Sunday, June 29, 2008

Papeete style

This is just like a big city, and yes everyone Dionne did it again!! I bought us some candy as a treat - 2 handfuls came to 1830 franks which is $20+ CDN can you believe it? its like the time I bought all those jelly bellies for $85 , remember that?!! We went to the market - which is just like being at Granville Island, almost feels like home here. How do you like the price of the watermelon and cantelopes? ( thats $30+ cdn and $12 cdn) shopping is oh so fun here!! actually it really is, and I am getting good at finding the deals(?) here. The kids got the great job of washing the boats!! and all three of mine are now washing their own laundry - by hand!! and hanging them to dry . All the kids from the 3 boats went exploring on their own, had a great time... They found McDonalds!!! don't even ask about the price of that..... they managed to scrape enough franks together to share a big Mc Flurry. ( between 7 of them)

We have finally got our Skype to work and made some calls..... eventually we will have spoken to all of you. get Skype then we can talk for free through the computer..... so cool hearing voices from home!!

I have been teaching my fellow boating buddies how to make the beaded bags! We are the beaded bag queens!!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Orca III in paradise!!

Dinner in Tauo at Gaston and Valentines home

these are parrot fish and boy they taste good!

more photos

the boys in Fakarava - Dionne , Emma & friends - the kids helped teach them English
Dave Kyle Jay Steve - no the short hair!! Steve cut it himself, did I mention that?
ORCA III sailing along!!

snorkeling the Fakarava pass

There's a whole lot of fishes swimming in the sea!!

just thought I'd update some more photos Yep thats a sshark and Kyle swimming . we had a lot of them around

Friday, June 27, 2008

on the move.....

happy belated fathers day to all the fathers in our life ( Especially you Dad!!) we totally missed it !!! I looked at the calendar yesterday and realized " oops....." all three of the boats missed it. We hardly even know the days of the week .....
anyway, we are leaving tonight at midnight for Papeete Tahiti. its about a 2 day trip , looks like the wind has picked up and there are squalls happening. the last 3 days has been no wind - listening to the SSB radio to other cruisers heading that way who are already out there helps us get a better picture of the weather. it seems to be very strange this year.

have been playing lots of volleyball here.. good fun, except you sur know whos island it is!! Gaston makes the calls!! and hogs the court - hahaha - good fun was had by all. Maya's serving has improved 100%! Emma was the offical kitten walker. they have a kitten here so Emma babysat. and Kyle went out spear fishing with Dick ( Valentines brother on the island) he also made us ( Orca III) dinner, excellent especially the poisson crew ( not the correct spelling) that is raw fish with onion marinaded
in lemon juice, oil , and salt. very good!!!!!

time to get the day going , sounds like we have a lot of wind out there, hope its an okay crossing.
until next time................

Dionne and the rest of Orca III

Saturday, June 21, 2008

hello again

We are still at the atoll Tauo in the Tuamotus- looks like no wind for 3-4 days so we will hang out here , great people and us adults had a great meal in the "restaurant" on shore . we left the kids to eat and be merry on Malachi. Steve ,Jay and Dave have gone to shore to help Gaston build some fish traps. GAston is the local man who took Steve and Jay lobstering.
We have had all the kids from the 3 boats here the last 2 days swinging in the bolsuns chair, doing spins and such. Kyle, Maya and Emma make is look so easy, however the other kids are gettting more confident and doing spins now!!! Orca III in once again the jungle gym.... remember all you kids.. swinging in the bolsuns chair?! oh what fun!!!! They have all been swimming lots now to. it is great snorkeling here, as the sharks here are scared of humans cause Gaston kills them so they stay away from
his fish and people swimming. There are only 4 families living here, all related ( mom , dad , daughter, sister and 1/2 brother with spouses. all the kids have grown and now come to see the family, ) they are all so friendly!!
we went to shore yesterday to explore and all the adults and kids had a great game of volleyball - loads of fun!! each family was split up between the two teams so made for some good competitive fun!!

