May 3

We are at a lovely bay on Ua Poa. The first one was at a small village with a breakwater. This one is facing more west and there is a tiny village but the bay is wide and clean. I went snorkeling with Chris yesterday. She is an amazing free diver and can free dive to 40 feet easily and stay down! I saw a spotted Eagle Ray and lots of little fish. We peered in all the caves looking for lobster but no luck.

Marcus has a terrible infection on his foot and is a living example of what happens in the tropics when you fail to tend properly to a little scratch. He scratched himself on a rock in a stream they crossed during a hike. Little scratches become very serious for sailors who tend to get wet a lot. His leg is severely swollen and is clearly a very serious infection. His father (he is a doctor) emailed him to inject antibiotics in a IV. I attempted to help but simply ending up bleeding him till he almost fainted and then I almost fainted. Well I am a bit rusty on IV insertion procedures. We located a nurse on another boat and shot him up like the pro she is. They will leave for Nuka Hiva tomorrow to have him checked out at the Hospital but I think he should be fine now that he has the antibiotic injected. He will get another dose before they leave.

We have decided to play as we have found a little 4 year old boy on the boat next door. There are only 5 boats here so it was not that hard. They are French, Claire and Raoul (he is a blonde Viking type!) and their little boy is Victor - a mini version of his dad. Jonah and he played all morning while Claire and I chatted. She is currently a teacher on Nuka Hiva trying to stash cash away for a new boat. All public servants here get paid 2.5 times a normal French salary as this is considered a hardship post. She painted a rather different picture than I had of the happy natives. She said there is much child abuse both physical and sexual. The children are not encouraged intellectually and the parents don't seem to value education. There is much alcoholism among young people and your average teen is as bored and disaffected as one would find in the anywhere.

I am not sure if her perception is 100% - one sees a lot being a teacher but perhaps it is only a slice of reality. Anyway the problems she mentioned seems to be consistent with a culture that was decimated, massacred and oppressed. The scars of that abuse by the French Navy (and American whalers, Peruvian Slavers and whoever else stopped by) are apparent in their lack family structures. Claire and her husband hope to work in Tahiti for a year and then move to New Zealand. She is pregnant with a second child and is due in July. Their 32' boat is steel and very small for their growing family. She misses the usual things - bookstores, certain foods, nice clothes and anything else cosmopolitan you can think. We have been invited to a play date in the morning and Jonah is excited.

I am currently reading a book on Abbie Hoffman written by his brother. Interesting and strange - one reads about the events of those times (the late 60's) and it seems so distant and strange.