I had a good time seeing colleagues at the marine science conference, and am full of ideas for new research.
I was also sick the whole time I was there, and after the 24 hours of travel that it took to get from the hotel in Nanaimo back to Galactic, I am very glad indeed to be home.
The migration of yachts from Fiji down to New Zealand for the upcoming cyclone season has begun, and Galactic will soon be heading that way. We'll start watching the weather patterns in earnest, and hope to sample just a few more delightful tropical anchorages before we turn south.
Alisa and I haven't yet had the chance to catch up without the boys around, but it seems we've both been thinking about the long-range plan, and independently coming to the same opinion about where Galactic should be heading after New Zealand.
More about that some other time.
OK, so here's the story.
Alisa had a good routine going with the boys while I was gone. Three hours of school in the morning for Elias while Eric played in the saloon. Then into the resort for a swim in the pool, picnic lunch on the beach and back to the boat for Eric to nap, then an early dinner at the bring-your-own-food barbecue that the resort hosts for yachties every night.
So, coming back from the pool one day, the outboard quit - Alisa had neglected to fill the tank that morning.
Undaunted, she started rowing back to Galactic. And then one of our aluminum oars, which had been secretly corroding from the inside, snapped in half.
So now she was without means of propulsion, and being blown down on the reef behind the mooring field. Yells and waves at neighboring yachts brought no response. So she stripped down to her skivvies, jumped into the water, and began swimming for the mothership, dinghy and children following along at the end of the painter.
It was only after they made it back to Galactic, and Alisa was standing on the jupe, that someone showed up to see if she needed any help.
The funny part comes when Alisa is telling the story, and she's trying to thank this yachtie bloke she's never met before for coming by to offer help, while simultaneously trying to ask him to just leave right away so she doesn't have to stand there and talk to him in her not-ready-for-company outfit of soaked sports bra and underpants.
Mango smoothies in the pool. Alisa admits to the regular employment of bribery to get her way with the crew while I was gone.