Remote Pacific IslandsOutlying Pacific Islands
Palmerston: Isle at the end of the world
Palmerston, a small Pacific isle, is frequented by a utility vessel no more than twice a year, and the long and dangerous voyage discourages only the most fearless people. was in a raft for nine consecutive nights, incapable of standing. Thirsty for nine nights, afraid of being struck by a tropic gale, tens of billions of miles from being saved.
That'?s the trip to the end of the world isle. Then after two flight- from London via Los Angeles-we took off from Tahiti by ferry. Unexpected clattering of strong rains strikes the side of the vessel. Sailing at full altitude, the breeze forces the ship over a full 60° and pulls us laterally through the canal.
It is an extremely long trip that will prevent everyone but the most ambitious visitor from arriving at Palmerston, a small leafy spot encircled by millennia of oceans. Because of the altitude of the isle it is only 2 mile away and just not seen in poor weathers.
Dozens, if not even hundred, of yachtsmen have struck the coral over the years, hidden directly under the sea and beached on the water. Parts of these vessels - motors, wood boards and poles - were recovered and reused by the people. When we are near Palmerston, a small ship, which shines in the bright light, is roaring towards us, swiveling to the right and right through the bay, the small engine crying.
Hang your barge here, we'll take you over there and you can have your dinner. He is the leader of one of only three homes on the isle. Generousness, labels, the judicial system and customs of the islands have been handed down from generation to generation. However, then the number of visitors slowered - six month between them became three years and finally they ended.
Palmerston was given to Palmerston by Queen Victoria. Prior to his deaths in 1899, he divided the Isle into three parts, one for each of his women. Fishes in their hundred are swimming under the ship and while the clear waters splash, a stingray and sharks glide by in tug. In Palmerston, nothing goes wrong," says Bob when we reach his metal roof house.
This island at the end of the world was broadcasted on BBC Radio 4 - listen to it again on the BBC iPlayer. Then in one of the most real times of my whole existence, amidst 3,000 leagues of open sea, I listen to one of the island' s inhabitants listen to her favorite music. Formally a New Zealand patronage, Palmerston gets many of the contemporary conveniences that we take for granted. Thanks to Palmerston, you will be able to enjoy all the comforts of home.
Cash is only used to buy food from the outside and not from each other. "That', says Bob, "is what I am so proud of with the Palmerston family. We work together, we make friends and we make friends. "I' m really glad the folks here aren't selling anything.
Palmerston's major, Bob, is located at one end of the town. "That' s the highway, no busses stop here, no busses to expect in Palmerston," says Bob with a warm smile. It' also one of the newest - and most stable - structures on the isle.
Without landfor tens of millions of miles, Palmerston will take the full power of a thunderstorm. This is how the inhabitants of the islands bind their building to the nearby wood. The year 1926 a Typhoon fell into the isle - and the ripples, they say, sweep the old cathedral from its fundament. "There is a fixed pace of living on the Sunday isle.
There are four saucepans in front of me - there' s seafood, there' s paddy, there' s chickens and there' s a cakes. "I' m trying to make you too big to get back on your barge! You' re going to need to be on Palmerston longer. "Eating is a big part of our lives. "He says the fishies are going back."
"There used to be a hundred fishing in school. But not now. "The once abundant populations of their favorite parrotfish are used up faster than others. Bill stands on the back of his minute, mended aluminum fin and sets off in pursuit of other species of fishing, the bags of his favorite disguise pants with string and hook.
Everything we say to humans - they just disregard it. "Seafood is the basic diet of the inhabitants of the island and their only exports. Its seclusion also poses other problems. However, after the brief process, she had to sit six month until a boat had brought her back. Whilst some see this insulation as one of the main features of Palmerston's lifestyle, it is a threat in another way, as they are all related except for two schoolteachers and a nursing staff.
There' s no one on the isle, so the mixed marriage takes place. One third of the inhabitants are kids and all look good and cheerful when they go to university. However, many of them hope to go to towns several hundred kilometres away where conveniences are better, salaries are higher and - perhaps most important - there is a wider range of prospective mates.
As mum Aka grew up, some folks married their half-sisters or half-brothers, she says. Mom Aka, the oldest inhabitant of the archipelago, recalls the early 1970s when the Royal Yacht Britannia landed off the Palmerston cliff. It is perhaps the first student from the local college to go to college and may even have the opportunity to go to Harvard.
" Currently she is studying English, alphabetics, US English and the fundamental Christian world. Next year the Act will be added. I' m swimming, fishing, playing the guitars, talking - that's all. Lieutenant Cdr Victor Clark wrecked the vessel in the 1950' and he spent nine month on the Isle while it was being mended.
At the age of 97, his daugther Rose travelled from her house in Devon to Palmerston to spread his cinders. "This was his favorite time," she says. Nevertheless, the Palmerstonians seem to lead a good existence. "In the evening, students go for a swim or a game of volley ball while some of the men gathered around the island's only TV to see the game.
By the time the next utility boat shows up, the isle will be arid. Edward, the Isle' s cop, is probably the least employed cop in the game. The book recounts William Marsters' journey to Palmerston a hundred and a half ago, when he said goodbye to the city. Goodbye was what we had to say to the lovely little city.
Bob arrives with a basked full of pisces as we get ready to take off. He' had more luck than Bill with his fishing and divides it all over the isle. "We' re sharing everything with our family," he says and hands us two pieces of meat for the way back. "We' re made to savour the outside universe, to savour the crisp breezes, to savour the sun, to savour the things God has brought us to the ground.
We were not sent to planet Earth to murder or harm other human beings. Hear The Island at the end of the world on the BBC iPlayer.