Frustrating is the word. In fact there are few other things you could put in front of frustrating to give frustrating a little more punch. Perfect wind, no wind, too much wind; big swell, flat as a pancake; sails up, sails down; eta to Biak 48 hours, eta 4 days; etc, etc. Since Kri Island it's not been great. Today we began to understand why we are making so little headway and it put our troubles into some perspective.
News of the terrible flooding in PNG just a few hundred miles to the east has reached us. It is the stale fag end of the weather system now slapping us about is the same one that battered Guam, the Marshall Islands and PNG destroying so many lives. The force of it has died away, but it's giving us rain, throwing up blustery little squalls followed by hours of doldrums and generally upsetting the traditional northwest monsoon winds we thought would push us easily east to PNG.
PNG is suffering and we'll have to wait and see what we find in the remote outlying islands we intend to visit. 1000s have been displaced and doubtless many lost their lives. A big push has begun to bring help to the more remote communities out in the islands of the Bismarck Archipelago. Certainly if we can lend a hand somewhere on our way through, we will, but at the moment we bob around in the Pacific powerless in the face of the elements.
- Matt Fletcher