The Tuamotus Diaries #21, Day 43 – July 10h 2016
It’s awesome to watch a small seed of an idea blossom in a kid’s mind.
Many months ago, we were still in Mexico, and our stint to the South Pacific was still just a strong desire and a busy project. One day Paulo was playing a survival game on his computer, and was very captivated by it. I sat by his side, asked a few questions about the game. And then I just let it go: “You know Paulo, when we reach French Polynesia, there is a group of islands there called the Tuamotus. These islands look pretty much like the one on your game …”.
The seed was planted.
Fast forward to the recent past, as soon as we reached the Tuamotus, the kids have been pleading for us to let them do a camp sleepover on the beach and simulate a “survivor” situation. We were here with our friends from sv Enough, and just another boat at the anchorage. The weather was stable. Moreover, after having spent time at the beach, we knew it was deserted and free of hazards. Why not, then?
They had already spoken with Horatio and Noah from sv Enough, and seemed to have everything figured out already. On the chosen day, we encouraged them to have a meeting in the morning to get everything organized. Without supervision, they made a long list of items, which was then distilled down to the “bare essentials”. They then assigned responsibilities. Later that day, we all met at the beach, each kids bringing the items under his/her responsibility. We set the tent and left them, having the beach all to themselves.
The experience was a success. They managed to set a fire, warmed up their dinner with it (basically canned food), kept their campsite tidy, managed their water well. They woke up early to watch the sunrise the next day, and only called their parents over the handheld radio when the sun was approaching the maximum point in the sky.
One month later, when sv Sangvind came to Punakura, we gave the experience a second go, this time with their friends Dylan and Jayden.
These experiences gave them a feeling of accomplishment and confidence. And I can’t hide that us parents also felt pretty proud of our little campers.