(Hanamoenoa Bay, Tahuata, Marquesas, French Polynesia)
Since we’re settling in so nicely here in Hanamoenoa Bay, we figured it might be a good thing to make the effort to get off the boat and explore the island of Tahuata a little more. With a full tank of dinghy fuel we ripped south to the village of Vaitahu. Our friends Paul and Sundy were anchored there and we ran into them almost immediately.
Paul and Sundy were on their way to run a handful of errands around town, and typical of their super, sweet nature let us tag along for the adventure! Its great hanging out with these two simply for their stellar company, but their fluent French gives a whole new layer to experiencing these islands and the French-speaking locals.
The first stop was Jun’s house. An incredibly kind local women whose son had helped Paul and Sundy get their dinghy out of a crap situation the day before. They were stopping at Jun’s to give her some coffee in return for the favour and before we knew it we were seated at her table drinking coffee and eating fresh baguettes. Just another example of how kind Marquesan people are.
After coffee and a promise from Greg to return with fresh fish in exchange for bananas, we headed out to the next stop on the day we hijacked. This time we were stopping in at another local’s home who Paul and Sundy had met them the day before. This visit was to see if we could help fix their broken washing machine. Paul had brought a bag of tools and Gregory was more than happy to tinker with something that wasn’t a problem in his own home.
While Sundy and I chatted with the wife – getting a full run down on her family, her health, and her home (Sundy kindly translating the French for me); the boys set to repairing the washing machine. They were able to re-key the shaft of the pump to get the impeller functional again. A favour that was repaid with fresh lemonade and a big bag of pamplemousse, mandarins, and starfruit.
To round out a charming day in Vaitahu we visited the village’s crowning jewel, their church. Rebuilt in 1995 the construction is exquisite. The beautiful stone walls and bell tower, are only matched by the phenomenal wood work and breathtaking stained glass windows. From the front steps there is an unobstructed view of the water making the churches location near as prominent as its architectural stature.