Wednesday, 11 June 2014


Liz Letters:

Fluenta 8-9 Jun - Taiohae

Greetings - just a quick message so you will know we are still here :)

We are still anchored in the big bay of Taiohae. It turns out that today was a holiday, so we have had three days of waiting for the workweek to start so we could get going on some provisioning, repairs, etc. Max went ashore today and met a guy who runs a yacht services company on the dock - an American sailor who came here by boat and married a local girl, so English is his working language, he has a good knowledge of both boats and the local area. He turned out to be really helpful, and will assist us with everything from laundry to diesel repairs. (Small world - his brother-in-law owns the restaurant where we ate a couple of nights ago, which supposedly has the best/quickest wifi signal around).

Max was able to do a temporary repair to our toe-rail today (where a piece tore off during our Mexico passage). He cut off the broken piece, then with Johnathan's help on the upper deck, he was able to fasten in some bolts [and a bunch of sealant] to keep it all snug until we get to Papeete or NZ. I spent a short while with my head in the area of the bolts when Johnathan didn't have the length to hold the wrench to the underside. My reaction was that it was a crowded awkward spot to put my head; for Max it has some of the easiest access of any of his jobs on the boat!

As for me, after two days of having it as the "next thing on my list," I finally worked my way through our bounty of mangoes and set some of them aside for eating and turned the rest into my first-ever pot of mango chutney. I wasn't sure how popular it would be, but when I presented it as mangoes cooked with sugar and vinegar ("Like Grammy's meatballs, but with fruit instead of meat," deduced Victoria) it turned out to be quite a hit as an accompaniment to our smoked turkey breast (Costco, Puerto Vallarta), mashed potatoes (pretty much the last of our Mexican horde - thanks to Deborah and Rigo on Heavy Metal for some last minute re-provisioning when we were in Punta Mita, or we would have been out some time ago), and corn at dinner time. Of course, we started with a sashimi appetizer as well, to use the last of our yellow-fin from the other day :)

Victoria and Johnathan continue to work their way through all the books on board (paper and electronic). They have both now finished the Island and Everest trilogies by Gordon Korman (thanks Mom for sending them, and thanks Marilyn for carrying them!). Johnathan has started "Hoot" and Victoria has been busy knitting. When they are busy, they are quiet. Johnathan has also spent some time each day doing something active (jumping overboard, climbing the rigging, paddling the kayak, etc ... it is good that he knows when he has energy to burn!)

The excitement on the Benjamin front is that he cut his first (sharp!) tooth this weekend. I am hoping that the eruption of these teeth will ease the grisliness/fussiness and the teething rash around his neck. We were given a solution to bathe his neck with by the nurse in Hatiheu last week, but I will take him to be seen tomorrow or the next day (local advice - it will be a bit like sick parade, so don't go on the first morning after a long weekend!) in the hopes of getting something for the thrush in his mouth, as well as for the rash (looks like a teenager's worst nightmare!)

Internet has been a bit of a case of "so near and yet so far" - there is internet in the bay, but it is painfully slow and we have thus far had to go ashore to do much of anything. We can see the wifi signal with our antenna, but we haven't been able to get a good connection. I know that you are waiting for photos of all of us (OK, I know that you are waiting for photos of Benjamin...), and they will come, but not today! Hopefully on Monday, one of us will go ashore with the sole purpose of choosing and uploading some photos :)

In the meantime, I hope our little note finds you well, and that you are enjoying the feeling of spring wafting across your doorstep.

Much love,
At 6/8/2014 6:18 AM (utc) Fluenta's position was 08°55.00'S 140°06.00'W

7 Jun 14

Greetings :)

Max finally has a reprieve from either rowing our dingy or making two round trips with our kayak for every excursion ashore. Our anchorage is rolly, but the winds are not as strong as they have been, which meant that it was not such an ordeal to launch both our dingy and our outboard this afternoon. This is the first we have used our outboard since Mexico, and it started on the first try. Even Johnathan was able to start it on his first pull when he drove us ashore for supper. We met another baby boat on our way - they were flying the unmistakable flag of baby families everywhere - diapers on the lifelines - so we stopped to chat. They will be heading to Canada this summer - they have another baby due in Dec, so we will exchange info, and help them as much as possible.

There is a breakwater here and a concrete wharf where dingies can be tied. I was a bit surprised to see the metal ladders we had to climb to leave the dingy - we have been so spoiled in other places with floating docks and stepping ashore! It was a bit daunting to pass Benjamin (in his life jacket) up from the dingy. We elected to do it in stages - Max stayed in the dingy, I stood on the middle of the ladder, and Victoria scampered up ahead of me to receive him on dry land. (I did things much more simply on our return to the boat - I put him in the back carrier and simply climbed down the ladder!) We also contemplated (jokingly) doing what several crews were doing with large water jugs - tying a line on and hoisting! Thank goodness or four watermaker :)

As soon as we stepped ashore, we had a selection of places to eat for dinner, all of which were offering free wifi ... this was the opposite of Atuona. We elected to walk into town a little ways, and found a sweet little place that offered what we were craving - steak / frites, hamburgers, and curries. We will go back for brunch at some point to try their crepes (and their wifi!)

Sooo ... it is quite likely that we will be able to upload some photos in the next day or so :) In the meantime, thank goodness for HF!

Love to all,
At 6/8/2014 6:18 AM (utc) Fluenta's position was 08°55.00'S 140°06.00'W
At 6/8/2014 6:18 AM (utc) Fluenta's position was 08°55.00'S 140°06.00'W

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