Attn: Bryce Fan Club MembersTop cross-country (la crosse in French) runners representing islands among all of French Polynesia: Marquesas, Gambiers, Tuamotus, Australs, and Societies competed Thursday in Tahiti. So, yes, in fact, Bryce got the chance to meet up with some of his school friends from the Marquesas. They were happy to see each other and surprised at how much each had grown. Bryce says it was a very positive interaction.
Racing for his College/Lycee des Iles sous le vent d’Uturoa, Bryce’s age group was the most populated, boys born 1999, 2000, and 2001. We haven’t yet the official stats, but Bryce estimated about 125 runners in his category. He believes he was one of the youngest and smallest runners in the group. He placed 25th individually and his Uturoa boys team placed 3rd in its category. He was pleased with his personal result, hoping at the start that he wouldn’t place last. He says their coach set them up with a strategy that provided a successful result. Bryce overtook many of the school’s faster runners, even those who had beaten him in the Marquesas the year before.
His friend, Mihi took third individually in her category, and her team took 3rd as well.
Trent’s friend, Hauari’i Cacelin also took third individually in his category. Hauari’i’s grandfather moved here from Mexico City many years ago. A very nice hombre.
Overall, Bryce had a great day and a half in Papeete, Tahiti. The first stop for all the Lycee d’Uturoa students was….McDonald’s, or in Tahitian slang “Mac Do” (pronounced “mac-Doh”). Then that night, they went to a movie theater (Bryce’s first movie-going experience since March 2015 in Ensenada, Mexico) saw the recently released Disney animated feature set in Polynesia; it’s titled “Moana” in the states.
We’re very proud of Bryce for his accomplishment, representing again his school in a territorial wide sporting event, being flown and lodged in Tahiti, sponsored by his community and the French Polynesian Territory.
On a side note, while Bryce was in Tahiti, Leslie and I attended parent-teacher conferences for Bryce and Trent on Wednesday. Bryce’s principal teacher (his French teacher) stated that Bryce, based on his grades so far, could take and would likely pass his “brevet des colleges” exam if he were to take it in mid- June. It’s a scholastic certificate between a ‘middle school’ and ‘high school’ diploma (the French school system is a bit different than in the states). The ‘brevet’ is recognized throughout France as an academic achievement, prior to the “bac.” But, he’d have to stay until mid-June to take it. We’ll see, as we were thinking of continuing our voyaging starting in May 2017.