NOAA Teacher at Sea
Onboard NOAA Ship Ka’imimoana
October 4 – 28, 2006
Mission: TAO Buoy Array Maintenance
Geographical Area: Hawaii
Date: October 19, 2006
Plan of the Day
Paint designs on TAO buoys; Go for a swim in the “pool”
Today was our last day of transit before we arrived at our destination of 8S/170W. After breakfast I got my paints out and spent literally all day painting the three buoys we will be deploying in the next few weeks. I enjoyed myself. I created an Aloha Buoy with plumeria flowers; a Samoan Buoy with a Samoan designed fish, turtle, shark, ray and an island scene; and my third one is of a fisherman trying to lure an octopus with a lure made of a large cowry shell that resembles a rat (isumu). The Samoan legend about the octopus (fe’e) and the rat comes into the picture.
Gather round, story time: It all started with a sightseeing canoe trip on the ocean by an owl, a snail and a rat. Their canoe started to sink, so the owl escaped by flying away, the snail sank with the canoe to the bottom of the ocean (goto uga), and the rat tried to swim to shore but he had a long way to go. He saw an octopus and called for help. The octopus agreed and swam to shore with the rat on his head. When they got to shore, the rat jumped off and thanked the octopus for saving his life and said that he left a little present on the octopus’s head. When the octopus realized that there was a rat dropping on his head, he became extremely angry and told the rat, “If I ever see you again, I’ll kill you.” To this day, the octopus is mad about this and is still looking for the rat. Whenever a fisherman uses this rat shape lure he is sure to bring an octopus home.
After my lunch break I went to relax in our ‘pool’ on the bow before returning to finish up the painting. It was fun and everyone seemed to get a laugh at my paintings. I was exhausted by the end of the day but it was worth it. Tomorrow starts another busy week with buoy ops, CTD’s, late nights and early mornings so I am enjoying the slow pace. OK this is enough for the day. Till tomorrow.