Wednesday, July 18, 2007

July 15, 2007 - Ahe

This place cracks me up. Here we are, on this remote atoll, and we've got jet skis whizzing by the boat, there are ATV's and huge new pickup trucks running around the town, and the teenagers have a mobile speaker cart that they wheel out to pump out music whenever they are hanging out on the town pier. I don't mind the euro pop, but Celiene Dion has got to go. The money for all these toys comes from the black pearls that are raised in the lagoon.
Last night some young guys came by to trade with us. They really wanted whiskey. Unfortunately, the open bottle of Seagram's Seven from our friend Pete's 7 and 7 phase was the only one we had on board. They didn't seem to mind that it was open or less than full.

We made a mistake preparing for the trading here - other than the supply of booze for our personal use (it would take a very nice pearl to wedge either of our two remaining bottles of tequila from my grasp), we only had about 9 bottles of rum aboard when we left Panama. If we were to do this again we would bring more booze and more variety - vodka and whiskey are more desirable here than rum, probably because everyone brings rum.

Sten spent today working on our main engine. Ever since March the engine hasn't wanted to turn on unless we first fire up the generator and juice up the batteries. Not only is this inconvenient, it is a safety issue as well. Lately we've been finding ourselves anchored either on a lee shore, or with reefs just off our stern. If the anchor drags, we have to be able to turn on the engine and get the boat away from the danger, otherwise we may find ourselves aground. Tomorrow we are going to snorkel on the wreck of a sailboat that dragged into a coral field and sank, just a few weeks ago.

Back to our engine: Sten thought it was a starter issue, so he replaced the starter motor. But that didn't solve the problem. So he reterminated three secondary electrical connections. That didn't do it either. Then he tested the new terminals, and discovered that one of them had low voltage. So he worked on the connectors on the back of the engine panel in the cockpit, and voila! We have an engine that starts with just the flip of a switch.

No comments: