29 December 2011 | Marshall Islands
The lagoon side of the same island.
Rongelap calls itself its sister island since it is situated 30 miles to the west. When we stood on the small island at the southern entrance to the lagoon, Rebecca could hear a murmur of voices, but later heard nothing when we explored the northeastern islands. Patrick is too hard of hearing to notice such things. It would be good to encourage the hauntedness of this atoll. There are conservation laws in the Marshall Islands to protect nesting turtles and other wild life but there is no enforcement. Even in downtown Majuro, the capital, huge turtles were landed and slaughtered as the centerpiece for functions or just for ones own consumption. Three of the four turtles we observed meeting such an end in Majuro were spewing eggs. Obviously they had been taken from a nesting beach. But that is the culture throughout the Pacific. Despite the tremendous amount of money the U.S. and other countries dump into these islands little makes its way to the common people. For them, there is little money. They eat what they can find including neighborhood dogs. If we meet any Marshalleese who think we are a bit odd, we will certainly tell them we had visited Rongerick and no one should go there. Rongerick should remain a haunted nature preserve.