Day 164, Year 5: A Special Call
Date: Thursday, April 8, 2010
Weather: No Wind; Another Beautiful Day
Location: Ile Fouquet, Peros Banhos Atoll, Chagos

Our friends Ed and Lynne on Constance have a satellite phone and they offered to let us use it to call Justin and Jo to wish Ziggy a happy birthday. So we took them up on the offer and made a quick call early this morning (Wednesday evening in New Mexico). We got to hear Ziggy making noises and I got to sing happy birthday to him. It was great fun and we really appreciate Ed and Lynne’s generosity.

We spent our morning doing what we have promised to do while here. Very slowly we are going through our three computers and five external hard drives to make sure all of our photos and videos are organized and backed-up. I think we could spend two hours every morning while we are here and still not have the job completed, but maybe it will go faster as we move along. We stopped for lunch and I made fish cakes using our daughter Heather’s recipe. I was using Rainbow Runner which is a dry fish and Heather’s fish cake recipe makes a very moist paddy, so the combination was great. They were so good. In the afternoon we tried for an instant replay of yesterday’s snorkel, but it just wasn’t the same. The water clarity wasn’t as good and there was a surge that we had to swim against. There was no Emperor Angelfish, no Oriental Sweetlips, no spade fish, and no ray today. But in the reef adjacent to the aquarium we saw a turtle and Lynne found one little clump of Clownfish hiding out in an anemone. This was our first sighting of anemone fish here, and it is nice to know that Nemo lives here, too.

All three of the French boats in the anchorage moved north to Ile Diamant today, so that leaves just Constance, Mirage, and Windbird here at Ile Fouquet. Mark called Ed on the VHF radio and asked if he would like to go outside the reef fishing in the morning and in the process ending up asking both Mirage and Constance over for dinner tonight. We supplied the grill and they supplied the last of the fresh fish supply. Lynne brought a wonderful red cabbage salad with carrots and fresh basil leaves. The colors were spectacular. And I added green beans and potatoes. Cathy of Mirage brought a wonderful cream cheese spread as an appetizer and I made tomato, feta cheese, and basil leaf appetizers topped with balsamic vinaigrette. Everything was so tasty and it was great fun getting together to visit with each other. Just at sunset a pod of dolphins made their way through the pass. They were far away, but we could see that they were a lively bunch-probably Spinners. I saw one fly into the air and do a complete 360 degree flip before reentering the water. I really want to swim with the dolphins while here in Chagos, but I think it is easier over in Salomon Atoll.

Tomorrow’s day will start with the fishing expedition to try and refresh the fish supply. Lynne has “ordered” Wahoo, so we’ll see what we get. I wouldn’t mind more Yellowfin Tuna for sushi, but Wahoo makes great sushi as well. Best not be too picky.

100408 Day 164 Peros Banhos, Chagos–Underwater at the Aquarium, Ile Fouquet