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From the good ship R Tucker Thompson, to all ye ashore tonight next to your warm fires.

We had the longest day today. The morning swim and duties cleared away, it was off to Urupukapuka to anchor once more in Paradise bay. Activities involved a short walk to Whangapau pa where the invasive Australian plant Acacia sp. is threatening the open spaces over the pa. Hand pulling seedlings and substantial trees proved no match for the enthusiasm and energy of the trainees and crew, rewarded with views and the song of the recently released Tieke (Saddleback).

As the tide dropped we returned to the beach for some sports, Frisbee, touch, cricket and some lighthearted sparring in a quickly drawn boxing ring before heading back to the ship for lunch after a quick haka for the Great Sights Fullers cruise.

Keen to gain their Turks-head stripes Eddie, Isabella and Hana climbed the rigging and went out to the end of the yard, to much applause from all. David and Conor were instrumental in the achievement, instructing them through the last stages of the climb. Then ashore for another walk over half the island and out to the coastal cliffs where a strong wind and extensive views held their breath, before heading for home. Perfect timing for another haka for the tourists and Hunter showed his head for heights leaping from the ratlines. Chocolate bars a just reward for the efforts.

Wayne and Nate were off for a dive, crayfish on their mind, with the trainees content on the ship to recover, doing some classwork. As darkness crept in we weighed anchor and went to collect the dive crew, two crayfish came aboard with them. Lunch.

Sneaking back into our overnight anchorage at Omakiwi just as the wind began swinging and the day’s first rain squall came through, the anchor was dropped and dinner was served. Perfick!

With the weather forecast not matching the actual day, we are ready for anything tomorrow.
Po marie

Day 5