Farr Gone Blog
Stuart Cannon
Wed 8 Jun 2011 18:25
A second night in Baie Haavai and the boat is doing it's dog on a chain impersonation in large blasts of wind down the valley. The wind is discouraging me from making the trip to the next island even though it's only a couple of hours away. Trouble is the forecasts don't seem to show any change in the foreseeable future so we will leave here at the latest tomorrow and head for Raiatea as I do want to get away from Bora Bora on either Friday or Monday. I have to do a major visit to customs, immigration and the gendarmes to get my bond back which had to be posted for me to enter Polynesia. The bond was $1200 and is meant to be used for an airfare if I fail to leave of my own volition. A little difficult to understand as there is the matter of a valuable boat but who can understand French officialdom? I mustn't complain as the Australian customs have the most feared reputation amongst sailors. Many cruisers go to extraordinary lengths to avoid Australia because of the rules so the French are comparatively benign. The problem is getting official clearance takes quite a bit of time going backwards and forward from Bank to gendarmes etc but it's the only hassle and it's a small price to pay for the freedom I am enjoying.
My thoughts are turning to the upcoming passage to Samoa and provisioning for it. I have my fingers crossed that the winds moderate soon as it would be a little much to have ten days like the one night we had from Moorea. That would be too hard. But the aim is Apia by the end of June. It's around 1200 nautical miles so a time of ten days would be cruising speed. With these winds it's likely to be six or less but solo that is just silly so there would be lots of bare pole sailing to get a rest. Trouble is the boat rolls a lot in the waves then so there is no real comfort there either. Better to wait for the moderation and enjoy these beautiful islands. The fringing reefs are the most vivid color and the water clarity is amazing. I was regretting the demise of the so called waterproof camera we got as I had tropical fish swimming around me yesterday in large numbers and the colors were so vivid as to be unbelievable. The fish are very inquisitive and fearless and come and check out this new arrival to their area.

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