|We were nearly the last boat to arrive in Lifou.|
Of course, that means much paperwork and many boat inspections. We have tried to visit different places in Tonga, Fiji, Vanuatu and New Caledonia where we have been before to have new experiences. And, of course, we continue to meet wonderful people who are out here doing the same thing as we are: enjoying the beauty of the world and its people.
|The water here is the most beautiful cerulean blue I have |
ever seen anywhere in the world! Indescribable!
I think we have found one of the most beautiful places in the South Pacific: cerulean blue and turquoise waters and snow white beaches. It is indescribable and the photos just cannot capture it. Sometimes my senses are on total overload from the beauty of the sights, sounds, smells, tastes and textures of the environment. It can be overwhelming and take your breath away. I have to pinch myself to see if I am really here!
|John and Lyn Martin welcoming Dennis to the event.|
We all anchored in Baie Du Santal (Sandal Bay 200 48S 1670 08E) which is sheltered, but full of reefs and coral heads so navigation must be right on the way points. Then you must watch where you drop the anchor so you don’t wrap the chair around a coral head. We tend to anchor at the back of the fleet so if we slip, we don’t slide into another boat. Also, Dennis likes to put out a lot of chain which increases our swing. Many of the European boats anchor close to others. I guess they are used to crowded conditions. We like to have space around us.
|Rally festival put on by the local village.|
This is a typical island method of
cooking and not too unlike the way we cooked in Girl Scout campouts, except we
placed the food in a covered pot before putting it in the ground and covering
it with earth to retain the heat. Then we would go off hiking for the day and
come back to a cooked meal. It was wonderful then, too!
|The hot Bougna was wrapped in this beautiful "carrying dish."|
|Not only do the women make the meal, but they also make|
the woven serving dishes or whatever you would call them.
There are several tiny little stores in the village where fresh baguettes were available each day. Yeah, bread – and good bread! When you are at sea, fresh bread becomes a real treat. Even if we buy several loaves before leaving shore, they are usually moldy before we use them up. That is when you know what preservatives do!
|Now the unveiling begins!|
|There were seven or eight different Bougna of different|
ingredients and flavors: chicken, fish and vegetarian.
|Several small market areas were set up for us.|
|The senior village women.|
It seems that four people had been in line the day before and only one of them was processed for a SIM card! They had been there several hours! Well, there is only one person at the desk and it is a long process to complete the forms that can only be done by that one person on her computer. With 20-some of us wanting SIM cards, we came up with a plan!
|She had the chocolate cake in her market!|
|Our groceries were the first in and last out of the bus.|
|This is what a mass provisioning trip looks like as |
everyone heads to their boats with dinghies full of goods!
|The joys of waiting and waiting and waiting for a SIM card!|
Fortunately, we had purchased an unlocked Samsung Galaxy in New Zealand so we can swap out SIM cards in each country and use it as a hotspot! I have had to learn a lot about prepaid phone cards, etc. Now the challenge is finding 3G coverage areas. It seems that the older phones are sold to the less developed countries so they do not offer the latest service. You can tell when we have found the right place as everyone is on their devices!