Swingin' on a Star

Ship's log for the circumnavigating Saint Francis 50 catamaran, "Swingin on a Star".

01 April 2010 | Palau
13 July 2009 | Palau
05 July 2009 | Yacht Harbor
03 July 2009 | Peleliu
02 July 2009 | Palau
01 July 2009 | Two Dog Beach
30 June 2009 | Mecharchar
29 June 2009 | Mecharchar
28 June 2009 | Ulong
27 June 2009 | Ngeruktabel
17 June 2009 | Ngeruktabel
16 June 2009 | Ngeruktabel
15 June 2009 | Ngeruktabel
14 June 2009 | Ngeruktabel
13 June 2009 | Ngerutable
25 May 2009 | Yacht Harbor
30 April 2009 | Malakal
29 April 2009 | Koror
28 April 2009 | Malakal
27 April 2009 | Malakal

Two Day Check Out

19 September 2008 | Bora Bora
Randy
The Gendarme that we checked out with yesterday was a nice guy and told us that we had 24 hours to leave once clearing out. The big task after clearing out is getting your bond back. Americans and Japanese (and most other non EU passport holders) have to post a bond to enter FP by yacht. The bond is approximately equivalent to the amount of a flight home. This made the Japanese bond 176,000 fp francs and the US bond 150,000 fpf. We hit the Gendarmerie at 4PM yesterday but the Socredo bank (holders of our bond) closed at 3:30.

The bank opened at 7:30 this morning so I arrived bright and early to get things handled. In order to make for a fast get away I decided to dinghy over to the Saint James restaurant dock one bay over from the yacht club. The Saint James is in a little plaza with a computer shop and a nice bakery with yummy breakfast items. A half block farther toward town and you are at the big grocery store, the chandlery and the Socredo Bank.

I purchased the bonds with my credit card and thus expected the symmetrical credit. Nothing doing. They would not credit my card. I was very insistent but they would not budge. This is not only inconvenient but seemingly unreasonable. If you can charge the card, certainly you can credit it? The cash amount is over $3,000 US. They suggested I take francs. The last thing we needed was more francs, we had just cleared out!

In the end I had to settle for US and New Zealand Dollars (good in the Cooks, Niue and Tonga). We made about 10% on the US dollar over the three months we were here, not sure whether to be happy or sad about that.

I made my way back to the boat with a stop at the pastry place. It was 10:00 when I returned to the boat. It was getting late to make Maupiti in good stead for clearing the tricky pass. After a nice breakfast, we had the dinghy up and the big boat ready to go by 11:00. Then I noticed that the bank had taken my clearance out and not returned it. They, of course, close from 11:30 to 1:30. So we enjoyed one more day in Bora Bora.

It was choppy in the lagoon but we ran the dinghy over to the Pearl Beach Resort on the motu across from the yacht club just to check it out. It was the only large hotel on Bora Bora we had not yet taken a look at. It was a nice place with the expected over water bungalows and all. The location was not optimal however. This resort, like the Bora Bora Lagoon Resort and Spa, faces the east and there is a fair amount of fetch off the resort beach. This makes the dock and beach of the resort choppy quite often. If you're going to visit Bora Bora and stay in a hotel our recommendation is still #1 Four Seasons or Nui (tie), #3 Saint Regis.

After lunch we returned to the bank to get our clearance papers. We also stopped at the Total station, the only fuel dock I know of in Bora Bora. We picked up a little 5 liter emergency tank for the dinghy that I had been looking for. I was surprised that the station did not take credit cards. Some yachts must run up a pretty serious bill which has to be rough on the cash reserves When we returned to the big boat I downloaded weather over the yacht club's Iorana Net WIFI site (you get one free hour a day with a mooring). The Bora Bora wind guru report among other resources indicated that wind and seas still looked good for Maupiti tomorrow, so we turned in early to prepare for a crack of dawn departure.
Comments
Vessel Name: Swingin on a Star
Vessel Make/Model: Saint Francis 50
Hailing Port: Las Vegas, NV
Crew: Randy & Hideko Abernethy
About: Randy, Hideko and Roq
Home Page: http://swinginonastar.com
Swingin on a Star's Photos - Swingin on a Star (Main)
Selected photos of Swingin' on a Star at anchor.
7 Photos
Created 18 September 2007
31 Photos
Created 15 September 2007
copyright 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 Randy & Hideko Abernethy, all rights reserved