November 05, 2010

Passage Making

I thought I would give you a flavor of what the week before a big passage looks like. All the cruisers have usually converged in the same area so in amongst all the chores are numerous parties. By the time you are ready to go you are exhausted and ready for some down time or should I say "detox time". :-)

Tuesday, October 26th
-Arrival in Nukulofa at 4pm
-Blender drinks and "we did it" party on board Stray Kitty

Wednesday, October 27th
-Got rid of our garbage, handed in our propane tanks for filling, and our laundry
-Checked in and out of Tonga with customs and immigration
-Rode over to the fuel docks on board Stray Kitty with our empty diesel cans for fill
-Birthday party for Jake (Cruising friend) at the local cruiser hang out "Big Mama's
-Turned into dinner, darts and conversation

Thursday, October 28th
-Rode over to the fuel docks on board Nikita on our final run to fill our empty diesel cans
-Took Amelia into town on our birthday shopping extravaganza
-Changed the oil
-Maintained the engine
-Took the kids to sports day on the beach
-Happy hour on board Artemo with Mojo celebrating Ondean's bday

Friday, October 29th
-Moved Artemo to town anchorage and made 4 runs back and forth with our dinghy and water jugs to fill the tanks
-Finished our passage grocery shop including stops at the fruit/veg market, bakery and various grocery stores
-Stored away all the food and washed the fruit/veg
-Put away the piles of clean laundry and made all the beds up with clean sheets
-Re anchored Artemo back in the cruiser anchorage
-Attended Big Mama's goodbye extravaganza party! (side note...during our shopping trip the day before in town when we were waiting for the ferry Amelia says..."Mom I think this sack under my bench is full of live baby pigs"......sure enough we see the bag moving and a hole in the bag and there is a bit of the pigs snout. The sacks then came with us on the ferry to Big Mama's and then at the party we saw them roasting on sticks over the pit. I am not a vegetarian but I just couldn't eat them.)

Saturday, October 30th
-Cleaned and scrubbed every surface inside of the boat
-Prepared for Amelia's Birthday Tea Party in the afternoon (set the table all fancy, made up treat bags, made pink icing cinnamon buns for a cake and pizza dough, straightened Amelia's hair)
-Left Amelia and her 5 friends to their party on board and headed to shore to spend 2 hours scrapping the green hair from the bottom of the dinghy
-Picked up the girls and attended the Big Mama's information session on arrival procedures in New Zealand
-Brought Amelia and the 2 Mojo girls back to the boat for pizza and a sleepover

Sunday, October 31st
-Kids were up early getting dressed for morning trick or treating. (Many cruisers were leaving for NZ in the afternoon so we needed to do it early)
-Watched as the kids zoomed off all dressed up and trick or treated boat to boat in the anchorage...way cool
-Cooked, cooked and cooked for passage...made lasagna, shepherds pie, rice, pasta, and cookie dough
-Deflated the dinghy, tied up the motor, strapped everything to the decks, put up the splash guards and readied all the lines
-Made ourselves sick on Halloween candy :-)

Monday, November 1st
-Departed Nukulofa at 6:30am enroute for New Zealand
-YIPPEEE......time to rest.

Crazy busy fun filled week but I am so glad to finally be underway. There is so much hooplah about this passage to New Zealand. It is notorious for bad weather conditions, so everyone spends their time talking about the weather and the route. My anxiety level was at an all time high. We are paying for the help of a well known New Zealand weather router named Bob McDavitt. He let us know the best time to go and the route to take and we are in contact with him as we make way. We are currently trying to out run a bit of weather that will be moving across North of 30 on November 6th. We never seem to win these races though so we are preparing for some higher winds.

We are all in good spirits and we have even folded Alex into the night time watch routine, so our sleep rotation has improved. I feel ready for whatever this passage has in store but for now we are enjoying a calm sea and blue sky and dreaming of wonderful glorious New Zealand.....visits from family, hair cuts, showers, clean grocery stores, movie theaters, shopping malls, shoes without holes in them, socks, and the list and discussions go on and on.....

1 comment:

  1. I'll have happy hour and blender drinks if you come visit us :)