Friday, September 30, 2011

River Bath, Pentecost

Hello All,
This morning after breakfast Rafal and I went to snorkel around Captain Cook Rock just south of us. There is a small reef but there is a river close by and it made the water very murky so it was hard to see so we gave up after an hour. We went to take a look at the small river and decided it was perfect for a bath and laundry. After returning to the boat we gathered up our clothes and all of us went back to the river. I took the engine off of the dingy and we carried it over to put it in the river and gave it a bath too. After we got finished we went river rafting and took the dingy out 100 feet of small rapids to the sea. That was pretty fun I must say.
This afternoon Rafal and Paula went to the village. I stayed behind and read a book. They walked for 40 minutes to the village just north of us. They said it's a bigger village and everyone was asking where they were from and how they got here. They got to see the Land Diving Tower that Pentecost is famous for. Basically Pentecost is the grand father to bungy jumping. They build a tower 100 feet tall out of what ever wood is available and bind it all together with vines and natives jump from it with vines tied on there angles. Originally it was a celebration of the Yam harvest but now they do it for visitors and yachties. They charge heaps of money to see this, usually around June, so they are pretty num to visitors afterwards. Hundreds of people come to see this every year and one a side note, the guy that made bungy jumping popular got his idea from this Island.
We will move onto Waterfall Bay tomorrow morning about 8 miles north so I will talk to you then.


Thursday, September 29, 2011

Wali Bay, Pentecost Island

Hello All,
We made it up to Wali Bay at 1130 yesterday. Wind was light and seas were pretty flat along the way. It was only 12 miles to get up here so was not to far to go. My position is 15 55.65S 168 11.12E
We went and took a look at the village in the after noon and visited with one of the loacals for a bit. There is a fresh water stream not far from here so we plan to do some snorceling by some reefs close by, then take a bath and do some laundry in the river. It is not a big village, maybe 50 people so it is pretty basic. I don't know how long we will stay, maybe leave tomorrow but we will see.
That's all for now. I will talk to you soon.


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Wood Carvings, Ranon, Vanuatu

Hello All,
We had a great time on the beach at Ranon Yesterday. We met a few of the wood carvers that make the Tam Tam drums and one of the guys, Ruben, showed us some work he had for sale. We told him we would think about it and took a walking tour of the rest of the village. As we were walking we ran into a guy from the village next door called Ranvetlam. It was about a 30 minute walk and on the way he climbed one of the coconut trees and got some down for us to drink. It was very hot yesterday so it was nice to have some coconut water. When we arrived at the village he introduced us to Mike, a young guy from England. He has been staying in the village for months taking the language and writing it all down and making a dictionary so it can be taught at school. The only way the language is taught right now is just the parents speaking it, so this way it can actually be taught in school. This is a program that the Vanuatu government is backing to keep the languages alive and well. It was very interesting speaking to him and he showed us around the village. Mike introduced us to the chief and he is also a wood carver. He showed us his work and it was awesome. I actually bought a piece from him and it is a work of art. We visited for a bit more and headed back.
We took a very nice swim in the bay on our return, wow that was refreshing.
Last night we went into the village for a Kava session with the village. They were all very interested in my trip and the boat and we visited for hours. It is one of the first times so far in Vanuatu that they seemed more interested in us and less interested in how we can make a few bucks on these guys. I hate to say it that way but I have had that feeling a few times so far. When we get through the Island Group I will write a blog on the Country as a whole so you can get a good idea about the people, the land and the culture.
We will head up to Pentecost Island this morning 12 miles away. The wind has been flat for days now so we will have to use the Iron sail. Speaking of weather, I don't talk about it much and that's because there is nothing to talk about. Sunny and calm here this morning, further outlook, Sunny and calm.
That's all for now.


