We “sailed” from Coconut Point to Cukuvu harbour in Yadua (prounounced Yandua). We had a little bit of wind in the beginning, but it died out and left us motoring in dead calm water. As the wind died, we got a chance to take a closeup of the damage to our genoa from the sail to Wallis. We also spent some time staring at pilot charts (average monthly winds) and the calendar, and concluding that there was no way we were going to make it to Indonesia this year.
Cukuvou is a really gorgeous setting. The bay stretches in a big wide arc, and a reef extends across the entrance from both the north and south, creating a calm and well-protected harbor. Writing this almost a month later, and having seen a lot more of Fiji, this is our favorite place so far. We think in theory we were supposed to go to the village three miles away to do sevusevu, but we didn’t see the trailhead… or another human being.
The flat seas on the way in reminded us of our trip across the Mona Passage, and we hoped we might be treated to an equally stellar sunset. The four of us headed out of the pass in Acushnet’s dinghy, hoping for an unblocked panorama… but the clouds settled over the sun and the colors never really popped. Still, it was nice watching the sunset out sort-of-at-sea. By the time we got back, Captain had already tired of the view and was passed out on the couch.
In the next morning’s calm we blew up the paddleboards and tried to take a paddle around the reef at the edge of shore. Acushnet, upwind of us, got a couple of shots of us approaching form their drone – thanks guys! Unfortunately, their new, only-used-once paddleboard exploded on their deck as they were setting up, so we gave them one of ours and shared our giant board. Then the wind picked up a few minutes into our paddle, which is even harder to manage riding tandem, so instead of making it all the way around the bay, we retreated to the back of Villa and played paddleboard games. Captain was invited, but for some reason didn’t want to join.
After some very dignified falls into the water, we cleaned up, regrouped, and Andrew, Ross, and Saskia went snorkeling. Jazz’s ear was improving but she was still not cleared to join, so she stayed home and cooked. So we all had dinner together, and then watched some Firefly over cups of hot chocolate.
We had intended to leave the next day, but the coral was so fantastically healthy that we decided to stay another day and tempt Jazz into the water early. She was supposed to wait ten days before getting her ear wet, and this was day eight, so she was nervous, and we started with a test snorkel. When she proved able to clear her ears free-diving, we whipped out the scuba gear for an afternoon dive. Other than her ear making some weird noises, she was able to descend and ascend just fine, which was cause for celebration. We ended the day with another Firefly night, and packed up the boat to leave the next morning. Dive photos separately because there are so many.