Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas 2011

Merry Christmas 2011 from Dennis, Carol and Josh aboard s/v Evergreen currently located on the island of Oahu, Hawaii, USA.
Yep, it is hard to believe how fast this year has gone by and the number of miles we have put under our hull. Like most years, 2011 has had ups and downs,but overall we have had a spectacular year. 

From the now familiar sights of Mexico to the picture postcard lagoons of French Polynesia there are just not enough words to describe what an amazing experience we have had this year.  It has definitely been a life enriching experience for all of us. 

Where's the T Rex?  Fatu Hiva
The Marquessa’s with their lush volcanic peaks reminded us of Jurassic park – right down to the staked out goat. Kind of eerie actually…. After a 24 day crossing we were happy to see land and have fresh food.  We began practicing our French, learning Polynesian words for things and orienting ourselves to cruising in FP.  We caught up with Doug and Carla on s/v Moondance in Nuka Hiva and were fortunate to buddy boat with them the rest of the season.

Dennis on the hooka - Tahanea

The Tuamotus gave us our first experience of entering lagoons thru the reef.  The entrance to Makemo was a little exciting between the current and waves.  We had no problems, but it was similar to eddy lines and waves on the river, only in a sailboat. Josh broke out his spear gun and provided several yummy dinners.  We voted the Tuomotus as best place to snorkel. We did lots of snorkeling, one scuba dive and several dives with our hooka. The water is so clear and there is an abundance of seal life – including sharks.
The Lagoon at Bora Bora

Tahiti and the Societies were next up. By the time we got to Tahiti we were ready to see a real grocery store.  We socialized with other Puddle Jumpers, provisioned, did laundry and boat projects; then headed out to explore the rest of the societies.  We spent about a month in BoraBora – the lagoon is beautiful.  Josh said goodbye to kid friends there and had to put up with just us grownups until our final stop in the Tuamotus on the way to Hawaii.  We made our way back to Tahiti with stops at Huahine and Tahaa.  We reprovisioned in Tahiti, and then headed out to spend some time in Moorea waiting for a good weather window to head back to the Tuamotu’s.

Toau  Josh, Doug, Carol, Valentine, Dennis and Gaston. 
Our last month or so in French Polynesia was spent in the Tuamotu’s on Toau and Rangiroa.  Toau was amazing – the caretakers there, Valentine and Gaston, made our stay special.  Rangiora was our last stop – Josh met up with his friend Max.  They fished like crazy men keeping us in a steady supply of fish. Again, had to wait for a weather window to leave, but made it to Hawaii in 17 days, just in time for Thanksgiving. 

Josh with the Big Fish kids, Alex, Max and Ayla

So, here we are.  Hawaii is beautiful, feels cool to us but I guess it is winter.  The marina is nice and our neighbors have been very welcoming and helpful.  We will be here until June – ish, so come see us.

Merry Christmas and Best Wishes for a Happy 2012,
Dennis, Carol & Josh

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