It's Not Proving Easy to Leave Fiji

Mike and Liz Downing
Sun 16 Sep 2012 12:10
A quick update as we hope to head west tomorrow - our 4th attempt to get away. Following the return to Musket Cove it was back to Port Denarau to spend 5 days servicing the engine and everything else that moves on the boat. We were all set for a departure on 3rd September, but a nasty looking frontal system came through and we're glad we decided to wait a week, heading over to Vuda Point marina as no room in Port Denarau. Tried to leave last Monday, but hit generator problems - a leaking hole in the bottom of the heat exchanger. It's buried in the bottom of the generator capsule (located over the far side of our main engine) and Mastervolt didn't think we could get it out without taking the engine out of the capsule, which would mean taking the whole generator out of the boat. So it was back to Vuda Point. We did manage to get the heat exchanger out and back, but it wasn't easy and we've spent all this week doing it.
We had then hoped to leave yesterday, but a tropical low was being forecast and no one was sure which direction it was going to go in or how strong it would be. So it looked like another week waiting for the weather, but all the forecasters have now downgraded the low and we hope they're right as we're hoping to leave tomorrow (Monday). It's a shame that our visas ran out on Friday and we had to renew them. So if we do manage to get away, we will have had 3 very expensive days! Hope to send daily updates once at sea again.
Our neighbours in Port Denarau. One of the jobs was to go up the mast to check the rigging
and replace the anchor light bulb at the top. It's handy to take a camera up, especially
as we were back in the superyacht area. 
Aurora B - a long way down!
Above and below, the market at Lautoka, Fiji's second city. It's good for reprovisioning and
only a 15 minute drive from Vuda Point marina.
Sugar cane loaded on a small gauge railway. Sugar is still Fiji's biggest export and Lautoka
is the sugar capital of Fiji. Most of the cane is grown around the area and processed in
Vuda Point marina, with it's entrance channel cut through the reef.
The very short pontoons at the marina. They look okay here, but they don't move
and the boats do - going up and down around 6 to 7 feet. It can be quite a challenge to get
on and off!
Looking the other way. The marina is a circle with boats tied up like this all the way
around. Stern lines are tied to an inner circle of buoys.