SAILING THROUGH PARADISE, Log #13,
Women's Expedition, Leg 6-97
Nov. 8, 1997 0830
Latitude: 17.40S,Longitude: 177.06 Log: 9561 Water Temp: 80.1F, Air: 80F
At anchor, Mana Is., Fiji
After a BBQ tuna dinner and a brief rest, we pulled anchor off Cape
Washington at 2200. With pairs of sailors at the watch, we were able to
sleep despite the rocking and rolling and 25 kt winds. Having our lee cloths
in place gave us an added sense of security in our bunks. I knew it was
my time to take the helm as my clanging alarm awoke me and apparently everyone
else. I donned my harness as I climbed up to the cockpit and quickly clipped
into the padeye. The skies were clear and the winds warm, giving a more
comfortable experience on my 1st overnight crossing. As each watch was
completed, I had a sense of accomplishment that the boat was still upright
and intact, and that another challenge of sailing had been conquered.
Mahina Tiarre III ghosting through the shallows, Kadavu, Figi 6-97.
After a fabulous overnight sail from Kadavu, we came through the pass
into Nadi Waters and on to Musket Cove Resort. We were all ready for some
shoreside lessons, some retail therapy, and some laundry. For about $5
US our laundry was done for us, but some elected to use the dock approach
on the dock. We also cleaned up the ship inside and out. Mahina Tiare was
a clean ship right down to her lace undies. Amanda assembled us all down
in the salon with ropes in hand for splicing lessons. We did a 3 braid
eye splice, crown knot and back splice, braid splice, and Amanda's trademark,
the soft eye in braid line. We then advanced to needle and thread and practiced
a sail repair stitch. We were all pretty pleased with ourselves. We reviewed
the contents of Amanda's ditty bag, rigging box, sail repair bag to plan
for our own. After another delicious lunch of fresh caught wahoo, we reviewed
workings of SSB, VHF, Inmarsat, and weatherfax. Our lessons done, we scattered
to our various adventures. That evening we had a great beachside BBQ with
other cruising yachts headed for New Zealand. Our 5 foot 7 inch wahoo and
pudgy yellowfin made great sashimi, poisson cru and grill.
My First Dive
I've snorkeled a bit, but was never totally satisfied. I wanted to "get
closer", but I couldn't dive deep enough, hold my breath long enough,
or clear my snorkel fast enough. Scuba was the answer! Somehow, it was
never the right time to learn and anyway, I was too old. Translation: I
was scared! My dream became a reality at Musket Cove. Encouraged by the
crew and skippers, John and Amanda, I did my first dive. The credit really
goes to the unbelievably patient and understanding dive instructor Api.
When I slid off the boat in all my scuba gear, I panicked. Thrashing around,
choking with salt water, I gave Api the "I want to go up" signal
we'd learned earlier during the pool instruction. Api was having none of
that. Gently, he deflated my jacket and encouraged me to concentrate on
the glorious scene below. With Api holding me and my dive buddy Carolyn's
hand, I began to relax. We must have looked pretty funny moving along like
Siamese triplets linked at the hip. But it worked and before I knew it,
we were back on the boat. 40 minutes and 40 feet had elapsed. I did it!
I've never felt prouder of myself.
Ladies back from a tropical snorkeling adventure 6-97.
On a perfect run from Musket Cove to Mana Is., practicing points of
sail with different crew members at the helm, we decided this was the ideal
time to do some man overboard drills. Amanda demo-ed the life sling, and
explained the emergency procedure for man overboard. The crew quickly got
into the exercise, as Shelley threw a wad of newspaper overboard to represent
the rescue, the helmswoman named it for her husband. We manage to quickly
pick up the first two, the next two were a bit of a problem. Shelley's
Cliff ended up being dragged under the dinghy after we ran over the life
sling line. Cheryl couldn't get the boat around in time to pick up Jim
with only a small jib and no main up. We'll be practicing again, guys...Never
Amanda explaining finepoints of sail trim. 6-97.
To The Next Log Entry: Log #14 - 12/01/97