We spent a couple of days in Noumea, the capital of New Caledonia. After clearing in we caught up with the crew of Ambler II, an Australian boat that had departed at the same time as us from Vanuatu and we had sailed together in an informal convoy. It turns out that on-board Ambler II is a lady called Jo who Nicki had previously met in Tonga in 2001.
We had some yellow fin sashimi and and Mahi Mahi for dinner, joined also by Vincent (another friend of Nickis who lives in New Caledonia) and Ian (a long time friend of Nickis, Ian is an Irishman who lived in Wellington and has been living onboard his boat in New Caledonia for the past couple of years)
Vincent took us to his man cave/sail loft (which contained an envious array of toys…..), at the back of his cave was his brewery!
Vincent kindly shared some of his excellent home brew with us, paired with some Vanuatan "Tusker" beer, Irish and Scotch whiskey, plus a drop of port.
To demonstrate her cultural sensitivity, Jaime experienced TimTam slammers - this is where you bite opposing corners off your chocolate biscuit, suck your port through the biscuit and then eat the port laden biscuit.
Somebody must have told the French navy that we were coming to town and they sent a ship out to greet us!
The following day we loaded up on fresh baguettes, pain chocolate, croissants and a selection of french pastries from the local bakery - lots of the weight lost on passages now being regained….