Well we were off like a herd of turtles. Our 0800 start was closer to 0900. And, bye bye sun. We had enough of a rain shower to thoroughly wet the awnings, but thankfully we were so late getting off that the big one was entirely dry, and I finished drying out the small one today. It was hard for Josh to say farewell to his new friends on Far and Away, but hopefully we will meet up one more time before we all depart Fiji.
On our way towards the reef exit we calibrated the autopilot and "swung the compass". We had some trouble with our "tracks" which are helpful getting us out of places we have successfully entered - or help us to miss things we came to close to. Was one of what I am beginning to think of as a Fiji sail - lots of wind at the beginning, none in the middle and lots again at the end.
Not an uneventful trip either. First off around 1400, in squirrely winds, Dennis decided to "heave to". It was something we had been meaning to practice, and when the winds shifted and we backwinded the sails, he decided to go for it. And then guess what??? "Fish on". Paul pulled in his first fish - an very nice Dorado/Mahimahi. Yum! (Dinner tonight). Curly's lure is now 3 for 4. Once we were settled from that and moving along, I discovered that we were taking in water through the sink drains. Now, that is not a first, but it was a first to happen to all three and the first time I managed to flood the cupboards on the starboard side. Paul and I removed everything from the cupboards, bailed them out (the drains were now closed) and I cleaned them when we got to anchor. So I guess on the positive side, it did make me clean the kitchen thoroughly. Was definitely a spaghetti (comfort food) night. The pass into Namena reef is easy - we used Curly's North Save a Tack waypoints, and a mid waypoint from the compendium. Oh, and no internet.
We are anchored here behind Namenalala Island. So far noone has come to collect the 35$/person fee. We are anchored wharfside of the mooring (not that we can see the wharf, but that is the best way for me to describe it) in about 45 feet. Josh did a good job of putting the anchor down in a sandy spot. We had an early night - I think that 5 days in town with the projects and the heat, wore us all out.
Today was leisurely, I finally made breakfast around 1100. After breakfast I decided that Josh's PE for the day would be free diving to salvage my favorite pan that fell in while I was pouring out grease. Gotta love it when your mother does those things to you - dontcha?? I did a reconnaissance snorkel to make sure he knew where to go and he got in and dove down and retrieved it first try - in at least 40 feet of water! That's my boy!!! After that Paul, Dennis and I went and snorkeled the reef by our boat. Sure can tell that this is a marine reserve - the spotted grouper were almost docile enough to pet. Josh didn't go, because he couldn't stand the thought of all those big fish - and no spearfishing :(. Dennis went further afield than Paul and I, and he said he saw some marbled grouper that were quite large as well. We will probably head out to Makogi tomorrow - another 20+ mile trip.
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