Friday, July 25, 2008


We made it! 1100 miles....not much by plane or driving but if you think about crossing an ocean at 5 miles per hour...well its different that's for sure! The adjustment of leaving those safe anchorages, sleeping through the night, doing town stuff, hanging out...and then just lifting the hook and pointing the bow west. Oh, we did our weather homework but its all speculation; weathermen must be right up there with economists in terms of credibility! Anyway, you pick your window and then take what
you get.
As it was, the passage was probably one of the best we've done so far! After a frustrating start with light winds and some motoring, it filled in and we had great sailing, with constant winds from the right quarter and we flew through the water. Unlike our friends who went north to Samoa, they were beat up a bit with 40 knot winds or more. "Little Wing" was knocked down and busted their mast. But we think they all arrived safely, maybe with a longer list of things to fix. Threw out the hook
on the last day and something struck it but when I reeled it in there was only a small piece missing from the hootchy!
Seeing land after a passage is always a good feeling. We spotted Niue, a long low dark line on the horizon, about 25 miles out. The sky was clear blue with those fluffy white clouds like in the opening credits for the Simpsons.
But that is now and back only a few days we were coasting along in the inky black darkness before the moon came up. Hard to know where the sea ended and the sky began, except for the million tiny dots of light, like someone poked a needle in the canopy of the heavens and allowed a trickle of brilliance to leak through. Then the moon would rise, directly in our wake. It always caught us off guard, even though we were waiting for it. That moment when you glanced back and saw this strange yellowish
light on the horizon and had an instant of panic, worried some ship was bearing down on us. But it was just our old friend and constant companion, so welcome in the long dark nights.
So here we are! Tied to a mooring, an open roadstead on the West side of the island, unsafe if the winds should shift to the West, but not likely this time of year.
Tomorrow we will launch the dinghy and do the official clearance procedure. Should be interesting, because of the constant surge on shore, they put in a concrete wharf with a crane on it and we have to hoist the dinghy up so it does not break up on the wharf!
Billed as 'the smallest country in the world', Niue so far is a very friendly place. Rumours of caves and hot springs and motorcycles to rent! Also told that if you look down into the hundred foot deep water, you can see the bottom! And along with the bottom, you can see myriads of tiny sea snakes! And whales are in the bay, diving under the moored boats and breaching nearby!
Anyway, I'm sure this is very boring compared to what you all are I'll try to spice it up....tomorrow!

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