October 14th, 2009
04:48 AM ET
5 years ago

From Congressman to Survivorman

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After two years of planning, Arizona Republican Rep. Jeff Flake spent a week on a remote, uninhabited island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. (Photo Credit: Rep. Jeff Flake)

WASHINGTON (CNN) - This past summer, Rep. Jeff Flake went into the wild.

After two years of planning, the Arizona Republican spent a week on a remote, uninhabited island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, eating coconuts and fish he caught with a spear, purifying his own water, sleeping in a hammock on the beach, and writing daily in his journal.

He listed a number of reasons for going on this trip, calling them "more physical than spiritual." And while he didn't end up talking to a volleyball, like Tom Hanks did in "Cast Away," he did find some unlikely friends - a few hermit crabs.

"I picked up a hermit crab, and, spotting the sharpie, wrote the number '1' on the back of his shell, and put a circle around it. I repeated this act whenever I felt a bit lonely," Flake wrote. Later, he added, "I've labeled 102 at this point with a sharpie marker. I just saw number one again today. He's remains one of my favorites, as is number 12, long since forgiven for pinching my toe."


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