Posted by: Carol | January 13, 2011

Still Waiting…

It’s coming up on noon Friday here in Noumea.  I’m sitting in the hotel lobby by open doors to the sidewalk…the internet works here at the moment but stopped working in our hotel room several hours ago.   The weather is getting exciting but not ultra scarey yet.  Blustery winds and blowing rain, street corners flooding, broken tree branches littering the sidewalks, awnings flapping and a few shredding.  Emergency vehicles speeding by, klaxon horns blaring.  Sitting here by the open doors I am hearing some crashing and clanking noises so presumably something is blowing down!

We have been on orange alert (schools and shops closed) but just now have upgraded to red alert (not allowed out on the streets at all).  Mike pulled in the above forecast awhile ago which shows us directly in the path. Since then our internet at the hotel went down so I starting texting Rod aboard AVATAR.  He picked up a forecast about 2 1/2 hours ago out of Nadi, Fiji, that was an improvement over what we have been reading so far. Rod’s reports from the marina:

8:30 am – Internet and power still working here.  Steady 35 gusting 45.  All’s well.

9:00 am – Forecast 30 minutes old.  Vania now 110 nautical miles from here.  Closest point of arrival 90 miles at about 3 pm.  Category 2 and weakening slowly.  I like my forecast better than yours – ha ha ha.  All probability it won’t be much worse than we have now.

9:17 am – Just been outside to check ropes.  Very windy on fly bridge. Bimini not moving.  Some small boats on the rocks.  I wonder if our wind instrument does under read?

If the center of the storm does miss us by 90 miles that will significantly lower the wind speeds that hit ashore…so fingers crossed. It is relatively exciting here at the moment.  I put on my foul weather gear and tucked my camera under my coat; went out to take some photos and video of the excitement – but gave a wide berth to any overhanging tree branches!  Came back sopping wet.  I’ll post photos/video when I have a chance to process them and hopefully internet still up and running by then.

We had a nice breakfast at the coffee shop associated with our Best Western Hotel le Paris, but they have just now kicked us all out, locking the doors and sending the employees home for the red alert.  We stocked up on a great picnic – bottle of wine, baguettes, croissants, cheese and meat plate, and cookies; also have bottled water and diet cokes in our room.  Not exactly diet fare but oh well – extenuating circumstances!  We are still getting our daily exercise – our room is on the 3rd floor and the hotel has wisely recommended that no one use the elevator (in case of power outage) so we are running up and down the flights of stairs frequently today!



  1. Hi Carol:
    Bet there are some good surfing shots to be had post cyclone – with Avatar. Wide angle, camera held on tripod over the side looking at bow.
    Looking forward to your photos.

  2. Carol, seems like catastrophic events occur where you are traveling or where you’ve just traveled. Volcanic Eruptions, Earthquakes, Hurricanes, and now this…, scary and thrilling all at the same time. You, Mike and Rod be safe and I hope that Avatar comes through without a scratch as well.

  3. This part of the world is called the Pacific Ring of Fire; goes with the territory! Here’s some Wikipedia info:

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