We took a break from all this activity to have lunch. Sten grilled up a few steaks from the giant wahoo that he caught this morning as we passed Blenheim Reef just after dawn. Served with lemony iced tea and the Andaman tomatoes that I pickled with coriander and ginger in Sri Lanka, no gourmet meal could have tasted better to us.
Because we are going to be here for so long, without access to fresh produce, I started some container plants this afternoon in Ikea herb pots. I have high hopes for my 'Kea Pets, particularly the lettuce and basil. Of the 26 boats anchored in this 4 mile wide atoll, many of which have been here for two or three months, 16 are leaving in the next few days. Maybe, if we're lucky, we'll inherit some plants from their aftdeck gardens.
We spent the evening visiting with Renaissance 2000, the charming Canadian couple who saved Mata'irea's topsides from getting scratched up in Kupang one afternoon when we were off the boat. Ken and Jean deployed our fenders when they noticed a boat dragging down on Mata'irea. We were glad to finally have an opportunity to properly thank them; in Chagos that means a gift of two ripe tomatoes and several pounds of wahoo and yellowfin.