Monday, April 28, 2008


We made landfall at Hiva Oa on the morning of April 26th, just in time to celebrate Jocelyn's 16th birthday!

We spotted land just before 5am and around 7am enjoyed a spectacular sunrise. Just before we got to the anchorage, a huge squall passed over us producing enough rain for us to shower and wash all the salt off the boat, it was sure nice to have that fresh water rise.

"Awe Struck" best describes our first impression of the Marquesas. It is so lush and green here, there are pistachios, limes, pamplemouse, papaya, mango, star fruit and bananas growing all over! The fragrance of the islands is incredible too, fresh and sweet. It is very hot! and we're told there are sharks in the bay so we haven't gone swimming but now that we're at anchor we're finally able to open up the port holes and hatches to get some fresh air inside, mercifully, the evenings are cool and breezy and we've been able to catch up on some sleep.

The boats in the anchorage at Atuona are all anchored bow and stern in about 10 feet of water - very squishy! We're so used to having lots of swinging room, but not here! We were finally able to meet some of the people we had been talking to on the radio during our crossing and everyone is so nice! Both girls took turns checking into the PPJ net daily as we were crossing and Jenny actually ran the net for the last week and did a wonderful job.

It's about a 40 minute walk to town and we've been twice and will have to go again tomorrow to finish up some entry paperwork. The night we arrived, we walked into town and celebrated Jocelyn's birthday with a pizza dinner with several friends old and new, in all there were 9 kids and 11 adults and even though we were very tired, we had a wonderful time. Since it was dark by the time we were done and the winding, hilly road back to the anchorage would be unsafe to walk, the owners of the restaurant drove us back. The Marquesan people are very kind and gracious.

We will be traveling to Tahuata tomorrow after we finish up with the Gendarme in town and will be able to meet up with friends from home, Australia, Florida and England, it's really nice to have people you know in places you've never been, cruising is unique for that.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

thoughts of crossing the equator

I was scared you know, to go to sea
with no vistas of land and nowhere to flee
the fear of storms kept me awake at night
not to mention the potential for an on-board fight

I thought I'd get sea sick, but that's not been so
I've managed my watches and to cook on the go
and now with the equator just a few hours away
we'll make it across, hip-hip-hooray (Marg)

Adios to Mexico, Bonjour Hiva Oa
with all of this water, I feel like Noah!
only two hours to go
we'll be at the equator so
with 30 degrees
we'll be weak at the knees
Hello paradise!
we'll say, "ah, this feels nice!" (Jenny)

Sunrise and sunset, every day
it's amazing beauty, I wish it to stay
the warmth of the sun
the light of the moon
we've had a long run
the equator comes soon

In the day, temperature's blazing
and at night we're star gazing
swim over the line
hope no shark attacks
the memory will shine
and now we're shellbacks! (Jocelyn)

What an honor it is to grant a request
along the equator, we'll travel due West
a last goodbye, we do our best
to place Jay's dad in his final place of rest (Jay)

Thanks to all of you who have shown your support through love, prayers and email.

We love you all! Jay, Marg, Jocelyn & Jenny

Saturday, April 19, 2008

A day away!

We are currently at 02 degrees 56 minutes North 129 degrees 13 minutes West and should be crossing the equator mid afternoon on Sunday. We've been out here for two weeks and it's been good so far, but quite monotonous so the anticipation of crossing the equator has everyone excited. We figure we'll be crossing over with our friends in sight, yesterday they were only 52 miles away, but they would have to be within 5 miles or so to actually see them.

We had a great rainfall yesterday, enough so that we could all go on deck for a shower and to give the boat a good rinse. The salt was everywhere so it feels good to have it rinsed off. It was a very hot day, 30 degrees and we all welcomed the cool down from the rain. We also had dolphins swim with us, that's a first for this crossing. Right now it's quite calm and we're motoring and have been doing so for almost 24 hours, it's 4:30am and the moon is bright and the sky is mostly clear, can see the Southern Cross, very cool.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Hot Hot Hot!

Mui Calliente! y Tres Chaud!

