Leela Year Six - Across the Pacific

Well.... to our own surprise here we are

17 May 2022 | Vuda Marina, Lautoka, Fiji
26 January 2022 | Australia
08 November 2021 | Viti Levu, Fiji
02 September 2021 | Paradise Resort, Taveuni
29 August 2021 | Paradise Resort, Taveuni, Fiji
10 August 2021 | Western S Pacific
19 June 2021 | New Jersey
14 March 2021 | At sea
05 March 2021 | Raroia, Tuamotus
05 February 2021 | Raivavae, The Australs Group, French Polynesia
04 February 2021 | Raivavae, The Australs Group, French Polynesia
17 January 2021 | Tahiti
13 December 2020 | Papeete, Tahiti
14 November 2020 | Pape’ete, Tahiti
14 November 2020 | Tahiti
01 October 2020 | Fakarava
24 September 2020 | Fakarava South Pass
19 August 2020 | Papeete, Tahiti
02 August 2020 | Pape’ete, French Polynesia
09 July 2020 | Papeete, Tahiti

Back in the Wilds

24 September 2020 | Fakarava South Pass
I have not posted for a while and much has happened. I have lots of new pics but no real internet access so this is a quick update until I can post more images to tell the story better.

We left Pape'ete and headed back into the Tuamotus Archipelago with some sense of relief as the Covid19 numbers were growing fast in Tahiti. We and our friends on Pitufa had hoped to get to Toau but the wind did not cooperate so we made an uncomfortable upwind passage to Apataki. There was not much going on there but it was a good place to self quarantine for a couple of weeks before moving on to other Covid-free islands.

When we got a break in the wind we headed down to Fakarava expecting a busier, more commercial atoll but were pleasantly surprised by its laid back charm. The town of Rotoava was fine, with a great little harbor and some useful general stores, but our favorite place so far is Harifa, a Motu down in the SE corner of the atoll. There is no snorkeling there but it is very beautiful and incredibly well sheltered from the prevailing winds. The picture is Janaki doing 'laps', something we try to do every day. As you can see social distancing is not a big problem....

We were there for about ten days practicing just hanging about (not our natural state), exercising and birdwatching, but we now have a spell of calmer weather and we have gone down to the Fakarava South Pass to dive and snorkel. This is a world famous spot, mainly for the sharks, and it did not disappoint. There are LOTS of sharks but there are also masses of other fish and great coral. We will stay here until the wind gets up next week then head back up to the town to shelter and reprovision. This is probably a six hour sail as the atoll is over 30nm (60km) long.

After that - who knows? We are keeping an eye on the spread of Covid19 and will try and stay one step ahead of it but we are not thrilled with French Polynesia's half-baked containment plans so we are sadly expecting it to spread throughout the islands. If/when it does things are going to get tricky. There are extremely limited or no medical facilities in the more remote areas. I guess we have to plan for the worst and hope for the best. We are very self contained and can go remote for several months if need be.

Unfortunately we do get enough Internet to get the world news and, much as I would like to ignore what is going on 'out there', it has the same horrific, compulsive draw as a traffic accident that you cannot look away from. It feels somewhat immoral to be sitting here watching it all go down from afar but that's where life placed us when it hit the fan. Please stay safe and resolute wherever you are.

Enough for now. I will post some more distracting pictures when we get back to town.

Vessel Name: Leela
Vessel Make/Model: Bristol 38.8
Hailing Port: Portsmouth, NH
Crew: Graham and Janaki
We are a Brit and an Australian now based in the wonderful community of Portsmouth, New Hampshire. We have a delightful home there but a couple of years ago we began to feel a bit over-domesticated so we thought we would buy another boat and head south. [...]
Leela, a Bristol 38.8 has turned out to be a wonderful cruising boat for us. Some might find it a little cramped by modern standards but it feels like just the right balance of living space and storage to us. She sails like a dream. She is remarkably well balanced and is comfortable in pretty [...]
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