We've been busy since the last blog update; returning to Nouméa, fixing the bow roller, catching up with old friends, stocking up for the trip to Vanuatu, scouring the town for hard to locate boat spares, procuring duty-free diesel, starting numerous other boat jobs, checking-out of New Caledonia and celebrating Charlotta's birthday. Phew... feels exhausting just writing about it.
Great to arrive back in Nouméa and find old friends in the marina you didn't expect to see. Especially when they've built their own boat and dissuade you from your chosen course of dismantling half the front of the boat just to fix a bent shaft. They then lent me their tools, produced a stainless rod from their spares as well as supervising and advising on the repair in progress. So it was with Ian and Cathy from Ariel.
On Saturday we started our journey towards the south of the main island bashing into a short-steep chop brought on by a strengthening east wind. As we tacked out to Amédée and back again we experienced a role reversal. I was sea-sick and incapacitated, meanwhile Charlotta ably helmed and brought us into a sheltered anchorage on the main island.
I blame the rich chocolate birthday cake which I gorged before we left, that or my body reacted to the frantic activity of the previous few days - somewhat worrying for my eventual return to work.
for more drying days in the Loyalties.