John & Irene Hunt
Sun 19 Oct 2008 05:37
Very interesting place. Allan McConnell from customs and immigration met us at the dock in Cascade Bay and very efficiently cleared us in and out at the same time. Allan telephoned the rental car company, made us a booking and then drove Sue to town to pick up a car. Talk about service! Also quarantine arrived and simply said "nothing comes ashore - OK?" to which we all agreed. So sensible as other places go through everything and take any fresh fruit, veggies, meat etc.
Bob Culbert, having been here before, I think this is his 9th visit became a tour guide and drove us all over the island in a small 8 seater van. Reminds me very much of New Zealand, dark green pine trees (Norfolk Pines of course) lighter green grass and foliage and a very lush environment. After driving around until 13:00 the decision was to go shopping. Norfolk is a duty free port and supposed to be very cheap. Guess what the shops close at 12:30 Saturdays so that put paid to that idea. Don off Harmonie had a toilet to fix so we drove him back to Cascade Bay and Terry off Storyteller delivered him back to his yacht.
The rest of us went walking, well, they did as I elected to drive the van to the pickup point about 4ks away and by the time the walkers arrived, I had read the Norfolk Island News from cover to cover. Not newsprint but photocopied pages. I also managed about a hours kip. Delivered more people back to Cascade Bay, while Michael & Jackie (off Lady Kay) together with Geoff, Bob & me off Southern Princess decided on dinner in town. Found a great steak house, charming people, superb hostess and some good NZ pinot so we had a beaut night. Back on board by around 21:00 and so to sleep in a big swell where it seemed as though we were rolling the scuppers under both sides! Very rollie night with the anchor chain growling across the bottom.
Bob, Geoff & Sue returned to town this morning. That Sue just can't avoid a shop and when she found out that boating shoes were available at duty free prices there was no stopping her.
I spent the time doing some chores. The fuel bladder has sprung a small weepy leak and I had diesel on the deck. Fixed that and topped up the fuel tanks as we will have a bit of motoring in the next couple of days. Pit some more rubber seals on the lazarette locker lids as I still have a small salt water leak into the yacht. Bashing to weather, this is a very wet boat with the bow shovelling up water in a short sea and green water rolling right back to the cockpit windscreen. This causes water to sheet across the aft deck which is causing our water problem. Let's hope I have got it this time!
Departed for Opua, New Zealand at 12:00 local time and about 490nm to go for out last sea voyage of this cruise. Boy what a trip we have had; all the way from Malta in the Med to NZ in about 18 months of constant cruising.