It has been very hectic these last few weeks and it will even get busier in the next few days before our planned departure on September 5.
First of all, we have been busy emptying the house, selling what we could and throwing everything that is not needed. It’s quite difficult to part with some things and Erwin and I do not always agree with each other as to what is needed or not. We also packed 11 boxes of personal belongings which we sent to Manila (my parents will be shocked when they see all those boxes). As of now, the house is almost empty and it feels like we are camping in our house since we do not have any furniture.
We are gathering everything we will need to take with us on the boat and the pile is getting bigger and bigger. It will certainly be a challenge to try and fit everything on the boat.
Erwin and I have 2 plastic storage boxes each for the clothes and the shoes we will take with us on our trip. How on earth do you fit all your clothes and shoes in 2 boxes!
I went to the grocery a few times to buy a year’s supply of provisions. The cashier probably thought I was buying food to feed a whole orphanage.
We will also take our left-over stock of the liquor cabinet with us. 30 red and 12 white wine, 6 Port, 7 Champagne, 6 Prosecco, 8 Whiskey, 2 Rum, Vodka, Gin, Tequila, Campari, Pastis, Amaretto, Frangelico and Sheridans. (Hope we won’t get arrested for smuggling)
We also have a few boxes which we labeled as “Gifts for the Chief” since it is customary in the remote islands of the Pacific to bring a gift for the Chief of the island . Bartering is still a common practice with the locals so we have items such as T-shirts, fish hooks, reading glasses, pencils, etc. which we will trade for fish, fruit and vegetables.
I have been planning our sailing route and have been gathering as much information I could find on the internet. Co and Carla Zwetsloot who have sailed around the world for 12 years on their boat “Lotus” have been a big help to us. We have learned a lot from their experiences and have received very useful information. We would also like to thank them for providing us with a luggage full of cruising and travel guides and charts.
Erwin has been checking, maintaining and making improvements to the boat so that it will be in tip top shape when we leave. He had a list of things to do like installing the radar, solar panels, navigational instruments, alarm, etc. Fortunately, a friend Ed Epskamp has been kind enough to offer Erwin help with the installation of the instruments. Since it will be more difficult to find parts for the boat during our trip, Erwin has been buying all the necesssary spare parts we need in case something breaks down.
So, at the moment it is quite stressful because there is still so much to do and there is so little time. We really look forward to that moment when we can cast off and just sit back and relax.