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Once my parents left, we had to start looking for a window to head out of Fiji. We have two more Pacific countries to visit before our landfall in Australia, so it’s time to move on!
Fortunately the winds are almost always blowing from the Southeast this time of year, and that left us with an important decision to make: leave before or after my birthday? If we left before, I’d be spending my birthday on watch, sober and with just the two of us in the big blue. Instead, we opted to make a run down to Musket Cove, where we picked up a mooring for $18 FJD a night, and had a party. 6 other boats joined us, 18 people, and I served tuna sashimi and birthday cake. Everyone brought something, and we had more than enough food and room for everyone.
A nice perk of spending an extra season in the South Pacific is how many of our friends from the last year are doing this too. We got to catch up with Carthago, Whistler, and Enough at the party, plus our newer friends on Qi, Sandy Cheeks, and Del Viento.
Being at Musket Cove also had other perks – pool privileges! David and I spent my birthday afternoon by the poolside, listening to music and having a drink.
After Musket Cove we left for Saweni Bay. We didn’t think we were going to make it here, but since we wanted to clear out towards the end of the week so we can clear in to Vanuatu on a Monday, we had some time left. Awaiting us in Saweni Bay was Blowing Bubbles, Enchanter and Swiftsure. Bubbles and Swiftsure we’ve known since Panama, and they are some of our best cruising friends. Shelley recently had a medical emergency, so they’d been in Saweni Bay for a month. We spent two nights catching up with everyone and then took off for Vuda point – our last stop in Fiji.
We’d been in touch with Cheeky Monkey and Sandy Cheeks, who we knew were also looking for a window to Vanuatu. We coordinated our departure plans are are holding a Faintaine Pajot Fiji to Vanuatu Regatta! Cheeky Monkey is another Helia, one year younger than SH, and Sandy Cheeks is a Lucia 40, one year younger than CM. Both SC and CM are selling their boats and ending their cruise in Australia.
Leaving Fiji is terribly sad. There’s still so much we wanted to do here! Even though in the past 2 years, SH has spent 108 days in Fiji, it is a huge country, with so many islands to see. People spend entire seasons in Fiji (like our friends on Blowin Bubbles) and still haven’t scratched the surface. Some off our favorite ancharages in the South Pacific are in Fiji.
So, we are off to Vanuatu and then on to New Caladonia. Internet will be very limited in Vanuatu so posting will be tricky!