Pirates of the Pacific - By Elizabeth (and Michael helped, too!)

Today, on a deserted island in the Haapai Islands of Tonga, we are pirates.  Dad snuck ashore and hid some 'booty' on the beach, and then he came back and drew a scary pirate map for us.  

We’ll have to use a GPS to find the treasures, so Dad shows us how to use it.  On the GPS he labeled two spots – one called “Hunger” and the other called “Gold”.  An arrow on the screen will point us to where we need to go.

On the map, we see clues for each treasure.  For “Hunger” the clues are:  ‘My mouth is the biggest part of my body’ and ‘Some people eat me when hungry.’  The clues for “Gold” are: ‘I’m on the leeward side of the island’ and ‘You can drink me anytime, but I’m better ice cold’.  Dad drew a sign on the map that said, “Death and murder to all who enter.”  Then he drew a skull and swords just to make it extra scary!

We put the GPS and the map in a plastic bag, because it looks like it’s going to rain.  I pull up the dinghy, and we hop in to go to shore.

From the dinghy, we see the island where the treasure is hidden.  I point to where I think it is.  The rain only threatens to fall, and we are thankful not to be wet pirates!

 On shore, Dad gives me the map and Michael holds the GPS to navigate us to the treasure.  

‘Hunger’ will be the first treasure we try to find.  We look at the clues again, just to make sure we are heading in the right direction.  

We run off in the direction the arrow on the GPS points to find the surprise that awaits us.

Michael pulls a bag of treasure from the opening in a clam shell that had been washed ashore.  It is CANDY!  We all have a piece to celebrate our find.  “Now I know why the clue tells us that the mouth is the biggest part of my body!” I exclaim, "Because of the clam!  Ha!  Good one, Dad!"  

Now it was time for me to hold the GPS, and Michael has the map.  “Gold” is our next quest.  

We run to the leeward side of the island, where we aren’t getting blown by wind, and follow the arrow again.  We run forward and back again.  I call out to Dad, “Dad, where is it?  The arrow isn’t working right.”  “Then you’ll have to depend on the clues, sweetie pie!” Dad answers.  We read the clues again.  “What can we drink that tastes better ice cold??” Michael wonders aloud.  “I know – a coconut!”  But when we look at the coconut near where the GPS points, there is nothing there.  Dad reminds us that some treasure is buried, and that’s when I spot the treasure sticking out from under the sand beneath a coconut! 

A bag of Tongan money that we can use to buy whatever we want in the next town!  Michael and I start imagining what we'll buy with our new treasure.  I hope to find a Tonga keychain and Michael says he just wants MORE CANDY!  On our way back to Field Trip, we both ask Dad when the next treasure hunt will be!  We like this whole pirate game!  

(A quick update - We got to Nuka Alofa, the main town in Haapai and the capital of Tonga, but instead of finding things to buy in the small stores there, we bought some carved bone pendants from the nice man who drove the taxi to the immigration office!  I picked out a sea turtle, and Michael chose a shark!)


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