July 2006
We took a driving tour around the island of Tahiti and stopped at the Maraa Fern Grotto, which is a small pool in a cave.  It is quite large and is deep towards the back.  Tahitians believ
The next stop was the Vaipahi Falls, with Emma, Chris, Kelly, Claire, Phoebe and Drake.  We also went to the Guaguin Museum, which displayed a few of his orginals along with some copies. 
After the museum was the Arahoho Blowhole. It was nice, but we saw so many in Mexico, that we weren't very impressed.  Plus the surf was small.
There is a two wekk long festival called Heiva, where dancers, singers and athletes from different islands compete.  We went to one show, and saw two different troops;  each did three dances with different costumes.  It was fabulous.  The costumes were all handmade and very elaborate.
We went with other cruisers,  Chris and Kelly and Claire from Sensei,  Steve and Rene from Shiraz, Wil from Laulea and Giles from Petrel.   Each troop had their own musicians, which was just as fabulous.
These are the two different troops in their costumes.  Each night two troops compete, until the end when the winner is announce.
Blue Sky is anchored outside of Marina Taina.  Papeete is a wonderful stop over.  You can find everything here, which is good if your boat needs repairing.  There is a large grocery store, the first since leaving Mexico, which is wonderful.  We are seeing our friends whom we have not seen since Mexico.

Our neighbor took this photo, and you can see Jim in the dinghy looking for the pot of gold, unfortunately to no avail.
We are anchored about six miles away from downtown, and have to catch the local transportation, called Le Truck, to get into town.  In the evenings it is fun to eat at the Routlettes, food trailers that set up along the waterfront.  You can find everything from Pizza to Chow Mein, all at a reasonable price.
Above are some more boat kids.  Bottom row is Kilian from Verena, then Benjamin from Lawur, Drake, Isobel, Kilian's sister, then Sebastian, Benjamin's brother and Phoebe.  Verena is from Germany and Lawur is Austrian, but they have lived in Santa Cruz the past several years.  All the boys are in love with Phoebe, we are in trouble.
When we arrived in Papeete, we were having trouble starting the engine, we trouble shooted the problem, and found the starter had failed.  We contacted Perkins and they immediately shipped us a new one, under warranty.  It took exactly a week for us to receive it, pretty good for being in the South Pacific. After installing the starter we went to change the oil and found salt water in it, bummer.  That is how our first engine died. 
With the help of Peter from s/v Nymph and Lloyd (the engineer for the 115' yacht Beagle V), we managed to get the injectors out, when we spun the engine with them out, oil and salt water splattered all over the boat!  Well after 8 oil changes it all looks good, we were able to save the engine.  However, the motor still won't start at the control, and we have to jump it.  With the help from yet another friend, Wil on s/v Lauleia, we traced it down to a faulty relay.  We don't know if we can get one here, at least we can go around it if we can't

So our time in Papeete has been exciting, but we are ready to leave and will head to Moorea next, then Huahine and Bora Bora.