August 24, 2009

This weekend I was finally able to recapture that feeling I had in Manihi, that feeling of freedom, wind in my hair, propelling myself forward at a fast clip by only the power of my own two legs. That feeling of riding a bike.

Three years ago (three!!) I wrote an article about riding a bike in Manihi. I’ve wanted a bike for a while; I haven’t had one since I was in the fifth grade. When we moved to the house, the first order of business was to buy a bike. Raju managed to do this, but I, as usual, drug my feet. I didn’t know what I wanted. Actually, I did; I just didn’t know where to go about getting it. So while dragging my feet, I just stated that first sentence, “I don’t know what I want…” Big sigh….

This weekend, I was determined to buy a bike. I woke from my nap and told Raju, “I’m going to the bike store.” He, of course, knows what this means. I kid myself into thinking I’m just looking. He knows I’ll walk out with a bike.

And I did! I guess I actually rode out with a bike. The bike in the pic above to be exact. It needs a basket and a bell, and I still need a crash helmet, but I had fun this weekend. We rode to the pizzeria, we rode on the trail. We rode around the neighborhood, then we tucked the bikes in for the night.

Hopefully they’ll get some use this week too. I don’t want this to be just a weekend thing. It feels too good. It puts a smile on my face. I now have grand plans of riding to the lake, pic-a-nick-ing (watching, of course, to make sure Yogi isn’t around). Maybe strapping a backpack with camera on and discovering new places. We’ll see where it leads.

Ahhhhhh! To have a bike.


It’s 2009. How did that happen?

January 9, 2009

Blink. A year went by. 2008 was a good year where I feel like I did a lot of nothing. I rested up from event-filled 2007. I wasn’t quite as crazy as I was in 2005 heading into 2006, though the way this work week is going, if I’m not careful, I’ll be back there. I guess I’ll just have to keep my sage friend pappy’s advice in mind, “Fuck work. :D”

I’m back to blah again, with nothingness sitting in my brain. My mind is blank – right now would be a great time to take up that whole zen meditation thing, because I can’t force a thought out of my head, except, of course, this rambling. Which hardly counts as a thought.


Greetings from Manihi!

December 12, 2008


God, don’t I wish. While it’s been a rough week back in the real world, the 7 days we spent in Manihi were as awesome as the last time we were there, if not better.

Just like last time, we spent a lot of time snorkeling right after sunrise. We brought an underwater camera this time, so we were able to get a few good shots of the fishies, though we never really mastered the taking pictures underwater thing (most are Raju’s, and he got much, much better at it than I did).

Banner Fish

Picasso Fish

Even though Raju was certain I would tire of him pointing out the Picasso fish every time it was spotted, I didn’t. It was so awesome to get to swim with them some this time. After 20 years, I’ve finally acclimated to snorkeling, finally learned to breath through the snorkel, not through my nose. And though I’m still a little wary of swimming where there are sharks, I think I have the panicky-ness under control now, too.

Speaking of sharks, something new we did this time was the Picnic on a Motu. We set out on a three-hour tour with Captain Kana, Alberto, Frederica, and a few other peeps. First we stopped to do a little hand-line fishing – we did need something to cook at the picnic after all. Then we landed on another strip of the atoll, where there were a lot of remoras, Fric and Frac’s bros from the last trip. They can eat quite a large chunk of meat; much more than Raju thought possible. And they are curious – one nipped my heels later on, though I had my swim shoes on so it didn’t hurt.

But I digress, we were speaking of sharks, not remoras. Our crazy captain thinks it is sport to try to catch sharks with nothing more than a rope, some fish guts, and his body. Tie large pieces of fish to the rope, and lure the shark toward shore. When he gets close, jump on him!! Well, I may think he’s crazy, but it worked. He also caught a baby just by watching it then swiftly sticking his hand in the water and grabbing it.

Fishing for Sharks

Raju with the big shark

There’s quite a bit more to share, including some videos Raju took while we snorkeled, but I’ll save those for another post, as this one is becoming a tad long.