Local Island to Port Moresby
Saturday 21st August
Our furling mainsail stopped working just as we were
about to go through the reef leaving Port Moresby for the Torres
Strait! Thankfully we were able to motor to a small island nearby
within the reef and shelter there whilst David got straight onto finding out
what the problem was. I won't bore you with mechanical details now,
other than the fact it has taken him 5 hours to do the repair, only to find
out that there was a small washer and piece of shim which had fallen out into
the transmission oil he had renewed, which I discovered after he put it all
back together again. I suggested he take the boom off etc. again tomorrow,
after he had a rest. But no, of course not, without taking a break, he
started to do the job all over again and discovered that the piece had been
floating around within the gear box for years, without causing any problem to
its workings! So my name was mud for the rest of the day. The
photo shows how David strapped up the boom to hold it in position whilst he
removed the gearbox for the mainsail furler attached to the mast.
Ollie was a good go’fer and help with the procedure, second
time David took the furler off and put it back again was quicker of
Another word for cruising is
‘fixing the boat in paradise’. This particular island is
home to many members of the same family, who live in shacks ashore during the
dry season. Other family members bring them food and water from the
main land by ‘banana boat’.
After 5 hours of non-stop sheer hard work, sweat and cuts and
bruises, David got the mainsail furler fixed and operational again, essential
for the 7 day non-stop sailing trip we had ahead of us to Indonesia.
Oooh how simple and elegant, drifting
along in the breeze in his home made outrigger and sail!
It’s the weekend, and there are
two of these ‘banana’ boats ferrying local family to the island
for a day’s fun on the beach, bringing eskies with cold drinks and
Going home they are a touch overloaded,
with 25knots of breeze to head into back to their home
Monday morning, just a few people left
and we took a look around the island ourselves.
The locals helped pull our dinghy to
their ‘camp’ so that their ‘mum’ could keep an eye on
it whilst they gave us a tour of their island.
This is ‘Mum’ looking on as
we wait for our guides
What a lot of rubbish they live
amongst, all washed up along their shore from Port Moresby, needless to say,
they don’t even think of picking it up, although signs of a fire just
here means that possibly they do have a bit ‘burn up’
The rock strata lying on it’s
side shows how the island was heaved up out of the sea
Negotiating these grooves in my shoes
was hard, but these guys are bare-footed!
Ollie is with the teenagers, who were
smoking some substance all the way round, but they did get to see a few moray
eels in the rock pools
I was getting thirsty half way round,
so one of the lads climbed up the tree to grab me a drinking coconut!
And proceeded to chop off the husk so
that I could have a long cool drink out of it
Climing up the hill, the turquoise
colours look more intense
A clear view to Port Moresby from the
top of the island
And Kanaloa comes into view at the top
The contrast between their ‘Swiss
Family Robinson’ lifestyle with Port Moresby so close is striking
With only a few coconuts to keep their thirst
quenched, their lifestyle is dependent on the fish they can catch to sell in
the market, so that they can pay for any food they need to be brought to
them. With no water, they cannot grow their own vegetables.
However, they have only been living here one month so far, preferring island
life to life in Port Moresby.