I will not leave today. Chitchatty did and I hope he is ok. Remember the swimming man? I found out that he swam from Chittchatty’s boat, but Chitchatty left the swimming man swimming somewhere in the Tuamotus.
I have called no less than 15 people today looking for someone who can help me fix Juniper’s propane control system. I can’t sing or sage it into working anymore. My calls are all dead ends because my tongue is broken. My friend, with the changing eyes, makes one phone call with her working tongue and a man named Jean Francois (JF) is on his way.
I blow up Daisy and row in to get JF at the fisherman’s pier. He sees Daisy and the oars, points to his pot belly and says, “I swim.” I insist not. JF squats inside Daisy with a twisted face and his hands grip onto her rubber edges like she’s a 1970s rollercoaster heading towards the sky.
We make it to Juniper. We can hardly communicate. We draw pictures and point and say things like “rouge,” “violet,” “fire,” “non.” He grunts, he shakes his head a lot, his sweat needs a sponge, he often says, “Je ne sais pas. I’m electrician, non electronics.” And I say, “JF, you do know. The electronic problem is electrical. We must try!”
We find a loose wire on the back of the unit, it’s brown and I can’t find the schematics so we have not a clue where it goes. I try to convince JF that it goes in the one empty slot back there; he says, “Maybe, maybe non, maybe we put and boom, fire!” Together we do something to the system and it shoots out an alarm so loud that it shakes a bird loose from the sky.
JF then decides that we must abolish the propane control system entirely. So we do. We break the connection between the sensor and the hoses going from the tanks to the stove. Now I‘m running back and forth every five minutes sniffing for leaks. JF told me I must do this for two days straight to be safe. The sensor made it so the propane only released when I turned the unit on, now propane is just flowing freely. To play the safest measure, I might just close the tank whenever it’s not in use. I can’t catch fire again.
I ask JF if I should set sail today. “ He says, “Non, the wind it’s 40 knots.” I thought it was a communication error, until another boat sailed into the anchorage. I said, “How was it out there?” They said, “It’s crazy, it’s blowing 40 knots.”
I will leave tomorrow. Friday. When the wind is calmer and the swell bigger, so Juniper can surf. Juniper will surf me to either Huahine or Raiatea. It depends. I am meeting up with some friends.