Now we wait for wind as by boat leans to the port with all 7 kids ( from 16-8yrs)hand out and swing in the bolsuns chair. maybe this is why I don't get seasick, am so used to the rocking and leaning from all the years of swinging?!! just a thought..................

love and hugs

now at Taou

we arrived at the northend of Fakarava 2 days ago, cool town, paved roads and everything. Not that great of a food store but they have a bakery , which means fresh baquettes!! ( cheaper here only 70 franks, Kauehi it was 110 franks) so we ( the boaters)_ bought a bunch. After tea on Orca III there was a mad dash back to the post office to fight over the only computer, fortuneatly for me Malachi and O'Vive brought their lap tops so I got the computer. Hope you enjoyed the photos. I just slammed them
on as it took forever to get to the website. ( by the way I had only 1.5 hrs to use the computer as the post office opens at 1pm and closes for the day at 2:30pm. ) I had originally labeled all the pictures but that posting somehow disappeared!! so I just slammed them on. most of them are from the atoll Kauehi, when we had lunch with the local man and his family. we actually helped to catch the fish and take them out of the net and then clean them, the fish are very small! Then Steve was in charge
of watching the barbeque along with going with the other men to climb the coconut tree to get a bunch of coconuts ( green ones for drinking the milk) we women got to grate the brown ones for the sauce. it was a great day!!
the picture of us sinking? like that one , eh?! got more of those, that was taken by O"vive as we sailed to Fakarava. love that picture , we even have a short movie of us .......
Well enough of that, at the northend of Fakarava we also had the kids go to "school" with the kids of the atoll. It was English class and all of the 3 boats kids helped teach English to the local kids. It was fantastic. we left the next day and that afternoon all the local kids missed ours! They wanted more time wilth them to learn English
We have arrived at the atoll Tauo, here there is a family that required help bring food to them as their boat is being fixed in Papeete. so both Malachi and Orca III brought them some grocieries . they are the most friendliest people we've met and the wife has got a sense of humour!! love her. Steve and Jay( malachi) we out this morning at 2:30am to go with the husband to catch lobster. The boys lost the local man as he moves way to quick !! so no lobster from them but the man came back hours later
with a bunch and I mean a bunch, this will be served at dinner tonight. They are repaying us for the groceries by a meal.. they have a restaurant. however it is very expensive. so the kids get to eat on the boat. We will be doing a bunch of snorkeling today also. We will be here a couple of days and then head to Papeete.
Looking forward to shopping as we need food, but not looking forward to the cost as it is so expensive there - we keep hearing about that from the cruisers ahead of us!! ah well say la vie!! ( is that spelt right? !)

off to snorkel! cause I have hand washed yet another bunch of laundry and have it out to dry. I tell ya, I really think I am getting arthritis in my hands from all the hand ringing,
until next time.............
Love ya and mucho hugs all around

Dionne, Steve, Kyle, Maya and Emma

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

just a couple of pictures

these are from my friend Natalie's camera...... so there are some of me!! the one with me and the bread, this what we have been pigging out on. its so cheap ( however here in the Tuamotus it cost double - 100 franks as apposed to 47 franks in the Marquesas.

we have been snorkling alot, will send some photos next time. also it has rained all yesterday and all this morning, could have swore we were back in Vancouver except we are all wearing our bathingsuits cause its so warm out with the rain, we caught alot for our water tanks and i did laundry with the buckets yesterday. The kids have been on Orca III ( 6 of them not including Emma- she is with her friend Emma on Imagine playing dolls and quite happy!) playing monopoly - have quite the big game going,quite
serious!! having a great time, me and the women are hanging out beading, yacking and venting. the men have been hanging out on another boat ( Malachi, playing bacgamon and working in the VHF radio getting the distresss thing working , doing the man thing) has been good for all of us!! We have quite the tight group here with Malachi, O'vive and Orca III . It will be sad when we eventually part. but we plan on being together all the way to Tahiti, then we will see what happens as Ovive has family
coming to stay on their boat for 5 weeks, wonder how Kyle and Emilie will be? anyway,

