Gangle Island – Part I

I am always surprised by what you can dig up when you are searching the web. I came across this post about the discovery of an unknown island in the South Seas. The post said that it was only ½ a mile by ½ a mile wide but that there were still a tribe living there.

I’m not sure from the article why they decided to call it Gangle Island since the tribe calls themselves Grangle – with two “G”s. Maybe it was just an error in translation since the couple who discovered the Island wrote it up in a French journal and the post I was reading was in Spanish – which I had to use a translator for.

Anyway, here’s in a nutshell what I think the post says:

Mar. 2005, Louise Almont

My husband and I wanted to have one of those out-of-the-way honeymoons and had decided a long time ago that when we did get married, we would go to some South Sea Island where we could be on our own. We knew that Marlon Brando lived in Tahiti and we started to research into the possibilities and found a small resort which only had a few couples during the winter season. Winter season meant that it would be a bit cooler, maybe only 85 degrees.

It was very expensive, but Georg, my soon-to-be husband, had just been appointed to the Ecole de Montmartre as a math professor, and his uncle Francois had died and left him a few hundred thousand francs, so somehow what had just been a sort of silly idea, became possible.

And that’s how we ended up – oh – now I’m wondering if I should even tell you the name of our base island because… well, because of what happened next. Let’s just say that it was a beautiful little island and that for the first few days it was a lovely honeymoon. Everything we could have hoped for.

The resort we were in had about 20 bungalows with straw roofs, and although it wasn’t exactly like a Club Med, we didn’t have to worry about money because everything was included. In the mornings we’d get up early and Haisu, who was the owner of several canoes would lead us in his own rigger to a quiet inlet where the waves would crash around us on in a sort of semi-circle and where we could paddle around safely enough. Haisu would paddle his own rigger to a nearby beach and watch us.

It was just like being on the Ville Franche sur Mer which was one of our own favorite beaches (near Nice).

We never did go out too far, because we had already seen the weather turn quickly in that area. And that day, even though we were no more than 100 meters from Haisu who had fallen asleep on the beach, a storm appeared so quickly, that it was upon us like that.

Georg and I screamed through driving rain to Haisu, though we couldn’t even see him, and the rain was hitting the ocean – you could hear each drop they were so large. The boat itself, was one of those double riggers and even in the storm, it was surprisingly steady. And then, just as quickly as the storm appeared, it sped away.
We couldn’t see the beach any longer. In any direction, there was just the ocean and the sky.

* * *

[Although I’m calling this part one, I plan to add the rest of the article to this post as I get them properly translated.  I used an online translator but they don’t get everything right.  Oh.  So where is the original post so you can just read it for yourself in the original.  That’s the weird thing.  I did the translation, so I had a copy in my cache but when I went back to where I had found the post, I got one of those not-found errors.  I’ve searched around for Gangle and Grangle and other spelling variations, but can’t find anything else other than what I managed to save.]

The sea was actually calm. Flat as far as we could see. And it was getting dark. I don’t know if Georg and I were more brave than we imagined we’d be in such a situation, but the funny thing was – neither of us were anxious. Georg said something like, well, we wanted to be alone, and we both burst out laughing. It was as if the calm sea which we could just barely see was gently taking our whatever fear we might have had away. I know that sounds odd, but that’s what happened.

I curled up on Georg’s lap, with my arms around his neck and my toes just trailing in the cool water. As we watched the sun sink, I fell into such a deep sleep as I’ve never known before.


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My name is Dave Beckerman. I am a fine art photographer working in New York City.

2 thoughts on “Gangle Island – Part I”

  1. I believe the correct name of the South Sea island you refer to is “Gargle Island.” It was discovered in 1774 by Captain James Cook during his second voyage and named for the extraordinarily thorough oral hygiene practiced by the natives.

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