Words by Bryson
Latitude: 16 deg 30' S
Longitude: 145 deg 27' W
Throughout my life, I have been very lucky to have the opportunities to go exploring, traveling and adventuring in search of new cultures, different experiences and new coastlines. All my previous trips have blown my mind and I have come home from each and every trip with something new learnt and experienced. However, throughout it all I always have had this fanciful dream. It started long long ago as a young kid reading and re-reading every single surfing magazine I could lay my hands on. My dream is more in the form of a picture than any actions, just an image that has been created by me and has imprinted itself into my subconscious.
Crystal clear aquamarine water, sun shine dappling through the clear waters to make the ocean floor shimmer, small reef fish swimming around the bottom of your boat. Ahead there is a small island, small enough to walk around in a couple hours, completely ringed by coral reef and the purest whitest sand. On the island, palm trees grow and shade the few bungalows. A small local restaurant is on a wharf ,over the water so you can look down between your feet and see reef fish darting back and forth. Perhaps a fellow sitting on the beach playing a ukulele or the local equivalent. Over everything there an unrushed feeling of peace.
Sounds like a pretty standard and a not very unusual dream image but the neat thing is, that today we found such a place.
While there may no be waves, this is the sort of location that you always dreamed of but never really thought you would find yourself in. The beauty literally takes your breath away.
Snorkeling through the reef pass this afternoon, we were completely surrounded by tropical reef fish, vibrantly coloured corals, and water so clear it was unnerving to look into the depths. Sharks swam in the depths, grouper hit under overhangs, spiny corals reached out to entangle you, little eyes peered out from every nook and cranny... incredible to drift along and watch this show.
Tomorrow we will head back to the beach to see what sort of influence garbage as had to this small motu and how the locals deal with it. Every island seems to have its own methods of garbage disposal, with varying levels of success. Another important aspect of this island is it's location on the windward side of the atoll. Therefore the trade winds blow smack bang into it and bring whatever floating garbage with them. Should be interesting to look around, can't wait.