love ya
cant send both taking to long

thanks all for reading qnd leaving comments WE LOVE IT

here is the shell art

Graeme we xould love to havze come here when will that be? miss everyone so much and having a great time too, thanks for putting comments ; we love to read them, trying to update with photos when can, internet is an all day thjing here, just finished loading all photos to have thm disappear gotta go

are we sinking?
men cleaning our lunch very small fish

hopefully some photos

airport at Kauehi
ran out of time to lable all

bread time
trying to add pictures using a very slow internet and a different keyboard the letteres are not all in the same place as our north american keyboards

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

We are at Fakarava

well we made it to the atoll Fakarava. had quite the sail, between 18-25 knots of wind with the odd gust of 28. wE sailed between 7.5-8.5 knots.!! 6ft seas and we took alot of green water on the deck as well as getting soaked quite a few times in the cockpit. the trip was about 7 hours . we came with Malachi and O'Vive. got lots of pictures of the boats sailing! wait til you see some of them , looks like we are sinking!!
Thanks Ron for getting our package to Lindsey, it has arrived . We will be getting it in the next couple of weeks when we meet up with Tin Soldier. It will be like having Christmas !! yeah.
We came here to do the drift dive/snorkle through the pass. It is absolutely beautiful, even had a bunch of black tipped reef sharks swim by us. we did the drift 2 days in a row. we have a new time here. " SHARK- Thirty" that means no swimming at all after 4:30, that is when they are most active - guess that is their dinner time. but the water is beautiful blue and clear, . There is a restaurant and we are going !! You have no idea how excited we main cooks are about that! We will be here for a
few days. We will be in Papeete in about 2 weeks. give or take a day as the wind has been blowing!! and the seas getting big!
We are down to having to bake and figure out snacky foods . no chips ( for about 10 days now), no nuts,just a few packages of crackers left, no fresh fruit ( 2 apples left only) . I have 4 fresh carrots, 1/2 cabbage , some potatoes , onions and garlic. the rest we have is frozen and canned. can not even get fresh fruit or veggies now until hopefully Papeete. but we can get all the coconuts we want! We are getting very creative! but it requires cooking and baking. so the restaurant is very exciting
to us. ( I do have 2 pkgs of beef jerky, being saved for the crossing to Tahiti, shhhhh don't tell my crew, its a surprise cause you can not get that stuff here!!!)

I have just hand washed a bunch more laundry with 2 other buckets soaking, its so windy here that the first bunch should be dry soon ( its 8:45am Tuamotu time) sure am looking forward to a laundry mat!
Steve , with the help of another cruiser, has made our sail cover so it never comes of the boom, and the sail stacks itself in the cover like a bag. looks really good and now it fits properly. that took a few days, pulling the mail sail on and off the boom a few times to fit it. required the help of Jay and Dave, and Chris on another steel boat did the sewing as he has the industrial sewing machine, mine just couldn't handle the thickness or the thick thread. Steve traded his thread and some
of our bar rust 235 epoxy for the sewing job.( yeah more stuff off the boat,) This works well, this trading thing! Having those 3 men on board doing the sail reminded me of when Ron, Brian, and others were on our boat helping. Thanks to all of you who helped us get of the dock!! and that includes all the meals, and help with the kids, and picking up stuff!! couldn't have done it without all of you!! Even got the new battons in the sail and also gave one of the old ones to Chris.
Well that's enough typing and power consumption for now, the computer just sucks the power!! thank god for our wind generator and solar panels , we have had lots of wind almost 24 hrs straight for a week !! this sure helps us . thats the big topic around the cruising world. trying to keep the power consumption down. not an easy task!! so enjoy your computer, tv, fridge/freezers,lights, and whatever else you turn on and take for granted ( this is from Steve by the way) for example in order to
maintain your lights in your house we would have to run our main engine 48hrs a day!!!!!!!!! (that's a lot of diesel to burn), not including the dishwasher.
next time we will talk about water conservation.....................
Enjoy!! be thankful that BC gets lots of rain, cause you have no idea what its like to have a very limited water supply, but that's for next time.

