Adamite 68, New Caledonia, Sept 2nd.
The last few days proved to me that the social side of this cruising life means allot to us both. It’s just as important as seeing new places and having all these amazing adventures! Last night we were 5 boats ashore for sunset drinks and beach games. Really interesting people from all walks of life. The common thread between us is we had all made some key decisions and changes in our lives in order to be out cruising and living our dreams.
To be honest I didn’t think much was going to happen this week worth writing about! After the rugby the rain set in and we had three days in the trot. By far the longest rain period since leaving NZ over a year ago! Jobs got done on the boat that have been on a list since we moved on board. We also explored the city of Noumea and found some interesting shops and cafes. One cafe had prepared all their beautiful organic food into glass re usable jars, now that makes sense! I also found some switches to replace some of our faulty lights after 30 years service. But, touch wood, Adamite has required very little attention over the last 2 years of full time living aboard, for sure its far less work and time than we put into our house at home (when we lived in it). Ulrika also spent time making these real nice candle lamps out of re cycled glass jars and tar hemp rope. So cool and great gifts to our boat friends.
We left Noumea on Tuesday and headed north to Bay Ma catching up with Masterplan for some more sailing Olympics. Games of rummy cub, cards, swimming, snorkelling and sup boarding. Great company and great times. We explored the deserted sand atolls north and with little wind could anchor anywhere. The southern lagoon of New Caledonia is amazing in that there are at least 50 of these deserted atolls within 50 miles of Noumea (Ulrika has counted them). All the anchorages are without swell due to the outer barrier reef which is the second largest in the world. It’s a fantastic cruising playground with plenty of fish and places to snorkel, surf and kite. The French charts are amazingly accurate which makes for stress free flat water sailing.
I had a frightening experience yesterday in the surf. Feeling good (even with the surf higher than before) I caught a few waves staying safe out wide. Well….. a massive set arrived and I fumbled and fell, seemed I was safe as I dived under the wall, not so as my board stayed in the wave and dragged me further in. Two more set waves arrived and I really thought I would drown. Crazy how it can all seem so under control one moment then completely frightening the next! So much air rated water and no buoyancy. It was horrible. Finally I got over the reef and headed back to boat beat up emotionally and with a few bumps and bruises, but just happy to be alive !
The sun has been out for the last 4 days and looks like staying round for our guests arrival next week. The strong trade winds will be back and kiting will be on again. Some of our kiting friends have arrived from Fiji and we are looking forward to a week at Maitre island before we pack up the boat and head off for Japan and NZ.