Vaiare Bay, Mo'orea

Discovering the Beauty of Lockdown

Sugar Shack enters confinement / lockdown in Mo’orea with Wayne and Deborah on board.  Not an ideal situation for visiting guests, but we make the best of it.  Deborah has never been on Sugar Shack and we are determined to show her a good time.

Matt met Deborah at Maxserve in the 90’s (yep, well over 30 years ago and she still hangs around).  I have had the pleasure of knowing her for about 20 years and was really looking forward to sharing our sea life with her.

Deborah

Deborah

There’s a lot of gray area around the lockdown rules.  The government stated that no inter island travel was allowed.  Which sucked as we had planned on sailing Deborah and Wayne to the Leeward islands.  The government (DPAM) stated “no leisure travel.”   However, there was no clear law or rule about moving around to other anchorages within the island you were currently anchored at.  Several cruisers wrote to the local authorities and everyone got mixed messages.  One government group (police municipale) said yes, you have to move around to adhere to the local anchoring laws. Whereas DPAM (another government department) said “no moving period.” Who do you believe?

Some anchorages in Mo’orea (where we were located) have anchoring restrictions.  Some places you can only anchor for 1 week and some for only 48 hours.  These regulations were created by a different organization than the one running the confinement.  So, two groups trying to instill their version of the law and we are caught in the middle.  We decided to move to a different anchorage to give Deborah and Wayne a change of scenery.  I mean, if we are going to be stuck on the boat, at least we can do is change the view, right?

We started in Opunohu Bay and moved to the Tiki anchorage closer to the reef.

What do you do on a 47’ boat 24/7?

Lucky for us, both Deborah and Wayne are super easy going and flexible.  We chatted a lot, shared tall stories, laid out in the sun, and swam.  We read, played a lot of games (Cards Against Humanity, Gin, Poker, Racko, Dominoes), watched a movie or two and went to shore to stretch our legs during our allotted time.

Fly a Kite.  Matt found one kite in the water and tried to fly it despite the fact that it was missing a rod.  He then got out another smaller kite and flew it off the back of the boat.

Work out:  Deborah and I worked out in the mornings with some stretching, crunches, squats, and wrist weights.  After all, you have to stay in shape during lockdown, right?

Some reading….

Played on the dinghy.

Pearl Shopping

A friend of mine, who runs a small pearl farm, provides me with imperfect pearls.  I try to sell them to other cruisers to help my friend and to make the recipients happy.  They get cheap pearls and all the money goes back to the pearl farmer. 

It was great fun educating Deborah on the life cycle of the oyster and its pearl.  She found some real gems.

The Tiki anchorage is not a bad place to be during lockdown.  The views are beautiful as are the sunsets.

Lockdown view

Lockdown view

Excursion on Shore

We decided to make use of our 1-hour exercise allotment and headed to shore.  We have visited here before and had no problem using this old basin to access the village, but this time we were thwarted by a locked gate. So, we just enjoyed the entire basin grounds to ourselves.

No worries, we found plenty to entertain ourselves.  Deborah at the welcome sign and departure sign.  We also found some cool art work on the walls: a giant gecko and octopus.

Deborah so badly wanted to reach the palm tree…try as she might, she wasn’t nearly tall enough.

We had a lot of lounging around on the “lido deck”

The Underwater Tiki Anchorage

We couldn’t anchor at the tiki anchorage without stopping at the underwater tiki garden.  Now technically, we are not supposed to be snorkeling.  The locals can’t snorkel and do watersports so they ask that cruisers don’t do it either.  But we were in a remote anchorage, far from shore with little traffic and we used it as our one hour of exercise.  I know, excuses, excuses, excuses.

Snorkeling was a first for Deborah.  We had a rough start, but that was because the mask did not fit her properly.  After switching masks, she did rather well for a first timer.  It can be scary learning how to breath under water. 

Wayne and I swam out to the underwater tiki garden.  Matt took Deborah by dinghy and helped her with her gear.  She jumped in and swam around like a Rockstar.

We found all 7 sunken tikis along with several fish and little coral gardens.

We headed back to the boat to enjoy some water time.

Dolphins and Whales

We got so lucky!  One calm day we were able to spy some whales just outside the pass.  We jumped in the dinghy and went out to meet them.  A large pod of dolphins enjoyed surfing the waves too.

Then the humpback whales came out to play.  It appeared to be a momma and baby and another large adult.  They were amaze balls! 

Some random photo ops during lockdown:

Sunrise over Tahiti from Mo'orea

Sunrise over Tahiti from Mo’orea

Crazy Fun Photos

Definitely not the holiday we had envisioned for Deborah.  But hopefully she had a good time.

Coming up next we visit an underwater sanctuary.  In our last blog, we welcome Wayne onboard Sugar Shack and get one day to play before confinement.

Events from this blog post occurred during the third week of August, 2021.  Our blog posts run 10-12 weeks behind our adventures.

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