Saturday, May 2, 2015

Crossing the Pacific--We'll Take Boring

This excerpt from Conrad's schoolwork sums up our trip pretty well:
Write three sentences about what you did last weekend. Then underline all the past-tense verbs.
We sailed and sailed some more. We got really bored. We kept sailing.
Look around the room. Write three sentences about everything that's happening now. Underline all the present-tense verbs.
We are sailing. We are bored. We are doing school.
Conrad measuring and dissecting a few
 of the many flying fish that would show up on deck
every morning.
Other than a few whale and dolphin sightings and catching a tuna and a 50-lb blue marlin, our 20-day crossing from the Galapagos to the Marquesas was pretty uneventful. Nothing major broke (our only issues were a sink drainpipe coming loose and the same intermittent problem we have been having with our desalinater/generator) and no one became ill (we gave Conrad some antibiotics for a possible ear infection after consulting with our doctor friend Pete via satellite email). We only saw one sailboat and one fishing boat during our crossing but were in VHF radio-contact for a bit with our friends on Amelie IV, who passed us in the final week. 

Unfortunately, a few other boats weren't quite as lucky.  We know of quite a few boats that had major mechanical issues (broken halyards, non-functional autopilots, engine failures).  Health issues caused worries on some boats.  And one boat had to be abandoned due to structural failure 1500 miles away from the closest land. So boring was just fine for us.
Anchorage at Fatu Hiva

Here is the list of produce and fresh food we brought with us: apples (20), giant bunch of bananas (more than 100), broccoli (2 heads), cabbages (5), carrots (20), eggs (180--6 dozen left), green beans (1 bunch), limes (20), mangoes (25), melons (3), onions (20), oranges (20), passion fruit (60), pineapples (4), plantains (6), potatoes (more than 50), sweet potatoes (5), tomatoes (15),  and watermelons (3). It was just about right, with a good amount leftover. We were pretty sick of bananas in the first couple of weeks after the entire stalk ripened pretty much all at once. We still have banana mush for baking left in the freezer.

When we arrived in Fatu Hiva, our friends on Amelie IV, Kazaio and Zorba greeted us with shouts and air horns, and Kazaio brought over a basket of fresh produce, including the local giant grapefruits (pamplemousse in French) that are so sweet that they don't need sugar. We have never seen terrain like this before and the people are warm and friendly. Unfortunately, we can't get any local money here but most of the residents are willing to take items in trade for things like fruit and handicrafts.

A 300-foot Polynesian waterfall

Manta rays frequent the anchorage.

1 comment:

  1. So glad you made it safely! I enjoyed reading the brief sat-phone email updates on your progress. I see you got sick of eating bananas, but what about blue marlin? Now just another 3,000 miles to New Zealand!


Add a comment: