I am getting married and my time and money must regrettably be channelled in other directions. Lone Wolf is therefore now for sale. To the boat buying public, I would say that I am getting everything fixed up and serviced, she is in fine fettle and ready for more adventures.
Apologies for the downbeat nature of the last post, and thanks to all who commented positively.
I am getting some repairs done here. Great place for that; all minor ones really, apart from the generator which needs an overhaul.
Little things go wrong, not big ones. There is nothing as reliable as the Lugger main engine., which is as rugged as ever. Lone Wolf is still floating after 5000 miles, and I have a lot of respect for her.
The New Zealand Airforce came and checked us out 500 miles out. Ch. 16- "do you have any animals or weapons? (see pic) Quite hardcore- I hope for the sake of the NZ taxpayer, they didn't come all that way just for us...
The passage was calm, which is almost unheard of. It was rough just before we left, and just after we arrived. Thanks be to Neptune.
It's quite cold here, goodbye tropics. The customs guy was nice. I think the Kiwis are probably a pretty reasonable bunch, but I don't suppose one wants to take the piss with them.
It took five days and we were three, Aidrian, myself, and A Tongan called Tevita. He would have been really good in a crisis if we had had one, which we didn't, apart from some dirty dishes.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Unfortunately(for me) it is also worth about a thousand dollars to Stratos (KVH), the f***ers who bill me for my oh-so-pricey at sea satellite internet service. It takes an age to upload, so no photos until the next blog entry which will hopefully be via wifi at Niue.
We visited Aitutaki, which may well have been a beautiful spot. Trouble is, the weather was dire, so I was not really given to exploring it. It was only possible to anchor outside the reef, but we saw some whales there, which was most edifying.
Then on 200 miles west to Palmerston Atoll, which as you may have guessed, was named after the British prime minister, Lord Atoll.
This is inhabited by 70 people, who are all descended from one man, William Marsters. There is no airstrip, and a supply ship only visits once every eight months.
It is a beautiful place, a paradise if you will, but remote in the extreme. The people are ultra-friendly and charming, and not the inbred morons one might expect. There is a church, a school, and the Cook Islands government have just installed trlephones. “This used to be a peaceful place”, one inhabitant told me, “but now these blasted phones won’t stop ringing”
Marina says this trip is easy and presents little challenge. It is the hope of all of us that she is correct.
1st leg. Tahiti to Aitutaki, Cook Islands- October 20-25th 2010
Marina Hanbury, Edo Flisi, new Captain Adrian Midwood and myself, have completed this leg of Lone Wolf’s voyage. First, we stopped for the night at Bora Bora. There, I met a Polynesian transvestite, who said to me: “ I grew up in Mayfair. The realization that the other kids I knew did not have a butler, a cook and servants, really came as quite a shock.”
We then proceeded to Maupiti. Unlike last time, when we failed to enter the Maupiti pass, due to breakers at the entrance, it was calm, and we entered without hindrance. What a beautiful and enchanting place Maupiti is! It is said to resemble Bora Bora, but without the crowds, and that is fairly apt. It contains one sleepy village, no banks, and not much in the way of stores. It is wonderfully green, fertile and mountainous, and the sea is an incredible shade of turquoise. It is a truly amazing place to visit. If I had to live there, I would probably shoot myself.
After leaving Maupiti, we embarked on a 48 hour trip to Aitutaki, in the Cook Islands. For the first 36 hours, the ocean was glassy smooth, like a lake. It was not to last. We approach Aitutaki as I write, and the waves have grown in intensity during the night, making it uncomfortable for all. Lone is now getting tossed around a fair bit, but is about to receive a well earned rest for a couple of days (as are her crew!) in the lee of the island, until the weather improves, We cannot enter the lagoon, due to our 7 foot draught .
The Cook Islands are administered by New Zealand. Apparently the authorities are about to seize our fresh fruit and vegetables, and spray the boat with DDT. Or maybe not, I will keep you posted. If they don’t check us out, we will not be checking in, daring outlaws that we are…
Like the mythical heroes of ancient Greece, Captain Ned is half-man and half-god. Men want to be him, and women want to be with him. He is handsome, intelligent, brave, athletic, hard-working, and skilled in all that he does; but above all, he is humble.