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Sailing in French Polynesia –
Day Eight

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Turquoise, Seafoam, Azure and Navy

Breakfast in town with mom. Christian dropped us off and his wife Nela picked us up.

We had a second briefing for Ben who finally arrived.   Laurent gave this briefing and gave much better tips with astute suggestions with regard to weather.

We topped off the water. Rinsed the deck and sailed off across the lagoon for the island of Taha’a.

I practiced anchoring just off motu Mahaea on the east side of Tahaa.  We headed into the wind while watching the depth finder.  Then, we dropped anchor, and reversed to set it.  Next, we attached the spreader to the chain to lessen the tension on the wench.   I gripped the chain for a few minutes to feel for vibrations…no vibrations.  So, the anchor isn’t dragging. Good.

Ben & I went for a swim.

Salmon, baggettes, crackers, tomatos slices and grapes for a light lunch on deck.   We listened to some duets with Tony Bennett.

Roger and Suzanne went for a swim.

We lowered the dingy to go ashore. Mom and Deb joined me to explore the little island, Motu Mahaea, across from Haamene Bay. We walked across to see the tide coming in the pass. A skinny French kid, looking like Robinson Caruso, carrying a coconut and a machete told us, “Cette une isle prive” and tried to charge us a $3.00 fee. We took one look at the machete and said,”au revoir.”

We picked up the anchor, and cruised to Apu bay. Moored outside Ficus restaurant for the night. Suzanne was a pro hooking the mooring ball, and deb expertly moved us into position. We had some rum drinks. We watched the sun set into the sea and paint the sky.

Suzanne prepared a garlic and ginger rice with chicken for dinner. While enjoying the afterglow of a great meal, Jeremy, the young proprietor of Ficus, canoed out to the mooring and explained that we would be the only guests at the restaurant this evening.

We left Deborah and Ben on the boat….their first night together since his late arrival.

At Ficus, Jeremy and the other young people put on a private show…just for us. First Jeremy on the Ukele. Then, he was joined by a drummer. Next, a guitar player.

He sang traditional Polynesian songs. Love songs. Breakup songs. And, folk songs lamenting the loss of traditional Polynesian culture. Lots of easy conversation with the audience…all 5 of us. Then, they taught us how to dance and play traditional Polynesian drumbs.

The show ended with a spectacular fire dance. What a surprise!

We showed them our appreciation. And they asked us back for breakfast…as their guests! Then, everyone walked us to the dock to wave goodbye. What unbelievable hospitality….felt like a true Polynesian experience. These are super nice people…visit them if you are in the neighborhood.

Back on the boat,  I laid out in the “trampoline,” watched the full moon, and reminisced about the day.

No internet. No problem.
 


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Day One
Day Two
Day Three
Day Four
Day Five
Day Six
Day Seven
Day Eight
Day Nine
Day Ten
Day Eleven
Day Twelve
Day Thirteen
Day Fourteen
Day Fifteen
Day Sixteen
Day Seventeen


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Drew de la Houssaye
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