Directions

Our latest entry always comes up first...

Click this link if you want to start at the beginning of our trip from
South Carolina (where we bought the boat) to Lake Ontario Click this link:

If you want to see the story of our 2 1/2 year project getting
Blowin' Bubbles ready for our life on board click here:
FIRST "REFIT" BLOG ENTRY - March 2011

If you want to start at the beginning of our trip:
START OF TRIP - July 2014
2015, 2016, 2017, 2018

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Getting ready to GO!

After almost a month in Kiribati it is time for us to start heading for Fiji...  Fortunately for us two cyclones have now passed over Fijian waters and we hope we can arrive with no drama.

We have met some amazing people while visiting here for a second time.  We frequently go to a place called the George Hotel where the staff have treated us like family.

Our friends from MV Reel Dreams arrived a few days ago and we celebrated Marilyn's Birthday at the George Hotel where they decorated our table and sang for us... What a treat.


Sisters: Janice & Marilyn

Janice and our amazing staff from George's

Happy to be out for dinner....

Bud & Marilyn (MV Reel Dreams)

A few days ago we arranged for a fuel delivery and all went very smoothly..



Today we checked out with Immigration and Customs and will set sail for Rotuma at first light in the morning.  We expect this leg will take 7-10 days.

Shelley has been busy baking for the trip!






We will check in again when we arrive in Rotuma

Cheers!

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Majuro, Mili, Tarawa & Abaiang

We are sorry that it has been a while since our last post.....  Mostly because internet has been very scarce.  When it is available, it is usually unreliable and always very expensive....  Oh well, it is the price we pay to sail through paradise....

After arriving back in Majuro, we witnessed something that was sad.   Every year the Marshalise people recognize the environmental and human damage caused by the US nuclear testing in the Bikini Atoll following WW2. To mark this anniversary, they gathered at the national government building to listen to speeches from people who talked about the damage the testing caused....  That was very helpful and informative all the way up to the time in the program when they got a bunch of school kids to release hundreds of balloons into the air!  Most of us know just how environmentally bad it is to release balloons.  You would think someone would have thought this through....





We attended the annual meeting of the Meico Yacht Club and had a great meal the night before we resupplied, checked out, and set off for a southern atoll in the Marshall Islands called Mili....


We arrived after a lovely overnight sail from Majuro and discovered why we were one of only a few cruising boats to visit each year....  While beautiful, the atoll provides very little protection from the prevailing NE trade winds.  After 3 aborted attempts, we finally found a safe spot to anchor.

All that aside, we are glad we made the effort to stop here.  Mili atoll is another example of a beautiful place unmolested and raw with beauty.  We spent spent just over a week exploring lots of uninhabited islands and walked miles of deserted beaches...

We have made plans to come home to Canada from June 9 to July 9th this year. The cheapest flight home from this part of the world turned out to be from Fiji, so we needed to get heading south.  The dilemma is that if we get to Fiji too soon, we will face the possibility of a late season cyclone (hurricane), so we decided to stop in Tarawa, Kiribati on the way.

We were in Tarawa in November, so there wasn't much for us to explore so we asked for, and received permission to visit an outlying atoll called Abaiang....


Abaiang is 30 nautical miles north of Tarawa but a WORLD away!  Folks here still live in a very traditional way.  there are very few cinder block buildings and NO ONE walks by with saying  "Mauri", which means literally, "you be well".  This is a greeting that these people really mean.





We visited a primary school that day we arrived and checked in and asked if we could come by the next day to bring some school supplies....  The next day came and we were greeted by an assembly of all 130 children, all the teachers and even a visit from the island school superintendent!



The children sang and danced for us and after we gave each child their pencil case we were fed an incredible lunch.  When lunch was over it took 9 BOYS to carry the gifts of food they gave us!  From coconuts to Pandanus fruit, we feel like we received MUCH MORE than we gave....














While here we met some students from Monivae College (high school),in Southwest Victoria, Australia.  There were 11 girls, 1 boy and three teachers visiting and having a mission experience....  What a great bunch! 


Before leaving Abaiang we rented motorcycles to explore the atoll.  Over 30 miles long, it was one of the most beautiful places we have been.

50% of the people here are Roman Catholic... The church's presence here is very evident.




This is not like the gas stations at home!

Helmets were not even an option!

Can you see it?
Speed bump!

We are now back in Tarawa waiting for about the middle of April before we make the 1200 nautical mile sail back to Fiji.

When we come home, we are working with some Yacht Clubs and Churches to arrange some speaking engagements.  We will publish our speaking schedule closer to the time we come home.

More soon....