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S/V Blue Dawn of Sark: Circumnavigation I & II
Sea's Reflections
Taking water in Fiji
07/11/2001, Navadra

"Sorry to not write as often as we did before but we are quite busy now we are TRYING to do it all by ourselves. And I swear that was not the smartest idea! We are spending half of our day with a manual in one hand and a screwdriver in the other. Covered in hydraulic oil and grease.
It is really glamorous a yachty life!
So, we finally manage to move on our trip and five days ago we sailed away for the lovely small chain of islands in Fiji called, Yasawas (where they made Castaways with Tom Hanks and the Blue Lagoon with Brooke Shield).
But (I hate that word) as we try to go through the small passage between the reef which are not marked we realize that something was wrong because it was just half a meter deep and that is never a good sign! That is not surprising because most of the maps were established in the 1800s, perhaps by Captain Blight himself !!!!!
So here we go, I am alone on that sailboat without a skipper to save me, Geoff who has two left hands and maps from a century ago!!! Oh, Oh very very bad!
As we were anchoring in that absolutely exquisite place a lot of water started being pumped out by the bilge pump and we could see the water going out on the side on the boat. What is happening now? Are we not going to have one quite day just enjoying the sun and the beach?
Geoff run down (it is just a way of talking, he do not actually really run, he kind of slide around!) and shout me: 'there is sea water coming in from the shaft seal because it moved'. I do not want to be more technical so in a few words, sea water do not belong inside the boat!!!! And I do not want to sink after only the first 25 nautical miles crossing by ourselves, we will look really stupid!!!!!
Geoff, Oh surprising cannot fix the thing nor do I, and we are in a very remote place without any other boat, no luck I guess and sea water is still coming in!!!
But we must have a big star in top of our heads taking care of us because two boats are sailing in. We jump in the dinghy and ask they if they could help us. Geoff has spend the last two months in the dinghy asking for help!!!! And now each time we are anchored somewhere no other boats come in, they see Blue Dawn and turn around to find another anchorage!!!!!
Anyway s/v Tucumcari and Allons'y fix the leak for us (see picture while having barbecue on the beach).
And they told us: 'This is how cruising life is and do not worry, you are still very lucky and your problem are nothing until you will run over a reef or a rock!'
Very promising I should say.
The next day Geoff made with the gang plunk a look out for me and now I am spending my days standing on the bow looking for reefs!!!!!!!
So far so good, I did see the different color in the sea warning me of shallows from my crow's nest."

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Trintella 75
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