Sunday, May 26, 2013

From Musket to Denarau and Back to Vuda Pt

We certainly have had an interesting adventure in the last few weeks. It began with bringing in the new birthday year for Suzi, with a new Fiji dress and cocktail party hosted by David on Sidewinder, followed by a special dinner at Dick's Restaurant. The following week included playing tennis, surfing and snorkeling, opening the new Island Bar with our friends, along with the wonderful gift of testing out our dive gear with Dels, who guided us out Wilks Pass with a large, friendly turtle, a huge ray, two eels, and lots of very colorful fish and coral. Unfortunately, the effects of a fall I took a week earlier, along with an unidentifiable infection with fever, left me flat so we headed for Prt Denarau where we could find a doctor. We were greeted by the HARD Rock Cafe's rendition of the song "YMCA" and, since they dance to it every 2-3 hours, it will live in our memories forever.:)) We were able  to do lots of shopping for specialty items, visit  a wonderful doctor who diagnosed me with a UTI  (urinary tract infection) and put me on a strong anti-biotic, we enjoyed, again, some special time with friends, and finally escaped last Thursday. Sailing back to Vuda Pt  was a real treat and our dear friends Peter and Diana on Quickstar, Ricki on Guava Jelly,  and the marina locals greeted us with open arms. We were hoping to find our new chain here, but, unfortunately it has not arrived yet. We had a fabulous "thirsty thursday" afternoon/evening with Diana and Peter and they have since left for Musket Cove. We had hoped to get back out there by Saturday, but hopefully our chain will arrive sometime today and we will not have to come back for a while. Meanwhile, we have been enjoying our time with Ricki and some other friends from Seattle, as well as watching the launching of the new viewing/restaurant/bar Cloud9 platform which will be placed out inside the reef at Cloudbreaks, an internationally known surf break here near Tavarua. Wow! It is beautiful and an inspiration to all the Fijians who worked on it. Tony, the son of the Vuda Pt marina owner, had the vision and helped to make it happen. What will it do to the ambience of the surf break? Who knows. Saturday all the bigtime surfers will be out there competing in the huge waves (which are coming up in the next few days). Meanwhile, we hope to go back out and join Quickstar in Musket and perhaps do some real venturing for a few more weeks. It is raining right now, so the weather will direct us from now on, and we do hope our chain arrives today..  Hope the summer is bringing the sun, blue skies, and warm water to all. We love you,  Suzi and David
               David and Dels get all of our gear ready for our test dive out at Namotu and Wilks Pass.
       A wonderful dive included a special turtle, huge ray, two eels, colorful fish and coral, and great fun! The small island of Namotu is in the background with it's small resort catering to surfers.
                                             Del's first time on a sailboat.......very special!
         Opening the Island Bar, which was destroyed by the cyclone, was a festive event shared by all.
         Steve( USA ), John ( Brazil ), and Julian ( New Zealand ) are great, funny, spirited surfer sailors who know how to play hard and party harder.
 Even in Prt Denarau, the sunsets can be stunning. We enjoyed our time here with friends, Ernie, Geoff, Sue and Andrew.
 Marginal pictures still portray the warm energy of our reunion with Canadian friends, Peter and Diana
                                           Sidewinder comes "home" to Vuda Point for a visit.

                                This is the floating platform that will be moored just inside Cloudbreaks.
                Suzi may be the first sexy young girl to belly up to the bar, even if it's only for a morning coffee !!
The wood work on the platform was all done by a local shipbuilder and take it from this old carpenter, it's all   first rate.
During its launch, they used logs wrapped in a protective cloth to roll it out into the arms of the waiting tide.
                                          This shot was taken the afternoon before its  launch.

                             Floated off the sand by the full moon tide, it was pulled out to sea by the research ship
" Ice " and soon will find it's way out to it's new home in the protected area inside the reef off Tavarua.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Loving Life at Musket Cove

This morning, after stretching and doing my JT exercises, I sat down to meditate and looked out over the beautiful blue water with warm gentle tradewinds blowing, keeping me cool, thinking about just how marvelous our life happens to be.  It is already May 9 and here we are, still in Musket Cove!!!  There are moments of wanting to get on with it and do some sailing, but we have so enjoyed being here, meeting lots of new friends, attempting to surf, snorkeling, hiking, meditating, golfing, and getting lots of necessary Sidewinder projects completed, realizing that being on the warm, clear water is quite amazing. We will leave here for a short excursion to a few islands before heading back to Vuda Point, but not sure exactly when. Meanwhile, the life out here is special and appreciating that is so very important. Love to all!
 David and Brazilain friend, John, with Don driving his little boat, on our first day out to the waves of Namotu. We tried Swimming Pools and then Lefts.  It was great just being out there!
 Lots of snorkeling to be had around Namotu as well. Great diving at Wilks pass on the left (right side)
 Feeling refreshed after being in the water, but it was hard work trying to catch waves with the current so strong. Waves have come up since this photo, and we are in awe of those who can surf these monsters!
 David has managed to make a new fish table, new ores for the dinghy, re-build the head, and now, fix the steering wheel pedestal.which is cracked. His skills with fiber-glass are being perfected.
 Capt Dave is such an amazing worker; he solves Sidewinder problems with such tenacity!
I am managing to have great fun while doing what needs to be done. Sometimes my jobs seem to be less productive, but they are definitely important!