Saturday, November 10, 2007

Up to speed in Mentawai

Hello, Matthew here,
I know we haven't been able to reach you much lately but we have been very busy. In order of events, we saw the biggest lizard on earth, the komodo dragon, watched dolphins swimming at night in the phosphorescence, and seen the all mighty Krakatoa's son erupt. Tristan already told you about Krakatoa so I will tell you about the amazing dolphins swimming at night.
Mom went outside to throw some compost overboard when she heard a faint sound. She called us up to our surprise and we spotted a small pod of dolphins riding the bow. They are like amazing shooting stars from below! They move fast and swiftly leaving trails of sparkling water behind them. It was the most amazing dolphin experience we had seen at night. The most amazing ones we had seen by day were spinner dolphins way back in the Marquesas.
Right now we are moving from small island to small island in the Mentawai's. The Mentawai islands are very good surfing. Tristan, myself and the gang have had a lot of fun catching waves and getting pelted too. We haven't been able to have many bon fires in the short time we have been island hopping because it rains here a lot. Because of that we couldn't have one on Halloween. So instead, we did have a nice party on s/v Pelikaan and then a great sleep over on our boat for Tristan's birthday.

Hope you enjoyed this small up to speed mail, bye bye for now,

Thursday, July 26, 2007

The Crossing Continued

The winds have been good the entire time we have been out here. There has been 25 to 40 knots of wind and at times we are making 7.5 - 8 knots of speed. It is weird sometimes not being able to see land. We are not scared but sometimes get nervous when we hear large waves hit the side or creaking sounds from the lines. It is only about 6 more days until we get to Thursday Island. Then it will be another 3 days until we arrive in Darwin. Matthew and I have not played many games because when
we do we don't feel well. It is really rolly now and then. But other than that we are doing great.
We are making great progress and a couple of nights ago I had my first night shift with my Dad. When you are on night shift you keep your eye on the radar and watch out to make sure that you do not run into anything or anyone. You also make sure that the autopilot doesn't go out. Now and then you change you direction a couple of degrees depending on which way you want to go to stay on track and adjust the sails to help.
talk to you soon,

Thursday, July 19, 2007

From Vanuatu to Australia

We're sailing! Today we started our 10 day passage across the Coral Sea to Australia. So far we haven't done that much lately expect for preparing for the crossing. Finally today we left. By preparing we cooked up groceries for meals so we don't have to cook so much on the passage. We went to an internet place to help find out the weather for the next days. The weather in Vanuatu hasn't been to good. It has been raining a ton. But at least we were able to catch a lot of water for our tanks.
So far the first day of passage was pretty calm until we got out of the islands. Now it is a bit rolly. The average wind speed is 15 knots and we are going a good speed of 6 or 7 knots. None of have gotten sea sick and we are all feeling fine.


Monday, July 16, 2007

Dugongs and magic rocks

Lately our adventures have been about dugong's, which are like salt water manatees or sea cows, and magic rocks which the locals think have powers. When we were at Epi we learned about the dugong and how sometimes he came to the bay. They are supposed to be very friendly and come up to you to get their tummy rubbed. When we saw it from our boat it looked like a baby whale. It turns out that it has a whale tail and yet looks very different. We could see it so well that we hopped in the dinghy
and rowed over. We kept following it until we dove in to swim with it. We were able to see it well in the water and we kept following it as fast as we could. But we still couldn't keep up with it even though it looked like the laziest thing in the world. Then we left Epi and headed to Malakula. There are Magic rocks there that are supposed to make storms when you strike together make storms occur. The magic rocks are just Quarts and they actually make a blue flash when you strike them together.
Even though there wasn't a storm its till was very interesting how they made a spark.


