"He was a wise man who invented beer"-Plato

Vessel Name: Pursuit
Vessel Make/Model: Liberty 49
Hailing Port: Toronto, Canada
Crew: Gary and Tara
17 October 2012 | South China Sea
14 October 2012 | Kumai, Borneo
27 September 2012 | Bali, Indonesia
27 September 2012 | Bali Marina, Indonesia
03 August 2012 | Marlin Marina, Cairns, Australia
25 July 2012 | Cairns, Australia
26 May 2012 | Scarborough Marina, Queensland, Australia
22 October 2011 | Port Bundaberg Marina, Queensland, Australia
25 September 2011 | Port Vila, Efate, Vanuatu
21 August 2011 | Noumea, New Caledonia
07 August 2011 | Soso Village, Yasawas, Fiji
26 July 2011 | Yasawas, Fiji
25 June 2011 | Viani Bay, Fiji
06 June 2011 | Sixty miles south east of Fiji
28 May 2011 | South Pacific
12 May 2011 | Slip F27, Opua Marina, New Zealand
06 May 2011 | Slip F27, Opua Marina, New Zealand
26 April 2011 | Slip F27, Opua Marina, New Zealand
25 April 2011 | Slip F27, Opua Marina, New Zealand
12 April 2011 | Slip F27, Opua Marina, New Zealand
Recent Blog Posts
17 October 2012 | South China Sea

Back in the Northern Hemisphere!

Just a quick blog, because it's been a long time since we have been sailing in the northern hemisphere. We crossed the equator today en route to the island of Batam, Indonesia. It has been almost 3 years since we left the northern hemisphere (in the boat) and it felt great to cross back into it. I feel [...]

14 October 2012 | Kumai, Borneo

Person Of The Forest

The island of Bali was our introduction to the "other" side of Indonesia; the side with tourism, action, noise and [TRL: more] pollution. It was also the side of age-old culture. We rented a car and spent a few days driving around the island. We stopped in Ubud and watched the ceremonial Legong dance [...]

27 September 2012 | Bali, Indonesia

Incredible Indonesia!

We had a long sail up the coast of Australia to Thursday Island, where we finally cut the strings with Australia and jumped into another world. The winds were high and coming directly from astern but fortunately the seas were relatively calm due to the protection from the 2600 km long Great Barrier Reef, [...]

27 September 2012 | Bali Marina, Indonesia


We have spent the last two months sailing about 2,500 miles from Cairns, Australia to Bali, Indonesia at a pace far faster than we are generally used to [Gary will blog a bit more about our travels up until now so stay tuned]. We are now happily parked at the Bali International Marina (which sounds [...]

03 August 2012 | Marlin Marina, Cairns, Australia

Cairns…or Cans. Whatever.

Cairns (pronounced "cans") is certainly a great little city. It definitely is the launching point for the Great Barrier Reef and all the biggest, best and busiest reef tours anywhere on the coast. The city is built around tourists. They arrive to the marina early every morning (waking us up [...]

25 July 2012 | Cairns, Australia

Nothing Nice to Say

We have been moving up the northern Australia (Queensland) Coast from Brisbane. We've had terrible weather with mostly rain and lots of wind. Our moms taught us if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all. So, there you go.

Getting Stoned With The Savages!

25 June 2011 | Viani Bay, Fiji
It has been a while since I blogged last. I must have fallen into a sun-induced coma under a shady palm tree somewhere along the way. Sorry to all that follow the blog. We arrived in the main port of Suva on the south island of Viti Levu since my last blog, and after a short stop there, we headed out to the Great Astrolabe Reef, then we started sailing up the east coast of the Fijian island chain. With over 300 islands it is easy to get sidetracked. We eventually sailed into a little port town called Savusavu, which is a popular area for sailors to moor for a few days and just relax, get provisions and hit a few restaurants. The clocks run slow here and it is nice to be back on island time. Everything runs slower and the Fijians are pretty laid back...well, most of them. The Customs officers in Savusavu unfortunately run a bit tighter. When we arrived in Savusavu, we knew we had to check in with Customs and let them know that we had arrived from a different area in Fiji, but what we didn't know was that we had to get an outbound clearance from our last port of Suva before arriving. Oops! Yah, big oops. When I arrived in the Customs office, I was asked for our clearance papers. I said, "what clearance papers?" It reminded me of a scene out of Blazing Saddles, "badges, we don't need no stinking badges", but if I said I didn't need no stinking clearance papers, I'm sure I would have been in it even deeper.

