Can't quite believe it but 2 years ago today we left Falmouth in company with a certain German boat at the beginning of our voyage - and a great friendship. Our blog, from the day before we left, reads: "We met a really nice German couple in a beautiful 48 ft cutter called Stormvogel. They are doing the same as us and we compared passage plans. We'll set off at the same time so it'll be good to have another boat for company and photos, though their extra length should make them quicker than us (we'll see!). If your German is up to it, they have a really nice website www.wiedekamm.com "
As it turned out, Stormvogel and Maunie proved to be incredibly evenly matched for speed so we shared thousands of miles together; on the 3000 mile passage from Galapagos to the Marquesas we reckoned we were never more than about a mile and a half apart.
Peter and Heidi are currently in Indonesia and the warm weather appears to be making them dress a little strangely, as you'll see if you read their most recent blog post.
Anyway if you'd like a little trip down memory lane to see how it all began, our first 'going foreign' blog entry from the 31st August 2012 is here
Our next little adventure begins tomorrow as we leave Savusavu, as the wind calms down a little, towards Viti Levu, the biggest island to the west of here. We've planned some short passages and are considering the scarily-narrow passage inside the reef around the north side of Viti Levu - we have a new crew member joining us on the 10th September for a couple of weeks so we're heading to an anchorage that will be handy for the main airport at Nadi.
Meanwhile, Graham's spend the best part of today installing a wonderful, free navigation software package called Open CPN on the pc so that we have additional back-up for the main chart plotter. The great thing is that it's possible to download Google Earth images so we can overlay these onto the chart (just like GE on the net, but without needing to be online) which will be a big help in identifying the reefs. Actually, loading the charting software was fairly easy, but trying to get a little USB GPS receiver to talk to it has been problematic and Graham has been using some of his best words, usually reserved for boat maintenance in confined spaces. It's a battle that he has yet to win.