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For several days after our arrival in the Marquesas we would occasionally pick up a fishy whiff. Eventually come Thursday it had become a malodorous lingering fish dock smell in the heat of a tropical sun;  Brixham Harbour on a summer afternoon had nothing on this. 

Temptress has a false deck under which the halyards, reefing lines and main sheet run back to the cockpit from the mast. For several days we had been pouring a little bleach on the deck forward of this area then swishing it through the gap with buckets of seawater to no avail, once dry the smell returned though a couple of tiny desiccated flying fish and a few larger fish scales washed out. We blamed the rubbish bins ashore until we moved out for the supply ship taking the odour with us. 

With the dinghy afloat once more we had room to remove the 16 screws that hold the 2 metre long lid in place and scrub out the channel either side where the lines run. Only about the third time we’ve ever lifted it. A bucket of hot soapy water, cloths and scrubbing brush were poised to do battle but nothing prepared us for the sight of the squishy remains of a large flying fish over a foot long, like a fat sardine! It had somehow been washed in past the deck tidies, short racks of small pullies that keep the lines organised and into a void we were unaware of between the saloon hatch and the stowage for the sliding companionway hatch. Once there it was trapped and there wasn’t anyway our buckets of water would have extracted it. Yuk! 

A more fragrant air now prevails in the cockpit and down below. And a lot of Caribbean brown dust/dirt has been washed away too.