Captain's Blog 4/6/2016
We are happy to be back in Tonga! To bring you up to date…. It has been now four months since we left Sea Angel in Neifu Va’vau, Tonga on our way back to America. Karen flew a direct flight back, or as direct as possible from here, Nukalofa, Fiji, LA, Charlotte, Wilmington, which took her a mere three days. My dear friend Mike Bartz flew out to Neifu and helped with the last rotation, preparing the boat for the summer cyclone season, then we enjoyed a 10 day road trip together through New Zealand before flying back for Thanksgiving. One thing that struck both Karen and I was how different it felt to be back home after having spent so long in the South Pacific Islands. Both of us felt a kind of “shock” in our returning home to the “land of plenty”. Being back in Tonga is very pleasantly simple. We spent a long 10 days with the boat in the yard taking care of maintenance, putting it back together again, and cleaning. We had the pleasure of staying in a wonderful little cottage on the water during this time so we could relax a bit in the evenings. We are now back in the harbor at Neifu and have our first volunteers (Hanna, James, and Sam) aboard for rotation 1. Unfortunately, Tonga has been under a late season cyclone alert and the weather has been downright miserable! Today seems to have been the worst of it, with the strong winds that have backed around from the typical SE to the N, then West, squally, rainy, and with large confused seas. A second low has developed into a cyclone, now classed as a category 3 which is currently approaching Fiji. It is projected to weaken substantially before passing over us but it is keeping me anxious. We have been staying put in the main harbor with the volunteers helping out at the main hospital in the mornings. Needless to say we are all getting a bit of cabin fever, and all of us want to get out to the villages! We will keep you posted.