Pickinnies, Pickinnies…….Old and Young

At my daughter Kate and Jackson’s wedding last year, I gave them a gift certificate to visit Logic this year. We were now at the time when they cashed their certificate in.

I had been looking forward to them flying in for months.

Initially we were planning on them flying in to Luganville, to sail down to Port Vila, but on second thoughts that was against the prevailing trade winds, so it was decided that that would fly into Lamen Bay on Epi, two thirds of the way there. It was a good thing that we did as over 75% of the time they were here, the wind was over 20kts from the direction we needed to go. It was a slog for me to get there on time, with gusts of over 40kts, anchored off Rannon on Ambrym on my way south to Epi.

The day had arrived for their flight to arrive.The airfield was a strip of grass beside the water.

Then in Ni-Vanu custom it was into the back of ute for the run to Albert,for the run out to Logic.PED and Jackson, spend the afternoon playing with the pickininies ashore.

I had taken in a bag of frozen Dog Toothed Tuna for Joshua and his mother (who run a guesthouse and restaurant), to cook for our dinner.Kava works best when drunk on an empty stomach, so of course we had to drink 3 shells before dinner.

There is some debate as to what actually was the cause of Kate vomiting all night and morning. She was far from well in the morning, defintley needing of get off the boat, which was rocking in the 20-25kts winds, so we took her ashore to sleep under a tree.She spent the night in one of Joshua’s Bungalows. Kate slept, while Jackson and I had dinner at Benni and Kenneth’s. Kate was well enough the next morning to go to Lamen Island for a wedding.

When we got there everyone was preparing the laplaps for the post wedding feasting.Laplap leaves over the top.Kenneth talked us though was was going on.Then heated stones over the top.

(a far more time and labour consuming way of cooking that us westerners do)

Then it was time for the wedding.

Everywhere the Bride and Groom went this musical procession lead the way, followed by the floral arch. 


The father of the bride doing what Harry and I did last year. He was the Vanuatu National Minister for Sports and Youth.

Then it was time for the eating.The next morning was snorkeling the coral time.

While I went ashore to invite people out to an afternoon of videos and popcorn on Logic.

PED and Jackson, got as much enjoyment from having Ni-Vanu pickininies onboard as I do.

Chief WillieIt would not be the Vanuatu I know if we did not get given a heap of food from their gardens. (the capsicums, tomatoes and beans are in the fridge).

A trip ashore to get some bread (baked in ovens made from 200lt drums)

There was a 2 day weather window of 15-20kts, with enough east in it to sail south to Nguna (nu-na, the g is silent), so reluctantly we left Lamen Bay at dawn on Sunday.

There was no wind as we motored down the lee side of Epi.

But it most certainly was pushing us along at a good rate as we went past Emae.

To anchor off the low area between 2 substantial mountains. Then into Albert, to go ashore and meet Chief Shim (and his granddaugher Stephanie)PED and Jackson, arranged with Shim to be guided up to the top of the big moutain on the right the next day. A 10km round trip.The satellite view of the anchorage and the mountains,and the photo from the drone.Up they went,

with Shim’s 3 dogs.

For a great view down at Logic from the summit.My knees would have not enjoyed the walk down.When they came down I put up the drone and chased the pickininies around the playground with it.

One last photo with pickininies in it, for this year’s cruising season.There was still time for Jackson and I to get in a snorkel on the reef surrounding the boat.

The weather forecast was 25kts from Wednesday onwards. With the wind funneling bertween those 2 hills, this was not the place to be in 2 days time.

The protected anchorages on the NorthWestern side of Efate, Havanah Harbour, are in quarantine due to an invasion of the Coconut Rhinoceros Beetle (a new pest, that has the potential to kill off all the coconut palms in Vanuatu), so we could not anchor out the blow there. Forcing us to sail around to Port Vila on the Tuesday (5 days earlier than I was hoping to). Unfortuantely the itinenary of a South Seas Vagabond is very much weather dependant.

The 2019 Vanuatu Cruising for Logic is now at an end. I did have a feelng of sadness as I sailed past Santo, then Penticost, then Malekula, then Ambrym, and then Epi, for the last time this year, with all their associated memeories. No more chasing pickinnies with the drone, no more drinking kava with the villagers, no more a lot of things that I have enjoyed over the last 5 months………….. Next Year.