Pamplemousse is known as pomelo in English. It is a sweet version of a grapefruit, and can last for several weeks in the pantry! This makes it an ideal sailboat fruit.
We loaded Aldebaran with 3 massive sacks of Pamplemousse, each weighing nearly 40 pounds, with at least 30 pamplemousse in each sack; one sack to give away and two to consume. Pamplemousse grows like weeds in the Marquesas and is given away freely; but it is unavailable in the Tuamotos, usually costing $2+ each (people even pay that much for them in the Society Islands’ supermarkets).
Two of the sacks came from friends of Leon (who we will soon introduce you to, he invited us to visit his house in Tuamotos). Leon’s friends met us at 9pm at the Taiohae docks in Nuku Hiva with the two sacks of pamplemousse and one sack of limes, which actually weighed closer to 50lbs (there must have been 500 limes in there!)
The other sack of pamplemousse was collected when we visited the island of Ua Pou, just south of Nuku Hiva. We went to see Yvonne, who makes beautiful pandanus hats (one of the raffle prizes that we gave away in our fundraiser for the EMMA school children’s marine reserves)
Yvonne set us free on her land to climb pamplemousse tree and grab both ripe and unripe ones (photo of Yvonne below). It was quite the operation but we packed all this fruit back on Aldebaran, inside the amas and dive lockers. We won’t have a vitamin C shortage while in the Tuamotos!