In yesterday's blog we touched on our visit to the Dillon's Bay "Yacht Club". What we didn't mention was that David has spent ten years building his "yacht club". Of course, the term is used very loosely. Consisting of a single building with the guest house on the top storey, it contained a table, a few benches and a book swap. The pathways and gardens leading up to the building were lovely and it has a magnificent view over the bay. His future plans include the construction of an awning over the balcony area and putting out tables and chairs where cruisers can relax and enjoy the ambiance.
We understood the building has been used for potluck gatherings when groups of cruisers or rallies have arrived, but also for an exchange of gifts, which was a little unexpected, given that we had already undertaken the traditional gift exchange with Chief Jacob. Nevertheless, we were grateful for the hospitality, so Roy returned to Paw Paw together a few gifts of our own to present, as well as some stationery enabling us to update the visitors book. What was a lovely surprise for us, though, were the flags attached to the rafters. Particularly those of cruisers we knew - Into the Blue, Corango, Barbara Jean, Belefonte and Overseas Express who have all completed their circumnavigation with the World ARC 2016 / 2017 rally. We also spotted the flags from Take off and Ain't Fancy whom we'd just said our goodbyes to in Fiji as they headed west with this year's World ARC rally. Needless to say, we rectified the fact that he didn't have an Irish flag.
Today, after completing a few chores, we headed ashore for a much needed walk. Our route took us along the river bank which reminded us a lot of the Salt River Canyon and our "tubing" days in Arizona. A little further along we were reminded of rural South Africa, when we came across the woman of the village doing their laundry in the river, slapping the cloths against the rocks in exactly the same way.
Unfortunately we didn't realise we had crossed ground that belonged to another chief, who was out of town. That didn't stop one of the villagers calling after us on our return to request a gift exchange. After a steady flow of villagers in their dugouts coming out to Paw Paw over the past three days, bringing fruit that is now running out of our ears in exchange for rice, sugar, powdered milk, cloths, fishing hooks and fishing line, we had to decline politely indicating that we had more than enough fruit and had nothing else to give. We're not too sure he was very pleased with the response, but it couldn't be helped. Of course, having David arrive with two more Paw Paw's this evening in the hopes of obtaining some books from us, certainly left us with a feeling that "enough is enough" and he left empty-handed as well. Of course, we then realised why no one was approaching the French yacht anchored next to us. The only thing the village rs were getting from them was a "God Bless You" and a prayer. The villagers obviously realised that Paw Paw was the local gift shop.
Regardless, it has been another experience and we'll definitely have to make Paw Paw jam in the next few days so as not to waste all the fruit!