Goodbye Fiji.

11/5/2017

We met Kat as planned in Auckland airport 11/1 and then the three of us flew to Fiji. It is great to be back. Huub left the boat well put away. That was a big chore, thank you Huub! He sailed down to NZ in a different boat last week and that went well.

Team Spill the Wine spent the past few days getting ready to go. Boat chores day by day. Nancy and I dismantled and greased two of four winches. That was messy. Thanks Nancy! Today we send Kat up the mast to inspect the rig and modify slightly. Thanks Kat! We have a great team.

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A view of a naked winch.

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A fully greased and clothed winch…

Scheduled to clear the marina bill tomorrow. Then to customs to clear out. Then we have to leave the marina. We will sneak off and anchor a couple hours South of here. Kat and I will be scrubbing the hull. New Zealand has no tolerance for dirty boats coming into their country. They are working hard to avoid invasive species problems.

Our friend Tony is still here. He’s a good Australian sort. It would be good to cross him again down the road. And we might. He heads for NZ the day after we do. Kat and I and Tony did significant provisioning today in Lautoka. We hit the fresh market and two grocery stores.

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The menu should be colorful as we head south.

Interestingly, there is lots of chicken, pork, lamb in the grocery. But little beef. That’s why we hit two grocers. The second one has a little bit of beef. I think Fiji us 90% Hindu. And they like cows. Sacred in fact. So eating them is frowned upon. Just like Nepal. But if you’re a water buffalo you are on the menu. You’d think this would be a popular place for cow tourists. Not seeing it tho…

Time to.mount the Solent Stay. This means a trip up the mast. Nancy cranks me up with the Milwaukee 28v Angle Drill of Power. Using the winch she just greased. It’s a pain going up mostly due to the fooling around factor getting ready. But it’s a bitchin’ view!

If you look closely you can see Nancy down in the cockpit. She runs the winch from there and we communicate with these clever headphone walkie talkie gizmos

This is a shorter forestay set up to carry a storm jib. Storm jib is pretty small. This means less powerful. In big wind you want less power. We’ll see if that proves necessary. We have been watching the weather. Predictions are mostly favorable. Maybe a day or two of headwinds. That happens. Situation norma

Rainy season is here. So we are getting rain for an hour or less daily. Mostly in the afternoon. That means the mosquitos are having a blast. And some of them are so small they are invisible. I will not miss them as we head south. But I must come back to Fiji. It is awesome.