And so it began. In the end I was sat down in a small room off to the side of the processing area and told I would have to pay a fine of $1250.00 Fijian dollars (approx. $750.00 Canadian). I was blown away. I explained that it was an honest mistake and that I simply didn't know. Ignorance is no excuse sometimes. Even in the laid back islands. I was told that if I didn't pay, then it would become a criminal matter and it would go to court, where I could be jailed. Ok, this isn't so much fun now, buddy! Things were started to spiral out of control a bit. I finally left and said that I would let them know in twenty-four hours what was going to be my choice. Although I knew jail was not at the top of my list. Part of me was thinking about making a run for the country of Wallis and Fortuna. It is a few day sail and they don't require arrival papers from your last country of departure, but that was just asking for it. Doors one and two didn't seem great, so I started looking for door number three. In the end I found a Fijian who used to work within the old regime of Fiji before the coup, and he knew the chief officer at Customs. They were old friends from the island of Koro and he said he would speak to him and try to work things out for me. In the end, I was told not to do that again and that was all. Just shut up, keep my mouth closed, follow the rules and I wouldn't have to pay. Terrific! I thanked my new Fijian friend, bought him a case of beer to show my gratitude and made sure I got outward clearance when I left Savusavu. Whew, close call! Time to get the hell out of Savusavu.

We eventually sailed into Viani Bay, which is right near the Rainbow Reef. The Rainbow Reef has reached near-mythical status among drivers around the world. In addition to the amazing dive sites, it has incredible snorkeling as well, just inside the reef. Tara and I enjoyed many dinghy rides out to the reef for a nice swim and snorkeling, plus it gave me a chance to try out my new underwater camera. The next morning we met an old Fijian named Jack. Generations of his family have lived around Viani Bay and he knew all the top dive spots and was happy to show them to us. We would take Pursuit out to the reef, anchor and then dive some of the most beautiful reef walls I have seen. Jack would follow our bubbles in our dinghy and then pick us up when we eventually surfaced from our dive. We would then head back to Pursuit, have a few beers and something to eat while filling the scuba tanks. It was a great time. We became good friends with Jack and learned a lot about the Fijian culture. We were invited to the school and his granddaughter took us on a nice walk to other villages where we were warmly greeted and enjoyed spending time with the villagers. There is so much fruit here. Every time Jack would come out the boat, he would bring bunches of bananas, oranges and papayas as gifts. We would do what we could to use it up (snacks, banana bread, muffins, pancakes, cookies, etc) but eventually we had so much fruit we had to tell him no more fruit. We couldn't eat it fast enough.

Before we left Suva, we bought a large quantity of kava root. This is for our sevusevu, which we would make along the way, as we arrive in different villages. Sevusevu is basically requesting permission to visit the village from the turaga-ni-koro (hereditary chief) and, in effect, the ancestral gods. He will then welcome us in a small ceremony, where we would all sit around the kava bowl and drink kava. Kava is a nasty little drink. Kava derives from Piper methysticum, a pepper shrub that thrives high in the hills. Traditionally, the kava was prepared by having prepubescent boys chew the root until it becomes a mush of pulp and saliva, then it is squeezed through a coconut fiber, mixed with water, and swallowed all in one go from a coconut shell. It sounds really weird reading it back now, but it makes you wonder, who in the hell thought this up way back when? But it is amazing what an enterprising person will do to get a buzz. Traveling allows one to discover that there is a whole new world of intoxicants out there, and I like intoxicants. Thankfully, people will now grind up kava for you, or you can even buy it in a powdered form, so there is need for some little kid's gob in your kava now. One evening Tara and I were invited to Jacks for a kava ceremony. I had bought a kava bowl and coconut cups from Tonga last year, so I was all ready to go. Kava is a mildly intoxicating drink that has an effect on the mouth similar to a shot of Novocain. So after "woo wuch wava, woo walk wunny". It was a fun night and we had great conversations about everything from politics to cannibalism. Jack's (sixth) wife is named Sophie and she claimed that her grandmother used to "eat the man". The last reported incident of cannibalism was in the late 1940's.