Sunday, June 24, 2007

Kids blog

We have made it to Vaunatu and have explored the village. In the village we saw a yacht club that they have built for sailors. We saw a bunch of houses that are built above the ground on sticks. The houses are made out of palm fronds and sticks. They have very little metal. The next day we rested and did school for awhile, then played board games for the rest of the day. The next day was the most exiting day of all. While were doing school a local named Olsen came to our boat and told us all
about his culture. We learned a lot about the kind of fruits and vegetables like snake beans. In all of our travels we never saw anything like it. It was long and kind of skinny. It was also hollow and you tap it and hear a hollow sound. The Snake bean had a lot of seeds that were spread out all over and none of them were close to each other inside it. The seeds were strapped to the side with a spider web like substance.

When he finally left we drove the dingy in. When we got on shore we went to a birthday party that the locals had invited us to. A baby was having his first birthday and not knowing anything that's going on around him. We brought balloons that were all popped by the end of it. But either way they loved them while they lasted. I was glad to be able to show them how to use them how to use them. After the balloons we brought out six marbles and played with the kids with them. We also gave the baby a
toy car and then we left. We were on our way to the volcano. To get there we had to take a very bumpy truck up a rough road to the crater. There was volcanic ash every where and felt as soft as sand. The volcano was shooting out lava globs that did not even get to close but when you hear the thunder like sound it makes you jump and all your hair on your body stands up. Even when you try not to always jump when you here it. Then after the long day we went back to our boat to get some rest.


Friday, June 15, 2007

(no subject)

This week we went to a school at Malolo Island where they were having their world day. They had a competition with questions that we might have at our
school like what percent of the human body is water. But most of the questions were about their environment and resources. We would of stayed longer but the tide was going out and we had to go before the entrance got to shallow. The school looks a lot like our school but still there are a lot of differences for example they wear uniforms and the boys wear skirts.
We are out of Musket cove finally because we got the water maker membrane we were waiting for. We made it to Nadi on Viti Levu and were lucky to meet up with some old friends on White Swan who were glad to see us.


Monday, June 4, 2007

Still in Musket Cove...

We are still sitting here in Musket Cove. Today we are having a half day of school. We are going to shore today to spend the whole day there. We are thinking about bringing a picnic lunch. Either way, I am dying to do a bike ride. We have spent a lot of time on the boat lately and had a great week of school last week, so mom says we deserve a special day.
Last week we went snorkeling. Mom held all the bread in her hand. It all stayed clumped together and mom was really surprised. The fish swarmed her. A fish swam right in front of my goggles. He came in from the side and scared me. There were tons of fish, some a foot long. Some were an inch. The fish were all kinds of color white, black, red, orange, yellow, green, blue, violet... makes a rainbow bright. My favorite part was when the fish swarmed mom. We had a great time.
Bye bye for now,
P.S. We are eager to hear from you

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Musket Cove, Fiji


This week we arrived at Musket Cove. We were able to see some of our friends on Arctic Fox. There is a kid on Arctic Fox named Cameron who is 13. Once we saw him we all hopped in the dingy and went out to wake board. It was our first time on it ever. I was able to stand up on it on my third try. The Kelly's on Moorea were really good. The next day we went on shore to a swimming pool at a hotel. To get to a really good pool you have to cross a really long dirt strip where planes come racing
out from behind a mountain. In front of the landing strip is a sign that says look both ways and listen. When you got to the pool, there was a big slide that shot you into the water. There was a deeper pool over to the side where our parents were. Over there we played Marco Polo. Kelly girl kept cheating by tossing us at the person who was it. It was a lot of fun.

When we went to Lautoka there was a giant mound of wood chips on shore. You could smell their scent all the way back to the boat. While in Lautoka we went and saw a movie, Pirates of the Carribean III. the movie was good and the theater looks just like one at home. After that we left Lautoka and came back to Musket Cove. We took the dinghy over to a little sandy beach island in the middle of the water. The tide was coming in and the island soon would be under water. We set up our trainer kite
and flew it until there was no beach left. The trainer kite is for teaching you how to use the handle bars to fly for kite surfing.

Matthew and I will be taking turns each week to write to our blog. Keep a lookout for them.

