Monday, August 11, 2008

Pago Pago

August 11, 2008--We have been in Pago Pago for 5 days now. Because the alternator that we ordered did not work, Steve tracked down a rebuilt alternator--guaranteed for 30 days--and installed it. It did not work. Our luck is not improving. As a last resort, he took the repaired alternator that was fixed in Raiatea and repaired the wiring problem for the third time. It worked! He didn't want to depend on it, however, so he ordered another brand new that should be here by the end of the week.

We have been busy packing up shells, books, and my souvenirs from Penrhyn to mail home. We can mail by domestic mail from American Samoa, so the shipping is very reasonable. I was able to get my hair cut, but my definition of short and the hairdresser's definition were very different. Steve is calling me Shanade now. At least it will last me until I get to New Zealand.

At least everything is reasonably priced here. We found wonderful sweet rolls for 75 cents. The laundry is $1 a load for wash or dry. That beats $10 a load in French Polynesia. There is a Cost U Less here that is much like COSTCO but not as big. Unfortunately, it is half way around the island from the anchorage so it is a major undertaking to bring things back. The buses are $1 anywhere you go, but they are small. We were bringing some stuff back from Cost U Less on Saturday, and it was everything we could do to get two of us plus our goods on one seat. We will probably take a taxi back on our next trip.

This is actually a very beautiful island--one of the prettiest we have seen. The harbor, unfortunately, is a commercial harbor. There is a tuna cannery across the way from us. We have had just two times that we could smell the fish, but it didn't last very long. The water is not the cleanest. The wind also blows from 15 to 25 knots in the anchorage all the time. Yesterday a boat that was anchored next to us began to drag their anchor. The owners were not on board, so Chris on sv Wind Dancer picked Steve up, and they went on board to try to re-anchor the boat. The owner then showed up and took over. It was an exciting afternoon. The good thing about a lot of wind is that we get a lot of power from our wind generator.

We will probably be here for another five days or so, and I do plan to post pictures at the end of the week. We were able to pay $15 for a month's worth of Internet service, and since the wi-fi tower is right across the bay from us, we get a very good signal on the boat. We are even able to make Skype calls from the boat, which is very nice.

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