Tuesday, September 27, 2011

On The Move Again

Hello All,
We moved to Ranon this morning. This village is on the north west coast of Ambrym Island. The position is 16 08.48S 168 07.01E
We had a great time in Craig Cove. The locals were all very friendly and invited us for Kava drinking with the rest of the village yesterday after noon. It was not a big place and had 2 very small stores where we got some fresh bread. Myself and the crew went snorkeling around some of the small reefs on the point and saw heaps of fish and a few turtles. The water was so clear you could see the anchor at 50 feet of water. We went into the village this morning to see their fresh veggie market but it didn't have much so we decided to move onto Ranon Village 15 miles up the leeward side of the Island.
We arrived here at 1130 this morning and got settled. There is one other French boat here, this is the first time we have shared an anchorage in 7 days. The crew went for a swim, it was so hot today. The active Volcanos on the Island have surrounded it by smoke giving a greenhouse effect and no wind, zip zero, we had to motor sail all the way up here. We were visited by a dug out canoe shortly after we arrived. He welcomed us to the village and told us to come into town anytime and he would show us around. His name is Barry and he heads up all of the activities for visitors and yachties. He has a guided tour up to the top of the Volcano which takes 2 days, a very small part by car and the rest hiking. The Volcano is famous for its lava pools inside, the only problem is 99% of the time you can't see inside for all of the smoke. Rob on Compass Rose did this tour a month ago and he told us to save our money. This is also the most dangerous Volcano of the archipelago because of its unpredictability of eruptions. I went into the village on my own this after noon to take a look around and met up with Barry. It seems Ranon is famous for what they call Tam Tams. They are 8 foot tall carved statues as big around as a tree and are carved out at the bottom for different sounds when you hit them, basically a big wooden drum 8 feet tall with a face on the top. I met one of the carvers as he was working on one. Very beautiful art work. I only stayed briefly but we will all return tomorrow to get some pictures and take a walk.
I will talk to you soon.


Sunday, September 25, 2011

Craig Cove, Ambryn Island

Hello All,
We made a very fast trip over to Ambrym Island yesterday morning. We had ESE winds at 15 knots so it was an awesome 16 mile sail over here.
My position is 16 15.13S 167 55.20E
As we got closer to the Island the wind picked up to 24 knots so we had to finish the last 5 miles under a double reef main and staysail only. Craig Cove is suppose to have a small store and fresh bread. We stayed on the boat all yesterday afternoon but we will go take a look around today.
I will let you know what we find out.


Saturday, September 24, 2011

Gaspard Bay, Vanuatu

Hello All,
We decided to stay another night here in the bay. The Chief of the area came out to the boat in a dug out canoe an hour after we arrived and told us there was an anchoring fee and if we were swimming there was a fee for that also. He said after paying we could do what ever we wanted in the area as long as we liked and he would show us around one of the Islands as a tour guide. I agreed to this extortion and sent him on his way.
So yesterday we took the dingy over to the Sakao Island just south of us and went and found the chief. He met us on the muddy flats in front of the island. It was low water so we had to anchor the dingy out a ways until the tide came back in. This is the areas Plantation Island, so most of the surrounding villages grow there crops here.
The Chief introduced us to a few folks and we took a walking tour around the Island and he told us about traditions, customs and showed us how they used to dress using us as manikins, I'll tell you more about this at a later date (hehe). We returned to the beach where the dingy was and they fed us lunch and had a nice visit with the plantation keepers. We said our goodbye's and went out to the pass that we entered through and Rafal went snorkeling on the reef, Paula and I just headed back to the boat, it was over cast and I didn't feel like swimming and nether did Paula so Rafal swam back to the boat. On his way back one of the dug out canoes fishing on the reef invited him to jump in the boat so he hitched a ride with him. He really got a kick out of that.
This morning we will head for Craig Cove on Ambrym Island 16 miles north of here. It looks like another good sailing day so we should make the crossing in good time.
I must finish my coffee and get the boat ready to get under way so I will talk to you soon.