Talk to you next time,

Wednesday, May 23, 2007


I just spent the last 5 days on Batiluva having great fun. Batiluva is a resort that parents can bring their children there for the weekend. We made anchor and I could only see about 2 houses. When we went on shore the next day they had two more houses and a lot more stuff than I had expected. It was rather clean and a nice beach. They have many comfortable hammocks and hammock chairs to my surprise. They are surrounded by forest of palm trees and there was a trail that led a 20 minute walk
to the village. I did not do the walk this time. Amazingly a small orange boat much smaller that ours carried all the stuff they had and all the stuff it took to build it onto that land.

While I was there I swam in nice cool water and kayaked around little coral heads. I also floated on inflatable rafts. Then I putted golf balls all around the main building of the resort. I threw noni fruits in the would because Sharon and Dan don't need them around on the ground because they make smelly puddles of muck when they get old.
Tristan and I helped Dan throw bamboo, palm branches and coconuts onto the fire to keep their grounds and beaches tidy. We made new friends, Ella and Billie, are 7 year old and 3 year old girls. They live in Fiji but are from New Zealand. I gave Ella golf lessons and Billie accidentally cut me. Billie liked to play with pillows and have pillow fights. We caught hermit crabs and had races. When the races were over my hermit crab was finally brave enough to come out and run faster than all of
them. When we were watching our movie we couldn't look after them at the same time so we put them in a cup. It was sort of cramped and I felt bad for them. They kept trying to climb on top of each other to get out. Poor little guys. In the end I through mine away, literally, I threw him back to the beach.

Lastly, we had a big buffet of dinner that was delicious. I ate more than absolutely everyone. We had spaghetti, the sauce was separate. I couldn't guess why. There was also spinach with bacon and a neat little cucumber salad with raisins and carrots. We had garlic bread with cheese on it, perfect. For dessert we had great Neopolitan ice cream.

Well, that is all I have to say about Batiluva. I will never forget it.
sincerely, Matthew

Saturday, May 19, 2007

On to Fiji

Leaving New Zealand was a little difficult because we knew we would miss a lot of things there. There was so much room to run and lots of places to play. We had good friends and places to scooter around. The day we set sail there was a lot of activity to be had. We played hide and seek tag, made a train of carts 5 long to ride in and had our final ice cream at the general store together. Most of our friends are going to sail the same path but a few are taking a different course and we hope to
venture over to them again soon. All of our friends came down to the end of the dock to see us off.

The crossing to Fiji was rough. The first few days of the crossing were very calm and we got to sit outside in the warm sunlight and read our books in the cockpit. The next few days we had very tiring rough weather. No one felt very good or got much sleep. The boat was rocking back and forth and we had to be careful not to let anything sit by itself or it slides with the swells. We put our drinks in squeeze water bottles and pass it around at dinner so that the drink doesn't fly around everywhere.
The wind and waves tossed and turned us like a baby's rattle.

After the storm, when it was really calm the main sail and head sail ripped at different times. My mom and dad took the main sail down and with Tristan's help they sewed it back together by hand for the next two days. It took us 8 days to reach Suva, Fiji. Suva is a big working city and is where there are lots of jobs for people. There is also a big shipping port. Every day huge ships come in and out. Matthew was surprised at what he saw. He thought it was dirtier than he expected. It is
very busy with a lot of busses and traffic. The people are very friendly and kind here.

The crossing to get here was worth it. We are excited to be in Fiji and get out to explore. We are finishing some jobs in Suva and then are going to go explore the outer islands on the west side. We are ready to go swimming and surfing again. The temperature here is 88F/30C and the water is 84 degrees F.
email us soon or write back to the blog,
Tristan and Matthew

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Kia Ora

Kia Ora or hello from New Zealand. This is going to be the new place where my brother and I can write down journal ideas from our sailing trip. We have just spent the last 6 months living in New Zealand. We are about to leave here and sail to Fiji when the weather is right. We have learned a lot about New Zealand while we are here and have seen some really great stuff. We will try to write a lot about these things for you to read here.