Ok, well I guess it's not really that hot, but for me (a heat sensitive canuck) it is. It's day 11 and we're currently at 10 degrees 8 minutes North and 125 degrees 44 minutes West, approximately 4-5 days from the equator and there's definitely a change in the climate. I checked the outside temperature at the end of my watch at 6am and it was 24 degrees and everything is starting to feel damp with all the humidity. No need for blankets or sweatshirts anymore, that's for sure.

There's not much to differentiate one day from another, sea and sky, sky and sea same old, same old. We have not seen a single whale, which really surprises me but I'm convinced they're lurking under the boat as the depth sounder sometimes reads as low as a few feet and often we'll see an entire school of flying fish dash away, just above the surface of the water, something's chasing them, right? Jocelyn and Jay are the only ones who've spotted dolphins this crossing, it's very cool to see them swimming through the water in the dark as they ignite the phosphorescence and look like torpedoes swarming around us.

We have not caught a single fish thus far but we wake up most mornings to an array of seafood on deck. Today we scored 4 flying fish and 3 squid! Jay & Jenny decided that they should put one of the squid on the fish hook and lo and behold, just an hour later had a strike! but sadly it got away.

The wind has been pretty good so far and we're traveling at an average of 6.5 knots. The sunsets and sunrises are the highlights as are the stars, we're starting to see different constellations now which is very cool, time to break out the nautical almanac. Perhaps today we'll take a noonsite with sextant and see if we can remember how to plot our position the celestial way.

Anyway, I'll be posting some pictures the next time we have internet, until then, you'll have to tolerate text only posts as this is all the ham radio will allow, pretty amazing though, come to think of it.

Until next time, adios! et aurevoir!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Our first week at sea

Our current position is 14 degrees 01'N 122 degrees 13'W

I must say that I would never have imagined that a week at sea could go by so quickly! We all feel that way. Our first three days out were fantastic traveling 164 miles each day, the last few have not been quite as successful but still over 100 miles each day. Today was glorious! Sunshine and 23 degrees in the cockpit, calm seas which are a nice change from the rolly ones of late, but unfortunately, calms seas are the result of light winds. We're flying our Gennaker right now and are having a really nice ride in 11 knots of wind.

We are talking twice daily with our friends aboard Maryke Violet and are trying to converge courses so that we can travel within VHF range but we've got a few days to go before we're close enough for that.

Night watches are going fine, of course nobody really enjoys them. Tonight there's a bit of a moon and light cloud cover so maybe we'll be able to see something, the last nights have been cloudy and extremely dark and when there's nothing to focus on one can feel a little dizzy.

Anyway, we've put 1052 miles behind us, only 1798 more to go!

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

At Sea - Day 4

We departed La Paz at 10:30 Saturday morning, April 5th and motored for 24 hours straight due to lack of wind. We decided to make a quick stop in Cabo San Lucas to top off our fuel and grab a few extra groceries and our last ice cream for a while, a little over an hour later we were off. As soon as we rounded the cape, we had 15 knots of NW wind....perfect! We set sail and have been sailing ever since. We are sailing a great circle route to Hiva Oa, Marquesas and at our current speed of 7kn we
would arrive in 14 days, although all of the other boats ahead of us have been out much longer than that and few have actually arrived. One thing we've learned for sure is that the winds are ever changing and can be very unpredictable.

The temperature is very pleasant in the mid 20's, both the sky and water are beautiful and's a good thing, since that's all we have to look at for the next several days. Everyone on board seems to be settling into the watch schedule and feeling more comfortable with the movement of the boat. Everything takes longer and requires much more effort. Today I was making sandwiches for lunch and I had to brace myself in the galley and had to chase the jar of mayo and the knife as they slid
all over the counter as the boat rolled. Sleep presents another challenge for us, we have lee cloths on the settee and the bunk bed but not in the fore and aft cabins where you have to work a little harder to be still. I actually think that I'm getting a workout while I sleep since my muscles have to work hard to keep me in one place instead of rolling all over....hmmm, maybe I'll create a fitness video and make millions....Bluewater Abs? Sailor's Six Pack? how about Trimming your Tummy While
Trimming the Sails? ....maybe not.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Almost ready to leave Mexico

Wow, I can't believe we've been in Mexico for four and a half months, time has flown by! We've been super busy the past 2 days provisioning for our crossing and beyond and washing the boat and getting everything put away for our time at sea. Muchas groceries y stuff!

I couldn't resist posting these next pictures....Gerrimae you'll be proud of me! We actually did this hike a few times during our visits to Puerto Escodido, but I only went to the top this once. The hike took us between 6 and 7 hours, including walking on the road and climbing over under and through the boulders. We had to crawl on our hands and knees under the huge boulders behind Jocelyn & Alanna and squeeze our way through the cracks under and behind them to get to the top. We had to use the flash on the picture of me climbing up the chimney because it was totally dark in there....the picture is taken looking straight DOWN!

Also, one last picture of the girls and their friends in La Paz. Thanks Bob for the great picture!

Goodbye Diesel!

Diesel flew home on Wednesday, it was a very tearful and sad day, we will miss him dreadfully.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Mexio Medical Mission-by Jocelyn

From left to right: Deanna, Jocelyn, Kris, Jonathan, Chuck, Jacey, Cara, Hannah, Don, Bert
on the ground: Alanna, Lindsay, Janessa and Barry is taking the picture

From March 18-25, our team of 14 worked with Mexico Medical Mission in Loreto doing different construction projects, hosting VBS (vacation bible school) programs and playing with the kids. I met the team at the airport in Loreto with Don, the leader of Mexico Medical Mission with his wife Lorainne. After a lots of hugs we headed out to motel Brenda where we got settled then we toured the town a bit.

For 3 days, we had a construction project. At Mar de Cristal, Jacey and Kris worked on building a bathroom while Lindsay, Deanna, Hannah, Janessa, Jonathan and I worked on raking sand, spreading gravel, covering the plumbing pipe, moving big rocks, pulling weeds, and picking up garbage. The other construction project was at Victorian Cristo. Alanna, Cara, Bert and Barry worked on painting the inside of the church. By the end of the 3 days, all the jobs were completed except the bathroom which was hard work.
After the construction project, we hosted a VBS program for the kids at Mar de Cristal. The first day there were 5 kids and each day grew in number. For VBS we played games like pato pato ganzo (duck duck goose) which the kids loved and a few others. Then we had a puppet show which Janessa, Kris and I did. After the puppet show we had some crafts for the kids to to, Lauren's spanish was great! We also had some songs to sing and at the very end, balloons which the kids went nuts for! They absolutely loved them!

One day, we went to the Migrant workers camp which is about an hour drive north of Loreto in San Juan. It was the hottest day yet! We stopped for lunch under the bridge which was the only shade of the day. We arrived at siesta time, so not many people were out when we got there so we set up and played soccer with the kids and fed the goats. We did our puppet show and had a dental clinic, eye chart and a few nurses, Heather and Nancy, who took blood preasure and some other things. We had a hot dog and soup dinner for everybody which was wonderful. After that, we played with the kids a bit more and then we were supposed to have a video presentation, but a dog peed on the equipment so we just ended the day with hanging out and coloring.

The last two days, we did some shopping in Loreto and went to the beach which was lots of fun!

We had all our meals at Don and Lorainne's house except for the meals where we ate out. Don and Lorainne are amazing! They are wonderful people who are listening to the call that God has given them and are really making a difference and touching lives in Loreto. I cannot thank them enough for all of their hospitality. This mission trip was an amazing experience and has definately changed me. I certainly appreciate the things that I have, and my family and a great deal more and am so greatful for the life that I have being born in Canada. We are so blessed to live in such a beautiful country. I would do this all over again in a heartbeat!

I would like to say a special thank you to everybody who supported me! I appreciate it so much! God Bless you all!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008


Jenny hosted 2 of her best buds aboard Malachi from March 18th to the 25th. The girls enjoyed loads of candy, laughter and fun. They did a tremendous 7 hour hike up the Steinbeck Canyon in Puerto Escondido and enjoyed snorkelling at Agua Verde and Isla Danzante. On top of all the adventurous fun, they all enjoyed a couple of great shopping days in Loreto.

The memories created while her friends were visiting will not soon be forgotten. Thanks Sarah and Nicole for spending your Spring Break in Mexico!