Friday, September 23, 2011

Geography Lesson, Lamen Isl

Hello All,
We had a really great time yesterday on Lamen Island 1 mile across from there we anchored the boat. The position of the Island is 16 35.19S 168 08.18E. We took the dingy across to see the small village that is there and say hello. The Island is surrounded by a reef so we had to pick a spot where the waves were not breaking, always exciting dealing with reefs. When we got to shore we took a walk around and passed by the primary school. The head master teaching there said hello and invited us inside to meet all the children. He asked us to sit in front of the class room and tell the kids where we are from and what its like to live there. After we told a few stories and explained what it's like to live in our countries he asked if we knew how to play a guitar, I told him I play a little so he handed it to me and said, play something for the kids. I just kept it simple and played a verse and a chorus from "Knocking on Heavens Door" That was a lot of fun and the kids got a kick out of it. The head master then started playing "Country Road" and all of the kids were singing along with him, as we were singing I was replacing "West Virginia" with Vanuatu, Everyone laughed very hard.
After all of the fun the head master gave us a tour of the village. He was born and raised there and after a few years of teaching around Vanuatu he finally got to teach in his own village and he is loving it being back home. He told us the history of the Island and showed us the house where he grew up and introduced us to a few of the Dug out Canoe builders. They are carved out of a big tree and shaped into a boat and then an outrigger is added. They are not very big boats, about 10 feet long. It takes about one month to complete one and it lasts about 3 years before it gets rotten. Some try using paint and epoxy to make them live longer but most just build a new one in 3 years. We thanked him for the tour and we headed back to the boat before dark.
This morning we pulled up anchor and headed for the South East Corner of Malakula Island 19 miles away. There is a group of Islands here called The Maskelyne's. They are a very small group and are very low Islands with reefs around them. We got over here at 1530 and anchored in Gaspard Bay just as you enter the group, our position is 16 28.38S 167 49.18E We will be here just for the night and then move 5 miles to a place we were told was awesome.
That's all I know for now so I will talk to you soon.


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Epi Island Vanuatu, Lamen Bay

Hello All,
We got here just as I planed at 0830 this morning. The light from the sun was in our eyes but was still easy to find a good spot to anchor. My position in the world is 16 35.79S 168 09.86E.
The bay is very shallow but is free from most hazards so I got into 14 feet of water and dropped the anchor. We got settled for a few hours then took the dingy to the beach. There is a small but nice village here and everyone said hello as we walked around. We wanted to find some fresh bread and one of the locals took us to someone's home. He bakes bread in a wood fired concrete oven. The recipe reminds me of a French baguette but he does it with a loaf, it was the best bread I have had in a while. We bought 2 loafs and plan to get 2 more tomorrow. There is also a small Resort here but not how you would think. I have found that most of the resorts here in Vanuatu are owned by locals and are not fancy, just a place to stay where they feed you and show you around. There is also a small Yacht club here, I plan to go talk to the owner tomorrow just to say hello.
After all of the exploring we all went for a swim. We didn't have to go far we just jumped off of the boat. There is a mammal that I had never heard of that lives here between the bay and Lamen Island next door, it's called a "Dugong". Paula spotted him first and I went to see. I would have to say it is a cousin of the Walrus but if you google it let me know. It is an amazing animal and not aggressive, it just swims around and eats the grass growing on the bay bottom. The bay also has more turtles than you can count. When I jumped in the water there was one in the shade of the boat on the bottom just taking a break from the sun. Rafal and Paula got some really good underwater pictures of our new friends so I hope to post them to show you.
Tomorrow I think we plan to take the dingy over to Lamen Island, a half mile across, I have been told there is a nice village there that welcome visitors.
I will tell you more later.


Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Postponed Passage to Epi Island

Hello All,
I am writing you on our passage to Epi. I decided to wait one more day at Efate Island for more favorable winds. It was blowing pretty good on the day we were suppose to leave so I made the decision to give the weather one more day and it seemed to work out great. We are doing a night passage so we can make it to the anchorage in the light and it looks like we will be right on time. We should be there this morning about 9 AM. The wind was still pretty strong but has been coming down all night. We have been under a double reefed main and a staysail only and have been making good time.
Before we left we took the boat to the other side of the bay right by the narrow pass that we used to leave and anchored by a reef. The crew went snorkeling a few hours and I stayed behind just to keep an eye on the poorly set anchor. They said it was ok but nothing special.
I will give you my position tonight or tomorrow and let you know whats going on.
Talk to you soon.


