26 May 2016
After two anchorages on either side of Papeete, it was time to venture to the Municiple Marina smack in the middle of the city- complete with sirens, stoplights, street lights and a lot pedestrian and foot traffic. After months in small towns, remote atolls and at sea, the noise and bustle of the city was somewhat of a shock. We covered much of it on foot tracking down marine stores, Yamaha parts, museums, the botanical garden, as well as simply relaxing in restaurants with friends. We did go on a beautiful hike with Antony and Venetia from "Alcedo of Rhyme", our hiking buddies, to a waterfall in the interior. The hike had several hip high stream crossing, and scrambles up the muddy trail but the waterfall was stupendous- the power from the falling water was unbelievable and the jungle there was lush and full of life. And yes, it rained for over half the hike....
The World ARC had a lovely reception, cocktail party and prize-giving in Papeete. To our surprise, we won the multihull division for the 3000 mile Pacific leg and were 6th overall in that leg. Granted, we have a large handicap but it was still fun to win something. We received a bottle of Tahitian rum and some odd vanilla bath products (that's what we think they are, the writing is in French and we know enough not to eat them).
Having our fill of the city, we left Papeete for Mo'orea, a spectacular island about 10 miles north of Tahiti and spent three days there, hiking, snorkeling with rays and black tip sharks, and completing a few boat projects, the most important of which was putting on our new mainsail! It took four months to get it but we're super happy with it so far. We also learned how to play "Catan" and are now hooked.
We left Mo'orea at sunset on May 3, for an overnight sail to Huahine, in the Leeward Islands of the Society Island, 80 miles north of Mo'orea. Huahine is one of the least developed islands in the Society Islands and is called the "Wild Island". Steve had picked up some bug making it's way through the fleet but Hannah and I escaped it and biked around the island on super cool, one speed Huffy bikes, pastel colored, with BIG seats and baskets. Truly sporty. It was a super island to bike around with a lot of interesting archeological sites, neat churches and a Pearl Farm located in the middle of a lagoon which required an outrigger boat ride to get to. The farm was interesting but our motive for going there was to see the owner who is also a fairly well known potter, Peter Owen. We got lucky and he happened to be in his studio that day and gave Hannah and I a fabulous tour and talked about his work for nearly an hour. Hannah was in heaven. We also celebrated Parker's graduation from the University of South Carolina- a big day for the Jenkins family!