day. It’s a 40 minute boat ride across the water. People were bicycling everywhere. I saw an all female bicycle gang, a woman on a bike with loads of fish flopping out of her basket, and the next thing I knew, I was on a bike too, it had three wheels and no breaks. Papi, Tony’s grandpa, whose a ball of light, brought copra (dried coconut) and eggs to sell in the village. Other than his eggs, the only thing fresh in the shop was cabbage, so I’ve been eating cabbage everything.
Anyway, I miss you and from here can feel the weight of the wind between us.
P.S.- What would you do if a crab crawled away with your shoe?