What a day!! Had another cup of tea, it was awful but made me happy 😆
Day started at 5:45 with an angry Japanese man having a phone conversation in French on the balcony outside my sliding door… took me a while to realise what the hell was going on, after 15 minutes I realised he must be my neighbour that shares my balcony, presumably out there so as not to disturb his wife – obviously unaware that the sliding doors do NOTHING to block sound. After 20 minutes I got up and poked my head out the door and said bonjour and pointed very firmly to his own room. Lots of bowing and waving and off he fucked. Thank god. Then the wall guys started at 6:30… they’re doing a great job by the way! I’m really hoping they’ll be finished tomorrow!! This is the one morning I’d set my alarm – off on a Tahiti Safari Expedition! Which sounds slightly more exciting than it was, but only slightly 😆
Was picked up at 9:20 and gathered a few more along the way then headed to the centre of the north of the island, not too far from Pape’ete. There were a couple from Germany (Stuttgart – apparently NOT a beautiful place!) on their honeymoon (just babies! So young – she just finished school last year!!) a couple from Normandy (near Paris apparently) & a couple from the States (Arizona) – they are headed off to NZ tonight then Oz next week, they’re having an adventure 😃 The French couple didn’t speak much English but were really cool and had a ball – great sense of humour and adventure and the German couple were really fun – helped that we three were the smokers 😃
We headed to the centre of the island with lots of stops along the way, many photo stops and a snack break by a swimming hole in the river and then lunch at the centre. This is a 4WD trip – and it’s a bit dicey coming down the other side even then! Gorgeous! Pretty much rained the whole time, but nothing major. I went swimming in the crater of Tahiti! And got changed semi-discreetly in front of 4 4WD worth of tourists and drivers! Very much like being a kid again 😃 The German chick took a photo of me (swimming, not changing thank god) just to prove I did it 🤣
We had lunch at the top of the crater too (where I had my 3rd cup of tea since I got here – insane!!) which was surreal. There’s a restaurant and a wee village down below which is a model Tahitian village used for school trips to keep the heritage alive which is really cool. The guy that was driving us said all the kids go in there way too cool for school and come out all “ia ora na” and excited about Tahitian culture and language. Awesome!
The trip reminded me very much of Banks Penisula, other than the palms (not like the Nikau palms) and the bursts of hibiscus – so beautiful, going to try painting them. Of course it helped that we were bouncing around like kids in the back of a truck and the road was basically one way with backing up to let others pass. But the plants are pretty much the same, two of the guys confirmed that when we stopped for the swim – they think New Zealand is freezing and don’t understand why the plants do okay there 😏 One of them asked if I knew what this thing is (pointing at a pineapple growing with some kumara (umara in Tahitian – they don’t do k’s or w’s, skip the k’s altogether and turn the w into a v – so waka becomes va’a and wahine vahine. So close and yet so far…) and I told him I have one growing on my deck at home, but it doesn’t look so healthy ‘cos it got caught in one of the Wellington winds and tried to move to the chicken cage… still going though, and I’m glad to see that the ‘leaves’ are meant to be that colour!
Anyway – this has been one day where I am sore, probably not the best idea to subject my back to that kind of wild ride, but I don’t regret it – it was something very cool and I’ll never forget it. And it was lovely to spend a whole day (8 hours +, definitely worth the money) with people that could speak English – very parochial of me I know but it’s been a while since my last conversation 😃
The first shot is feeding the eels… the rest should be self explanatory. Well apart from the thumb photo…
P.S. weirdly the thumb nail I so proudly took a photo of below fell off the next night… so that is the last confirmed sighting of my blue thumbnail