Tonga to New Zealand Passage – Day 2

Date: Friday, November 2nd 2018 Time: 23:00 UTC (12pm local) Location: 21° 28.78 ‘ S, 177° 47.23′ W COG: 275°T SOG: 4.5kts Distance to the New Zealand: 1062nm 24 hr Distance covered: 97 nm
Cameron Here, Last night was a quiet night. We lost all wind for about four hours and were forced to motor which the batteries enjoyed as our solar and wind wasn’t keeping up with constant 24 hour power usage. The wind kicked back in about 5am and we struggled to make our course of 230 degrees but at least we were moving. Banyan is a heavy boat weighing in at 20 tons and with me being a bit of a packrat and a preparedness freak she could be a little heavier.
I’ve been a bit of a packrat most of my life. There are certain things I’ve held on to for way too long. Part of this comes from my obsession with the six “P’s”. Prior, preparation and planning prevents poor performance. We used this acronym a lot when teaching sailing at OCSC in Berkeley, CA. If you’re not prepared when you sail out of that harbor in the summer with the winds cranking, then you’re just asking for trouble. Every year at least one and sometimes more vessels went on the rocks within meters of the harbor exit. Watch that lee shore folks, those rocks are harder than the ones on the upwind shore that you’ll get blown off of.
One item that had been with me now for 26 years were several packets of Mountain House Freeze Dried meals. The Spaghetti with Meat and Sauce advertised a “mouth-watering Italian style tomato sauce accompanied by tender pasta and accented with chunks of beef.” I purchased these “meals” in 1992 at an outdoors store in New Hampshire while on a road trip with Michael and Phil, two dear High School buddies. We were off to hike a part of the Appalachian Trail. Truth be told, I actually had about 5 of these “meals” when we departed San Francisco which were purchased on that same day. I had a smattering of flavors: Cuban Rice and Beans (not highly recommended), Spaghetti and Meat Balls (I’m only 50 points on that), Beef Stroganoff (actually pretty good), and sadly, Annie’ tossed the Sausages and Eggs before I could get to it.
Annie has threatened to throw these away annually since we got married in 2014 but when in California who can argue with your need for an “earthquake preparedness kit.” She tried to give them to my sister Kim when she hiked the PCT but Kim declined as she was making her own (smart girl). Annie said they were not leaving Mexico and I brought up the need for “liferaft food”. Don’t forget those six P’s I would tell her.
Like many fathers I don’t like seeing wasted food and while my wife can’t throw away my emergency rations, the NZ Customs Agents are not so understanding, especially when they contain “chunks of beef.” I decided it was time to start enjoying these well aged treats. It’s a pity our wine cellar is so far away as I’m sure there’s something in there which would have gone brilliantly with some of these treasures. I have to admit a couple of them were not up to the age and would have been better enjoyed with Mike and Phil on the trail. Oh well, they are now gone, Annie is happy once again and Banyan is a couple pounds lighter.
Now what to do with all those broken spare parts…


  1. JAMES N VAWTER says:

    I agree completely with you Cameron. I have two containers with 30 days of “Survival Food” (for 5 people), 30 gal of water and other supplies. I’ve seen too many people totally unprepared for emergencies.

  2. Douglas Vawter says:

    Thanks Cameron for not mentioning Gramps old tool shed or my garage! I’m sure this is a trait you originated. Wonder how many comments you will get about only being married for four years!!! Just a typing error —— think you meant 2004 and not 2014! Thanks for sharing your thoughts on preparation; we know it comes from your heart and it gives mom and I comfort knowing you sailed off with two of our grandchildren. Your beleif in the 6P’s has allowed you and your family to be safe and well prepared for this outstanding dream you are living. Sail on young man; Sail on!!!!

  3. Marianne McGriff says:

    Good morning, Banyon(Cameron and all!)
    I can’t begin to tell you how much I LOVE all the posts. Your 6 P’s fit right along with my being a “Teacher.” However, we do part ways on the Dehydrated Meals. I’m on Anne’s page, for sure! Please tell Adelaide and Isa that I can hardly wait to wrap my arms around them and embrace some outings together soon. Love to all, Marianne

  4. Erin Bernhardt says:

    Cameron, cameron…
    I can’t believe you’d kept those for so long. So glad you all abide by the preparation, though. Keep those girls safe and healthy!

    You all amaze me. Love to all.

  5. Debi says:

    Cameron I have to admit I’m a pack rat too! I try to purge, but then think, I may need that someday! . You must get it honestly! Love to all.. Aunt Debi

  6. Libbey McKendry says:

    Very cute post. Love the humor. I need to go through our earthquake emergency. I looked in it a few weeks ago and the jar of applesauce was a very dark brown. Probably still good but not very appetizing. Thank you for the daily posts!

  7. Gary Souza says:

    Hi guys! Yea I’ve got a few of those Mountain House meals on my boat too, but they’re only 15 years old. Good to know that they’ll still be “good” in 11 years… Be safe, stay warm. Hugs to all. Aloha, Gary

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