January 22

Here we are in the outer atolls finally. Lovely, beautiful. We have been here for several days. It was only an overnight from Majuro. We were delayed in Majuro due to a severe case of strep throat that Jordan got. We had problems with our dingy which is serious when you are a yachtie - equivalent to the family car being on the blink. We finally decided to order a new one and it will arrive next month by ship. It was expensive but necessary as it was becoming difficult and unsafe to go any place except very close. We have upgraded to a RIB (rigid fiberglass floor with inflatable pontoons) and a 15 HP engine. It will be heavier and more difficult to store and launch but we will be able to go faster, stay drier and carry more gear.Diving sites will be easier to get to and remote places will be more accessible in general.

Unfortunately today it is raining and we won't be diving. This atoll was a Japanese Air Base in WWII and there is a ship wreck about 500 feet from our boat. On shore there is an old airstrip with old planes. We are here with several boats we know which is kind of pleasant.

We have talked about staying another year in the Pacific but in addition we are eager to see other places. It has been a slightly disappointing mix of bad weather, boat repairs and dingy trouble which has prevented us from diving. Al thought if we had been more aggressive we might have done some diving around Majuro. All in all it has been interesting to see this part of the Pacific - very different and rich in sea life. It's really amazing to even snorkel as the variety and number of fish is great.

Jonah is having fun although he has a persistent heat rash on his neck. The temperature is around 95F constantly and we all sweat profusely. I am glad to be out in the outer atolls where swimming and snorkeling (and diving) is a more regular thing.

Jordan is making bread right now and is very upset that his new food processor is not as powerful as the old one and seems to have difficulty kneading bread.