Sunday Morning we start our voyage towards Tahiti, where we arrive at 16h and tie up at the city pier. Today it’s Sunday program: dinner at the Roulott’s in the harbour and afterwards we take the kids to a childrens’s movie at the cinema – who knows where we will find the next cinema ?
Monday is work day: Gui, me and the kids march towards Fare Ute, Gui continues to the customs where she will negotiate the ‘Papeetisation’: If a ship changes owners here in french Polynesia, 26% of the value of the vessel have to be paid as a tax. But the Rancho Relaxo couldn’t be sold and we will give her as a present. Thanks to the persuasion of Gui and a very helpful agent we can lower the Papeetisation to next to nothing. It would be totally in Moitessier’s sense: We were extremely lucky when we had our crash landing and thanks to the help of so many friends and our families we got a second chance. Now we help somebody else and give our old ship without anything in return.
In the meantime I walk in that order to: ACE hardware 1, ACE hardware 2, dive shop, tool shop, Nautisport, Yamaha dealer, Sing Tun Hing Marine. At noon we meet for lunch as most shops and offices are closed. Afterwards we again visit: ACE1, ACE2, Nautisport, Sing Tun Hing, steel shop, AS Systems, Ocean 2000 und fully packed we get back to the ship. That’s really something. Marching the whole day in tropical heat with two children through the town without the little ones complaining even once ! At the ship we unload everything, put the new shortwave antenna on deck and only minutes later we’re on our way south towards the Taina Marina.
Tuesday, early in the morning I bring Gui ashore where she continues her oddysee: Papeete again to deliver papers to the agent, later to pick up my new sunglasses then all the way down to Taravao in the south of Tahiti where she orders new mast steps for the Suvarov, then to pick up seeds and two seedlings of the ‘Magic Tree’. In the mean time Christoph the new owner of the Rancho arrives and we show him the Rancho and start working. We have to repair the bilge pumps, replace the leaking stuffing box, check the fuel, start the engine, repair the steering and the kerosene stove and bend the sprayhood back to it’s original shape. We install a spare anchor at the bow and clear the deck, etc. At 18h the Rancho is ready and we’re all wrecked. We meet ashore to have a shower and a beer and call it a day.
Wednesday morning, Gui again travels to Papeete to finally pick up the fabrics for Coquito, while I get the Suvarov ready to leave and Christoph removes ten months worth of mussels and green stuff from the hull of the Rancho. At ten in the morning Gui arrives and we meet at the gas station where we get 120 liters of Diesel, Christoph brings the bottom part of Rancho’s old Mast on bord and we store about 50kg of fabrics. We set back out into the mooring field where we go alongside the Rancho and fill her tank with 20l Diesel and put the kayak on bord so Christoph has something that floats – just in case. At noon we’re ready and travel through the lagoon towards Papeete, followed by the Rancho. Christoph is at the steering and smiles like a child at christmas as we exit through the pass and find ourselves out on the Pacific again. For once the weather report was correct and indeed we have no wind and nearly no swell. We run under engine with five knots towards Moorea, the Rancho always 100m behind us. As we start dreaming of Tonga and Fiji and can’t think how it could get any better, a huge whale jumps out of the water just 200m in front of us ! Seconds later a younger whale follows and splashes back into the sea. We stand at the bow, shout ‘Uuuuh !!’ and ‘Aaaah !’, while we slowly pass the whales. What a crazy day ! Soon later two other whales follow us a bit towards the Cook’s Bay. At 16h we enter the Opunohu Bay and find ourselves surprised how much we think of this anchorage as our ‘home’ now. We throw the anchor while the Rancho is tied to the mooring that was prepard for her right in front of Christoph’s house.
The next months he will slowly restore the Rancho to her old beauty. And as both he and his wife are sailors the chances are quite good that soon the Rancho Relaxo of the Seas will set out for another amazing journey. Oh, wow. We’re sooo happy !!