Sunday, September 18, 2011

Heading to Epi Island Sunday

Hello All,
We had an awesome Sunday here on beautiful Efate Island. The sun was out and not a cloud in the sky. Rafal and Paula went to the church services in the morning and I stayed behind and just did some research on what anchorage and what Island we want to see next.
I was visited by my neighboring boat, an American couple from Dallas Texas. He just got new sails put on there 52 foot Tayana and he asked me if I could take a few pictures from there dingy of there boat under sail. I said sure, this will be fun. This is a very big bay and is protected from the sea. So he left me his dingy and they went out and got the boat sailing and I raced out to where they were at and took some great pictures from all different angles. There dingy does 25 knots so I was having fun with that as well. After the photo shoot they came back and re anchored the boat. I got there dingy back to them and they showed up later with a bottle of French wine, a boat card and thanked me. They seemed pleased with the photos, it is harder than one may think to take pictures of a moving object from a very small moving object trying to stay ahead of an 8 knot boat. It was fun had by all.
After all of the excitement of the morning Rafal and Paula returned to tell me we have all been invited for lunch in the village, after the church service. The whole village makes food of all kinds and they all eat it together Buffet style. This village has 10 family's that live here so it is very small. They grow there own fruit and vegetables here and they sell them at the market in Port Vila. The main road to Port Vila is only a half of a mile from the village and they told us that a lot of the veggies sold at the market are grown right here.
We went into the village this morning with our laundry and went to a fresh water river close by. We took a bath and then washed our clothes in the river. This is the first time I have done laundry that way. I have done it many other ways but I liked this one best. The village was empty this morning, seems everyone was hard at work in there gardens getting the crops ready for market. They call them gardens here but they are actually plantations. Each family that lives here has there own piece of ground that they harvest just across the river from the village. The crew took the dingy over to take a look and I stayed behind to write this letter.
We plan to leave here this afternoon and make an over night passage to Epi Island about 65 miles from here. I will let you know when we get there and give you a position.
Talk to you soon.


Saturday, September 17, 2011

Hello All,
We made the 22 mile trip to Esoma Bay this morning from Mele Island. We got to sail most of the way but when we got into the protection of the bay the wind came from all directions so we pulled the sails down and used the engine for an hour and a half to get to the anchorage. We got anchored and launched the dingy and went to the beach. There is a very small village here and we went and said hi to everyone. They were so nice and showed us around. They were curious of where we were from and after that we just visited. This particular village speaks English and French, from what they told us most on the other Islands speak there native language and English. I mentioned on a previous blog that before Vanuatu's Independence in 1980 they were governed jointly by the British and the French so that makes for an interesting culture. We were invited to go to church in the morning so we will see if everyone can wake up for that. We will be here a few days exploring the area. This is a great anchorage, flat calm and no swells rocking the boat. There are 4 other boats here anchored so a pretty quiet place.
Yesterday Paula got some great underwater pictures of the reef at Mele Island and of the underwater post office. We went out there at 1 pm so we could see the SCUBA Post Master hard at work. We had a great time swimming there and last night we went to the beach and saw and awesome fire dance show.

My coordinates are 17 33.85S 168 16.90E

That's all for now so I will talk to you soon.


Thursday, September 15, 2011

Mele Island AKA:Hideaway Isl.

Hello All,
We left Port Vila this morning at 1100, I got the boat topped off with fuel and we had breakfast then headed north 5 miles to this nice anchorage on Efate Island, Position 17 41.56S 168 15.93E . There is a Resort here and about 20 boats anchored but still very nice. We went and snorkeled on some reefs close by here. The coral is not that great but the schools of fish are awesome. Vanuatu has made an underwater Post Office here so you can drop off Post Cards here with special paper and Ink then they collect them and send them off. There is a Post Master with diving gear that mans the small Under water Post Office from 1 pm to 2 pm Monday to Friday. We snorkeled on it today and it is pretty cute. It is in about 15 feet of water and at low tide you can sit on the roof.
We will hang around here till Saturday morning then head up to the next bay 23 miles north of here.
Vanuatu has been an awesome experience so far and more to come.
I will talk to you soon.


Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Rained Out on Efate Island

Hello All,
We were planning a tour of a few places on Efate Island today but it rained pretty much all day so we went to town and Rafal and Paula did some stuff on the Internet at a cafe. I changed the oil on the boat and just did a few small things. Was not a great day so we just hung around close by. I hope it clears up some by tomorrow. We are going to do some shopping to restock the boat and hope to leave here Thursday.
I will try one more time to add some pictures to the web site tomorrow, I have one other place I haven't tried yet, hope it's faster. I actually bought an umbrella today. I haven't needed one for a long time and finally did it. They are a wonderful invention, should have done that a long time ago.
I will keep you posted on what's going on and where we are going.
That's all for now.


Sunday, September 11, 2011

Super Markets

Hello All,
Today we went to the Port Vila's largest Super Market not far from the Yacht Club. It was a very nice surprise to see a variety of food stuffs that I am used to seeing in America. The best selection I have seen since Tahiti. The French and the British governed this place till 1980 so there is heaps of french cheese and wine here and other things. We spent an hour looking around and taking notes as to what we will be getting on Wednesday to restock the boat. I have learned on this trip that if you see it you get it because you may not get the chance for months at a time.
Tomorrow we will jump on a bus and go check out a few sites close by the city. There are a few things to do here so we will try to get in as much as we can before we head out on Thursday.
I am at the Internet Cafe and the crew is in the dingy waiting so I better get.
Oh, one more thing, the Internet is to slow here to add pictures or update my position so I will start giving Long Lat for my positions as I go.
Talk to you later.


Saturday, September 10, 2011

Compass Rose

Hello All,
It is the weekend here in Port Villa so not allot is open. I managed to find Internet down town but it is very slow. I have been trying to update my position on my map but no luck yet. There is one Internet Cafe I will try tomorrow.
Rob on Compass Rose came in 2 days ago and got a mooring right by us. He has been cruising the Northern Islands for the last month. His crew left the boat a week ago to go back to Isreal so he brought the boat back down here solo. He will leave to boat here for a month to go visit his mother in the states on Tuesday for a month. I was hoping I would run into him before he left. It is really cool to see old friends I have spent so much time with. We had him over for a sundowner last night and he told us about all of the Vanuatu Islands visited. It was really great to catch up once again.
I will try again tomorrow to up date the route traveled so far . I will let you know. We are still pretty new to the place so still learning about the people and there languages.
I will talk to you soon.


Friday, September 9, 2011

Arrived Port Villa, Vanuatu

Hello All,
After sailing for most of the day and into the night at 0100 the wind ceased to blow. I had to fire up the iron sail and we motored into Port Villa. We grabbed a mooring buoy in the well protected area very close to the water front, cleaned off the rest of the volcano ash off of the deck from Mt. Yasur and went into town in the dingy. It is a very nice place kind of reminds me of Neifu Tonga. We walked around town looking for the customs office and we were told they were at the commercial wharf. I think we walked 2 miles to visit with customs for 2 minutes. Rafal had the great idea of hitch hiking back to town and we were picked up right away. They did some Internet work at a cafe in town and I hung out with them for a bit and then took a walk around. We met back at the dingy and came back to the boat.
Tomorrow is the weekend so I don't know what we have planed. I will try to do Internet myself so I can post some pictures but from what I have seen it looks really slow, so no promises.
Talk to you soon.


Thursday, September 8, 2011

Passage to Port Villa, Vanuatu

Hello All,
We left Port Resolution, Tanna Island at 0400 this morning and were originally going to stop at Dillon Bay on Erromango Island 50 miles North. After running the engine all morning and then finally getting some good wind I thought we will go straight to Port Villa. The trade winds are calm right now but we are sailing with a south westerly at the moment so I hope to get into Port before it starts blowing on the bow. The trades will be unsettled for at least another 5 days so it will give us some time in town to check the place out. Erromango only has one village and only a few hiking trails so I will save it for the next sailing trip.
We should arrive in Port Villa sometime in the morning.

