Monday, May 7, 2012

Tales from The Blue Lagoon

Remember the Brooke Shields movie The Blue Lagoon? Well, we never saw it but thought that the Blue Lagoon would be a beautiful place to visit! Armed with our Garmin chart plotter, Navionix charts on the Ipad, two cruising books and one of us up on the bow we threaded our way from Waya Island through the reef strewn route to Nanuya Island and Nanuya Levu where they are still talking about Brooke Shields! There were reefs everywhere but none of the charts could agree on EXACTLY where so it ends up that eyeballing your way through them is just as good as following a chart..... It's just a bit difficult to eyeball depth (especially when heading into the sun) so one moment we were in 60 feet of water and the next moment we were in 6 feet!

We are finally in a very protected and calm anchorage! We have had our fair share of rolly anchorages and therefore sleepless nights! The Blue Lagoon is formed by four islands and is the most protected anchorage in the Yasawas. Upon arrival, we made our way ashore to make sevusevu and ask permission to anchor off of the village. The village has mostly disappeared as they have sold off most of the land to resorts, but the original landowner still living in her original home right on the beach and was happy to have us anchor in her front yard (so to speak). We are the first yacht of the season to visit the village and Lai, our hostess, made us feel very welcome and gave us the lowdown on where to snorkel, when to walk the reefs and who to visit. Since there is some SPCZ weather coming our way, we plan to spend a couple of days here.

Sunday afternoon we treated ourselves to lunch at the resort. Picture, if you will, a palm frond thatched roof covering a round, open-sided structure which is perched on a rocky spit of land overlooking turquoise water..... the breeze floats in cooling the 84 degree mid day heat, the palm trees sway and your server (a good looking, dark as night Fijian) brings you a beer (which is cheaper than a soft drink)! We did languish over that lunch- it was our first meal out in three weeks AND I ordered a salad, which was a treat because guess what we are out of! The Supermoon rose over Nanuya Sunday night and was huge and brilliant before disappearing into the SPCZ cloud band and as the wind had not yet picked up we were gently lulled to sleep.

Monday we returned to shore to visit some more with Lai. However she had left for the village on Matacawalevu to do some visiting (it's school break so everyone is on holiday) and we instead visited with Bill. Bill is probably our age (but looks older!) and is from the village on the other side of the island where there are still ten families living. Since Lai and her family were gone, Bill was taking care of and watching over their house. Crime on Nanuya? While we sat there, Neal helping Bill make a broom by stripping the leaves off of the palm fronds and collecting the spines, we chatted about the village, Fijian life, some local gossip and "oh, did we have any AA batteries that we could give him?". Since the tide was ebbing we next walked around the entire island of Nanyua-Sewa (it's small) to visit the village on the other side and visit the famous Lo's Tea House! Lo is very quick to tell you that ALL of the yachties visit her Tea House (she is very glad to hear that many more are on their way) and that the Tea House is in all of the tourist brochures including the Lonely Planet Guide to the South Pacific! Leaving our shoes at the door, we passed on the hot tea or hot coffee, and we ordered orange soda (no ice, served in very old pink plastic cups) and were talked into a piece of Lo's famous chocolate cake. I bought a coconut shell bracelet, oohed and ahhed over the other local handicrafts and we were once again on our way, promising to be good advertising ambassadors for the Tea House. Really, if you are ever in the area, do stop in!

The late afternoon finds us back on the boat overhauling the windlass- it's in a million pieces but no problem, we're only in 50 feet of water with 200 feet of chain out! It will be a two day project (at least) but there were no bearings left in it and it was a wonder that it worked at all. Got a bit of a lightening show in the early evening and then had to hail a power boat, that had just arrived an hour or two earlier, because he was dragging anchor and about to drag down right on top of us....... The clouds are thick tonight, no more Supermoon, but we could really use a good rain shower because Rutea is once again caked in salt!

Tomorrow? Who knows! Every day is different and something unexpected usually occurs! There are lots of nooks and crannies yet to be snorkeled in the Blue Lagoon, villages to visit, Scrabble to be played and the never ending list of boat projects to be attended to. I know we sound busy but we also have time to email you, so........

R of Rutea
At 5/7/2012 8:15 AM (utc) Rutea's position was 16°56.57'S 177°22.00'E

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