Saturday, April 10, 2010

Part 2-1 Everyone, Strip Down

We arrived and found the island overgrown with vibrant green grass, though there was not a single tree. It was a small coral island whose highest point was about four meters above the water, with an average of about two meters. The flock of seabirds was surprised by the sight of us coming on land and were cawed, flying wildly above our heads.
"It's a wonderful island."
"How about this soft green grass, it's a perfect carpet."
"It is, we can live here in luxury."
"The island isn't moving, ha ha ha."
Everyone was happy to be on solid ground after so long, and were speaking foolishly. However we had a mountain of work to do. Time was short.
"All men come together."
I stood before the gathered fifteen men.
"It's decided, we will live on this island. From this moment, all men will start to work.
"Helmsman Sakakibara, it will be difficult, but take the four best oarsmen on the lighter back to the boulder, pack all the goods onto the raft and tow it back.
"Boatswain Inoue, take the four strongest men and start digging a well.
"Fishing Captain Suzuki, take four men once around the island as fast as you can and find anything that will be useful. When that is finished, get to work building a water distiller.
"All men, before you begin work, strip down immediately. We will live naked here. Beside what we are now wearing, there is not a single change of clothes. We don't know how many years we will be living on this island, and clothes will be valuable. We must take winter into consideration as well. During the time that we can live naked, we will live naked. Everyone, before you start your jobs, spread out your clothes and hang them up. We will store them away carefully."
All the men immediately took of their clothes and became naked.
"My clothes are already half dry."
"Ahh, that's refreshing."
There were even men who moved their hands and legs around enthusiastically. After getting naked, the weight on our trunks was lifted, and we suddenly felt the pangs of our empty stomachs. It was no wonder, we had not eaten breakfast, and lunch had been one sip of canned fruit. Still, there was no way to prepare a meal. We had no tools, no rice and no water. First and foremost, time was short. We all began our work in high spirits but on empty stomachs.
The lighter crew gathered the oars and set out in good cheer.
"We'll be back soon with goods to set up living and food supplies. We're counting on you for the well."
The well-digging team gave them this answer, "we're counting on you too. We'll dig a good well and let you guzzle down nice, cold water."

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