Love ya!!
Dionne and Steve , Kyle, Maya and Emma

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Orca III on the move again

Hi all,
we have had a really great time here!.. We met a local fisherman and artist! he invited us to help catch the small fish with this net kinda like a smelting net and then we did lunch.... he taught the boys how to clean the fish for bbqing and for the raw fish soaked in coconut milk ( i think its called poi poi) anyway us women got to grate the coconut French Polynesian style.. sitting on a board with this cool grater thing attached. ( will post photos later)
We invited him and his wife over the next day to O'vives boat and we made them lunch and gave gifts. He really likes country music so I burned 2 cds and gave him my " Country Heat" one. big grin and then we also gave him some abalone shells we got from Mexico. He takes the oyster shells and carves the most beautiful pictures and stuff. unfortunately he no longer does it to sell, he was making a picture for his grand daughters first birthday ( again look for photo later) I loved the candle he made!!!
but he made all the kids a necklace with his carved design from the oyster shell, absolutely beautiful!!! So needles to say he was very thrilled to have the abalone shells. they don't have them here and they are so full of colour, he has a friend who has given him one or two from New Zealand. He was so thrilled to get those shells. Emma also gave some of her my little pets shop guys to the little girl for her birthday.

Steve is really looking into the Black Pearls here and our new friends have contacts for us in Tahiti and she is also showing Steve some this morning.
it has been very windy here and has rained at some point everyday that we have been here. Every book says that the Tuamotous are very dry, that has not been our experience at all. in fact yesterday it rained so hard and so much that we collected a ton of water in our buckets and all of us ( Malachi and Orca III) said this is just like BC!! only it rains like that days and weeks in a row. We are leaving here tomorrow early to make the tide at the next pass. we have about an 8 hour sail to the next
atoll called Fakarava.

here is our tentative itinerary - Toau, Ahe, Rangiroa, Tikehau, Papeete - this is of course subject to change depending on the weather...

We plan on staying with O'Vive and Malachi for a while ( Kyle's girlfriend is on O'Vive - that'd be Emilie)

love ya all!! take care and hugs all around

Dionne and family

Thursday, June 5, 2008

we are in the Tuomotus at the atoll called Kauehi

Hi all,
well it is absolutely beautiful here!! we arrived Sunday June 1, at dawn breaker with Malachi. O'vive got here on the Saturday. we slowed down as we were going to end up coming in in the dark, not a good idea! Its a pass and has a good current, just like going through Poiler Pass or Active pass. Being th etrue BCers, Jay ( Malachi) and Steve decided to try to "buck" our way through instead of waiting 3 hrs for slack tide. Malachi went through first and made it , the current was running 5 knots
- ended up pushing our way through at 1.5 knots , actually had to put our Genoa up for extra push. This place reminds me of Gilligans Island!.

I was also amazed at how wide the inside of the atoll is . it took us and hour and half to get across to the other side to anchor. I had been up since 11 pm the night before, pulling a double watch as Steve ended up having sever stomach craps. He thought maybe it was a kidney stone, but no back pain. it subsided enough to bring the boat through the pass that morning. needless to say I was a bit giddy, having gotten my second wind. ( Jay also was up the same as me) once we anchored and cleaned the
boat after the passage - that by the way is a chore......... all the kids were dying to get together as well as us seeing our buddies. so I took the kids to O'Vive's boat ( left Steve on Orca III trying to "ease his pain"- (that lines from a great movie - prize for the name of it)
the whole crew of Malachi came too and we had quite the pow wow. Steve showed up later with the crew from Warm Rain ( all you BCA ers thats Tom and Dawn Baker and boy have they had quite the trip, lots of things breaking. )

After going for a quick dip in the gorgeous green water, Steve and I went back to Orca the kids all went to Malachi and swam off the boat. Then it was an early night and boy did I crash . had been up for 21 hours and I was tired!

