Location: Port Vila, Efate, Vanuatu

After five spectacular days in Vanuatu, it’s time for us to soak up every last bit and prepare for the longest passage yet. Today we had two how-to presentations in the morning. Ermi taught us a relaxation form of Tai Chi and taught us what not to do when we go to China. She explained how we should NEVER get a tattoo of a Chinese character because most of the time, they say chicken or are written in terrible handwriting. She also informed us not to try and speak the language because we no doubt will have it wrong, and they will have no idea what we are trying to say anyway. It was wildly entertaining, and I say we learned a lot and are very prepared for our travels to China. We then had Katelyn show an egg beating, the water polo form for treading water. She did fantastically; she managed to get everyone in the water to practice egg beating and pass around a watermelon, our substitute water polo ball, of course. I was tired after about 10 minutes in the water, and these players have to beat me for hours. I have a whole new perspective on egg beating and water polo. After the morning, we had the afternoon for shore time. Students went and saw the waterfalls, jumped in this beautiful blue lagoon with a rope swing, rode horses, shopped, and loaded up on food for passage. There was also a pretty large group of us, RJ, Jim, Eric Sturm, Ryan, Leah, and myself, who all went provisioning to make sure we have enough food on our next passage. It is a lot of fun filling up nine shopping carts of at least 9 of everything.

Also, seeing the look on the face of the woman checking us out when she rings up 70 boxes of cereal, 125 potatoes, 80 apples, 85 tomatoes, and the list just goes on. I also may or may not have loved being pushed around in shopping by Jim! The whole group worked so well together and had a great time. Go, provisioners!! We ended the day with a wonderful spaghetti and meat sauce made by Sam, Jake, and Ryan. Our squeeze question for the night was, what is one of the simple things in life that we get back at home or on Argo every day that we love? It was a gift to hear everyone’s answers. From that morning coffee to watching the sunrise to cleaning the sheets, we all enjoy the little things, and it’s always important to recognize and see the beauty in them. I can not believe it’s 21 days until we are all leaving our new home on Argo. I know I miss my family so very much, but there is a family here that has grown and flourished that can never be replaced. Until tomorrow, goodnight, friends, and family.