Exciting Veggies

There is no veggie market here in Tahuata, but we get more fruit than we can handle from the locals anyway, that’s why we have banana smoothies several times a day, banana cake and a big tray of bananas drying in the sun on deck;-)
Teii who lives in the little house in the bay of Hanatefau has lots of maniok and sweet potatoes and is eager to trade with cruisers, but then you have the choice of either carrying the bags back to the dock in Hapatoni (about half an hour) or brave the boulder strewn shore by dinghy and scramble up to his house.

Yesterday the swell was rather low, so we agreed to meet Teii in the afternoon at his house by dinghy. I hopped out with our bags and a headlamp for Teii, Christian anchored the dinghy out of the danger zone and swam ashore. Teii took us up the hill where maniok and sweet potatoes grow in wild patches on the slopes and next to the road (no real ‘fields’ as we Europeans expect). Fortunately the soil was soft from the rain, so uprooting the maniok trees wasn’t hard. After digging for the roots with a pick-axe and our hands we soon looked like the three piggies, but a big bag was quickly filled. We took it down to Teii’s house, washed our booty in the freshwater creek, got a stack of bananas, some papaya and two green coconuts and contemplated our options watching the growing surf that was roaring against the shore with a beer in hand.
In the end Christian swam out, surfed towards the rocks in the dinghy where I waited in the hip-high foaming water. I threw in two bags and he managed to get away from shore with a howling dinghy outboard just before the next breaker. Another attempt seemed to risky for the dinghy, so I tried to swim out–not so easy with a stack of bananas in one hand, a bag of fruit in the other and breakers trying to wash you back ashore.
Christian managed to fish me and my bags out unharmed and we were giggling with the adrenaline rush on the way home.
Kids who think that vegetables are boring should try to get them here in the Marquesas–this way they are quite exciting!

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