Fijians began feasting upon each other as far back as 2500 years ago. In traditional Fijian society, dining on the enemy was considered the ultimate revenge, as a disrespected death was a lasting insult to the enemy's family and the departed spirit. When missionaries brought cannibalism to an end in the late 19th century, it had become a ritualized part of everyday life. Bodies were either consumed on the battlefield or brought back to the village spirit house, where they were butchered, baked and eaten on the local war god's behalf. In celebration of the event, men performed the cibi (death dance) and women the dele- a dance in which they sexually humiliated corpses. Captives were often forced to watch their own body parts being consumed or even to eat some themselves! For cannibalistic feasts, men fed themselves with special long-pronged wooden forks. Considered special relics, these forks were kept in the spirit house away from women and children. So when Jack had invited us to his house, saying that he and Sophie would love to have us for dinner, we had to ask what was on the menu first. Thankfully it was a traditional feast of fish curry, taro, sweet potatoes and roti, and not Gary and Tara in a big, boiling pot.
Pursuit's Photos - Main
Preparing Pursuit for storage and the trip home.
16 Photos
Created 24 March 2013
Cruising into Singapore and Malaysia
11 Photos
Created 24 March 2013
Cruising some of the 17,000 islands of Indonesia
116 Photos
Created 27 September 2012
Photos from Down Under
53 Photos
Created 3 August 2012
Some pics from our drive across the US on route to LA for the flight back to Australia
73 Photos
Created 27 April 2012
Various photos from our wedding in Niagara Falls, Canada
41 Photos
Created 27 April 2012
Where The Adventure Began!
118 Photos
Created 4 November 2011
New Caledonia cruising and road trip
47 Photos
Created 23 October 2011
Sailing through the islands of Vanuatu
103 Photos
Created 25 September 2011
Pictures from around the islands of Fiji
103 Photos
Created 16 July 2011
Things that have been done in New Zealand.
64 Photos
Created 12 April 2011
Cruising down the Pacific coast of Central America
50 Photos
Created 22 February 2011
Road trip west across Canada on the Trans-Canada Highway.
52 Photos
Created 22 February 2011
Road trip east to NFLD on the Trans-Canada Highway.
88 Photos
Created 22 February 2011
Road trip through the New Zealand South Island
107 Photos
Created 26 January 2011
Road trip through the New Zealand North Island
49 Photos
Created 19 January 2011
19 Photos
Created 20 October 2010
39 Photos
Created 5 October 2010
80 Photos | 2 Sub-Albums
Created 10 August 2010
29 Photos
Created 5 June 2010
20 Photos
Created 5 June 2010
34 Photos
Created 8 May 2010
40 Photos
Created 8 May 2010
32 Photos
Created 8 May 2010
45 Photos
Created 13 April 2010
41 Photos
Created 13 April 2010
106 Photos
Created 8 February 2010
22 Photos
Created 27 January 2010
22 Photos
Created 10 November 2009
22 Photos
Created 4 November 2009
Various pictures of Pursuit
29 Photos
Created 12 October 2009
Lots of work!
38 Photos
Created 4 October 2009
17 Photos
Created 4 October 2009
23 Photos
Created 12 September 2009
Cruising around the San Blas Islands
27 Photos
Created 12 September 2009
May 11th, 2009. Panama Canal transit
32 Photos
Created 12 September 2009