Last Days in South Fakarava Atoll…..

Dear F&F,
August 9-10, 2009

We patched the gennaker successfully. I went snorkeling to cool off, very nice. Then a nap & editing my journal for the website\’s \”Ships Logs\”. There are now four other boats anchored by us, one is \”Uliad\” who we first met via radio sailing on the Galapagos to Marquesas passage. We are thinking to go ashore tomorrow & say our farewell to Marc. Then motor to the north of Fakarava Monday. I will have a chance to buy eggs, milk & oatmeal there. Any fruit or veggie they have. A supply of baguettes and chocolate croissants. We still won\’t know our timing for Tahiti until Tuesday at the earliest. We will probably head to Toau Atoll on Tuesday.

Scott has worked on video editing all day. It takes many, many hours of editing for him to come up with a 3 minute segment for the website. I nag him periodically to stand up & move around for his back. He will likely upgrade to a straight hard drive camera & new housing on our next trip home. It will save him hours of the tedious step uploading the mini digital video tapes to a hard drive. The new one will be drag & drop. He can use the same expensive wide angle lens, so that\’s good.

Aug 10
Marc came over last night to work on photo & video stuff with Scott. I handed each of them a bowl of rice, cut up beef & green beans when it became apparent that there would be no dinner break. It was fun to see them in their element. We are really blessed that we\’ve been making new friends along the way.

Yesterday Steven, the M.D. on sailboat \”Uliad\” kindly made a \”house call\” to examine my ear. One look & he said there was no mystery why I couldn\’t hear well. He pulled out a bunch of wax with a little plastic tool; an ear currette. He showed Scott how & gave us the tool. He also instructed me to rinse with mild soapy fresh water (ear bulb in the shower) after being in the ocean, whether for a dive or snorkel. And to continue using my alcohol or vinegar/peroxide drops too. My ear was too sore for him to get all the wax so I used Debrox drops last night & tried to flush out more wax this morning. It is weird and somewhat jarring to hear clearly out of the right ear for the first time in a long time. I am very relieved that there is nothing more complicated than wax to deal with. Apparently, I not only have my father\’s nose, but his ears too!

During the day we went ashore for a walk. I also had one last snorkel at the pier. I saw my fishy friends & cooled off.

Last night the wind came more from the north which makes it feel like we are underway, even though we are still tied to the mooring.

August 10
This morning I asked to speak to Mary after the guys had their radio chat. There was a lot of static, but it was still nice to hear her voice. Their daughter is flying in from Scotland soon & will stay with them onboard for 2 months.

We are conflicted, but think we will motor the 30 miles back to north Fakarava today. We are envisioning happy news from the visa office in Papeete. If they do not grant our delay and tell us we must be there for the renewal process August 14, perhaps one of us could fly to Papeete since there is an airport out of North Fakarava. If we can find someone to keep an eye on the boat I think it would be fun, although pricey, for both of us to go. Anyway, I\’m not really worried about it, it will work out somehow. It\’s all an adventure.

Cindy & Scott