We did it. We signed up. Pacific crossing – here we come!
The Pacific Puddle Jump is a rally in only the loosest sense of the term. They have no dates (of departure or arrival), no ports (of departure, arrival or in between), and it is free. Latitude 38, who sponsors the event, has a good description.
If you go to the Pacific Puddle Jump main site you will see a Wauquiez Pretorien in the banner image (at the top). This is not us, but Piko, who crossed this last season and is currently in New Zealand.
Why sign up? Our main reason is that they negotiate a deal with an agency which allows boats (for a fee) to avoid posting a bond in French Polynesia. This bond is the equivalent of airfare back home for each person and ensures that we don’t become a burden on their society. If we become indigent, they ship us out with our own money. For various reasons, it is (apparently) a pain in the arse to post and retrieve your bond and the agencies essentially promise to pay for you if you become indigent – accepting the risk for you.
A secondary reason is that it is fun to announce your intentions, watch your name get added to the list and to see the list of your cohort growing.