About Us

Welcome to our blog, describing our voyage aboard Bravo, a Kelly Peterson 46 sailboat with homeport in Seattle, Washington. We headed south in 2010, destined for Mexico and beyond. Cheers, Adam and Cindi

"As for me, I am tormented by an everlasting itch for things remote. I love to sail forbidden seas, and land on barbarous coasts." -Herman Melville, 1844

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Fulanga Chronicles - Post 2

One of the great things about Fulaga is it's relative inaccessibility.  As we wrote earlier, the island was largely closed to visitors until just a couple of years ago, and today only visiting yachties have the privilege of visiting.  So visitors are still somewhat of a novelty (though this is clearly changing with the influx of yachts....this year, so far, over 30 have anchored here).  Both kids and adults couldn't be friendlier or more open.

Fulaga Island has 3 villages, Muanaicake, Muanaira and Naividamu.  The largest, Muanaicake, is the place we spent most of our time, visiting almost daily with hosts Meri and Jon-e and others, participating in daily village life, and generally hanging out and drinking kava.  (a LOT of that goes on in Fulaga!!!).  The village, though simple, is extremely clean.  Paths are raked daily, and all of the houses are neat.

Here are a few miscellaneous shots from around the village to get the general idea:

Post office.  Now, with cell phones (have to climb up to the overlook for any chance of service) they only handle an average of 8 (yes, that's EIGHT) letters on the supply boat each month.  The only phone on the island is in the little box on the right next to the front door.  It is a satellite phone, so quite expensive.

Rugby played by the "boarders" after school.  The boarders are the kids from the other two villages on the island who spend Monday through Friday in Muanaicake, the only village with a school.  The school is only for kids up to age 12.  After that they are sent away to school in Suva for their final 5 years of compulsory public school.  Strange to have no teenagers living on the island.

One day we took a hike with friends Graham and Diane of s/y Maunie, along with Mele and Bis.  Hiked to a high overlook, with spectacular views of the whole island.  

BRAVO is the lower boat of the two toward the left

The path to enter the lagoon is easy to see from here!!!  (Not nearly so easy on cloudy days at high tide!)

Mele, Graham and Diane, Bis, and Cindi

One of our first days in the village was also the going away party for two other boats, our friends m/y Mystic Moon and s/y Spruce.  An amazing party it was, with lots of music, dancing and, oh yeah, kava.  Typical crowd of around 40 villagers and perhaps 10 or so cruisers.....everyone has a great time playing together.

Cindi and host Meri on the right.  Moses on the left, a great guy behind a typically dour facade!

Tara and Bob (s/y Charisma) cut the mat

Tai, always the perfect host, escorts the guys for a pee break in the banana plantation

Pounding the kava roots to a powder before putting in a cloth to soak in the kava bowl.

Standing room only

All parties typically end in a feast.  Here we have fish, crab, curries, eggplant and taro leaves, most things cooked in coconut milk, and all very good.  But it is a very starchy diet, with yams, sweet potatoes, and casava playing a major part, and few green vegetables grown on the island.  Silverware is typically just for serving, and everyone eats with their fingers.

We'll end this post here.  There is much more to the "Fulaga Chronicles" yet to come.  But we have very sadly now left the island.  (notice the photos???  We now have internet for the first time in over a month).  It was extremely difficult to tear away from our new friends in Fulaga.  But we've left the Lau Group entirely, with a fantastic overnight downwind sail north 170 miles to the island of Taveuni in northern Fiji.  After 2 nights there, we've moved today to Viani Bay, where we'll spend the next several days diving the spectacular reefs there.  More posts on our Viani adventures will be interspersed with additional editions of the "Fulaga Chronicles".  Sorry for the somewhat disjointed approach, hope you hang with us!!!

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