Monday, April 2, 2012

02/04/12 Victory on Curieuse

Oh my word. We MORE THAN DOUBLED our target amount for the first ever Curieuse Charitable Trust Challenge. I know there’s a separate blog about the event (and I encourage you to read it for details), but I have to mention it here too. It was the highlight of last week. And clearly, it was the prototype for all future Curieuse Charitable Trust Challenges. Follow in our fundraising footsteps future volunteers! We raised 224% of our target. Perhaps a few more donations are trickling in too, as word spreads around the world. I’m so proud of Camp Curieuse!

I’m so enthusiastic about the event, partly because it was such a novelty to explore the island, partly because it was so much fun, partly because we raised so much money, and partly because I was on the winning team. Well, I was on the fastest team. This wasn’t actually the winning team. The Hammerheadbangers won the prize for the best outfits. But the Three Muskaturbines were the speediest. One for all and all for one. Burtos, Stylis and Sebus lulled everyone into a false sense of security with talk of picnic blankets, snoozes and leisurely strolls, but if truth be told, it was a military operation. When we’d not seen our rival teams towards the end of the hunt, and we knew we only had a few clues and tasks to go, and we could taste victory on our parched tongues, we further quickened our pace. It was a grand team effort and a great feeling (that Camp Curieuse had raised so much money).

As well as name deriving, costume designing and headwear constructing (turbines, obviously), this week has seen fish and coral exams for the newbies and alot more surveying for the veterans. Dolphins have been snorkelled with by a few lucky volunteers. The unlucky ones were the picture of enthusiasm and grace though, in hearing the dolphin news (not). Add sharks and turtles to the list too, and (for me) the lovely juvenile semi-circular angel fish. Google it. It’s amazing. Oh yes, and some (un)synchronised swimming. There were moments of beauty and harmony, from our vantage point in the treehouse. But those moments were few. And perhaps more by chance than skill, but the enthusiasm was undeniable.

There is a general feeling in camp that there should be more birthdays. This week, a 23rd birthday was celebrated. The birthday boy awoke to the lyrical sound of Hut Hawksbill Hilton singing Happy Birthday, accompanied by (a two string) guitar that had been conscientiously practiced the night before. The night before had also seen pancake batter prepared for a momentous non-porridge breakfast. Banana pancakes and balloons. What a start to your birthday in paradise. For lunch, there were Thai noodles with a delicious gingery, garlicy, lemony, vinegary cucumber and tomato salad. I understand there was a pleasure dive thrown in for the birthday boy. And for supper, there were burritos. AND CHOCOLATE CAKE. With a PIPED picture of a Moorish Idol iced on top. (Google it. It’s a very cool fish.) I say Moorish Idol in the broadest possible sense of the name. In the time it took to carry the cake from the kitchen to the table, it had become quite an abstract Moorish Idol. And by the time the cake was cut, it no longer resembled anything at all, let alone a fish. But the birthday boy was pleased. It’s his favourite fish.

This week, there is good and bad news. The good news is that we get a three-day weekend because last week we only had a one-day weekend. Thank you GVI. But we say goodbye to one of the scholars. We will miss you Michele. Especially your unbelievably tasty homemade garlic mayonnaise. And your numerous GoPro moments. We wish you all the best with your next project in Mauritius, and all your future adventures.