• Our impact on the Pacific and Micronesia – it’s not as far away as you think

    Being back on land and reflecting on close to a year cruising the pacific islands and Micronesia I realise how much I’ve gained from the experience – Fiji, Tonga, Tuvalu, Kiribati and the Marshall Islands. Before just names on a map, dots in a vast blue ocean. So what is different now?

    The reality of life in these places has been experienced. Ties have been made with people, faces aligned to a country, and an understanding of the land that they live on. My latest assignment for my development studies course is on development induced migration. You might think about the three gorges dam, or other high profile mass re-locations.  But there are countless stories like this on smaller scales around the pacific.

    Right now I’m thinking of what we’ve seen along the way, not necessarily experienced directly, but through the stories of people we’ve met…

    * Displacement from Bikini island for nuclear testing for “the good of mankind”

    * The impact of world war two on the Marshall islands and Kiribati.

    * Displacement from French nuclear testing in polynesia

    * Banaba island resettlement to Rabi island Fiji. And while we can say the above didn’t have a direct link to New Zealand – this last one did.

    Phosphate spraying in Northern NZ from 'Our sea of phosphate' by Katerina Teaiwa

    Phosphate spraying in Northern NZ from ‘Our sea of phosphate’ by Katerina Teaiwa

    For a low price the British Phosphate commission (BPC – including NZ and Aus) stripped Banaba of it’s phosphate by the ship load. Much of this was used in New Zealand for fertilizer turning hill country soil into arable and lucrative land. So we are connected to the people of Banaba as the phosphate from their island helped us increase agricultural fertility in the 50s and 60s. And we are connected to the people of Banaba in the sense that in gaining our fertile land, they lost theirs.

    This connection isn’t just true for people of the pacific. We are connected to people in China who make some of the products we consume, the factories that serve us derive their power from the three gorges. We also may even be connected to the people in Congo who work in Coltan mines so we can have phone batteries, and other electronics. We live in a world where we have no idea who makes our products. We don’t see who, or what environments are affected by our purchases.

  • Farewell to Fiji

    It’s hard to say goodbye to a place you have loved and people you love, but we are excited about the trip ahead. It’s great to be back out on the water and even more fantastic to see a pod of dolphins on departure.


    New Spanish friends

    New Spanish friends from Caps III


    Waving good bye to amigos on Sikkim

    First dinner on passage

    First meal on passage with new crew Jonas


    First sunset on passage

    Sun gone

    Sun gooone

    Dolphin visitors


  • Final night in Fiji at Vuda Point

    After three months cruising in Fiji the time has come to go north!

    Cheers, salut, skal, and all that to the wonderful people we’ve met over the past few months. Drinks Vuda Point




  • Savusavu and Sevusevu

    In Savusavu we attended Curlys infamous seminar with a few new friends. Curly very thoroughly informed us of the etiquette for Sevusevu:

    In Fiji when you anchor off a village you should go ashore, make yourself known to the chief and he will welcome you to the village. The catch is he will only welcome you to the village if you come bearing a 1/3-1/2 kilo package of Yaqona, aka Kava. This needs to be appropriately bundled in newspaper (which is apparently read from front to back) and the long twirly sticks of Yaqona are tied together with a piece of ribbon. This tradition goes for Fijians and foreigners alike, and we found it a really nice way to experience the culture. Once the ceremony is finished you are part of the village and are allowed to walk through it, fish, swim, etc. Here’s a picture of the liquor cabinet on Confederate stocked with Kava and ready for action.


    In Savusavu we caught up with a few boats we met in Tonga – Celtic castle and Toodles. We are loving the somewhat transient community we find ourselves in, and the instant respect for anyone we meet knowing that they have crossed an ocean to get where they are.  All the moments we are sharing with people along the way are really special. We spent about a week with Kate and Gary (a fellow Kiwi couple) with some awesome convos over rum, fish, fiji golds, and a random yet fantastic meal in the thriving metropolis that is labassa.

    Drinks Savusavu

    Tis a good chance to thnk everyone we’ve met so far for the good times and community spirity. Big shout outs to Trish and Dave off Halcyon 2 and Geoff and Sharon off Silhouette who we left behind in Tonga but loved spending time with you guys.

  • Arriving in Fiji

    We left Tonga to a pod of whales bidding us farewell, and arrived in Fiji to a pod of dolphins playing in the surf around us. No pictures – unfortunately we were a bit too excited of a) arriving in Fiji and b) being surrounded by jumping dolphins. We checked into Savusavu after the 4 day trip feeling exhausted but at the same time invigorated. A trip out on the big blue can do that to you – part of you is so excited to see land, the other part of you wants to keep going to Vanuatu or wherever really. Here’s a few pictures of Savusavu in all it’s glory.

    Confederate arriving Savusavu on a bit of an overcast day. Extreme excitement levels

    Confederate arriving Savusavu on a bit of an overcast day. Extreme excitement levels

    The next morning beautiful

    The next morning beautiful


    Pretty chuffed to be in Fiji

    Pretty chuffed to be in Fiji