Coral always wins out

Trip Start Jan 02, 2011
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Trip End May 09, 2011


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Flag of Vanuatu  , Sanma,
Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Needing to stock up on basic food stuffs (ahead of our flight to Malekula) we travel the 15 minutes back to Luganville by minibus. Whilst not a great tourist town we pass a pleasant few hours buying various miscellaneous groceries, browsing the markets and enjoying an excellent lunch of beans on toast…what a treat!

Million dollar point affords the opportunity of a snorkel en route back to our island paradise. It is at this spot that the US Army, frustrated over their negotiations, with local British and French officials, about their surplus post war supplies (the British and French thinking that the US army would sell their surplus at any price as they had no other option) dumped everything into the ocean. Trucks, bulldozers, cranes, groceries and artillery were unceremoniously deposited into the ocean, creating what would be today an environmental catastrophe but was then simply a petulant solution to a annoying problem. Snorkeling this rusted landscape of coral and military hardware is slightly surreal. Whilst much has deteriorated the chassis of military vehicles, trailers, earth moving buckets and the fragments of a 1,000 coke bottles are still clearly visible. What a strange world!

With the promise of excellent snorkeling around the resort we continue our exploration after only a brief interlude to relax at our little bungalow. Unfortunately, limited visibility (due to temperature inversions) and strong currents from the incoming tide limit our enjoyment of this swim. Caught by the current I am washed onto the coral, scratching my leg as I swim back out of danger. Feeling a little sorry for myself we abandon the swim and return to the beach by the safer channel! Cleaned and bandaged no permanent harm done!
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