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Cyclops Marine 2020 - LEADERBOARD

OCC Report from the Fiji

by Kath McNulty & Franco Ferrero 28 May 02:12 UTC
Caernarfon, North Wales © Ocean Cruising Club

When health gets in the way of cruising plans, cruisers make adjustments, as most cruising plans are written in the sand below the high water mark. Kath and Franco return to Caernarfon, North Wales.

Savu-Savu lay within sight, at the end of the bay. We still had to carefully navigate a large submerged coral reef before we could tie up to a yacht club mooring and relax. We loved Fiji from the minute the government officials stepped on board, they were fun and friendly, a stark contrast to our experience in Tonga.

A few days after we arrived, Franco started to feel unwell - fever, chest pains, lack of concentration. A blood test revealed that he had dengue. He took it easy for a few days until he felt well enough to sail east, our aim was to cruise the Lau group. Vanua Balavu and in particular the 'Bay of Islands' was stunningly beautiful, and is one of my favourite places.

Unfortunately Franco's health worsened and we decided he needed medical help. We sailed overnight to Suva, the capital. Here, Franco was well looked after but the complications of his illness were taking a long time to heal. Cyclone season was fast approaching and we had to make some decisions. Franco couldn't sail and couldn't look after himself alone on shore. Sunny (who looks after The Yacht Shop moorings) offered to take care of Caramor while we flew back to the UK. Franco went to stay with his daughter and a couple of weeks later I flew back to Fiji. David Berg (Mary (our PO in Whangarei)'s husband) joined me and we sailed/motored back to New Zealand where Caramor now has a prime spot at Riverside Drive.

We are weathering Storm Corona from a small house in Caernarfon, Caramor's home port. Franco is nearly well again and I have an excellent job with Natural Resources Wales (the successor body to the Forestry Commission). Our plan is to rejoin Caramor in a couple of years. I would like to thank Curtis and Julie of s/v Manna and Sunny (of The Yacht Shop) for the incredible support they gave us while we were in Fiji.

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