Up we got the next morning to go ashore -= all the boats .had a nice walk across the atoll to the ocean side to gather coral and shells. on the way I spotted an old rusted out car for Steve. It was a 1929 Essex. Steve had fun picking through the ruins. and grabbed the only remaining hubcap. One of you lucky old car buffs will get that I'm sure. got lots of pictures. ( if you want any more of the parts though you will have to come and get them yourself, we already have too much wait on this boat-
tee hee )
You would not believe all the plastic garbage on the ocean side beach!! all this comes from the boaters and freighters. pass on the word to NOT dump those things in the ocean . This is where it ends up!! not a pretty site and yes I took pictures of that too. We even found one huge fridge - clearly from a freighter. anyway, I had the idea of a beach clean up..... we will seee.......................

after the hike we came back for lunch then all got together in our dingys to go snorkling- lots of cool fish, coral,and sharks! can't swim at dusk and dark cause the sharks will get ya. Emma and I didn't end up snorkling as she has had a headache for the last couple of days and the pounding in the dingy made it worse. so I took her back to the boat , where she also said her eyes were sore and blurry. Question for Annette, can I give her the silver cordial? anyway, I am a little concerned cause
the headache has been a few days and Emma can ignore it , she also has to shake her head to unblurr her eyes. ( eyes were tested before we left vancouver and she as 20/20 vision) course it doesn't help that I just finished reading " Voyage of the Tryste " and the youngest daughter died of a brain tumor .... I'll just ditch that thought....
Everyone came back to Orca and we had an inprompt and late potluck. Us adults had gone to shore for bread ,cause here the baquettes are flown in once a week on Mondays, so you come to the store for 5pm, food shopping is so different in French Polynesia ( I mean 4:30am for veggies in Nuka HIva and 5pm for bread in Atoll Kauehi) The adults walked around the "town" while the kids stayed on Orca III playing Risk. neat place here, there are only 150 people living here. we organized a tour for the Pearl
farms for the next day.

Pearl farm day: way cool, never seen black pearls before. real neat to see the farm. here was a bunch of us cruisers going. they took all of us ( 20) in the back of a pick up truck. but first we had to see the airport!! they are so proud of it. no planes there mind you. have pictures will post when I can. better to see it then have me try to type. next of to the pearl farm, which by the way is owned by the only store owner who also happens to be the mayor of this town. he was away so his wife
took us to their place. ( closed up the shop first for the day) the tour was really neat , will send pictures again as easiler then explaining. They also fed us , raw oysters done in salt and lime - boy that was good , even Steve liked them!! we had coconut bread, and I got the receipe , you need a green coconut though ,so we will get one. and we drank the milk from the green coconuts and it is good!!! Out came the black pearls and purchases made. we didn't yet , want to see more before we buy. we
returned back to the store for 4:30 and then had O'vive stay for a visit and then Malachi came over after dinner.
we have been so busy , I finally have the time this morning to fill you all in. actually , I got a bunch of movies from Malachi and I am burning them as I type this.... also just finished hanging up a whole pile more laundry............ oh I look so forward to a laundry mat!! Hey mom, remember that old washing machine with the ringer on it. sure could use the ringer part!! my wrists are tired and sore! and thats with everyone taking turns to wring out the clothes.
We are off this morning for a lesson on catching the little fish with a huge net thing. one of the local fishermen is showing us how they do it. it should be fun.
signing off for now.

love ya





'Lil' putt putt

'Lil' putt putt
Christmas at Snug Cove