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Monday, September 8, 2008

Niue – Sept 4 – 8th, 2008

We have adopted a temporary crew member, Ryan our friend who was crewing with Syren.  Apparently Joe was ready for a change so he booted his crew today.  We felt somewhat responsible for Ryan's being out here so we told him he had a place with us until he can find another crew opportunity.  At the least he will sail with us to Tonga.  After that we will take it one day at a time. 

We have had so many incredible, interesting and new experiences here in Niue.  We went to Bingo one night at the Pacific Bar – wow!  There must've been over a hundred locals playing SERIOUS bingo!  You do not talk, whisper or move during a game, the guy calling the numbers spewed them rapid-fire and there was no going back if you missed one – definitely no whispering to your neighbor, "What was that #?"  The prizes were serious as well.  For $10.00 NZ, you get a 10 game card.  Several of us cruisers played and some won prizes.  Andy from Spectacle won a very large hand-woven basket full of food – whole chickens, lamb meat, corned beef, local vegetables, canned foods, and more.  Jenny from Malachi won a whole tuna!  We took pictures which will be posted to our site.  Afterward we had our choice of fish & chips (for either a $% or $10 plate), or chicken curry with rice ($7).  Not bad for dinner prices.

 On Friday three boats (Destiny, Timella, Spectacle), of us got together to rent a very large van for the tour around the island.  This island had some incredible geographical points of interest, including chasms, arches, caves and beautiful inland beaches that formed sometime during floods I guess.  The history of Niue is actually a charming tale: "NIUE the name is derived from "Niu" a Polynesian word for coconut, and "E!" which is Polynesian for behold!  The first inhabitants are thought to have arrived one thousand years ago and were delighted to find coconut trees growing here as they had been in their ancestral homes.  So, "Niue" literally translated could have been…"Hey, look guys, this place has coconut trees as well!"  That is the story we copied from the Niue guide.  Niue is 259 sq. kms; approximately 21 km long by 18 km wide, with a 64 km road that goes around the island.  We have been captivated by her land and her people.  And her food! We tried to take as many pictures as possible and hope to do the Niueans justice.

 Today is Monday – departure day.  We have heavy hearts as we prepare to leave for Tonga.  Frank and I are happy to have Ryan aboard to help us with not only handling and watches, but I have a personal dishwasher – yay!  Ryan agreed to wash all the dishes as long as he doesn't have to cook.  We look forward to our next adventure in Tonga.  Many of our friends are headed there or have arrived there already – Imagine, Syren, Morning Light, Bebe, Malachi, Estrellita and our friend, Mike Miller's daughter Amber, who is there with her boyfriend a delivery captain.  We hear the prices are extremely reasonable, for instance a $5.00 steak dinner is waiting for us!

 We will cross the international dateline thus losing a day just before we reach Tonga.  We will leave on Monday for a 2 day crossing, arriving on Thursday.  Hopefully we will have internet there.  We will
while at sea: (note:the sender must include the character sequence "//WL2K" in the subject line of the message.)
Skype ID: frank.barb.gladney

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