You Can Take It With You If You're Patient
30 May 2014 | On Passage To Vanuatu
We did manage to leave New Zealand this past Monday but it wasn't easy. After checking out, we headed to the fuel dock for the last task of filling up with duty free diesel. We had quite a scare though when the pumps wouldn't work and there was only a trickle of fuel coming out of the nozzle. There's nowhere else to get fuel and we were thinking oh brother, we're going to have to check back in and wait another week! But, it turns out these pumps are finicky and sometimes require a special touch that the local ferry captain showed all of us, including the marina staff person who was beginning to pull her hair out. And then off we went.
It's now Friday night and we're on the downward stretch with 330 miles to go. So far it's been an insanely easy passage with very light winds after the first blustery day. It has meant a lot of motoring though. The first 3 nights were pretty chilly and we wore multiple layers but every day it's warmer and now we're in to shorts & shirt again. Today was another perfect sunny day. As I slathered on sunblock, mixed with the scent of the sea and a touch of diesel fumes, I was reminded of how those smells bring back so many memories of summertime boating in New England. Especially on the calm seas of today, you could be anywhere up north in the summer and it would feel exactly the same. We haven't had the benefit of the moon, but with all the stars theres's till plenty of light to see.... the line of the horizon mainly. A cruise ship passed us on the second day, bound for Vanuatu but we haven't seen any fins or flukes or other ships since then, just a few birds using our boat as a turning point. We love watching the albatross since they never seem to have to flap their wings at all and they're so big. It's very tempting to toss in a line, but we typically don't fish on passage. It just seems like any added thing is too much to bother with, our minds are not into it and the fridge is still full of all kinds of good stuff from NZ.
We've busied ourselves with the usual passage routine of watchkeeping, making meals, sleeping and keeping ourselves & the boat ship shape. Although today, Jon spent much of the day working on the watermaker... which has a new problem where it's sucking air on the vacuum side. Of course this didn't reveal itself during the 2 weeks we were using it recently cruising around NZ. Must be the warmer water temp brought it out? We're not sure. More troubleshooting tomorrow. It never ends! But, we have plenty of water so not to worry about us. We just need to get it sorted before too long. It sure is looking like we'll be using the Fedex depot in Port Vila, Vanuatu's capitol.
They say "you can't take it with you", which when it comes to money, we've never really worried about having any left to take! But, unlike flying someplace for vacation, cruising on your own boat does allow you to take your little world with you wherever you go. It sure does take some patience though! I can't think of a slower mode of transportation other than walking! But I guess you can't have it all. Although... one of the greatest things we enjoy is coming back to the boat in
the evening after a full day on shore and then sitting in the cockpit to enjoy a drink & the sunset. At those times, it does kind of feel like we have it all. It's the simple things I guess. We hope to make landfall Monday morning. Maybe the wind will fill in before then. Either way, getting there will be nice. And a drink in the cockpit before heading to our
real bed will be luxury!