31 Aug Papeete, Tahiti and the Passage to Raiatea – August 25-31, 2002
We spent most of the week in Papeete after Shari left, cleaning Starr and provisioning for the remainder of the trip to New Zealand. We wash down the outside of the boat with vinegar to get rid of the buildup of salt; I polish the stainless, wash windows and clean and don fixes things that broke during our passage, removed the anchor windless check valve, changed oil on both of the generators, fixed the antenna on the mast and cleaned the water intake screens and cleaned filters. We squeeze Starr, stern to, between a couple of big boats and fill up with diesel. For fun we paddle our canoes.
We are pleased to discover that our friends that we met in Tahanea, Carl, Karen and Rebecca on Enchante and Clive and Jean on Hannnakin, are at anchor close by. I spend a day messing about downtown Papeete with Karen and Jean and come home with a bag full of fresh fruit and veggies from the Papeete Market. One evening we all go into town and eat at the roulettes, the mobil kitchens that park at the main wharf downtown during the evening and serve fast food. I have “galette popeye” (a special type of crepe), cidre and waffle with chocolate, almonds, Chantilly cream and ice cream for desert. Yummy! We have been in and out of Tahiti many times now, as we travel back and forth to Seattle and have made many friends. We say “hello and good-bye” to Pascal from Tahiti Ocean and Constance who manages Marina Tahina, as this will be our last time in Papeete for awhile.
The highlight of this visit to Papeete is meeting new friends, Daniel and Deanna de Marigny, who are friends of Thom and Karen Hamilton back home in Seattle. Thom told us to be sure and look them up, so after several phone calls we finally connect and they kindly invite us to their home for lunch. Deanna is an American from California and Daniel is originally from Mauritius, a French island off of the coast of Africa. They have lived in Papeete for 22 years. Daniel and his brothers import food, wine, pharmaceuticals, etc. and are shipping agents. Deanna is a painter and also creates and builds stained glass windows for most of the churches in French Polynesia. They have 3 boys, ages 24, 21 and 17; the two oldest are at school in France. We have a wonderful time at their home at the “top of the world” on the hill above Marina Tahina. After lunch they come down and visit Starr. This is what travel is all about; making new friends. Thank you Thom and Karen for the introduction.
Our day with Daniel and Deanna is out last in Papeete. We stop and Carrofours, the wonderful, huge French grocery store and prepare Starr to leave. We cruise down the lagoon to the main entrance, passing many canoes out paddling, working out in training for the big canoe races yet to come and exit the main pass by 1800 for out night passage to Raiatea.