P.S. I have some great pictures and video of the volcano so I will post them in a few days.


Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Mt. Yasur Volcano, Tanna Island

Hello All,
We finally made it up to the volcano today. This morning right at sun rise Gordon and Sherry on "Serenity" from California showed up from Port Villa. I met them in Fiji a few months ago and was glad to see them again. They went up to the volcano with us along with another cruising couple from Australia. We went up in a Toyota pick up with 4 doors and a small bed. I think I counted 10 people just in the back of the truck and 5 inside. The road is very rough but we all just kinda laughed about it. We got up there just as the sun was going down and we could hear the thunder of the mountain all the way from the anchorage 20 miles away. When we got to the top and looked inside we were all going wow, look at the lava and the sparks. Today was a very good day because the mountain was very active. When it erupted I thought I was shooting a 44 pistol, the power was amazing and molten lava was shooting out of the crater about 400 feet in the air. There were 100 eruptions the 2 hours we stayed there but a few about knocked you off of your feet. It is hands down the closest I have been to Mother Nature and her awesome power. It will be a while before I will top that adventure.
Now that we have seen about all Tanna can offer we will be leaving at 0400 for Erromango Island 50 miles to the north west. There is not much to do there but there is a village and some trails to hike. We will use it as a stop over to Port Villa so I don't plan to spend much time there. The weather will be going to crap in a few days so I want to get into safe harbor.
That's all I have for now so I will talk to you soon.


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Postponed Volcano Trip

Hello All,
We were already to go see the volcano this after noon but our truck never showed up to take us there. The weather has been rainy and the truck on his way back from town got caught behind a flash flood so he had to wait for the river to come down before he could cross. Rafal assumed everything was on schedule and he wanted to walk the 4 miles to the entrance. He had already left when we figured out the truck wasn't coming so he had his own adventure to the volcano and he managed to make it up to see it. Mean while Paula and I waited for him to return for hours. We finally started walking up the road to look for him in the dark and he finally showed up in the truck that was suppose to take us up there, so we jumped in and the driver gave us a ride back to the village. Rafal said the volcano is awesome and said it is a must see for sure.
We have arranged for a truck to take all of us there tomorrow so I hope the weather is a little better. We will go with a Swiss couple that we met on the return trip from Lenakel yesterday. They are here on holiday and after visiting with them for a while it seems they had toured Alaska in a motor home a few years back so we had lots to talk about.
The wind has shifted to the North East and is very light so we may have to spend a few more days here to see if the weather improves.
I will let you know what happens and I hope we can get up to the volcano tomorrow.


Monday, September 5, 2011

Lenakel, Tanna Island, Vanuatu

Hello All,
We made it over to Lenakel this morning by 4 wheel drive down the rough dirty road in a crew cab truck. We got checked into the country with the officials and got some fresh fruit and veggies while we were there. It was a 2 hour drive to go 20 miles so that gives you an idea of the condition of the road. We did pass by the volcano along the way and got some great pics. Tomorrow we will take the trip up to the top and hope to see sparks and lava flowing. They plan it for the evening so you can see all of the lava coming out of the volcano.
A great adventure had by all today and we have made friends every day.

I will fill you in on visiting the Volcano tomorrow. I will talk to you soon.


Sunday, September 4, 2011

Rafal, Paula and I

Hello All,
Today we went into the village to see Stanley and get some water from there local well to refill the water tanks. You have to hand pump it and a few of the young locals helped us with the task. I repaired and old guitar that belongs to one of Stanleys friends, it needed some glue and a few things fixed on it so I was happy to help. I returned it back to him this morning. After we finished we carried the water jugs back to the dingy and then went for a walk to a few other villages a few miles from here. I haven't walked that far in a long time so I was pretty tired when we returned.
We will be going to the west side of the Island in a truck tomorrow to see customs and go see what they have in the stores there. It will be an all day trip to go 40 miles so should be interesting. We also payed a visit to the Port Resolution Yacht Club today. It is Sunday so pretty quiet but a really cool place and has a beautiful view of the bay. Know one was around today but was cool to see it.
I have been meaning to tell this in the blog but a new boat came into the anchorage yesterday that I met in Vuda Point a few weeks ago, S/V Mahina Tiare 3, owned by John and Amanda Swan Neal. They are a very famous cruising couple that have wrote books and the like of all of there travels. I bought Amanda's cook book before I left Alaska just because it had good info for people with out refrigeration. When I figured out that this was the couple that wrote the book I took it over to where they were moored at Vuda and Amanda signed my book for me. John takes a paying group of 6 people around where they are traveling and teaches them about sailing, It is basically a charter boat. They took there group of six to the volcano tonight to see the awesome sights of Mt. Yasur and I hope to take my group of 2 there by Wednesday.
We hope to move on to Erromango Island 50 miles to the North by the end of the week but until then I will let you know how the volcano trip goes. We heard it like a jet plane going off today so I hope it shows us all of its colors when we get ready to go up there Wednesday night.
I will talk to you all later.


Saturday, September 3, 2011


Hello All,
We aired up the dingy this morning and went to see Stanley in the Port Resolution village not far from here. He showed us around and told us where to go to the beach and sight see. We had a great time and I must say this is one of the few places I have seen where they still make grass huts to live in. They are very traditional people and live like they always have for many generations. They see heaps of yachts visiting all of the time but still take the time to make you feel welcome. Willies girlfriend took us on a tour to see the hot springs and a vent where the volcano vents steam, it was very cool.
Tonight Stanley invited us to a Kava drinking session with his friends and had a great visit with them. They are similar to the Fijian people with some things but are different in so many ways. It is so cool to see the different cultures of the South Pacific again and to see how they live.
I don't know what we will do tomorrow but I am sure we will figure something out. Stanley will take us to Lenakel on Monday to check into the country and after that we hope to get up to the volcano to see that.
We have had such a great time with these people so far, it has been amazing.
I hope the rest of Vanuatu is just like this, great people and awesome Islands.
That's all far now, I will let you know what we did tomorrow.


Friday, September 2, 2011

Port Resolution, Tanna Isl., Vanuatu

Hello All,
We made it to Port Resolution, Vanuatu this afternoon at 1330. We had a very good sail here since we got good wind after leaving Fiji. The anchorage is very incomplete on my chart but it was easy to find the way in. There are 4 boats anchored here that I haven't seen before but I am sure we will get to visit at some point. Right after we anchored we were visited by a wooden dug out canoe, Willie from the village at the head of the bay came to say hello and welcomed us to Vanuatu with 2 coconuts that we drank and ate right way, he told us where everything was here and welcomed us to his village when we came to shore. Not long after Willie Stanley showed up in his dug out canoe and saw my yellow flag on the boat. He told us he was the guy to hire to go to town, which is 10 miles away on a dirt road, to do the check in for the country. He said it wouldn't happen until Monday so he invited us to his village close to the bay to say hello and he would show us around.
We like Vanuatu already and have only been here a few hours. Tanna has the most accessible active volcano in the world and we saw it's smoke coming in so we are looking forward to seeing this beautiful Island and meeting more of the wonderful people that have welcomed us so far.
I will let you know how it goes in the next few days.


Thursday, September 1, 2011

19 12.22S 171 07.33E

Hello All,
we had a great days sail. The wind came up to 20 knots on a beam reach so I had the working jib, staysail and a full main. The seas have been pretty flat so with that combination I actually broke a self cruising record of doing 7.8 knots with the boat handling it very well. I think that all of the conditions were perfect for that, sail arrangement and sea state.
We are about 17 hours out of Tanna now so we are all getting excited. We should be in the bay by early afternoon tomorrow. The first few days went very slow but since then Freestyle has been a sailing machine.
I will let you know when we get in so till then, I will talk to you soon.