Thursday, 13 December 2018

Scheduled birthday and Unscheduled haulout - Slight change in plan ...

Pre-Departure Photo.
It is great to have plans.  Sometimes though, the boat gets a vote, or veto, on the plan ... We had intended to depart our favourite little town in the South Pacific, Savusavu, for a quick trip to Wallis and then back north to the Marshall Island.  However ... we noticed an ever so slight weeping (a leak would be an exaggeration) in one of the thru hulls .  Considering the miles ahead we did the prudent thing and sailed around to Nadi so we could haul out at Vuda Marina and replace the fitting.

Feeling the time pressures we did not wait for a good weather window and went despite the lack of forecast wind.  We did manage to sail about half of the way but it was a lot of motoring around the south of Vitu Levu.  Considering that the last two times we went around the south coast of Viti Levu we had rather "invigorating" sails it did seem odd.

We arrived in good time and talked with our new friend Kiti at Yuves Marine about options for the thru hulls.  Since we had to haul out anyway we decided to replace three old thru hulls and add a few more coats of antifouling.  We could not find the materials we wanted for the thru hulls so we called Steve at Steves's Marine, the best little chandlery in New Zealand, for help.  Steve and his team - who are mostly his family - had the required collection of parts on their way to us in Fiji in no time at all.  Thank you Steve and family !

The Hempel antifouling that Daryl of LinkUp Paint recommend when we were in Tauranga was doing well so we ordered another 10L from Kiti to apply since we were going to be out of the water anyway.  A long ways back to Canada !

There was a bit of delay in the parts arriving so we had time to head off for a play with our new friends on SV Sonadora.  We went out to Musket Cove again and then finally a night anchored out near Cloud 9 for Benjamin's birthday.

Finally, the fun had to come to an end and we hauled out, did our work and got back on our way again a few days later.

A few photos from our time below:

Sad day leaving the Copra Shed.  Pretti and Seti took such good care of us over our three seasons visiting.

As did Siteri !

Benjamin was given handmade cards by Pretti and her son Benjamin.

Back to Vuda.  Upgrades to the playground though

and then to Musket Cove.  Room to play at the Island Bar

and making Christmas wrapping paper.

Dingy surfing on Benjamin's birthday.

Dingy surfing on Benjamin's birthday.

and lots of lego.

Then to the pseudo-Fiji world of Denarau for Benjamin's birthday.  The Denarau marina staff asked why we did not haul out at Denarau.  I explained that Fluenta is our home and you are not allowed to live aboard in their yard.  I asked what a room ashore at Denarau for a family of five would be ... $1000 Fijian/night.  Hmm ... that is one reason to go to Vuda as well as a greater choice in contractors.

A Minecraft cake by Victoria of course but ably assisted by four (!) boys.  Victoria was very patient !

Complete with snowmen as Benjamin is quite fascinated by the concept of snow.

Great night out with the Sonadora crew.

and one tuckered birthday boy.

Alas, the fun comes to an end and we are back into a boat yard.

Cleaning the hull.  The antifouling was in good shape so we did not pressure wash but rather used some scotchbright pads.

Our reefer compressor is water cooled so without the sea ... a bucket of water suffices for a short period.  A living thermodynamics lesson.

The fancy switch for our propane solenoid stopped working so I wired in a new switch and Victoria made and installed a new cover from an ice cream bucket.

Time for more antifouling !

Yuve Marine getting ready to treat Fluenta to some Propspeed.  Normally we do not bother since it is no hassle in the tropics to jump over the side and give the props a quick scrub before each passage.  Less fun once the water temperature starts to drop on the way home.

The joys of living in the yard.  Mud, bugs and the ladder.

A bit of plumbing ...

The Headmistress at work with her able assistant Johnathan.

Ready to launch but then the travel lift broke.  Vuda managed to get it fixed over the weekend and had us launched only delayed by two days.

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