In an Oregon hospital, John Sapelalut’s doctor tells him that he has serious heart disease and that he should make amends and arrangements with his island family. Ever pragmatic and realistic, John decides that he will spend his last days surrounded by family and friends, and enjoy his beloved ocean until the last minute. Christmas is just a few months away, so John asks his daughter and wife to round up the rest of the family for a joyous holiday season on his home island of Ulithi in Yap State.
John is a highly respected teacher and scientist, and along with the family members attending, friends, former students and colleagues come for the most memorable celebration that the islanders of Ulithi have ever experienced…but simultaneously, the islands are slammed by a major tropical storm of typhoon severity. John faces his destiny and the high winds head-on.