On our last long passage from Panama to French Polynesia, we crossed the equator, which was a huge tick off the bucket list. Today, we got another tick as we sailed across the international date line.
For the briefest moment, Two Drifters became the Tardis, as we time-travelled ahead of French Polynesian time by 22 hours in a nano-second! Whooosssshhhhh.
In the middle of cooking bacon and eggs for brunch, Sunday was stopped in its tracks and it became Monday. It’s a very good thing we’re a dry boat on passage as, in a normal week, Skipper would have been rather miffed to miss his Sunday sundowner (mind you, so would I)!
So, instead of being 11 hours behind the UK, we’re now a trailblazing, 11 hours in front!
International Date Line Factoids…
The international date line is an imaginary line, running from the North Pole to the South Pole, which defines the boundary between one calendar day and the next. It passes through the middle of the Pacific Ocean at 180 degrees of longitude from the Prime Meridian, which cuts through Greenwich, England.
However, in the real world, the line zigzags around a few territories and borders to avoid cutting some countries in half and to keep them on the same time line as their main trading partners, which is the case for Fiji. So at 172 degrees, we passed the line between American Samoa - that affiliates the USA - and Samoa, that trades more with its Pacific partners like Australia and New Zealand.
While all of Fiji is considered west of the international date line, the 180-degree line actually passes directly through the islands of Rabi, Tavenui and Vanua Levu. And, as these are islands we’ll soon be visiting, I think we could have some fun bouncing between the past and the present, with a few Back To The Future moments!
In other news…the weather has been kinder to us, delivering us good wind, less sq ualls and, occasionally, better seas. It’s still rather bouncy at times, but we can cope with that. Mind you, the temperatures have dropped slightly and we’re having to wrap up warm on night shift. In the last few days, we’ve broken out the sweatshirts, fleeces and woolly hats to go with the wet-weather gear. Which means, we’re just one stop short of digging out the thermals. Yikes!!!
Total miles to SavuSavu, Fiji: 496
Date: Sunday 15 August & Monday 16 August
Sent from Iridium Mail & Web.