Day 3,132 - New Caledonia (22° 27S 166° 46E)
10:46hrs - December 27th 2015
Frères de la Côte

The original Frères de la Côte, "Brothers of the Coast" or as they were more commonly referred to back then, pirates and buccaneers, were up to mischief and in their prime on the high seas in the 17th century. They were nice pirates mostly, or as nice as pirates can be with an honorable pirate code, but pirates and scallywags none the less, so it was with some interest that this weekend in Turtle Bay, we found ourselves surrounded by 12 boats flying the ensign of the New Caledonian table of Frères de la Côte!

After some discrete inspection on their part we were approached by two of the French pirates/sailors who on first seeing us had initially dismissed our boat because of the American flag, but after chatting for a while it turned out that one of them recognized us from his sailing in French Polynesia and as we talked we realized we had had a number of anchorages in common so we were promptly invited to join the evenings festivities ashore to regale the brothers with tales of our sailing adventures on the high seas.

Once ashore and in all their fine pirate regalia including an array of sharp weaponry and grand nautical headgear, we discovered that these men were not only enthusiastic and convincing pirates, but they were also a selection of active and retired French Army, Navy and Air Force with a sprinkling of doctors, lawyers and dentists, however tonight they were all simply brothers of the coast and pirates. They laughed, ate, drank and were very merry as they swore in a new member of their brotherhood with lots of rum, a small but very loud cannon and a lot, and I mean a lot, of singing. And then there was my personal favorite, the musicians, a mesmerizing bagpipe player and a flute player who played for the assembled pirates, families and guests, and we had the honor of being invited to sit in the middle of it all, and we enjoyed every moment of the whole wonderful spectacle.

The local sailing community here is very active and with steady trade winds all year the sailing is fast and fun with lots of places to go for weekend sails, so now we have been here a few months we've realized a lot of the boats we met this weekend are boats we have actually seen before in different anchorages in the lagoon, and meeting them all like this at the start of our yearlong stay here feels like very good luck indeed, we felt truly welcomed. Thank you Frères de la Côte, that was a lot of fun, I hope we can do it again soon!





Dec 26th, 2015   |   Baie de Prony, New Caledonia    The red rock summit of Ile Casy.  |   (22° 21.0'S / 165° 50.5' E)


Christmas Eve, 2015   |   Îlot Mato, New Caledonia    Lucky us - Santa's already doing the rounds in the South Pacific!   |   (22° 23.00'S / 166° 47.85' E)

Day 3,117 - New Caledonia (22° 17S 166° 25E)
10:46hrs - December 12th 2015
The Inconvenience of Cruising

A lot of work's required to make our little paradise, well, paradise - sailing routes and anchorages are carefully researched; weather is constantly monitored (especially now that it's cyclone season) drinking water is made with a desalinator; power is harnessed daily, either from the sun, wind or generator and its usage scrutinized down to the amp; trash often needs to be burned and laundry is cleaned in a bucket, although currently we have the luxury of a laundry service that only requires a five-minute dingy ride to the local fuel dock, where a rusty ladder is negotiated to make the delivery.

The cruising lifestyle is indeed a joyous adventure, but it's not always a convenient one. Like this week, for example, we had to refill our propane tanks (we carry two standard 20lb canisters for cooking), which in America would involve nothing more than a leisurely trip to the local hardware store or gas station. New Zealand, Tahiti, even Vanuatu all offer similar services - filling or replacing foreign tanks without hassle or significant effort. But for some reason New Caledonia offers no such convenience.

Short of converting Dream Time's propane system: hoses, connections and solenoid over to European fittings, we're left with no other option than to jury-rig our own gravity feed system - draining the contents of a European tank, which Is suspended aloft using the main halyard, into our empty American tank.

The hissing of released vapor, the smell of butane in the air, and the fact that in French New Caledonia smoking still appears to be very much in vogue, gives authorities the opinion that perhaps jury-rigging highly flammable liquid gas gravity feed systems, especially those that dangle precariously from the rigs of sailboats, may not be a very good idea.

But until New Caledonia offers visiting yachts a better solution to top-up their propane tanks, it's just one more small inconvenience we're happy to tolerate in order to keep living the dream.


One of the cartridges we found which is too corroded to identify the caliber.

Quick Fix: 22° 19.5 S / 166° 19.0 E
December 5th, 2015 (day 3,110)
Conditions:  Wind: 12/SE  Sky: Clear.

Scuba Souvenir
At the end of World War II rather than dealing with the costly prospect of shipping equipment back to America, or letting it fall into 'unfriendly' hands, the US military dumped all manner of munitions into the South Pacific, and on a recent scuba with my buddy Brad, we may have found some of the remains. During a drift dive through Passe de Boulari, and while clinging to the bottom to enjoy a low flying manta, we came across a handful of cartridges alongside what seemed to be the business end of some heavy-duty artillery. The nav' charts indicate that an area nearby was an 'EXPLOSIVE DUMPING GROUND' and prohibits any anchoring, fishing or underwater activities! Brad, I think, has managed to smuggle his souvenir back to LA, and I might just turn mine into a manly necklace.


Navigating i&D's awesome new website from the floating office.

Quick Fix: 22° 19.5 S / 166° 19.0 E
December 3rd, 2015 (day 3,108)
Conditions:  Wind: 10/E  Sky: Clear.

We've helped Bravo win an Emmy Award, our creative ideas
for Panasonic and Discovery won International Davey Design Awards, and as our clients say so many wonderful things about us, we decided to post it all on a new i&D website.

I opened i&D's creative doors almost twenty years ago (how time flies when you're having fun), but since I started working remotely from Dream Time, the New York headquarters is now navigated by three exceptionally talented designers - each dedicated to the pursuit of creative excellence, business partners that I am immensely proud of. Congratulations
'Dream Team', full steam ahead!
    Explore more at i&D >


Tieing-up loose ends - almost ready for cyclone season.

Quick Fix: 22° 16.6 S / 166° 26.4 E
December 1st, 2015 (day 3,106)
Conditions:  Wind: 30/ESE  Sky: Clear.

Loose Ends
Today we bought 120 meters, or four hundred feet, of 18mm line. It's fresh off the spool, clean, shiny and even has that new rope smell, it'll be a shame to get it dirty. But tomorrow, as part of our final cyclone preparedness procedure, we'll be hiring a professional diver to secure them to heavy-duty storm chains that run along the bottom of Port Moselle's Harbor - a murky, muddy, smelly underworld where our swanky new rope will soon become home to all manner of unsavory sea life. But if during cyclone season, which began a month ago, we're unfortunate enough to be visited by a named storm, at least we'll have mooring lines at the ready to secure Dream Time. And I guess if it comes to that, handling smelly lines will be the least of our worries.