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Charm - Tonga 14

It’s a lovely calm night on the South Pacific as we close in on the “halfway around the world” point. We have probably already crossed it for ourselves since we traveled to the Eastern Mediterranean in Charm. But to make it clean, we will soon be crossing 180 degrees of longitude, which is definitely 180 degrees away from Valencia, Spain, where we started a couple of years ago.

We had a nice day today after recovering from the trauma of last night. Marin woke bright and cheery with both ears looking very good. We did look at some bits of Marin under the microscope but didn’t see anything too interesting.

The kids have been so disciplined with their school that I am giving them a day off tomorrow when they get to do whatever they want. Usually that means Cobin will be on some device all day and the girls will play with him for a while and then do other things. Today, after writing and math, we played a game with Legos where I gave them an object to build and the others had to guess what it was. Sort of like Pictionary but with Legos.

Tully made a horse and we eventually guessed it but then she said, “And now, what color?” If you’re going to imagine things, you might as well imagine everything, right? Cobin, Marin and I, with some helpful hints from Tully, (“It starts with blah “) guessed black and white and Tully decided it might actually be a zebra.

Cobin got to wear the hoodie we just had custom-made at a screen shop in Neiafu run by an American named Cindy. Since Niue, the weather has taken a delightful turn for the slightly cooler so we are no longer sweating through our sheets at night! It’s actually cool enough for light blankets and light jackets.

Cobin is also wearing the Air Tahiti hat he got as part of the swag for being on the winning team (Cruising Division) in the Tahiti Pearl Regatta. Cobin and some other young men raced on Nica and got some great monohull experience. I asked Cobin if they heeled on Nica. He said, “Yeah, it felt like I was going to fall into the water!” I asked him if he liked it and he said, “Yeah, it was fantastic!” I’m just fine with sailing flat but I’m glad Cobin got to experience a fast monohull racing team!

Last photo is of the cool whale statue we won at the prize giving in Tonga. We came in second in the race because of all the motoring we had to do when we dropped the main due to the wiggly mast (Joe tightened all the rigging and seems happy with it now). They only gave statues for first prize and both Joe and I were feeling sad because in the other races we have won so far, the prizes have been a deck of cards or a jar of honey or coasters. Nice, practical things to win but not a carved wooden statue.

So we were all pleased when they announced a category for “First over the start line” and we won it! Now we have a cool memento from the Kingdom of Tonga!

This is our first overnight watch with no extra crew on the World ARC. Joe and I are divvying up shifts and testing out the schedule for when we do longer passages. Most families just give up on school during overnight trips but that is usually when we get the most done because there are no other distractions. So Joe is taking 12 am to 6 am so I can sleep and teach school and Cobin, Marin and I are taking more shifts during the day so Joe can sleep then. I like to think of it as he is working nights and I am working days. The kids made lunch today to help out so it’s a team effort and going well.

Really nice sailing tonight! Full moon, good breeze on the stern quarter, calm seas and no sign of squalls. It usually changes as soon as I finish writing but maybe for once it will hold!


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