Checking in day
23 June 2021 | 08 55.038'S:140 05.994'W, Nuku Hiva , Marquesas
08 55.038 S
140 05.994 W
Weather; sunny, wind N/A, waves N/A
I forgot to mention yesterday that while he was trying to do the check in stuff yesterday Gerry also made a detour to the bank to take out some local currency, well he tried! His ANZ debit card didn't work in either of the machines, not to be put off he tried his US card and that one, thankfully, worked - it's a pity that there isn't much money in that account to take out! Now I have to say at this point that we had exactly the same issue with the same machines and the ANZ debit cards the last time we were here and in 14 years the problem hasn't gone away! Back on the boat Gerry had steam coming out of his ears over it and was immediately on the phone to the ANZ bank to find out what the issue was, only to be told there is no issue from their end, there is plenty of money to draw out and they have no idea why the card wouldn't work - we can send you out a new card! This was received with the derision it deserved, we weren't sure how we were going to retrieve a new card from our mailing address in Tasmania to use in Nuku Hiva! The call ended just as I had predicted it would, sorry but we can't do anything to help you out! I suggested to Gerry that we try again in the morning to see if using my card made any difference as it had worked for us 14 years ago, meanwhile everywhere here takes visa so it's not a desperate situation. It doesn't help that there is just one bank here with 2 ATMs plus there is an ATM at the post office which we had forgotten about - something to check out in the morning.
So on to today, first things first we needed to get ourselves checked in so off we went in the dinghy with our paperwork and a load of washing to drop off at the laundry service. Once we had tied up to the dock and clambered up the ladder we dropped the laundry off and then Gerry considerately said why don't I browse the market and he would go and get us checked in up the hill and would meet me back at the caf next to the market. He left me with the equivalent of 2 x US$50 notes- the only local cash we had. I did a brief wander around the market, more disappointed than I care to admit, it was sadly lacking in the fresh vegetables that we need with only a few eggplant, daikon radish, small cabbages and bags of 4 potatoes for sale, there was no green vegetables of any description, no onions, no beans, no sweet potatoes, no tomatoes, no lettuce or capsicum to be seen. As far as the fruit went there were bananas, breadfruit, mangoes and grapefruit but that was all. I didn't want to be buying the few things that we needed before checking out the supermarket so decided to go and have a coffee in the cafe, of course they didn't have change for the $50 note but I told the lady that I would pay her after going to the supermarket and she was OK with that. I dawdled over the coffee hoping that Gerry would appear but in the end I gave up and went across to the artisan place where they sell the local wood carvings and jewellery and browsed the stalls there, not buying anything just at the moment but noting the things that caught my eye for later. Gerry finally appeared there and dragged me away as the gendarme needed to physically see me and compare me to my passport, so we trudged back up the hill to the gendarmerie, spent 2 minutes getting the papers stamped and then we were all legal and set to stay - for the regulated 4 days! Next it was along the foreshore to the bank to try my card in the machine, a complete waste of time as it had exactly the same result as Gerry's card had (at this point we had forgotten about the post office ATM). On a positive note we didn't have to deposit the security to ensure that we would leave French Polynesia as has been the case in the past, probably due to the fact that we are only allowed 4 days here anyway and can't go anywhere else in FP anyway. From there we were half way to the supermarket and decided to continue on to pick up a few items and check out what was available there. To be honest the shop was well stocked with frozen, tinned and packet goods but was severely lacking on the fresh fruit and vegetable side. We found some carrots and apples which we bought, plus there were a few potatoes and lots of garlic which we already have plenty of onboard. We bought a case of diet coke and a few top up tins of fruit and other essentials (read chocolate!) and then thought we didn't want to be carrying much more back to the dock so went to pay. Another couple from the dock were waiting to pay and told us that if we had too much to carry the shop will drop you back to the dock , you just have to ask — good to know and we did just that which made buying the case of Coke and tinned goods easier to deal with. We stopped off at the cafe on the dock for a cold drink and a baguette for our lunch plus paid for the coffee I had earlier before buying a few bananas and eggplants from the market and then heading back out to our boat. Once onboard we stowed the shopping and broke out the list of stuff to do, first thing on the list was getting the jib back up so we set about end to ending the sheets, noting there was a little wear on the sail end of the lines but not too bad. Gerry added more grease into the top of the furler to make sure it was moving freely. Next it was the same process as on previous occasions, I stood in the pulpit and threaded the sail into the track whilst Gerry winched the sail up the forestay. As soon as it was fully in place we had to hurry back to the cockpit to furl it away as we really didn't want the small amount of wind in the anchorage to be filling the sail and having us trying to take off whilst still anchored. So the jib was away, but whilst we are here we might as well take the staysail down and end to end the lines, then we can check the sail to see if any stitching needs doing (not that I am going to be doing that today!) so we did the end to ending of the lines and then called it a day, leaving the checking until tomorrow. It was 4 pm by now and we were both flagging badly. Talking of flagging we took down our Quarantine flag and hoisted the French curtesy flag, there is a Nuku Hiva flag but we don't have one so we go under the French banner instead.
We sat for a while and then it was time for a shower and change of clothes as we had been invited over to our neighbour, Jonathon's boat for cocktails. I was reluctant to go as we were tired but Gerry was keen so we packed some nibbles, beer, rum and coke and headed over to his boat where we spent the next couple of hours enjoying the company of Jonathon, Michael and Jacob and sharing stories of our travels. It was well past dusk when we returned to our boat, the moon was out and was almost full - just one day short of the full moon. Although we really didn't want anything big for dinner Gerry was determined to make corn beef hash as we had found some cans of corned beef at the supermarket. With dinner and dishes done I took myself off to bed and was out like a light, I didn't even know Gerry had come to bed!
More fixing stuff will be happening tomorrow!