Well, almost. We had decided to take a day trip to Nanuku island, a couple of hours boat ride away from the already small island of Qamea. There were 8 of us in total including our captain, in a small fiberglass boat with a single outboard motor on the back. We carved through the waves past the ‘Red Bull island’.. and finally reached the isolated sand bar of an island, Nanuku. Unfortunately the heavens opened just as we reached the island, and the storm clouds built up.. heading towards us at a rate of knots. We had an awesome walk around the island, stopping to marvel at the massive turtle tracks in the sand. By the time we got back to our little shelter the weather had really kicked in.
There was a small wooden hut on the island, lashed together by a former island dweller who had lived on there for 6 months living the castaway life. We were already drenched from the rain, and after a couple of hours snorkeling in the rain just off the island it was starting to get a bit cold. Damp clothes, rain and fading light. We had planned to leave the island as soon as the weather cleared, we could see no landmarks on distant islands, no GPS, and had just a mobile phone. It had been decided that if we couldn’t see land in the distance by 6pm we would spend the night.
As soon as we had all decided that staying in the cold and damp was the best option, we scavenged around the island for food and dry wood to burn, as well as finding bits and pieces the last island dweller had left behind. That was so much fun, instant team building!
At 5:55pm the clouds broke and we made a dash for it, both with a sense of relief and disappointment… disappointment that we wouldn’t be ‘actual’ desert island strandees – fending for ourselves in the wilds of a small desert island… but relief that we wouldn’t be shivering all night because none of us knew any Bear Grylls techniques.
We powered flat out through the last of the bad weather and got back to our camp pretty excitable but tired. An awesome day.
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