May 28

This morning we heard from Gavin on Soersce that diesel fuel is indeed available at the village! This is great news as I have been somewhat anxious since we consumed a great deal of our fuel just getting here. I emptied my 3 jugs (6US gallons each) into tank #1 and lent them to Gavin so he can ferry fuel to his boat. When he is done I will borrow his to allow me to make fewer trips. I think I will get about 60 gallons which, with 5 jugs of 6 gallons each, will take me 2 trips, plus a third trip to refill the 3 empty jugs to store on deck as usual for emergency reserves. A total of 78 gallons at $2.89 a gallon comes to a whopping $225 US dollars. It may be expensive but it is crucial to our existence. From diesel fuel we not only propel the boat when there is no wind but we also make electricity with which we can make water, keep our freezer cold, operate the computer, the washing machine (when it is working which it is not now) and operate a variety of other electronics and appliances. Diesel fuel surely is the staff of life for a cruising boat!

After I am done ferrying diesel back and forth I am going to try to investigate the washing machine failure. So far I have only checked that it is indeed getting power, but that is all I have been able to determine without taking apart the furniture which prevents me from examining the back of the machine. I am hoping that I will find a loose connection back there, some foreign object lodged in the pump perhaps, or some other easily rectified problem. But in truth my confidence is not high. Kate has been especially devastated by its failure as we have come to rely upon the fact that we have an ample supply of clean clothes, sheets and towels.

This afternoon I had Tom from Etak over to take a look at the washer with me. Unfortunately we came up dry - no solution. So I guess we will learn to live without it, at least for a while. I have a feeling it will not be possible to repair it along the way, even in Tahiti. If I pull it out of the boat (no small task) in Papeete and try to bring it to a local appliance repair shop and then they say they cannot fix it there will not be time to have a new one shipped to Tahiti since we don't want to stay there very long. I suppose we could wait till Papeete and hope it can be fixed, and if not have a new one shipped to American Samoa. We will think about it in the next few days.

Meanwhile, the S/V Attitude (of London) has arrived today with Jonathan, Claire, Hanna, William and Nick (their tutor and crew dog) aboard and tomorrow we will go diving outside the reef with them. I am expecting a spectacular dive! But for now, I need some sleep so I'll sign off and see you all another day!