A couple of months after the launch of Dark Sun I received an email from Brendon Tarrant in Auckland. Imagine my surprise as I read that he had in his possession a “log book from the yacht Te Rapunga”! Would this be of interest to me, he asked. Would it?! In response to my enthusiastic query as to how he had come to have the log, Brendon replied:
“As to how I got it, I now know the full story. When George was arrested in Napier, his logs were confiscated by the local police. Some time in the seventies a move or major refit happened at the police station and the logs, now of no interest, were to be thrown out. My uncle, then a police officer at the station, saw that there were plenty of blank pages in the logs for his young children to draw on so he took them home. I have no idea how many logs and for what other vessels. Long after his children grew up and two logs remained untouched in the bottom of an old cabinet for several years, I happened to be visiting my aunt, who knew I was interested in old boat stuff, and she gave them to me.”
After scanning the pages for posterity, Brendon felt it appropriate to return the log book to Eileen Morris, who was largely responsible for log entries. He told of the thrill it was to talk with Eileen in a lengthy phone call, how rewarding it was to know that he had given her the pleasure of revived memories. While earlier he had written “as a researcher I am pained by what else may have been lost” he certainly made up for the perceived negligence in the case of Te Rapunga.
Sample pages from the Te Rapunga log book.