Monday, April 10, 2017
A Taste of Civilization
At Lola Island, the proprietors of the resort were kind enough to share their Internet with visiting yachts. This is the first 'unlimited' Internet we have enjoyed since arriving in the Solomons in November. Initially, it was a huge boon to be able to do the things we needed, such as banking and taxes. However, by the end of our weeklong stay, I was feeling vaguely discontent and somewhat anxious. A constant connection to the outside world brought me news (usually bad) and all the trivia of my favorite websites. Yet, being on the Internet sucked me in and I read fewer, played less guitar, and felt I was being pulled away from the real world. I saw the same effect on the kids as well, especially Conrad. He would rush through meals to email and e-chat with his friends. Both he and Mark were disproportionately excited about the arrive of (iPad) game day WITH INTERNET. I'm being overly dramatic but the experience gave me a glimpse of the challenges that going back to the U.S. might bring.
We are currently anchored at Malazeke Island, slowly making our way to Gizo. The village here is Seventh Day Adventist, so the villagers don't have teeth stained red and black by Betel nut. When we arrived, Billy came out to say hello, offer his many services (tour guide, boat bottom cleaner, carver), and see what we had to trade (angle grinder, generator, engine). He asked whether Matt was interested in going fishing and for help writing a thank you letter to the Australian High Commission for the water collection tanks that were sent.
Matt has continued his battle against the misbehaving freezer and refrigerator. Apparently, sealing the leaking pumps stopped the leak but made the water infiltrate the motor. Both pumps have been replaced (and new ones ordered). He has also cleaned the boat's bottom and propellers, which has given us an extra knot of speed.
The weather remains hot but we haven't seen much sun (for the Solomons) in the last week. Our water tanks are full but our solar performance has been dismal. Our generator is getting more use here than anywhere else in four years of cruising.